They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience.1 Timothy 3:9 NIV
This little nugget comes in the midst of a passage that deals with qualifications for deacons. And because of that, it may be easy for some to pass over it. After all, if you are not a deacon, or looking to become one, it would seem not to apply. And yet, it seems to me that it should be something that all believers would strive for.
One of the problems with this passage is that getting hold of the deep truths of the faith is not easy. It takes time. And it takes effort. You will likely not get to the deep truths of the faith by sitting in a Sunday school class that covers Romans in 13 weeks. And sitting through a sermon a week will not get you there either. Both of those can be useful to you. But to get into the depths of our faith, you will need to spend some quality time in the Bible. Other books, classes, and teachers can be useful in this pursuit. But nothing will replace investing blood, sweat, and tears in the Bible itself.
This instruction also tells us to hold to these deep truths with a clear conscience. How do you hold to a deep truth with a clear conscience? I think you need to incorporate it into your life. It’s not enough just to know that truth. What do you do with it? Does it make any impact on who you are? On how you live? It should!
2 thoughts on “The Deep Truths of the Faith – 1 Timothy 3:9”
I want to know what those “deep truths” are.
So much confusion today as to what The Gospel & Our Faith actually are!
Would love to hear your views as I believe you are one who could help me! Thanks in anticipation!
This was an interesting question. And, in looking into it, I discovered that the NIV (that I use extensively) obscured this a bit with the expression “deep truths”. This is the Greek word mystērion meaning mystery or secret. It is a word Paul uses a number of times. Ephesians 6:19 is the closest in usage to this. Here, it is the mystery of the faith while in Ephesians 6:19 it is the mystery of the gospel. In Ephesians 3:2-6 he describes this mystery that had been revealed to him. And it is that the Gentiles are heirs together with the Jews, members of one body, and sharing together in the promise in Christ. This mystery has to do with what Christ came to do and to create in his church.
The “deep truths”, or mystery, of the faith, are not some set of secrets that only a few find. They are the fundamental truths of our faith that we can easily learn. And yet continue to better understand them as we spend time in the word. Paul is calling on us here to hold tightly to those truths and not be deceived by the lies of the evil one.