Hello everyone! Welcome back to Deeper Waters. I’d like to ask first off for your continued prayers, first off on the situation I’ve mentioned, and second off in the case of my grandmother. I’ve heard word that she’s not doing too well. I’d appreciate your prayers. Tonight, we’re going to be continuing our Trinitarian commentary and we’ll be in the book of 1 Timothy. We’re emphasizing 1 Timothy 4:10 today, but I want to start at verse 9. I’m actually going to give a verse that I don’t think argues for the Trinity, but I want to give what I believe is a correct interpretation of.
9This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance 10(and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.
Okay. What’s going on in this passage? Is universalism being taught? How so? How can God be the savior of all men but especially of those who believe. Is this saying that God saves those who believe but at the same time that he also saves those who do not believe? It would seem that we have universalism then.
Or, is this talking about Jesus? After all, isn’t Jesus the savior? If Jesus is the savior and we’re saying God is the savior here, then do we have a slam dunk? Is this an unequivocal way of referring to Jesus as God?
However, as we have routinely seen and we do see in this letter, Lord usually refers to Christ. God routinely refers to the Father. I do not believe there is any reason to think any differently in this case. We have seen a few isolated incidents where Jesus is referred to as God, and we will see a few more, but this is not the norm.
Furthermore, we have the first verse of this epistle:
1Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the command of God our Savior and of Christ Jesus our hope,
Where there is a clear distinction between Christ Jesus and God and God is listed as savior.
So what is going on in this passage? God is seen as the living God which means he is the one who is real and he is the one who is active. He is the one who is overseeing the world and making sure that all runs according to plan.
What I believe is going on then, to which I am in agreement with Guthrie on in the Tyndale New Testament Commentaries, is that this is saying that God is the preserver of all men. We have too many passages that do indicate that some people do sadly die without Christ and they do face never-ending consequences for that. Savior in this context then means that God is the preserver of all men as all men live because of him, but God does have a special eye on those who are in the family of believers.
We shall continue tomorrow.