A Model of the Believers - Part 4

1 Timothy 4:12  •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 9
“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example [or model] of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Tim. 4:1212Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. (1 Timothy 4:12)).
Spirit Models
In previous issues we have considered the words of our Lord Jesus Christ as a perfect example for a believer, David as a good model of a Christian’s conduct, and Timothy as a good example of divine love in action. Now let’s focus on the believer’s spirit. “Be thou an example [or model] of the believers... in spirit.”
In the early days of the church, when the number of disciples was multiplying, they encountered a difficulty. Some of the widows were overlooked in the daily distribution for their temporal needs. To solve this problem, the apostles told the disciples, “Look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business” (Acts 6:33Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. (Acts 6:3)).
One of the young men that they chose was named Stephen. In giving his name, the Spirit of God specifically reiterates the qualifications by which he was known and which specially suited him for this task: “Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost” (vs. 5).
The Word of God says, “A man’s gift maketh room for him” (Prov. 18:1616A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men. (Proverbs 18:16)). Also, “They that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 3:1313For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 3:13)). Stephen clearly exemplified these principles. Being full of the Holy Spirit, he faithfully performed all of his duties as a deacon (a servant), and the Lord opened up other opportunities for Stephen to serve Him. “Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people” (Acts 6:88And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. (Acts 6:8)).
This aroused opposition, as it often does. Some chose to dispute with Stephen, rather than accept the faithful message of Jesus Christ that he proclaimed. But there was something they could not resist-something they had to notice and acknowledge that was different about this young man. “They were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake” (vs. 10).
He was not only indwelt by the Spirit of God, but he was also full of the Holy Spirit. He allowed the Spirit to have full control of his thoughts, his words and his actions. His own spirit was one with the Holy Spirit, and therefore the attitude he displayed as well as the words he spoke all testified to the divine source of power in his life and in his message. They modeled the spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ.
D. R. Macy