Avoid foolish questions, genealogies, big arguments and battles over
the law, for they are not beneficial and useless.
Reject a heretic—after the first and second warning—
Knowing that such a person is twisted and sins, being self-condemned.
Actions to avoid
Some cross references
2 Timothy 2:23 WEL Avoid
foolish and stupid questions, knowing that they breed hostilities.
for foolish is μωρός mōrós. It means imprudent,
without forethought or wisdom, useless, impious, godless.
It means questions that are without
instruction, and disciple, uneducated, ignorant, rude.
to decline to answer.
Who is 666? Whose name can be reduced to these numbers?
Jesus have sinned? A brief answer
would suffice, but to prolong an answer to this or get in an argument
over it, would be foolish.
1 Timothy 4:7 CSB But
have nothing to do with pointless and silly myths. Rather, train
yourself in godliness.
Timothy 6:4 CSB he
is conceited and understands nothing, but has an unhealthy interest
in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy,
quarreling, slander, evil suspicions,
Dealing with foolish questions
Proverbs 26:4-5 NLT Don't
answer the foolish arguments of fools, or you will become as foolish
as they are. 5 Be sure to answer the foolish arguments of fools, or
they will become wise in their own estimation.
A strange pair of verses. Are we to answer or not?
My opinion is that there are fools with different attitudes. Some you
can discuss and deal with questions. Others you cannot, for they
become angry or abusive. We need to answer the former and decline to
answer the latter.
must state the truth. We must state truth calmly, not as an abusive
We are not to use the same method of argument as a foolish person.
Listen. Really listen, so that we understand what the other person is
If they criticism me, just be
quiet and don’t respond.
Do not defend yourself. We may need to clarify what we believe, but
argue to defend myself, is wrong.
If they criticize
God, we must tell them the truth.
If they blaspheme, we must warn them that it is dangerous to do so.
Christians are not to have blind faith; we have a reasonable faith.
Thus, we need to study the Bible and know philosophical basics to
have an answer to seekers or challengers.
This mainly deals with Jewish genealogies, but certainly other groups
place a great importance on their heritage.
Titus 1:10-11 CSB For there are many rebellious people, full of
empty talk and deception, especially those from the circumcision
party. 11 It is necessary to silence them; they are ruining entire
households by teaching what they shouldn't in order to get money
How is this for arguing? Instead of corporate worship, they fight:
Isaiah 58:4 NET Look, your fasting is accompanied by arguments,
brawls, and fistfights. Do not fast as you do today, trying to make
your voice heard in heaven.
Hebrews 13:9 NET Do not be carried away by all sorts of strange
teachings. For it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace,
not ritual meals, which have never benefited those who participated
About the Law. This deals with Judaizers who felt that Christians had
to keep the Law or at least the feasts, etc. This was answered at the
Jerusalem Council. See Acts 15.
God wants reconciliation not revenge, nevertheless He is just and
will judge and sentence. Ezekiel 18:23 NET Do I actually delight
in the death of the wicked, declares the sovereign LORD? Do I not
prefer that he turn from his wicked conduct and live?
2 Peter 3:9 NET The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as
some regard slowness, but is being patient toward you, because he
does not wish for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
We Christians want to reflect the character of God to enemies and
friends. Arguing, issues about Mosaic law, genealogies, and/or
foolish questions are not important. These things to not reflect
God’s character. Often we see the Lord Jesus ignoring these
Matthew 26:62-64 CSB The high priest stood up and said to him,
"Don't you have an answer to what these men are testifying
against you? " 63 But Jesus kept silent. The high priest said to
him, "I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you
are the Messiah, the Son of God." 64 "You have said it,"
Jesus told him. "But I tell you, in the future you will see the
Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds
Luke 23:8-9 NET When Herod saw Jesus, he was very glad, for he had
long desired to see him, because he had heard about him and was
hoping to see him perform some miraculous sign. 9 So Herod questioned
him at considerable length; Jesus gave him no answer.
