Paul continues to teach and encourage Timothy to adhere to the true confession of faith that Timothy made, just like Jesus did before Pontius Pilate (v.13). Any teaching that goes away from the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and godliness is false teaching (v.3). False teachers usually want to take the gospel and add to, or subtract from, it. This adding on usually includes elements of themselves, leading to conceit, arguments and a belief that godliness is a means of false financial gain. Timothy is encouraged not to hold back when dealing with false teaching and false teachers.
In v.10 we come to one of the verses of Scripture that is often misquoted: money is the root of all evil. No – the verse says – ‘For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils’. When our love for something or someone becomes greater than our love of Jesus, then we are in trouble. This leads to discontentment, something the modern advertising expert latches onto. How many times do we see the phrase “Must have” or “Love, Want, Have” in advertising from all directions? Contentment seems a rare commodity.
Paul, in v.6, links contentment with godliness, saying there is great gain in it. There seems to be a real lack of contentment in society these days and sometimes this penetrates into the church. We need to direct our discontentment towards pursuing:
‘Fight the good fight of the faith’, Paul exhorts in v.12. It is a battle we are in until Christ returns for his church. Paul lost one of his co-workers, Alexander, due to his love of money, even though he was a believer. How many people can you think of who have left churches and their faith over other distractions.
Timothy is encouraged to guard the deposit entrusted to him. We are building foundations for the future through our generosity, sharing of all God has richly given to us. God’s work and his church uses money but let’s not let it become a stumbling block for anyone. God’s grace to us shows how much he has given us. Thank you Lord.