1 aDo not sharply rebuke an bolder man, but rather appeal to him as a father, to cthe younger men as brothers,
2 the older women as mothers, and the younger women as sisters, in all purity.
3 Honor widows who are awidows indeed;
4 but if any widow has children or grandchildren, athey must first learn to practice piety in regard to their own family and to 1make some return to their parents; for this is bacceptable in the sight of God.
5 Now she who is a awidow indeed and who has been left alone, bhas fixed her hope on God and continues in centreaties and prayers night and day.
6 But she who agives herself to wanton pleasure is bdead even while she lives.
7 1aPrescribe these things as well, so that they may be above reproach.
8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has adenied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
9 A widow is to be aput on the list only if she is not less than sixty years old, having been bthe wife of one man,
10 having a reputation for agood works; and if she has brought up children, if she has bshown hospitality to strangers, if she chas washed the 1saints’ feet, if she has dassisted those in distress, and if she has devoted herself to every good work.
11 But refuse to put younger widows on the list, for when they feel asensual desires in disregard of Christ, they want to get married,
12 thus incurring condemnation, because they have set aside their previous 1pledge.
13 At the same time they also learn to be idle, as they go around from house to house; and not merely idle, but also agossips and bbusybodies, talking about cthings not proper to mention.
14 Therefore, I want younger widows to get amarried, bear children, bkeep house, and cgive the enemy no occasion for reproach;
15 for some ahave already turned aside to follow bSatan.
16 If any woman who is a believer ahas dependent widows, she must bassist them and the church must not be burdened, so that it may assist those who are cwidows indeed.
17 aThe elders who brule well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who cwork hard 1at preaching and teaching.
18 For the Scripture says, “aYou shall not muzzle the ox while he is threshing,” and “bThe laborer is worthy of his wages.”
19 Do not receive an accusation against an aelder except on the basis of btwo or three witnesses.
20 Those who continue in sin, arebuke in the presence of all, bso that the rest also will be fearful of sinning.
21 aI solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality.
22 aDo not lay hands upon anyone too hastily and 1thereby share bresponsibility for the sins of others; keep yourself 2free from sin.
23 No longer drink water exclusively, but ause a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.
24 The sins of some men are quite evident, going before them to judgment; for others, their sins afollow after.
25 Likewise also, deeds that are good are quite evident, and athose which are otherwise cannot be concealed.
Instructions to Those Who Minister
1 aAll who are under the yoke as slaves are to regard their own masters as worthy of all honor so bthat the name of God and our doctrine will not be 1spoken against.
2 Those who have believers as their masters must not be disrespectful to them because they are abrethren, but must serve them all the more, because those who 1partake of the benefit are believers and beloved. bTeach and 2preach these principles.
3 If anyone aadvocates a different doctrine and does not 1agree with bsound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine cconforming to godliness,
4 he is aconceited and understands nothing; but he 1has a morbid interest in bcontroversial questions and cdisputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions,
5 and constant friction between amen of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who bsuppose that 1godliness is a means of gain.
6 aBut godliness actually is a means of bgreat gain when accompanied by ccontentment.
7 For awe have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either.
8 If we ahave food and covering, with these we shall be content.
9 aBut those who want to get rich fall into temptation and ba snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction.
10 For athe love of money is a root of all 1sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have bwandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.