F.B. Hole

1 Timothy 3

The third chapter is a continuation of the same general theme as occupied us in our reading of the second chapter; viz., the behaviour that becomes believers as being in the house of God. That this is the general subject is plainly stated in verse 15 of our chapter. Now God is a God of order and hence in the Christian assembly where He dwells all things are to be done "decently and in order" (1 Cor. 14: 40). For the furtherance of this the two offices of Bishop and Deacon had been es...

1 Timothy 5

Timothy had been entrusted with special responsibilities both as to teaching and as to order in the church. Consequently if he kept right and in a state of happy deliverance from these dangers he would be a minister of deliverance to many others. But then this might bring him into a measure of conflict with some. An elder even might need admonition as verse 1 of chapter 5 shows us, and Timothy must be careful not to set himself wrong in attempting to set him right. The truth teaches us ...

Introduction to Comments on 2 Timothy

We have no certain knowledge of how many years elapsed between the writing of the 1st and 2nd epistles to Timothy but evidently there had been sufficient time for the development of a big down-grade movement in the church of God. The diverse characters stamped upon the two Epistles make this quite plain. In the first epistle Timothy is instructed as to good order in the church and exhorted to maintain it in the presence of disorders that threatened it. In the second we find that, while th...

1 Timothy 4

Verse 1 of chapter 4 must be read in connection with the last two verses of chapter 3. God dwells in the church as His house by the Holy Spirit and the church is the pillar on which the truth is inscribed. Now the indwelling Spirit speaks in defence of the truth, warning of the devices of the devil to be expected in the latter times, and He speaks expressly, there is no indefiniteness about His utterances. When the Apostle wrote the Holy Spirit was still giving inspired messages thro...

2 Thessalonians 1

The second letter to the Thessalonians was evidently written not long after the first, while still they were young in the faith and the more likely to be misled by false teachers, especially in matters pertaining to the coming of the Lord. The opening words are almost exactly the same as in the first letter; Paul again associating with himself the same two fellow-labourers. The condition of this assembly still gave great joy and thankfulness to the Apostle. Their spiritual health w...

1 Thessalonians 4

As we open the fourth chapter of this epistle we find the Apostle turning to exhortation and instruction. The earlier chapters had been largely occupied with reminiscences both as regards the work of God, wrought in the Thessalonians, and also the behaviour and service of Paul and his fellow­workers in their midst. Now the Apostle addresses himself to the present needs of his much-loved converts. In the first chapter he had been able to say about them much that was highly commendato...

Philippians 1

In opening, Paul does not present himself as an apostle, but just as a bondman of Jesus Christ. Hence we are not to regard the experience which he is led to relate as being something apostolic, and therefore beyond the reach of ordinary Christians. On the contrary it is the experience of a bondman or servant, and we all are that. He addresses himself to those at Philippi who could be spoken of as "saints in Christ Jesus." Being in Christ they were set apart for God. They had bishops and...

Introduction to Philippians

The portion that now comes before us might be termed the Epistle of Christian experience. It is not characterized by the unfolding of doctrine, as are the epistles to the Romans and the Ephesians: any doctrine that it contains is brought in incidentally and not as the main theme. It is characterized by a spirit of great intimacy - for there was a very strong bond of affection between Paul and the Philippian saints - and by many personal details being given. Thus it comes to pass th...

Philippians 2

The opening verse of chapter 2 appears to be an allusion to the supplies from the Philippians which had reached Paul by the hand of Epaphroditus. These gifts had been to him a very refreshing expression of the love and compassion that marked them, and of the true fellowship of the Spirit that existed between himself and them. As a result his heart had been filled with consolation and comfort in the midst of his afflictions. Whilst recognizing however, the immediate application of this f...

Philippians 3

There was rejoicing then both for Paul and for the Philippians as regards Epaphroditus; but as we enter upon chapter 3 we find where the truest and most permanent rejoicing lies for the Christian. God may, and indeed often does, give us to experience His mercy and make our hearts glad, yet on the other hand often He has to pass us through the valley of weeping. But even if circumstances are permitted to move against us, and sickness end fatally, the Lord Himself remains the same. Our re...
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