Developing Church Leadership

Pastoral Epistles Overview

1 Timothy, 2 Timothy and Titus

Troubles Churches Might Face
#1 Difference in church policies
#3 Oppression and Persecution

Troubles Churches Might Face

Tensions in the church can lessen the confidence of a pastor. Paul wrote these letters probably around 62 A.D. to encourage these two church appointees to stand strong in God's Word so that God's sheep might be protected.


Solutions Churches Might Use

Paul supplied a great number of instructions and exhortations to these young pastors so that they might stand strong in their calling to God and faithfully carry out the needed steps to protect the flock of God.

Project: Church Health

This is what Paul does in these
pastoral epistles.

Think of a church that you are familiar with.
Identify any struggles that are threatening the welfare of that church.

    Be objective as ______________.
    Briefly describe each ______________.
    Identify what harm is threatening God's ______________.
    Take steps to strengthen that which is being ______________.

#1 Difference in church policies

The main purposes of 1 Timothy and Titus seem to focus on helping the pastors to rightly handle different church problems and policies. In this case inefficient or nonexistent policies enabled false teachers to exert undue influence on the church. Often a pastor is unaware of problems until numerous people have been hurt. Each new wave of false doctrine leads to clearer standards.

Chart of Pastoral church policies


Teach Authoritative Guidelines

Church of God: the pillar and support of truth. 1 Timothy 3:15.

"But in case I am delayed, I write so that you may know how one ought to conduct himself in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.
(1 Timothy 3:15)

The solution for difference among church policies is to clarify or define them, teach them and enforce them. Remember that this is not a discussion of personal preference or tradition. We are speaking about the truth of God. If we carefully establish thee principles of truth, God's people will be blessed. If not, the church would lose its salt and light and be good for nothing.

Project: Church Policies

Go through the above marked sections of scripture and write down what church policies did Paul instruct them upon? Keep notes where those policies are found.

Why are these instructions important? Are they important today?

Are any of the areas Paul mentioned needed for the church you attend?

         If so, which ones? In not, what areas of need do exist?

Are the leadership standards only for leaders (elders/deacons)? Why or why not?

#2 False Teachers

False teachers are as destructive today as ever.

Although we are not sure how long after his departure from Ephesus, that Paul wrote these letters to Timothy, we can see Paul battling strong to hold the Ephesus church pure and strong.


Teach the Word of God

Click for a large map with Paul's missionary journeys.

You will note from the chart above, while Paul was busy confronting these false teachers in his letters, Satan was doing his best to hold back the advance of the gospel to the world.

Timothy was probably converted on the latter part of Paul's first missionary journey. On Paul's second missionary journey, he was ordained and circumcised. We know that both Titus and Timothy were sent on missions while Paul was in Ephesus during 54-56 A.D. Titus was sent to Corinth (2 Cor 8:6) and Timothy to Macedonia (Acts 19:21-22). However, it is not at this time these pastoral epistles were written but later (62-63 A.D.) closer to his death (64 A.D.).

Later, after Paul’s first imprisonment in Rome (end of Acts), he was released. At one point after visiting Crete, he left Titus behind (Titus 1:5) and went to Macedonia (1 Timothy 1:3). There he wrote both 1 Timothy, which he sent to Timothy in Ephesus, and Titus, which he sent to Crete by Zenas and Apollos (Titus 3:13). 2 Timothy was written during his second imprisonment in Rome and finally was put to death by Nero as the persecution against Christians rose up in 64 A.D.

Paul was very critical of these false teachers, but he took very strong positive steps to counter their efforts. We partly see this in these pastoral epistles.

Acts 20:28-30Acts 20:17, 28-31

17 ... He sent to Ephesus and called to him the elders of the church. 28 “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. 29 “I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 “Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for a period of three years I did not cease to admonish each one with tears.

Paul countered these false teachers by focusing on at least four things.

1  ____________ for Leaders

Taught the qualifications for being a teacher. (1 Ti 3:1-2; 2:12)
(The false teachers couldn't live by that standard).

An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, (1 Timothy 3:2).

2 ____________ for new Leaders

He encouraged those contemplating to join the ministry (1 Ti 3:1).

It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. (1 Timothy 3:1)

3 ____________ of Teaching Content

He made sure one's teaching was based on God's Word.(2 Ti 3:16)

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; (2 Timothy 3:16).

4 ____________ on how to Train

He instructed those on training. (2 Ti 2:2; Tit 2:1-5)

And the things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also. (2 Timothy 2:2).

Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips, nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good,4 that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be dishonored. (Titus 2:3-5).

#3 Oppression and Persecution

We can feel the intensity of the fight against Paul in 2 Timothy as he prepares to give his life for Christ. He is concerned that Timothy also endure the fight.

After Paul was released from his first imprisonment, he wrote wrote 1 Timothy and Titus from Macedonia (1 Timothy 1:3). It appears that he was again arrested in 64 A.D. and before he was martyred wrote 2 Timothy from Rome.

Timothy was imprisoned in 64 A.D. but later released.

Take notice that our brother Timothy has been released, with whom, if he comes soon, I shall see you. (Hebrews 13:23).

Tradition has it that Timothy was martyred during the reign of either Dometian or Nero.


Persevere and Train Others

"And the things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also." (2 Timothy 2:2).

Paul wasn't sure how long he would be around. Notice the way Paul encouraged Timothy to pass the gospel on.

List the four generations of believers mentioned in 2 Timothy 2:2.

Four Generation of Believers

GOAL: Able to Teach

   We must be able to teach _____________ .

   We must teach them so that they can _____________.

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