People to avoid
Christianity has a gospel, a set of beliefs, and a lifestyle
Many claim to be Christians but have non-biblical beliefs.
Revelation 2:6 NET But you do have this going for you: You hate
what the Nicolaitans practice - practices I also hate.
Revelation 2:14 NET But I have a few things against you: You have
some people there who follow the teaching of Balaam, who instructed
Balak to put a stumbling block before the people of Israel so they
would eat food sacrificed to idols and commit sexual immorality.
2 Timothy 2:17-18 NET and their message will spread its infection
like gangrene. Hymenaeus and Philetus are in this group. 18 They have
strayed from the truth by saying that the resurrection has already
occurred, and they are undermining some people's faith.
2 Corinthians 11:13-15 NET For such people are false apostles,
deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14
And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.
15 Therefore it is not surprising his servants also disguise
themselves as servants of righteousness, whose end will correspond to
How to deal with what is false
Remain calm: Colossians 4:6 CSB Let your speech always be
gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should
answer each person.
Pray for wisdom
Know the truth
Colossians 3:16 CSB Let the word of Christ dwell richly among you,
in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another through psalms,
hymns, and spiritual songs, singing to God with gratitude in your
2 Timothy 2:15 NET Make every effort to present yourself before
God as a proven worker who does not need to be ashamed, teaching the
message of truth accurately.
Answers to people’s questions. This is apologetics.
We ourselves were also at one time foolish, disobedient, deceived,
serving various evil desires and pleasures, passing our time being
spiteful, envious, obnoxious, and hating one another.
But as soon as the kindness and love of God our Savior toward mankind
He saved us, not by works of righteousness, which we have done, but
according to his mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal by
the Holy Spirit,
Which he abundantly poured out on us through Jesus Christ our Savior,
That having been justified by means of his grace, we should be made
heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
This is a trustworthy saying, and I want you to insist on them, so
that those who believe in God might be conscientious to keep up good
works. These things are right and beneficial to people.
Before we believed the Gospel
Sin is defined as
Transgressing God’s law 1 John 3:4 NIV Everyone
who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness.
Unrighteousness 1 John 5:17 NIV All
wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.
Knowing what is right, but refusing to do: James 4:17 NIV If
anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn't do it, it
is sin for them.
Anything not of faith (believing God): Romans 14:23 GNB But
if they have doubts about what they eat, God condemns them when they
eat it, because their action is not based on faith. And anything that
is not based on faith is sin.
Foolish plans as here: Proverbs 24:9 GNB Any
scheme a fool thinks up is sinful. People hate a person who has
nothing but scorn for others.
Penalty and punishment are necessary
All humans are addicted to sin. We are enslaved. John
8:34, Romans 6:12-20, Titus 3:3
The characteristics of the human addicted to sin
The lie of believing ourselves to be good
The lie that we can overcome sin on our own strength
Blind and in darkness to truth and the
reality of our condition
The free will is hindered because of our
addiction to sin
We are addicted to what is pleasurable to us
the opposite of the Ten Commandments
We have other gods, namely ourselves
We have idols of some type of material or imagination
We blaspheme God’s character
We don’t rest from anything to worship the creator, the King of the
Universe (and beyond).
We don’t honor our parents
We commit sexual sins
If we sin 10 times a day, then in one year,
we break God’s law 3,650 times every
year. Each sin
will receive the death penalty. Some protest that it is not fair to
suffer for eternity for committing one lie, but they forget or are
ignorant that God, the King of the Universe, warns them that one sin
will receive this penalty. James 2:10 NLT For
the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a
person who has broken all of God's laws.
The penalty (and God warns us) is death. Death is spiritual and
physical. The spiritual death of the unconverted is spiritual,
emotional, intellectual, and physical resulting in physical death and
eventually eternal death of torment in
Genesis 2:17 CSB but you must not eat
from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for on the day you
eat from it, you will certainly die.
We earn something for what we work for. The wages of sin in death.
