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I Timothy

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The First Epistle to Timothy is a letter written by St Paul to Timothy, a companion of his and a prolific early evangelist. It is included in the New Testament alongside Paul's other letters.

In the letter, Paul instructs Timothy to stay in Ephesus (a city in what is now Turkey) and work against false doctrines that are being taught in that area, in competition with the teachings Paul had brought when he helped to establish a Christian church in the city (see also the Letter to the Ephesians). One thing he warns against is undue devotion to genealogies, which he sees as a nit-picking distraction from faith and active Christian life (1 Timothy 1:4). As in many of his other letters, Paul also argues against reliance on the Mosaic law; again, he sees this as an unwelcome distraction from true righteousness, which comes from the Holy Spirit.

After this preamble, Paul briefly discusses his conversion, and then goes on to issue instructions for worship, and for the appointment of church leaders (chapters 2 and 3). The latter half of the letter mainly contains instructions to Timothy himself, including practical advice on how to approach the running of a church, and how to deal with different members of the church community.



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