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pt.4 The Husband of One Wife (1 Timothy 3:1-11)






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Compiled by JS LOWTHER

Part 4 

Chapter 3:1-11



A Creed
1 Timothy 1:15-17

This is a faithful saying,
and worthy of all acceptation, that:
Christ Jesus – came into the world
to save sinners;
Of whom – I am chief.

For this cause – I obtained mercy,

That- In me first
Jesus Christ
Might shew forth – all longsuffering,
For a pattern – to them
Which should hereafter – believe on him
To life everlasting.

As He is: King:
The only wise God,
Honored and glorified
forever and ever

1Ti_3:1  This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
1Ti 3:2  A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
1Ti 3:3  Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
1Ti 3:4  One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
1Ti 3:5  (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
1Ti 3:6  Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
1Ti 3:7  Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

1Ti 3:11  Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

1Ti_3:1  This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop (epi-scope) , he desireth a good work.

( A man who desires to be the Overseer of his Unit of 10, 50, 100 or 1000, this is not just a position in the church building, this is a man who desires to be the Head Judge of the unite of his family and that his family is part of, and Paul says this is not a conceited desire this is a good work he desires.
Now Remember all good works answer to the standard of what is Good by the Word of God, thus by the Law of God, and so in context to our prior chapters Paul is continuing to seat the aims of this desire upon that proper economy of God in Faith, and very much so this is a part of the household law of God, especially to teach the Gospel and to Oversee the sheep in need of guidance to keep them ready to fight for the faith and protect against the blasphemy of those who would abuse the law by using it lawfully.)
So in that light consider the whole:

1Ti_3:1  … If a man desire the office of a bishop (epi-scope) , he desireth a good work.

1Ti_3:2  A bishop / Overseer then must be:
1. blameless, G423 an-epi-lēptos in the ABP as unassailable. lit. means “not over taken”.

2. the husband of one wife /
ειναιG1510 V-PAN μιαςG1520 A-GSF γυναικοςG1135 N-GSF ανδραG435 N-ASM


This specific command should be noticed to only applying to men as it is a husband of one wife.
Now, in the primary and first context of what this epistle has spoken of prior in chapter 2 must needs be remembered as we consider the wife this man is to have in enquiring into the future context and immediate context of these qualifications.
I believe this is speaking strictly in this way as a man who is the husband of a wife, that is he has a wife, not that he had a wife but the Greek word ei-nai is present tense having and all that is after speaks in the possessive state or genitive and the husband being such: ‘Having his owe wife that he is the man of’ is the sense I believe this Greek statement is speaking in.
This man desiring the office of Oversight, must have his own wife, she is not another’s, but she is his and his alone, and he presently as one desiring this office has proven himself, his wife and his marriage blamelessly, and by this extension his whole house as well.

This is a blameless or unassailable, not able to be taken over:

2. husband of one wife
That is at this time desiring to be the head judge of a unit, to be a the Overseer, a Numberer and Episcope.
So this is speaking of him presently with his present faithful wife (who as the next few verses 1Ti_3:4-11 )will provide is also the mother of his children and proven by time to be a woman of the character of what we read last week in

1Ti_2:9-15  :
1. women adorn themselves in modest apparel,
2. with shamefacedness
3. and sobriety;
a. not with broided hair,
or b. gold, or pearls, or
c. costly array;
4. But (which becometh women professing godliness)
5. with good works.
1Ti 2:11
6. woman who learn in silence with all subjection.
1Ti 2:12  not a woman who to attempts to
b. nor to usurp authority over the man,
c. but to be in silence.

who knows:
1Ti 2:13
7. For Adam was first formed, then Eve.
1Ti 2:14  And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
8. and understands the lesson of salvation in her feminine nature as a Child bearer, as to continue in
a. faith and
b.charity and
c. holiness
and all of this with
d. sobriety.

The husband’s wife is of such character in the present tense of the immediate context.

Many have made different understanding of these statements important over the years by deviating from the immediate context and the tense of the language being used as present and possessive, and the application of what we will find in

1Ti_3:4  One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
1Ti 3:5  (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
1Ti 3:6  Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.

1Ti 3:7  Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

and in 1Ti 3:11  Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

And so some have speculated outside of this context that divorced men are not qualified to serve in this capacity, and as well women who had been divorced make a man who may have married her disqualified as well regardless of time and circumstances, but let me remind and point out the sense and meaning of “the husband of one wife” / ‘Having his owe wife that he is the man of’, this is a present tense having, and possessive of one wife and possessing as a husband.

Thus, I do not think this is saying a divorced man is unable to desire and attain the office of Over seer, so long as his divorce or separation was before his conversion or if it were after he began to use the law, so long as his divorce was lawful.

Here is why:

biblically lawful divorced is provided as the opposite of what is positively asserted according to an affirming of Gen_1:26-28 & Gen_2:20-25, As our Lord taught in:
Mar_10:5  And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept (of divorce Deu_24:1).

