Need help understanding widows

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by minnesota slim, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. minnesota slim

    minnesota slim
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    1 Timothy 5:3-16

    3 Give proper recognition to those widows who are really in need. 4 But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God. 5 The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help. 6 But the widow who lives for pleasure is dead even while she lives. 7 Give the people these instructions, so that no one may be open to blame. 8 Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

    9 No widow may be put on the list of widows unless she is over sixty, has been faithful to her husband, 10 and is well known for her good deeds, such as bringing up children, showing hospitality, washing the feet of the Lord’s people, helping those in trouble and devoting herself to all kinds of good deeds.

    11 As for younger widows, do not put them on such a list. For when their sensual desires overcome their dedication to Christ, they want to marry. 12 Thus they bring judgment on themselves, because they have broken their first pledge. 13 Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they ought not to. 14 So I counsel younger widows to marry, to have children, to manage their homes and to give the enemy no opportunity for slander. 15 Some have in fact already turned away to follow Satan.

    16 If any woman who is a believer has widows in her care, she should continue to help them and not let the church be burdened with them, so that the church can help those widows who are really in need.


    I'm sort of posting this for my wife, since I couldn't really give her any good answers. Here are her questions to me, and I appreciate any help anyone can give.

     
  2. Dr. Walter

    Dr. Walter
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    Paul is writing to Timothy who is the pastor in the congregation at Ephesus. This relates to widows in the congregation. Verse 3 qualifies those widows which are to be financially supported by the congregation as those "really in need." These are defined in verses, 5, 9-10





    The congregation should not financially support widows who have family to provide for them. To do so, would be to encourage irresponsibility of that family to care for its own (v.8). The widow who is "really in need" has no one but God to help her (v. 5).


    5 The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help.

    The ungodly widow is not qualified to be financially supported by the congregation




    Here is the Biblical qualifications for those widows who are to be placed on the list for financial support by the congregation.


    Paul does not mean to deny any temporary need for widows unqualified for full financial support by the congregation but rather they are not to depend upon the congregation for their support but to remarry. Most would be disqualified because they do have family to support them as verse 16 indicates. The married woman in the household, (most likely the mother of the younger widows) who is a believer, who has younger widows in her family ought to care for them rather than the congregation. The family should never shift to the church what is their responsibility as a family.

    16 If any woman who is a believer has widows in her care, she should continue to help them and not let the church be burdened with them, so that the church can help those widows who are really in need.
     
  3. billwald

    billwald
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    We don't know what prompted Psuedo Paul to write this letter. It was probably written after Paul's death. Thread demonstrates the futility of trying to formulate doctrine after reading only one half of an exchange.
     
  4. Dr. Walter

    Dr. Walter
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    I know of know authentic demonstratable evidence that any Psuedo Paul was the author of 1 Timothy? Conservative scholarship has put to rest the lame accusations of liberals against this epistle of Paul.
     

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