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Read Introduction to 1 Timothy

 

19 having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck, 20 of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.

 

Some in the church at Ephesus deliberately rejected “having faith and a good conscience.”

1:19

which some having rejected [thrust away],

Some in the church at Ephesus rejected “faith and a good conscience.“ “Rejected” refers to deliberately turning away from these two qualities. They threw the truth away. Acts 7:27 uses the term “rejected” of Moses when he was thrown aside in a physical scuffle and then of Israel’s rejection of his leadership (Acts 7:39).

concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck,

Once false teachers became blinded by false doctrine and sin, and the rejection or throwing away of proper doctrine, some made a “shipwreck” of their faith.

“Faith” in Greek has a definite article “the” before it, making it the body of biblical belief, not personal faith. False teachers made “shipwreck” of what they believed. They willfully and culpably rejected biblical truth.

1:20

of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander,

Hymenaeus and Alexander, who turned from the faith, were the ringleaders of false doctrine in the church at Ephesus. Hymenaeus claimed that believers’ bodily resurrection had already occurred (2 Tim 2:17-18). Alexander is the Alexander of 2 Timothy 4:14-15.

whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.

Paul, using his apostolic authority, handed both Hymenaeus and Alexander over to Satan for their blasphemy. He placed them in the realm of enemies of the Word. “To blaspheme” is to dishonor God and His Word. The apostle knew something about blasphemy because he blasphemed God before his conversion (1 Tim 1:13).

The purpose of remanding a person to Satan is that they may learn not to blaspheme. The word “learn” carries the ideas of teaching, training, or instructing. It also means to chasten, correct, or discipline. People need to go through the process of discipline to maintain biblical stability.

PRINCIPLE:

Theological error often roots in moral failure.

APPLICATION:

A good conscience and right belief must go hand-in-hand. The two are indivisible; we cannot separate them. Spiritual wolves behave poorly, resulting in bad doctrine (Mt 7:15-20). They adjust their beliefs to accommodate their lifestyles (1 Tim 4:16).

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