Maligning the Word of God

There are a few passages in the Pastoral Epistles that warn against “maligning the word of God.” I thought it would be profitable to look at those passages so as to understand the setting in which Paul used them, as well as the different examples he uses to make the same point, which should ultimately provide for us a direct line of application for our context.

First the passages that Paul uses and the context.

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. (Titus 2:3-5 ESV)

Let all who are under a yoke as bondservants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled.
(1 Timothy 6:1 ESV)

It’s interesting to note that both of the instances Paul uses this phrase has to do with submission. As we mentioned, he is specifically dealing with social constructs, but what implications do these exhortations have for us?

And finally, what is the application for us? In all we do we should strive to uphold the name of God and the teaching that flows from His name. If we profess to be followers of Christ, then our actions (submission) should bring glory to God’s name, as the life of Christ did. He lived to glorify the Father.

Let us then, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. The implications of this practice for the church body is transformational. Think how our lives and our congregations would be realigned if we truly sought to count others as more important than ourselves.

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