Lectionary Year C
September 27, 1998
I Tim 6:6-19

Step II: Disposition



Out of a section on parenetical instruction grows what seems to me somewhat like the "charge and benediction" that we are used to at the end of a worship service. First we are instructed by the writer what we ought to do (to witness) and who we ought to be (witnesses), then the writer launches into a hymnic description [on hymnic: also see: Bailey/Vander Broek: Literary Forms of the NT] about the character of God. Finally, he closes the section with "Amen!" Was this piece perhaps used in the liturgy of the early church? Is it a hymnic-charge-benediction-confession with which the worshippers responded to the word preached? And since the over-arching genre of 1 Timothy is that of "letter," does this letter perhaps function, or was used, as a liturgical piece that was read in worship? According to the article on 1 Timothy in the "Anchor Bible Dictionary," vv.11-16 might have functioned as a "traditional ordination charge." [vol. 6, p. 561; 565]


- What does it mean to confess the good testimony (v.12)?
- Are these good witnesses the ones mentioned in The Book of Revelation? (cf. Rev 17:6; 14)
- The Greek word "zoogennaoo" interests me quite a bit! Is it somehow related to the "monogennaes" in the prologue of John's gospel, and if so, how?
- Is the "epiphany" mentioned in v. 14 related/equal to Jesus' "Second Coming" in the Book of Revelation?
- What are the "own critical hours" (Greek: kairois idiois) [v.15]?
- What does it mean to have "deathlessness" (Gr: athanasia) [v. 16]?
- What does "life in unapproachable light" look like [v.16]? Why employ such a metaphor, if we might not be able to make any sense of it?
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