Saturday, April 21, 2007

As of late, we have been going through the book of 1 Timothy at a fairly slow rate. I would like to speed this up so I could get through the rest of the Pastorals! :=)

This morning, we continue where we left off last time with Paul in the first verses of 1 Timothy four and his prediction that in the latter times (that is, the church age in which we now live) some will apostasize from the faith thus giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons. This is what he says:

1 Timothy 4:1-2 But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, 2 by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron,

Now we must continue to the next few verses and hear how this plays out in these hypocrites and apostates:

1 Timothy 4:3-5 3 men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods, which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. 4 For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude; 5 for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.

My purpose this morning is just to recall your attention to various articles that were brought forth at the end of last year (2006) regarding the fact that:

"The Vatican on Thursday reaffirmed the requirement of celibacy for priests after a summit led by Pope Benedict XVI that was spurred by a married African archbishop who has been excommunicated from the Roman Catholic Church."

Now in my Bible - and in the text printed above - the Scriptures spoke of these deceivers saying that marriage is to be forbidden. The verbal participle here has the idea of continuous, habitual action. They will be constantly forbidding marriage. This is exactly what Romanism (i.e. Roman Catholicism) has done through the centuries - even to the present.

More from the article:

"The participants at the reunion were carefully briefed on the requests to receive dispensation from the obligation of celibacy that have been made in recent years and on the possibility of being readmitted to the exercise of the ministry of priests who now meet the conditions required by the church," the statement said.

It seems to me that the Scriptures teach that one ought to get married except for a select few who have the divine privilege of being celibate (Matt 19:10-12). But elsewhere in Scripture you have the clear imperatives that most people are to marry, love their wives/husbands and raise children in a way that honors and glorifies the Savior.

We must hold firm to the Word of God. We understand that from this text alone (1 Tim 4:3) that this specific teaching that "men are forbidden to marry" as a specific dogma is sourced in a deceiving spirit and a doctrine from demons.

We know that:

1 Timothy 4:4-5 4 For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude; 5 for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.

Marriage was an institution created by God.

Genesis 2:18 18, 23-25- Then the LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him... 23 And the man said, "This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man." 24 For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. 25 And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.

To God be all the glory!

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