corner graphic

Bible Commentaries

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

1 Timothy 5



Verse 3

Widows indeed; those that are entirely friendless and desolate, as explained below. (1 Timothy 5:5.) To honor them in this case means to provide for them. (Compare 1 Timothy 5:17.)

Verse 4

Let them,--that is, the children or nephews; let them take care of their relative, and not call upon the church.

Verse 5

Trusteth in God, &c.; that is, she ought to trust in God, and live a holy and blameless life.

Verse 6

Is dead; dead to the cause of Christ. Perhaps the meaning is, that she is to be excluded from all share in the charities of the church.

Verse 9

Taken into the number; selected, chosen. This expression is usually understood to refer to some office in the church, held by aged widows, the nature of which we can only infer from the circumstances of the case. Perhaps Phebe (Romans 16:1,2) was one of this class.--Having been the wife of one man; having, been faithful and true during her married life. The expression cannot be intended to censure a second marriage, inasmuch as such a marriage is recommended in 1 Timothy 5:14.

Verse 10

Washed the saints' feet; been hospitable and kind to them,--washing the feet being the token and symbol of hospitality.

Verse 11

Refuse; that is, in respect to the appointment or election referred to above. (1 Timothy 5:9.)

Verse 12

We are not sufficiently acquainted with the usage in the early church, to which the apostle refers in this passage, (1 Timothy 5:9-12,) to account for the apparent severity of this language. It seems to imply that being received into the number referred to above, (1 Timothy 5:9,) they came under some obligation to remain single, and in devote themselves for life to the service of the church. But what circumstances there were to render it necessary or desirable to impose such an obligation, does not appear.

Verse 14

The younger women; including, of course, the widows, as it is this class which is the subject of these instructions.

Verse 16

Have widows; related to them, or dependent upon them.

Verse 17

Honor; reward. This is shown to be the meaning by 1 Timothy 5:18.

Verse 20

Before all; publicly.

Verse 21

The elect angels; the holy angels.

Verse 22

Lay hands; in ordination.

Verse 23

By this direction, which stands in striking contrast with the ascetic doctrines which Paul had condemned, (1 Timothy 4:3,) he shows that no religious end is answered by suffering any bodily discomfort or pain which can be avoided; but that Christianity seeks to promote the welfare and happiness of man in all respects,--in small things as well as in great, at present as well as for the future, and in respect to the comfort of the body as well as to the prosperity of the soul.

Verse 24

They follow after; that is, they are concealed for a time, and afterwards developed.

Verse 25

Cannot be hid; cannot long be hid. The meaning of the 1 Timothy 5:24,25 is, that, though sin may be secreted for a time, and virtue remain unobserved, yet in the end the true character of every one will be fully known.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliography Information
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on 1 Timothy 5:4". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". 1878.

Commentary Navigator
Search This Commentary
Enter query in the box below
To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use our convenient contact form
Powered by Lightspeed Technology