QTVOTD: Age does beget wisdom…

“Let a widow be enrolled if she is not less than sixty years of age, having been the wife of one husband, and having a reputation for good works: if she has brought up children, has shown hospitality, has washed the feet of the saints, has cared for the afflicted, and has devoted herself to every good work.” 1 Timothy 5:9-10 -> me: I know that Paul is talking about widows here but I my primary takeaway, personally to my walk, is about how age can bring wisdom, dedication, and resilience against temptation. 

There are just things that a life filled with experience can bring in a person’s set of variables they use in decision making, trustworthiness, and steadfastness.  When you bring this age together with a walk of faith that leads to good works, you find a formidable Christian and follower of Jesus Christ that can have a tremendous impact on your church and the body of believers in it.  This does not mean I should discount younger believers, but it does mean that an older believer can add attributes and contribution that is well informed and tested. 

I really like this list of character traits Paul calls out as they can be applied to any believer’s evaluation of fruit.  I turn 50 years old next month, yet I still have so much to learn about being in fellowship with my Lord and Savior. 

Just in the last 3 days I have had to relook at how I contribute to my home, my wife, and my children.  I have become complacent in my focus on these precious people who mean so much to me.  My selfishness, attitude, and pride can get the best of me and I pray that the Lord continues to show me my weaknesses through His word and Holy Spirit, that I might become the man my wife and children deserve in a husband and father.

Marianne’s Notes: The POWER of the gospel…

Amazing that I’ve had time today to actually WRITE something down!!

I Peter 1:18-20

“…knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.  He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world but was manifest in these last times for you.”

We who claim the name of Christ we weren’t redeemed with anything that fades or breaks down.  No!  We were redeemed with the precious, sacred, holy, glorious, righteous blood of JESUS CHRIST!  His blood.  The infinite God.  The Creator of all the world, space, and time…  It’s HIS blood that has redeemed me…FOREVER.  I can not step outside of His blood…it’s already been shed for me, over me, stained me.  There is NOTHING I can do or say that will ever un-redeem me.  Jesus Christ became my covenant.  He is my perfect lamb…the only One who could have the power to save me incorruptibly. 


Before the foundations of the world were made it was foreordained that He would manifest this gift for ME!  Let that sink in.  If that doesn’t speak indescribable VALUE into my heart then nothing will!  He has chosen me not because I’m special, talented, or have “so much to offer”…simply because of His grace & mercy & love. 

This is the POWER of the gospel.  This has the power to melt any heart of stone.  This is where I stand, firm and complete…in His incorruptible redemption.  Only He can make all things new…only He redeems.  We are to SHOW that to the world. 

QTVOTD: Honoring…everyone.

“She who is truly a widow, left all alone, has set her hope on God and continues in supplications and prayers night and day,” 1 Timothy 5:5 -> me: The last couple of days I have been pressing into chapter 5 here of 1 Timothy.  I usually try to read through a chapter before I dive into deep study.  When I do dive in, God always surprises me with a new understanding of His character, will, purposes, and plan.  Well, today was no different.  These first several verses focus on respecting those around us; older people, people our same age, and widows (real widows – let’s get to that in a moment).  Paul knew that Timothy might need to correct an older believer in their doctrine or theology so he tells Timothy to do such rebuke with respect and treat him no different than he would his own father.  Likewise, to treat people his own age like he would his own brothers and sisters; older women as he would treat his mother.  Then Paul gets to widows where he spends 13 verses talking about them.  The first three define what it means to be a ‘real’ widow, a widow who has no family or relatives to take care of her.  A woman who has lost everything and solely relies on God day and night to answer her prayers as she beseeches Him.  The Lord provides for her through the church and takes the place of her husband for support.  It is pleasing to God that we take care of our parents.  When we take care of our parents we are paying them back for our upbringing and  the sacrifices they made for us.  What’s important is that Paul doesn’t provide a different instruction for children who may feel they have nothing good to pay back; we are to take care of our aging or widowed parents regardless…even if the only reason we do it is please God.  In my case, I have much to pay back; my parents not only made many a sacrifice for my brother and I; they also raised us with all of the knowledge we needed to become godly men.  Thank you mom and dad, for the example you have set and who you have been for me all these years.

