Sermon or Lesson:  1 Timothy 1:1-4 (NIV based)
[Lesson Questions included]

TITLE:  Confront The Teaching Of False Doctrines

INTRO:  Have you ever been sick on a Sunday morning, so you stayed home and watched a church program on television?  Flipping through the channels, you briefly watched a variety of preachers, looking for one suitable to your religious beliefs.  As you listened to the content from each preacher, were you shocked and troubled as you observed how abundant and prevalent the teaching of false doctrines are on television?
     Let's look in our passage to see what God says regarding the teaching of false doctrine.

vv.1-2 - READ 

[Lesson Question:  What can be extrapolated in regard to the relationship between Paul and Timothy?]

SECTION POINT:  From various evidences, Paul has an excellent relationship with his subordinate fellow ministry worker Timothy.

- - Paul is writing a letter to Timothy.
- - Paul holds the authoritative ministry position of "apostle" - by the "command of God our Savior and of (Lord) Christ Jesus our hope".
- - Paul's usage of the term 'apostle' indicates he is writing from the ranking authority God has given him, and he is giving teaching to Timothy under the directive of God.

- - Timothy is a minister or deacon of Christ Jesus, young, a man of God, and stationed in Ephesus. 
(vv.4:6,12; 6:11; 1:3)
- - Paul regards and loves Timothy as "his true son in the faith", extending Timothy a warm blessing of "grace, mercy, and peace from" and on behalf of "God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord". 
(v.2; 1 Corinthians 4:17)
- - Timothy had been serving with Paul on their missionary trip to establish new churches and had proven himself to be a trustworthy reliable ministry assistant and companion to Paul. 
(Philippians 2:22; Romans 16:21)
- - A skim through the contents of this letter reveals that Paul regards Timothy as his trainee or apprentice.

v.3 - READ

[Lesson Question:  Develop the characteristics of what Timothy is being instructed to do in his ministry.]

SECTION POINT:  Those persons engaged in teaching false doctrines are to be singled out, confronted, and commanded to stop.

- - Timothy is to remain in Ephesus and confront the teaching of false doctrines, which are contrary and/or destructive to "sincere", "genuine, pure, non-hypocritical faith".  (
from Strong's #0505 - v.5; and AHD - 'sincere')
- - Paul had previously "urged" Timothy to confront the teaching of false doctrines and now he is again directing Timothy to do this - suggesting this is a very important matter for Timothy to attend to.
- - In confronting those persons who are teaching false doctrines, Timothy is to "command" them, "prohibiting, forbidding, and directing them with authority and emphasis". 
(from Strong's #3853 - "enjoin"; with AHD - 'enjoin')
- - Notice that "command" does not contain the tone of asking or suggesting or waiting for or compromising or negotiating with those persons to stop teaching false doctrines. 
- - "Command" is a prompt decisive firm exerting of direct impacting authority, wielded against those specific "certain men" to stop their teaching of false doctrines in the church.
- - In his ministry, Timothy is to identify, and single out, and confront these "certain men", assertively implementing and enforcing the immediate termination of their false teaching activities.

Logically, this kind of confrontation may begin by:
- - "refuting" or exhortative reasoning which presents proofs that their doctrines are false or erroneous, 
(Titus 1:9; AHD - 'refute')
- - and then (as necessary) followed by "sharp rebuke", 
(Titus 1:13)
- - and then if they still refuse to repent, they "must be silenced" altogether. 
(Titus 1:11)

v.4 - READ, with v.3 for context

SECTION POINT:  Those persons devoted to doctrines derived from myths and genealogies are likewise to be singled out, confronted, and commanded to stop.

- - Paul is also again urging and directing Timothy to command certain persons not "to devote themselves to", "pay attention to, hold their mind towards, apply themselves to, or adhere to" "myths and endless genealogies". 
(Strong's #4337 - "to devote")
- - These false doctrines, myths, and endless genealogies "promote controversies" in churches and ministries, generating and fostering "doubts, disputes", "useless speculations, questionings", and discontent. 
(from Strong's #2214 - "controversies", with AMP) 
- - Thereby, these controversies are not only useless and unproductive, but they are also counterproductive to the accomplishing of "God's work" that these churches and ministries are to be focused on and doing.
- - Not much ministry work will get done if its people are distracted and occupied with addressing the presence and perhaps proliferation of false doctrines, myths, and genealogies within its ranks.
- - God has purposed and designed that the "stewardship and administration" of accomplishing His ministry "work" is to be based upon and spring forth from solid unwavering "faith" in the "sound doctrines" derived from appropriately interpreting the Scriptures, His Word. 
(v.4; Strong's #3622 - "work"; vv.10-11; cf. 2 Timothy 4:2-4)

BIG IDEA:  Churches, ministries, and their workers are to monitor what is being taught, and confront the teaching of false doctrines, myths, and any theology that wanders from appropriate interpreting of God's Word.



[Lesson Question:  What requirements and dynamics would be expected if the teaching of false doctrine is to be confronted in a church or ministry?]

- - Confronting false teaching in ministries requires exerting an ongoing alertness for false teaching, which thereby necessitates regular monitoring of what is being taught.
- - Monitoring what is being taught involves direct observation, discernment, and identification.
- - When false teaching has been found, then documentation, confrontation, and follow-up are required.

- - From 1 Timothy chapter 1 and other passages, the teaching of false doctrines is a serious urgent matter to God, and therefore failing to take confrontative action against the teaching of false doctrines is not acceptable to God. 
(cf. Titus 1:9-2:1; 1 Timothy 6:3-5; 2 Timothy 3:16-4:4)
- - Failing to take confrontative action would include: doing nothing about the teaching of false doctrine; hoping the false teaching stops on its own; delaying taking confrontative action; approving of the false doctrine; or allowing the teaching of false doctrine in order to achieve or sustain some benefit.

- - Maintaining the teaching of sound doctrine should be a very high priority and continuous endeavor for God's people, for those in ministry, and especially for those leading a ministry.
- - Minimally, the leadership of the church or the ministry should be highly supportive when confronting of false teaching is being initiated and conducted.
- - Furthermore, there should be no fear, reluctance, or hindering due to potential or anticipated loss of attendance numbers, bad-mouthing, disparaging of reputation, or loss of leadership standing in the church or ministry.
- - According to this passage, the doctrinal and relational health of the congregation is at stake, thus being well worth any consequential costs from conducting the confrontation to stop the teaching of false doctrines, myths, and etc.


- - Do you regard the teaching of false doctrine as being a serious threat?
- - Do you regard the teaching of false doctrine as being an urgent matter that would need to be dealt with right away?
- - Does your church or ministry have a way or system in place that regularly monitors what is being taught?
- - Do you check out for yourself the teaching that is occurring?
- - Or do you assume all is well?
- - Or do you take someone else's word for it?
- - Do you have someone in your church or ministry that has the courage to confront false teaching?
- - And do you support and backup that person who is doing the confronting of the teaching of false doctrine?

Works Cited:
The American Heritage Dictionary. 3rd ed., ver. 3.6a (CD-ROM). Cambridge, MA: SoftKey International Inc., 1994.

Bible. The Comparative Study Bible: A Parallel Bible Presenting New International Version, New American Standard Bible,
     Amplified Bible, King James Version
. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1984.

Bible. “The Holy Bible: New International Version.” The Bible Library CD-ROM. Oklahoma City, OK: Ellis Enterprises, 1988.

“Strong's Greek Dictionary.” The Bible Library CD-ROM. Oklahoma City, OK: Ellis Enterprises, 1988.
Scriptures taken from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®
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Updated:  September 1, 2016