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Bible Dictionaries

Smith's Bible Dictionary

Timothy The Epistles of Paul to

Tim'othy, The Epistles of Paul to. The Epistles to Timothy and Titus are called the Pastoral Epistles, because they are principally devoted to directions, about the work of the pastor of a church. The First Epistle to Timothy was probably written from Macedonia, A.D. 65, in the interval between St. Paul's first and second imprisonments at Rome. The absence of any local reference, but that in 1 Timothy 1:3, suggests Macedonia, or some neighboring district. In some manuscripts and versions, Laodicea is named in the inscription, as the place from which it was sent.

The Second Epistle to Timothy appears to have been written A.D. 67 or 68, and in all probability at Rome. The following are the characteristic features of these Epistles: -

(1) The ever-deepening sense in St. Paul's heart of the divine mercy of which he was the object, as shown in the insertion of the "mercy" in the salutations of both Epistles, and in the "obtained mercy" of 1 Timothy 1:13.

(2) The greater abruptness of the Second Epistle. From first to last there is no plan, no treatment of subjects carefully thought out. All speaks of strong overflowing emotion memories of the past, anxieties about the future.

(3) The absence, as compared with St. Paul other Epistles, of Old Testament references. This may connect itself with the fact just noticed, that these Epistles are not argumentative, possibly also with the request for the "books and parchments" which had been left behind. 2 Timothy 4:13.

(4) The conspicuous position of the "faithful sayings" as taking the place, occupied in other Epistles, by the Old Testament Scriptures. The way in which these are cited as authoritative, the variety of subjects which they cover, suggests the thought that in them, we have specimens of the prophecies of the apostolic Church, which had most impressed themselves on the mind of the apostle, and of the disciples generally. 1 Corinthians 14:1, shows how deep a reverence, he was likely to feel for spiritual utterances. In 1 Timothy 4:1, we have a distinct reference to them.

(5) The tendency of the apostle's mind, to dwell more on the universality of the redemptive work of Christ, 1 Timothy 2:3-6; 1 Timothy 4:10, and his strong desire that all the teaching of his disciples should be "sound."

(6) The importance attached by him, to the practical details of administration. The gathered experience of a long life had taught him that, the life and well being of the Church required these for its safeguards.

(7) The recurrence of doxologies, 1 Timothy 1:17; 1 Timothy 6:15-16; 2 Timothy 4:18, as from one living perpetually in the presence of God, to whom the language of adoration was as his natural speech.

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Bibliography Information
Smith, William, Dr. Entry for 'Timothy The Epistles of Paul to'. Smith's Bible Dictionary. 1901.

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