1 Timothy 1:16-20
1 Tim 1:16 (KJB)
Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.
Pattern - Example, form, or standard
Paul reiterates the fact that he obtained mercy from the Lord Jesus Christ even while he was on his tirade against the church. Here though Paul gives the reason that he was given mercy. It shows the great longsuffering or patience of the Lord Jesus had toward the apostle Paul. Jesus knew full well that Paul had desired to make shipwreck of the entire church in every place he could. The Damascus road was Paulís time of visitation when the Lord Jesus saved him and gave him a new life. Paul speaks about the longsuffering of the Lord Jesus toward him as an example to every single believer, which means that each believer who was named before the foundation of the world will have a specific time when they will become saved. (2 Pet 3:9 KJV) The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. Now 2 Peter 3:9 specifically states that God is not willing that any should perish and that any is referring to the Elect who was named before the foundation of the world. Until the last one named is saved according to the timing of the Lord, He is longsuffering in that He knows that not everyone will become saved at the same time and in each succeeding year, people become saved and it will continue until the last day. We live in time but the Lord lives in eternity which means He already sees everything as completed while in time the last one must be saved. (Eph 2:6 KJV) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: Ephesians 2:6 already teaches us that God sees the salvation completed and all the believers are at home in Heaven.
1 Tim 1:17 (KJB)
Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Immortal - Imperishable or incorruptible
As Paul began this section with thanksgiving, he now ends it with tremendous praise that teaches us some attributes about God. First he calls God a King which he is as King of the entire universe, Heaven, and earth. There is no one higher than Him. Then Paul states God is eternal, that is, He has no beginning and He has no end. Try to sit down and ponder that with a mind of flesh. Then Paul calls Him immortal which means that He will never perish nor can he ever be corrupted. Then Paul calls Him invisible which means that He is invisible to the naked eye on earth and that is good because if God ever showed His full glory, we would all be consumed by it. Someday all the believers will see Him in all His glory because we will have been qualified to see Him without any harm coming to us. Then Paul tells us He is the only wise God. Jude also calls Him wise. (Jude 1:25 KJV) To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and for ever. Amen. With the false god of Diana in Ephesus, she would not be considered wise because that cult leads people into eternal damnation. The true God being wise gives us the way of salvation through His Son so we may escape the sins of the cults and false religions. The wisdom of God also baffles the world as we read in 1 Corinthians 1-3. Paul then goes on to say that our God should be honored as the great King that He is and be glorified for eternity which the believers will partake in. Paul finalizes this statement with amen, which means that is final.
1 Tim 1:18 (KJB)
This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare;
Charge - Instruction or command
Commit - Give over, entrust, or commend
Mightest war - Serve as a soldier or to serve in an army
Warfare - Military expedition or campaign
Paul now resumes the charge which he made to Timothy in verse 3. This charge is not one to be taken lightly because of what it contains. Paul is charging Timothy based upon the prophecies which went before on him. These are not the prophecies of the Old Testament but rather the testimony which Timothy held and was given a good reference as a man of God. Timothy had a Christian upbringing in a Christian home and since the Bible had not yet been completed, prophecies in the form of dreams or visions was still possible and maybe some had them concerning Timothy as God wanted Paul to appoint Timothy to the office of pastor in the church at Ephesus. So Timothy was definitely trusted by Paul and gave him the charge that he needs to take the position in the church as one who is going to war. Timothy, like all Christians, must face the unbelieving and religious world as one who is a soldier ready for battle. Spiritual warfare is not for the weak or lazy because every believer fights the army of Satan. This is why the majority of churches are useless because they hire a pastor who instead of going to war against the forces of darkness, lay back, get their sermons off the internet and never engage the enemy, instead, many would rather have Satan take over their church with false gospels as long as it doesnít affect the good givers. True Christianity is a constant declaration of war against the forces of Satan! True Christianity marches on and does not retreat in the face of the enemy! This is why a wimp in the pulpit is dangerous because they retreat and acquiesce as long as they maintain their position.
1 Tim 1:19 (KJB)
Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:
Holding - Keep, posses or cling to
Put away - A deliberate rejection
Shipwreck - Fail or be destroyed
Paul tells Timothy that there are two ways that one fights a good fight. The first is that he must maintain faith in the Lord Jesus Christ because it is only though Him that Timothy or any Christian will have victory in spiritual warfare. We are nor warring against flesh and blood but against the powers of evil. (2 Cor 10:4-5 KJV) (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) {5} Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; Our weapons are mighty through God such as prayer. Then Paul states that Timothy must have a good conscience. Unsaved people have a darkened conscience. (Eph 4:18 KJV) Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: The conscience is designed by God to give a person the ability to know what is right from wrong and to act accordingly. When man sinned the understanding of the heart became darkened and with it the conscience. This is why a person can do harm to another and enjoy it because their conscience is dead in sin. Paul tells Timothy to posses a good conscience, one that has been saved and enlightened with the gospel of Christ thus enabling him to make proper decisions about what is right and wrong, plus the ability to wage a proper spiritual war. You never win a spiritual battle by physically hurting someone as we read in 2 Cor. 10:4-5 because the unbeliever is just the front line private for Satanís army and unbelief can only be removed by belief, that is, salvation in Christ. Paul tells Timothy that there are some who have completely rejected the faith and walk with a darkened conscience which results in the fact that they made shipwreck of their lives.
1 Tim 1:20 (KJB)
Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.
When Paul speaks of Alexander, he may be referencing the Coppersmith. (2 Tim 4:14 KJV) Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: Then he mentions Hymenaeus. (2 Tim 2:17-18 KJV) And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; {18} Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some. He was a false teacher who created a teaching that the resurrection was already past. Paul deals with these by delivering them to Satan which would mean they would be sent out of the church into the world and if they become saved, then they would be welcomed back but if not they would not infect the believers anymore with false teachings. This way, if they lack an audience there will be no blasphemy unless they prove that they are unsaved and start a false church. Now these men were sent out of the church for the purpose of seeing them become saved not as an act of retribution. Church discipline always has the intended goal of restoration and not vengeance.