Mar 10:6  But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.
Mar 10:7  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife;
Mar 10:8  And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh.
Mar 10:9  What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

At the beginning of the creation of Adam God made them husband and wife, they were one flesh obviously so, and thus no right could possibly exist in this case, to divorce or separate that body. The organic Law and precedent that provides for marriage as being one body of the same flesh and bone becoming two, also provides for 2 now becoming one flesh in covenantal Christian marriage by lawful means namely: dowry, giving away of the bride in betrothal, and cohabitation.

Thus Jesus teaches these truths concerning ordained marriage and ordained divorce, the divorce being, regardless of the reason for it, having its root in the hardness of the heart of both or either party in regards to obedience to the Law and Gospel of God.

And so we see the first ordained and thus Lawful putting away or divorce of father Abraham from his legitimate wife Hagar, the first divorce recorded in holy write in Gen_21:12-14.
This showing, in the very story of Abraham and Sarah now with Hagar a separation of body particularly in the faith Sarah and Abraham shared in the covenantal promises of God to them, while Hagar had no such Faith but rather is found mocking Isaac who is the child of the Covenant “In Isaac shall they seed be called”; so what we see here in this essential divorcement is Abraham and Hagar not acting as 1 body, but rather we see evidence that God had not joined these two together in Faith, so much so that for the purposes of the providence of God in assuring that the Proto- Gospel promised to Abraham go forth this union between Hagar and Abraham must needs be dissolved. Because this idea was so very grievous upon Abraham because of his son, God in this account says ;

“Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee”: “Cast out this bondwoman and her son…”

And so we have a faith based understanding of how divorce must needs be understood lawfully, that is in this Economy of God in Faith.

Abraham and Hagar were physically compatible, making Ishmael who was in fact physically bone of bone and flesh of flesh, but faithfully they were not united lacking God’s joining as it was in the beginning, this created irreconcilable differences that made divorce preferable to abiding together for the sake of the Gospel.

And thus in accordance with Jesus Lesson in Mark 10:5-9 on the converse separation of the one body of Genesis 2, so speaks this in this harmony in Deu_24:1, as also would Mat_5:31-32, Mat_19:7-9; Luk_16:18 all speak to this wise providing for times that the lawful use of divorce is the best option for a man as one that “ruleth well his own house… and taking care of the church of God.”

As such, excommunications will exist likened to a divorce among the church of God, and thus among the faithful of the unites of 10, 50, 100, 1000’s and the tribe which an Overseer will have to at times make judgment of, this House hold law or Economy must needs be examined.
Remembering, it is not that an Head Judge will have the power to evict a man from his inheritance he receives from his forefathers as member of the family he is part of physically, but that the church is the ground and pillar of the truth as the called out, thus it must be known and understood who is faithful and a member of the Church with in that family unit to this man, for potential judgment and leadership qualities, thus a divorce like scenario we commonly call excommunication might exist in terms of fellowship and leadership.

Paul as well as that taught within these lawful confines as it pertains to new converts, which we must remember is the focus of Timothy’s ministry, likewise in 1Co_7:11-17 Paul speaks of the marriage and divorce, as well as lawful reconciliation as is also spoken of in Deu_24:1.

In concluding on this point, when the scripture as a whole is asked for its discretion on divorce, the law used lawfully provides for this judicial consideration to acknowledge:

1. that divorce may happen between 2 unbelievers, as Church Government has no jurisdiction on the non-believers they are not bound to the morality of the Law of God consciously, they are dead in sin not knowing they are a foremost sinner and thus both are unruly, so that before conversion has take place this may be the case for a man who will desire the office of Overseer after he is converted or the wife of one desiring an office after her conversion.

But these are not lawful disqualifications in the present tense of the man desiring to be an Overseer, because these things were done in ignorance.

Such is seen in the adulteration committed in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah, not in regards to a consideration of faith but in consideration of a physical union that was unlawful and displeasing to the LORD YHWH, thus after the conversion of the men of Israel these then put away the wives and children and divorced themselves to be a pattern and example to the congregation as these were Princes and Heads in fact, that were ignorant of the Law of God on this matter and already ordained as such.

2. And so we have provisions for divorce to happen between a believer and a non-believer, as also seen with Abraham and Hagar.

But this, unlike the example of the priests, princes and people of Ezra’s day, Abraham and Hagar were not compatible in regards to faith, and thus God endorsed this act, where we find Abraham understanding that he and Sarah could not perform the Gospel’s work with the hindrance of Faithless Hagar.

These marriages should never happen, but people make mistakes or are ignorant of another’s faith, or are deceived by the elation of the marriage, and so these issues are presented.

