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1 Timothy 3:14-15

1 Timothy 3:14-15


Series: The Church
Sermon: The Church: The House of God
Bible Passage: 1 Timothy 3:14-15

I. Introductory considerations:

1. This epistle was written after Paul was allowed to travel from Rome after his first imprisonment, i.e., after Acts 28
2. He came to Ephesus via Crete

a. Titus at Crete (Titus 1:5)
b. Timothy at Ephesus (1:3, 8)
c. He instructed them with church leadership
d. These letters were “aide memoire” or “written summaries” of his instructions
e. He wrote 1 Timothy most likely from Nicapolis (3:12) or Philippi or Thessalonica (1:3)—Macedonia, somewhere between AD 63 and 65

3. 1 Timothy 3:15 is the center of the epistle—it is the purpose statement

a. Life style of the Christians in Ephesus is the primary subject of this epistle
b. Besides being the largest cosmopolitan city, Ephesus also housed the temple of Artemis (cf. Acts 19:27-28 “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians”)
c. Most likely, verse 15 carries contrast between the “house of God” and “house of Artemis”

II. The unhealthy status of Ephesian Church was behind the composition of this epistle

1. Spiritually unqualified leaders were posing a threat to the life and ministry of the church

a. Some were teaching doctrines which are not in concurrence with the teachings of the church (1:3; 4:3)
b. Some were teaching heresies which disturbed the redemptive plan of God—Gnostics (1:4; 4:3; 6:4, 20-21)
c. Some were promoting Jewish legalism in the place of Christian freedom (1:7)
d. Some leaders like Hymenaeus and Alexander have rejected sound Christian faith (1:19-20; cf. Acts 20:30)—most likely they were quite popular among the believers of Ephesus
e. Most likely, some of the leaders of the Ephesian Church(es) had questionable moral character (4:2; 5:19-20; 6:5)
f. Most likely, church leaders were appointed hastily, without a proper assessment and preparation (3:1-13; 5:22)

2. Some teachers of heresies found some women followers (2:9–15; 5:3–16; 2 Tim 3:6–9)

III. The potential meaning of the expression “house of God” (3:15)

1.  A place where God is immanent to be approached and experienced.
2. A place where people come together to meet God
3. “Father’s House”
4. A big shift from physical building to the followers of Jesus: “we are his house” (cf. Heb 3:6)
5. In light of the above, the metaphor “house of God” in verse 15 conveys:

a. God’s family or household of God
b. A place where God makes Himself immanent
c. A place people come to see God
d. A place Jesus is zealous about

6. It is the church of the living God
7. It is the pillar of the Christian truth (verse 15)
8. It is the foundation of the Christian truth (verse 15)

Take Away

Conduct yourselves appropriate/suitable to your membership in God’s house because you represent God to the society

1. You are the church of the living God (a community that belongs to God)

a. Those who belonged to the living God must overflow with His life
b. Being belong to the living God is both a privilege and responsibility

2. You are the pillar and foundation of God’s truth

a. Promoter and preserver of truth, not deviating to some self-promoting philosophies/ideologies
b. The manner of your life at the church has a missional effect to the public

3. The word “conduct yourself” is in middle voice—(an action done to yourself)
4. Their lifestyle needs to be distinguished by holiness

a. Who your associates are!
b. Who you listen to!
c. What ideologies you lean towards!

5. It is not enough to recite the creeds and intellectually know some doctrines, but they need to be fully committed to the incarnate Son of God (3:16)

a. Being fully committed involves making adjustments to our preferences, friendship, influences, etc
b. Being fully committed involves putting oneself back to the teaching of the Scripture

Speaker: William J. Subash

Born and raised in south India, William J. Subash became a follower of Jesus Christ in 1983 at the age of nineteen. After a brief career in a tea and coffee plantation, Subash decided to spend rest of his life to preach about Jesus and his life-transforming message of God, which is popularly known as “the Gospel.” Subash teaches New Testament Studies at two institutions: SAIACS in India and Liberty University Online, VA, USA. Currently, Subash serves as the chief point person for GROW Gospel Initiatives and the Lead Pastor of the Crossroad Church, Bangalore. Write to him at