Servants and Masters 1 Tim. 6:1-5 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
In 1 Tim 6:1-5, Paul taught Timothy about the relationship between servants and masters, particularly servants who are “under the yoke.” That is, they are bond servants, as in Lev 26:13, where the Jews were bondservants in Egypt.
Bond service is mentioned in Lev 25:39-46, where a person becomes the possession of another. Jews could not be bond servants to Jews. See Ex 21:2-6; Deut 15:12-18 for the proper treatment of a Jew who sells himself to another Jew. Slave trade, stealing men and selling them, was prohibited and is covered in Ex 21:16.
A bond servant is to:
Honor his master – 1 Tim 6:1 – his master is worthy of honor because he is his master. It’s a matter of respect for authority. And even if the master is cruel [1 Pet 2:18-19], the servant is to honor him. Great examples are Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, Joseph [Gen 39], and the maid in 2 Ki 5.
A servant’s failure to honor his master blasphemes [to curse or revile] the name of God and his doctrine. In 1 Tim 6:3, we see that the words of Jesus on this subject establish the doctrine [Matt 20:25-28]. See Titus 2:4-5 for another example of how the word of God is blasphemed when a proper authority is not honored. If you are not under the authority of those over you, you are not under the authority of God or his words and this is blasphemy.
Not despise his saved master – 1 Tim 6:2 – servants shouldn’t despise them because they are saved. Paul, in 1 Cor 7:20-24, encourages servants to remain servants, though they may be made free, for testimony. In Phile 10-16, Onesimus escaped from Philemon. Paul led him to the Lord and sent him back to Philemon, though he could have kept him from going back [Deut 23:15-16]. A servant is to serve his saved master because a brother in Christ is faithful and beloved and each is a partaker of the benefit [Paul mentions this eternal benefit in Eph 6:5-9].
Paul told Timothy that he was to teach and exhort this doctrine. He said that a man who would teach otherwise fails to consent to wholesome words [the words of Jesus] and to the doctrine according to godliness [the contrary doctrine is according to worldliness]. The doctrine of the world today is absolutely in contrast to this doctrine.
A man who teaches otherwise is:
- Proud – pride goeth before destruction
- Knowing nothing – see the stark contrast in Prov 9:4-6, 13
- Doting about questions and strifes of words – doting is to be hung up on. See 2 Tim 2:14
- envy – the Pharisees envied Jesus Matt 27:18; Prov 27:3-4
- strife – Jas 3:14-16
- railings – reproach, violent complaint
- evil surmising – conjecture, imagination – you find much of this in the media
- perverse disputing – by men with corrupt minds
- Destitute of the truth
- Wrong – he supposes that gain is godliness. He measures success by crowds and dollars.
Paul says, “From such withdraw thyself.” Like Titus 3:10; Rom 16:17. Separation is the solution.