3. But what we never find, and that which is totally not permitted and never provided for in scripture, is a case for a marriage between believers to be dissolved by divorce. By the words of Jesus and by the logic of Genesis 1&2 , the Law of God expressed in Deu_24:1 and all that is stated by Paul to the churches, divorce has no application to Christians of the same flesh and bone, that is of the same racial kind or kindred.

This is a point I wish to make in this regards before moving on: Two Christians of the same Faith, bone and flesh never get divorced, both parties cannot claim the status of the Church presently in making this decision ,  or of Christians and as lawful in the present tense after a divorce.

Why? Because the woman who’s is the husband’s . the man desiring to be an Overseer as an example to the church of God, her’s is of the character of 1Ti_2:9-15, and the man who is blameless, and sober in judgment and self controlled, orderly and hospitable, who is also apt to teach the woman who will learn in silence with all subjection and not teach, nor usurp authority over the man, but will silently give her own husband authority (1Ti_2:11-12 ).

These covenanted in marriage will work together to be united in Christ as members of that one body of Christ in which they share, as well as being in communion one with the other in the dominion mandate with is prescribed: after their kind, in flesh of flesh and bone of bone.
These, both in the present Christian reality will not be committed to fornication or unsubmissiveness, the husband will not be blatant rejection of God’s authority nor will he be found not loving his wife as Christ loves the church, and in the case of a believing woman, she will not be committed to fornication or unsubmissiveness to her husband’s authority, but she will be found learning in silence from him and not usurping authority from him, but wearing the modest and respectable apparel of a woman professing Godliness with Good Works.

Insubordination to God in the present tense, in the immediate past and the obvious future are disqualifying attributes, as they are proofs of a man who is able to be over taken, and thus a man who is not in following:

vigilant or watching, sober or temperate, of good behavior or modest (same as said of a woman in 2:9), given to hospitality or found of guests, apt to teach or able to communicate teaching to others (see Adam Clark)

Very much this man has done as the prior chapter has directed in using the Law lawfully in terms of teaching faith unfeigned, not faked that is as the with love from the heart and a good conscience. And thus understanding the balance of Law and Gospel, forgiveness and holiness, and knowing the lawful line of sin and transgression by the standards of what YHWH God calls good and perfect, by his Law.
I say this because a man who, has not this reality, will be a chronic divorcee with no pric to his conscience, he has in fact a hard heart and is unable to condescend to his wife when she fails his standards, and to be a tolerant teacher, even when she fails in learning with all subjection and silence forgetting she is a daughter of Eve the mother of deception, and needs be subject to her husband whom God has given headship to. A hard hearted man or woman will not be as Christ, and will not recon themselves as members of Christ together, they will separate not knowing what substance they are of, as they are not jointly part of that one body or yet aware of their access in that one body.
this man seeking the office of a Over seer must blamelessly be

3. vigilant,
4. sober,
5. of good behaviour,
6. given to hospitality,
7. apt to teach;

1Ti 3:11
16. Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

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About JS Lowther

Foremost I know that I am a chief sinner saved by Grace. I am a servant of YHWH Almighty the one true God Who is Father, Son and Spirit. I believe in God's only begotten and perfect Son Jesu(s) Christ whose redemption power of my soul I have Faith in and testify of. Having been redeemed by the blood of Christ, I wish to no longer spend my time in the lusts of the flesh and of this world, but to promote the Gospel of the Kingdom by means of the knowledge of the New Covenant, a reNewal of the Covenant God made with his people Israel in the blood of Christ (Jer 31:31 and Heb 8:8) whereby He writes His Law upon the Heart and Mind beside the forgiveness of sin and transgressions. I believe Christ Jesus is the incarnate Son of God as the WORD made flesh, and the son of man born of the virgin Mary conceived of the Holy Spirit: I believe Christ Jesus Lived a perfect life for us as a living sacrifice as well as a pattern of the Sanctified newness of life a believer has in Him, I believe Christ Jesus died a cursed death on the Cross for His people of Covenant who are sinners, and I believe in Christ Jesus who Resurrected with power from Death from the grave to Justify the offenders. This is the same Jesus who is indeed the Son of David and king of Israel, who is both LORD and Christ over all the kings and dominions of the earth! In the fullness of time YHWH will regather his people under the Head of the Church, Jesu(s) Christ to affect his will according to the Lord's prayer, Psalm 2, 8 and 110 as well as Genesis 1:26. The focus of my administration of the Gospel is like unto my Lord's who said "I have come not but for the lost sheep of the house of Israel.."(Mathew 15:24), and so I have come to my European kinsman according to the flesh. It is my mission to show the Israel of God the Salvation which is taught by Scripture Alone and offered in all ages by Grace Alone through Faith Alone in the work of Christ Alone to the Glory of GOD Alone. As a modern day Puritan separatist it is my goal to purify the church of Christ with Faith heretofore stated. I am studying to show my self approved, if you have any questions just ask!

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