Romans 6:23 CSB For
the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in
Christ Jesus our Lord.
Works count, but all have sinned.
Punishment is eternal: Revelation 20:12, 14-15 CSB I
also saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the
throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the
book of life, and the dead were judged according to their works by
what was written in the books. ... 14 Death and Hades were thrown
into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15
And anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was
thrown into the lake of fire.
Matthew 25:46 NLT And they will go away
into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life.
All these sins are done in thoughts,
desires, words, and/or deeds. Matthew 5:28 NLT But
I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already
committed adultery with her in his heart.
D11People have different levels of how evil
they are. Some are more evil than others.
D12We show our sin by actions. People live the
way they believe. What they say is not necessarily
what anyone really believes. Some of these actions are shown in our
passage. ... foolish, disobedient,
deceived, serving various evil desires and pleasures, passing our
time being spiteful, envious, obnoxious, and hating one another.
We do not and we can not seek God. We are enslaved to our sins.
Romans 3:11 WEL There is no one who is
understanding, there is no one seeking for God.
(See Romans 3:10-18).
John 8:34 NLT Jesus replied, "I
tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin.
All are sinning.
All will be judged.
All will be found guilty.
All will die.
All will be sentenced to eternity suffering
as our punishment.
The salvation that is offered is because God is kind and loves us
enough to genuinely offer it.
After we believed the Gospel
What God does
God initiates salvation. If God does not, then no one will be saved.
John 16:8 and John
God in His sovereign power frees the will from darkness, blindness,
ignorance, etc. to understand our sin and God’s punishment. Acts
Having a freed will, God presents the Gospel through the preaching of
it. 1 Corinthians 1:21
One can then believe or not believe, resist or not resist, comply
or refuse the Holy Spirit of God. God has
freed our will, that is, given us the ability to make a choice or
contrary choice. Acts 7:51, Isaiah
63:10, Isaiah 1:20
If one believes, then God gives new life (regeneration), the earnest
of the Holy Spirit, forgiveness of sins, eternal life, etc. 2
All sin must be punished. Romans 6:23 and
Either I can be punished or someone else.
If someone else is chosen, they must be sinless. Otherwise, they are
being punished for their own sin.
Jesus, Son of God and Son of Man, is sinless. 2
Corinthians 5:21 and Hebrews 4:15
Jesus is the Passover Lamb. He did this
only one time. 1 Corinthians 5:7 and
The blood of Jesus paid penalty. 1 Peter
1:2, Hebrews 12:24, Ephesians 1:7
Jesus suffered for our sins bearing the
wrath of God. 1 Peter 2:24 and 1
Salvation is not something earned. Our
passage shows this. Faith is not a work.
Jesus raised from the dead proving He is
God, He is sinless, and He has paid that penalty successfully. Romans
Jesus lives forever to make intercession for believers. Hebrews
If we drift and finally and forever deny Jesus Christ, we will be
apostate and go to eternal punishment. It is rare but does happen.
When it happens? Only God knows. Let us stay in the grace of God.
Hebrews 6:4-6 and Hebrews 10:26-31
Characteristics of the regenerated
Fruit of the Spirit. These are not something is ourselves but a fruit
of the Holy Spirit working in our life. Galatians
We are sanctified.
We are separated from addiction and slavery
to sin to be separated to God for serving Him, His kingdom, and His
Instant and completed sanctification when believing is justification.
Acts 26:18, 1 Corinthians 6:11, Hebrews
The Holy Spirit's
continuous teaching and convicting
is a ongoing work of sanctification. This is progressive
sanctification. 2 Corinthians 7:1
and 1 Thessalonians 4:3
Instant and completed sanctification after physical death is
glorification. Romans 8:30, Philippians
God frees us from our
sins. Romans 6:7
His grace gives us the grace and power to know His will and do it.
