Godliness is Gain
1 Timothy 6:2b-10
Pastor John Sloan
Introduction: Greed is life’s greatest thief. It steals from every experience the joy of living. Someone who is greedy is always operating at a loss, because they never quite have what they want. But, with television commercials constantly promoting the latest and greatest “it” things, how can we learn to be content?
Questions for Discussion & Discovery
1. In what ways do unhealthy controversies in the church lead to “constant friction” (verse 5) and dishonor God? How can we avoid such distractions?
2. Is it possible for a church to preach from the Bible and still completely miss Jesus? How so?
3. Are there material things that you feel like you don’t have but desperately need? What are they and what do you think they will add to your life?
4. The false teachers at Ephesus imagined that “godliness was a means of gain” (verse 5b)? Are there ways that you are inclined to make Jesus a means to an end (e.g., happiness, success, prosperity)?
5. Why do we have a hard time believing that what we have in Christ is enough?
6. What are some of the things that the Scriptures say belong to those who are in Christ?
1. Read 1 Timothy 6:2b-5
2. “Some think this refers to what is found in a written Gospel and thus means words spoken by Christ. But that misses Paul’s emphasis, namely, that the false teachers have abandoned the truth of the gospel, which comes from our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Gordon Fee
3. 01. When a church abandons the gospel, that marks the beginning of the end of that church.
4. “The salvation … the opponents preached was adherence to these mythical reconstructions.” – William Mounce
5. Moralistic Therapeutic Deism
6. Read verse 5b-8
7. “These men suppose that ‘godliness’ pays. [They had] all the externals without the Spirit, the words without the music, the letter without the living voice. This role-playing gets them an actor’s salary. For them religion is a livelihood, not a life.” – Jerome Quinn
8. 02. Being satisfied in Jesus (which is the essence of godliness) frees us from the burden of feeling constantly “in need.”
9. “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:12-13 NIV
10. Read verse 9-10
11. 03. Greed is a silent spiritual killer that sets us on a path away from God (and satisfaction in Him).
12. “Jesus warns people far more often about greed than about sex, yet almost no one thinks they’re guilty of it. Therefore we should begin with a working hypothesis that ‘this could easily be a problem for me.’” – Timothy Keller