1 TIMOTHY 6:3-10 | Whoever teaches otherwise and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that is in accordance with godliness, is conceited, understanding nothing, and has a morbid craving for controversy and for disputes about words. From these come envy, dissension, slander, base suspicions, and wrangling among those who are depraved in mind and bereft of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain. Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it; but if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. But those who want to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.
Timothy is encouraged to struggle for some things and against others. In our vivid passage today, Paul describes the way any teacher of faith must fight for the truth against false and pernicious versions of Christian thinking. False thinking among Jesus’ followers is not like getting your sums wrong or mistaking the capitals of the states; it leads to dissension, wrangling, envy and division. Some controversies can go on and on distracting communities and displacing the real work of God. Moreover, materialism, understood here as the discontented desire for ever more in possessions and resources, must be resisted.
How contented are you?
Have you ever seen dissension and wrangling in a church?
Pray that our teachers can “agree with the sound teaching of Jesus Christ.”