Friday, April 11, 2008

How We should Act

Today we start in1 Timothy 5. In the ESV this chapter is all one section, but that's too big for me to do in one sitting, so I'll be breaking it down a bit.
1 Do not rebuke an older man but encourage him as you would a father, younger men as brothers, 2older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, in all purity.

Four age groups are mentioned in these two verses. Old men, younger men, older women, younger women.

Treat all these age groups like family.
All older men as if they were your father - to be encouraged.
Younger men like your brother.
Older women like your mother.
Younger women like your sister, with all purity.

Treat them like family.
How do you treat your family?
Have you learned the respect, the give and take, the love and enjoyment of each other?
As a man, can you interact with younger women in a morally pure manner?
Of course to me I a woman, can I interact with younger men in a morally pure manner as well?

Hmmm...reading these verses puts up lots of questions in my brain.

How do people read this who don't have family, or who grew up in families that were very dysfunctional? How do people read this who have learned that brothers and sisters aren't really the nicest people in the world? That perhaps their parents could be cruel or unthinking? How do we show such people that what being part of a family really means?

How easy is it for us to dismiss the seniors in our congregation? How do we encourage them?

Does this also mean the seniors should see all the younger folks as sons and daughters? If so, would this change anything in how we all interact?

When people read these verses do they look at what they are doing that might violate, or hinder others in treating them this way? For and women who like to flirt -- are they helping or hindering others in treating them like brothers and sisters in a pure manner? Young women who come to church dressed to the nines...with more showing than they aught, how are they helping young men treat them with purity as sisters?

How do people learn how to treat others with purity and respect if they haven't grown up with it in their own physical families? How do people learn to do this?

I think having good examples help.
Knowing the bible and being open to God is the biggest help.
Praying for each other is a huge boon....if you pray for someone I find it often opens my eyes to ways that I can just show love to them.

What do you think?

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