The gift of the Holy Spirit who works in our lives Romans 8:7-9
Verse 5 He
saved us, not by works of righteousness, which we have done, but
according to his mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal by
the Holy Spirit,
C1Works of righteousness do not save us from
God’s wrath. Isaiah 64:6
Faith is not works. The Scripture states it so: Romans 4:2-4 LEB For
if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about,
but not before God. 3 For what does the scripture say? "And
Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him for righteousness."
4 Now to the one who works, his pay is not credited according to
grace, but according to his due.
Mercy is receiving what we do not deserve. We deserve the wrath of
God, but the Lord Jesus, the Son of God and Son of Man, received
God’s wrath for us.
Washing of regeneration and renewal
These are the work of the Holy Spirit John
1:12-13, 1 Corinthians 6:11, Romans
6:3-9 (baptism does not make one saved, it is the result of being
saved and then identified with Jesus Christ).
Renewal. What was dead in now alive.
Colossians 3:10, Psalm 51:10, Ephesians
Verse 6 Which he abundantly poured out on us through
Jesus Christ our Savior,
Not just a little but much
Done in love, wisdom, and holiness
Verse 7 That having been justified by means of his grace, we
should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
Justification is instant sanctification accomplished entirely by God
for those who believe in His son Jesus Christ.
It is God’s grace, not our work
God made us heirs of a heavenly kingdom Romans 8:17, Galatians 3:29,
Verse 8 This
is a trustworthy saying, and I want you to insist on them, so that
those who believe in God might be conscientious to keep up good
works. These things are right and beneficial to people.
Good works glorify
God. So the works we do must be works that are approved by
Stealing to help the poor would not qualify as
a good work.
The good works we do are first for our family, then for our local
brothers and sisters, then for our other brothers and sisters
worldwide, and finally as a witness to those who do not believe.
It must be a work that we can do. Some can give money, food, clothes,
necessities. Some can give in labor as cleaning, repairing, running
errands, etc. All can pray, but for some that is all they are able to
Philippians 1:9-11 GNB I
pray that your love will keep on growing more and more, together with
true knowledge and perfect judgment, 10 so that you will be
able to choose what is best. Then you will be free from all impurity
and blame on the Day of Christ. 11 Your lives will be filled
with the truly good qualities which only Jesus Christ can produce,
for the glory and praise of God.
Remind them to be under the authority of rulers and authorities, to
comply with [their rules], to be ready for every good work,
Not to insult anyone, or be contentious, [but to be] gentle, showing
a complete meekness to all people.
As much as possible, we are to follow the law of our government.
There is no such thing as a just government. As far as I know, all
governments have corruption.
A rather full review of the Roman Empire is here
Some the main reasons that the Empire fell is here.
Basically, the empire fell due to governmental and society
corruption. Just like governement and society do today.
Romans 12:18 CSB If possible, as far as it depends on you, live at
peace with everyone.
Some things we are required as Christians:
Pray for leaders: 1 Timothy 2:1-2 CSB First of all, then, I urge
that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for
everyone, 2 for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we
may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.
Be respectful of them: Acts 23:5 CSB I did not know, brothers,
that he was the high priest," replied Paul. "For it is
written, You must not speak evil of a ruler of your people.
Pay taxes: Romans 13:6-7 NLT Pay your taxes, too, for these same
reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God
in what they do. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes
and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and
honor to those who are in authority.
No bias in society: 1 Timothy 5:21 NLT I solemnly command you in
the presence of God and Christ Jesus and the highest angels to obey
these instructions without taking sides or showing favoritism to
Seek peace, not confrontation: Matthew 5:9 NLT God blesses those
who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.
Telling and living the truth: Matthew 5:37 NLT Just say a simple,
'Yes, I will,' or 'No, I won't.' Anything beyond this is from the
No molestation, exploitation, or abuse:
1 Timothy 4:12 NLT Don't let anyone think less of you because you
are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way
you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.
1 Timothy 5:2 NLT Treat older women as you would your mother, and
treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters.