QTVOTD: Be diligent in these matters…

“Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. 16 Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.” 1 Timothy 4:15-16 -> me: Finished up chapter 4 today in 1 Timothy.  These concluding verses were so impactful to me.  What are the things that Paul is referring to that Timothy should practice and immerse himself in? 1) To teach the gospel of HOPE.  2) Set an example for believers in life, in speech, in love, in faith, and in purity. 3) Devoting one’s self to preaching and teaching God’s word…expositionally.  4) To not neglect your gifts.  |  I also like how Paul, once again, talks about Timothy keeping his life and doctrine in check lest he wander off path.  We can never become too comfortable in where God has us.  I must continually keep how I live my life and what I teach from God’s word linked in such a way that someone doesn’t just have to listen to what I might teach but how I live out my teaching.  This hit me today when I thought back to the devotion I recorded for my Life Group on Monday (https://bourlandweb.com/2020/07/19/qtvod-from-gods-to-gift/).  Am I thanking God for everything just as I said in my video?  Am I practicing this concept God revealed to me through His word.  The answer – not as much as I should.  Thank you Lord Jesus for your consistent help in my life that needs you so badly.  Everything I have is a gift from you, including my life that is alive to enjoy them.

QTVOTD: A great minister…

“For physical training is of some value (useful for a little), but godliness (spiritual training) is useful and of value in everything and in every way, for it holds promise for the present life and also for the life which is to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8 -> me:  yesterday’s quiet time was on 1st Timothy 4:3-5.  I didn’t send the write up for this because I plan to use it as a devotional that I’m going to send my life group. 🙂 Once that is out I will put it up on our website so that it can be read. In today’s reading, Paul spends time telling Timothy what it looks like to be a good minister of the word. Paul exhorts Timothy in how absolutely important it is that he calls out false teaching and to help brothers and sisters in Christ understand what this looks like. In fact, I read a commentary that says being good minister is like a shepherd who shoves stones under the hooves of their flock as they walk over treacherous ground.  One of the things I love about Canyon Hills is that we follow Paul’s teaching in that the responsibility of teachers is to give positive answers to negative doctrines.  Paul tells Timothy that he has been brought up in the truths of the faith; the words Paul chooses suggest a continual process.  There is no better means of spiritual nourishment than a constant dwelling on the great truths of faith. False teaching is equated here with godless myths and wives’ tales. Old wive’s tales are those superstitions that hold no real truth or consequence…it is wasted time and energy devoting ones life to following them. The words used for ‘having nothing to do with’ are the same as Titus 3:10 and 2 Timothy 2:23. Finally we get to verse 8 where Paul tells us that even physical training has more benefit than believing myths or wive’s tales…but even this can not hold a candle to godliness. The practice and search for godliness reaps benefits for and wide…in both this life and eternal life.

QTVOTD: Identify false teaching….

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,” 1 Timothy 4:1-2 -> me: Well, I didn’t get that far into chapter 4 today.  I spent all of my time on the first two verses. 

The first part of 1 Timothy 4 is all about those who leave the faith and follow false teaching.  Paul uses ‘expressly’ or ‘clearly’ because Peter, James, and Paul himself wrote Spirit inspired scripture on this topic and Jesus Himself talked about it in Mark 13:22.  The apostacy Paul talks about here is specified in a two-fold manner.  1) The apostates ‘follow’ deceiving spirits and 2) believe things taught by demons.  Verse 2 talks about teachings coming through hypocritical liars which means that the deceiving spirits and demon find particular allies in these hypocritical liars. 

These false teachers have lost all sense of the wrongness of their actions which is why Paul uses the term meaning ‘cauterized’ to describe the consciences of these men – Ephesians 4:19. 

Here is the META POINT -> The consciences of these false teachers have ceased to warn them of the falseness of their teaching…they have become anaesthetized.  This is scary because the false teaching can be so cleverly woven to sound truthful. 

As a Christian who has his head deep in God’s word, I must stay vigilant to the false doctrine being disseminated around me.  I can see it in people I once respected and I can see it in the leadership of some of the churches surrounding Canyon Hills.

