No Debate August 11
I Timothy 3:16
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
When you first read this scripture, it can be a little perplexing. It’s the deep knowledge of God and who God is.
The books to Timothy, written by the Apostle Paul, are pastoral epistles addressing conduct, behavior, and qualifications for positions in the church. The first sentence in this verse: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:
There is so much controversy surrounding the bible, but here Paul is saying that without argument that godliness is a mystery, but why would he write this? Wasn’t Paul one of the godliest men that ever lived?
The answer is yes and no. Paul started off pursuing godliness by persecuting the church, torturing and even putting to death Christians, and forcing Christians to recant Christ. Beating people with absolute hatred thinking he was doing this for God, and yet, he was doing this against God.
Others will cut themselves and beat their backs with whips and cords trying to attain this godliness. Sadly, in a twist of irony, Timothy was killed trying to stop the ungodly procession of the goddess Dianna. He wanted to prevent people from the worship of idols.
Now you see where the mystery comes in; people search for godliness.
Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts.
In the following sentence, Paul puts his foot down. God was manifest in the flesh. He straight up says Jesus Christ was God!
It’s hard for us to grasp that Jesus is God, but in the same sense, it should bring you peace in knowing that God came to live and die for us. He looked for a man to stand in the gap but found no one.
On the road to Damascus, Saul discovered who he was and left his old identity, his old form of godliness, and took on a new identity in Christ. Now he has become the Apostle Paul, an Ambassador for Christ. With a new understanding that godliness only comes through Jesus Christ.
And how did Jesus instruct us?
Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
This is the first and great commandment.
And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
He is: Immanuel
God with Us