Attitudes towards all people
Humility: Philippians 2:5-8 NLT You must have the same attitude
that Christ Jesus had. 6 Though he was God, he did not think of
equality with God as something to cling to. 7 Instead, he gave up his
divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was
born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, 8 he humbled
himself in obedience to God and died a criminal's death on a cross.
No complaining or arguing: Philippians 2:14 NLT Do everything
without complaining and arguing.
Thankfulness: Colossians 4:2 NLT Devote yourselves to prayer with
an alert mind and a thankful heart.
Faithfulness: John 8:31 NLT Jesus said to the people who believed
in him, "You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my
Speech What we say is to be
Jesus is the perfect example. Everything He did and said is 100%
truth: John 14:6 CSB Jesus told him, "I am the way, the
truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Our worship must be true. John 4:24 GW God is a spirit. Those who
worship him must worship in spirit and truth.
God is spirit, that is, Yahweh is not flesh, stone, wood, etc. He is
Worship in spirit:
An attitude of reverence
The opposite of fleshly worship such as many heathen worship
Deuteronomy 12:31 CSB You must not do the same to the LORD your
God, because they practice every detestable act, which the LORD
hates, for their gods. They even burn their sons and daughters in the
fire to their gods.
Deuteronomy 18:9-11, 14 CSB When you enter the land the LORD your
God is giving you, do not imitate the detestable customs of those
nations. 10 "No one among you is to sacrifice his son or
daughter in the fire, practice divination, tell fortunes, interpret
omens, practice sorcery, 11 "cast spells, consult a medium or a
spiritist, or inquire of the dead. ... 14 "Though these nations
you are about to drive out listen to fortune-tellers and diviners,
the LORD your God has not permitted you to do this.
1 Kings 14:23-24 NLT For they also built for themselves pagan
shrines and set up sacred pillars and Asherah poles on every high
hill and under every green tree. 24 There were even male and female
shrine prostitutes throughout the land. The people imitated the
detestable practices of the pagan nations the LORD had driven from
the land ahead of the Israelites.
1 Timothy 4:1 NIV The Spirit clearly says that in later times some
will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught
According to God’s standards
1 Timothy 4:13 NIV Until I come, devote yourself to the public
reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching.
Ephesians 5:18-20 NIV Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to
debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one
another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make
music from your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the
Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Worship in truth
Not outward form or piety
But in inward piety
Being contentious (also translated quarrelsome, argumentative, etc.
Also, some understand not to be referring to speech but action so it
is translated as peaceable)
Not hot tempered about personal opinions
Gentle in what we say instead of abusive, emotionally hurting words
In words, deeds, body language
Seen in pleasant treatment of others (especially vulnerable people)
Antonyms often help us understand. Some listed antonyms of gentleness
are abusive, brutal, ferocious, fierce, violent
Philippians 4:5 NIV Let your gentleness be evident to all. The
Lord is near.
Note the contrast: 1 Corinthians 4:21 NLT Which do you choose?
Should I come with a rod to punish you, or should I come with love
and a gentle spirit?
Again some antonyms: aggressive, arrogant, and being rude and pushy
With some people it is their way or no way. It is their opinion only.
They are controlling and demanding.
God separates the meek and the arrogant in judgment: Zephaniah
3:11-12 NIV On that day you, Jerusalem, will not be put to shame
for all the wrongs you have done to me, because I will remove from
you your arrogant boasters. Never again will you be haughty on my
holy hill. 12 But I will leave within you the meek and humble. The
remnant of Israel will trust in the name of the LORD.
Speaking of Messiah, the Psalmist writes: Psalms 45:4 ESV In your
majesty ride out victoriously for the cause of truth and meekness and
righteousness; let your right hand teach you awesome deeds!
Note the contrast: Proverbs 16:19 GW Better
to be humble with lowly people than to share stolen goods with
God helps the meek (the humble) and opposes
the proud and arrogant: James 4:6 CSB But
he gives greater grace. Therefore he says: God resists the proud, but
gives grace to the humble.