QTVOTD: Back after a deep study…

“For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.” 1 Timothy 3:13 -> me: Just an update from me today since you have not heard from me for awhile (since the 8th of July).  I have been spending a majority of that time searching God’s word and direction in how we should operate as a church body during a time where there is confusion, fear, doubt, mistrust, and instability.  What I can tell you is that God has been so faithful and merciful to give me several passages that encouraged me and gave me a peace about how to look at all of what is going on.  I shared what God had laid on my heart as part of our elders meeting this last Monday.  This godly group of men has me so humbled.  The love and care they feel for their church flock is overwhelming.  I will be back in the swing of regular quiet times tomorrow and will post my discoveries on what God revealed to me in His word and through His Holy Spirit here on the website in the next couple of days.  I finished the passage in 1 Timothy 3:8-16 on church deacons.  The primary difference I was able to discern was that deacons are impowered to serve the poor and needy.  They are mentioned in Acts 6, Philippians 1:1, and here in 1 Timothy.  Another quality that is mentioned for elders and pastors separate from deacons, is that elders and pastors have the additional role of teaching.  This move to 1 Timothy (and the rest of the pastorals) has been so great!  Thank you for the encouragement Jeff P!

QTVOTD: Overseer qualities -> Part 3

“…not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.” 1 Timothy 3:3 -> me: Today we tackle verse 3.  For this post I am just going to jot in here my stream of conscientiousness. 

1) Not given to drunkenness – For this person, drinking never leads to being drunk.  They never desire to be drunk.  Not only alcohol, they also never allow themselves to be controlled by any substance as a vice.  The Lord alone is their refuge/retreat.

2) Not violent, but GENTLE – Does not lash out irrationally.  This person has an intolerance with any violent method.  They have a spirit that is opposed to the escalation of emotions. GENTLE – A spirit of nurturing and seeks peace in all situations.  A calming presence. 

3) Not quarrelsome – Is not baited by controversy (does not feel like every post on Facebook needs an opinionated response).  Affirms truth, but in love and with grace.  Again, a calming nature that does not put themselves in situations that play into the hands of agitators…let alone never being an agitator themselves. 

4) Not a lover of money – Money is about acquisition of things or power; its about the enablement of self-sufficiency.  This person is not motivated by wealth and is not disposed to the building of storehouses.  What this person obtains, easily slips through their hands when a need arises and that person is always prayerfully looking for the needy places that their money can go to further the glorification of God, not themselves. 

All of the negatives listed in this verse should not only be alien to the Christian spirit; they should be ACTIVELY avoided.  A spirit should be fostered that points to considerateness and patient forbearance.

QTVOTD: Overseer qualities -> Part 2

“Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,” 1 Timothy 3:2 -> me:  Well, I have decided to camp out a bit here in the first 7 verses of 1 Timothy 3.  As an elder candidate (in training) I think it is good if I take the time to let these verses sink in and expound on my understanding of them to my accountability group….YOU! 

Let’s start with ‘Above Reproach’ – A person who is not only of good report but also deservingly so.  This means that even if an action or activity is allowed, if the partaking in that activity can be suspect or interpreted negatively, this individual avoids it or executes it in such a way that their stance and intent is clear.  This also means that the private version of this person matches the public version.  It means that the uprightness of the individual permeates into and through their character; not for pleasing men, but to be who God desires them to be in their conversion and grafting into God’s family and inheritance. 

‘Husband of one wife’ – There is some disagreement on what this is pointing at 1) One woman through one marriage – that a person who has been married twice to 2 different women would be disqualified.  2) That polygamy is forbidden in the Christian church and men of monogamous marriages only.  I side with the later and here is why: The Greek word used here is gune (long e) which is used for woman, wife, or even ‘my lady’.  However, when the word for husband precedes it, it appears to refer to ‘wife’ specifically.  So, from my perspective and ‘light’ study, Paul likely means ‘wife’ and not the other definition ‘woman’; which brings in the one wife in a marriage. 

‘Temperate, Self-Control, and Respectable’ – These belong together because they are all closely related -> They describe an orderly life.  Temperate is only used in the Pastorals and denotes an even approach to all situations. Doesn’t get riled up easily and is not complacent.  Self-Control also means prudent and of sound mind.  This person is not easily swayed back and forth in their thinking.  They have a gauged approach to problem solving and maintain a healthy internal dialog that keeps them upright in their thinking.  Respectable also means ‘proper’.  This attribute brings a character that is dignified.  A perception managed by the bearer that supports the aspect of being above reproach. 

‘Hospitable’ – Someone who not only accepts and takes in all, but also  fights for the feeling of all to be welcomed and at home in their church, in the overseer’s home, or in their sphere. 

Finally, ‘Able to Teach’ – I would go further to say that an overseer must be so acquainted with the word of God that they can instruct and re-align the flock.  This really comes down to Guarding, Guiding, and Growing the church body.