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Unlike the letters from Paul we have been reading, this one is to an individual, rather than a church. Timothy was trained by Paul and is now the pastor of the church in Ephesus. Paul is instructing Timothy on how the church should operate. Timothy’s most important role is to protect the church from those who promote false teachings. They can be recognized not only because they teach things the Bible doesn’t teach, but also because they are motivated by self-interest instead of love.

Wrong motives and false teaching go together. When we do the right things with the wrong motives, we will eventually slide into doing the wrong things. What are your motives for serving; love for God and others or something else?