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1 Timothy 5 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Do not rebuke an older man, but exhort him as a father, younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and with all propriety, the younger women as sisters.

The Support of Widows

Support[a] widows who are genuinely widows. But if any widow has children or grandchildren, they must learn to practice godliness toward their own family first and to repay their parents, for this pleases God. The real widow, left all alone, has put her hope in God and continues night and day in her petitions and prayers; however, she who is self-indulgent is dead even while she lives. Command this also, so they won’t be blamed. But if anyone does not provide for his own, that is his own household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

No widow should be placed on the official support list[b] unless she is at least 60 years old, has been the wife of one husband, 10 and is well known for good works—that is, if she has brought up children, shown hospitality, washed the saints’ feet, helped the afflicted, and devoted herself to every good work. 11 But refuse to enroll younger widows, for when they are drawn away from Christ by desire, they want to marry 12 and will therefore receive condemnation because they have renounced their original pledge. 13 At the same time, they also learn to be idle, going from house to house; they are not only idle, but are also gossips and busybodies, saying things they shouldn’t say. 14 Therefore, I want younger women to marry, have children, manage their households, and give the adversary no opportunity to accuse us. 15 For some have already turned away to follow Satan. 16 If any[c] believing woman has widows in her family, she should help them, and the church should not be burdened, so that it can help those who are genuinely widows.

Honoring the Elders

17 The elders who are good leaders should be considered worthy of an ample honorarium,[d] especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says:

Do not muzzle an ox
while it is treading out the grain,[e] and,
the worker is worthy of his wages.

19 Don’t accept an accusation against an elder unless it is supported by two or three witnesses. 20 Publicly rebuke those who sin, so that the rest will also be afraid. 21 I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels to observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing out of favoritism. 22 Don’t be too quick to appoint[f] anyone as an elder, and don’t share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure. 23 Don’t continue drinking only water, but use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses. 24 Some people’s sins are obvious, going before them to judgment, but the sins of others surface[g] later. 25 Likewise, good works are obvious, and those that are not obvious cannot remain hidden.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Timothy 5:3 Lit Honor
  2. 1 Timothy 5:9 Lit be enrolled
  3. 1 Timothy 5:16 Other mss add believing man or
  4. 1 Timothy 5:17 Or of respect and remuneration; lit of double honor
  5. 1 Timothy 5:18 Dt 25:4
  6. 1 Timothy 5:22 Lit to lay hands on = to ordain
  7. 1 Timothy 5:24 Lit follow

1 Timothy 5 New International Version (NIV)

Widows, Elders and Slaves

Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.

Give proper recognition to those widows who are really in need. But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God. The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help. But the widow who lives for pleasure is dead even while she lives. Give the people these instructions, so that no one may be open to blame. Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

No widow may be put on the list of widows unless she is over sixty, has been faithful to her husband, 10 and is well known for her good deeds, such as bringing up children, showing hospitality, washing the feet of the Lord’s people, helping those in trouble and devoting herself to all kinds of good deeds.

11 As for younger widows, do not put them on such a list. For when their sensual desires overcome their dedication to Christ, they want to marry. 12 Thus they bring judgment on themselves, because they have broken their first pledge. 13 Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they ought not to. 14 So I counsel younger widows to marry, to have children, to manage their homes and to give the enemy no opportunity for slander. 15 Some have in fact already turned away to follow Satan.

16 If any woman who is a believer has widows in her care, she should continue to help them and not let the church be burdened with them, so that the church can help those widows who are really in need.

17 The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching. 18 For Scripture says, “Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain,”[a] and “The worker deserves his wages.”[b] 19 Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses. 20 But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning. 21 I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

22 Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, and do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.

23 Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.

24 The sins of some are obvious, reaching the place of judgment ahead of them; the sins of others trail behind them. 25 In the same way, good deeds are obvious, and even those that are not obvious cannot remain hidden forever.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Timothy 5:18 Deut. 25:4
  2. 1 Timothy 5:18 Luke 10:7
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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