Paul's First Letter to Timothy

Chapter 1

Timothy is put in mind of the charge which was given to him by Paul at his going to Macedonia, 1-4. Of the right use and end of the law, 5-10. Of Paul's calling to be an apostle, 11-19; and Hymeneus and Alexander, 20.

1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ, who is our hope,

2 To Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

3 As I implored you when I went into Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you might charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions rather than godly edifying which is in faith. 5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned, 6 From which some, having swerved, have turned aside to vain jangling, 7 Desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say, nor concerning what they affirm.

8 But we know that the law is good, if a man uses it lawfully, 9 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for man-slayers, 10 For lewd persons, for those who defile themselves with mankind, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God which was committed to my trust.

12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry. 13 I was before a blasphemer, a persecutor, and injurious, but I obtained mercy because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. 14 And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 15 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. 16 However, for this cause I obtained mercy, so that in me as chief, Jesus Christ might show forth all his patience for an example to those who should hereafter believe in him to eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, God the only wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

18 This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before to you, so that by them you may war a good warfare, 19 Holding faith and a good conscience, which some having thrust away, have made shipwreck concerning faith, 20 Of whom are Hymeneus and Alexander, whom I have delivered to Satan so that they may learn not to blaspheme.


Matthew Henry Commentary - 1st Timothy, Chapter 1[➚]


[v.19] - In other words, those who reject a good conscience (i.e., they don't listen to their conscience) will make a shipwreck of their faith. The "which" in this verse is singular in the Greek, so it only applies to a good conscience and not to faith. From the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary: "Faith is the vessel in which they had professedly embarked, of which 'good conscience' is the anchor. The ancient Church often used this image, comparing the course of faith to navigation. The Greek does not imply that one having once had faith makes shipwreck of it, but that they who put away good conscience 'make shipwreck with respect to the faith.'"