Acts 19: Paul in Ephesus
EPHESUS efʹə-səs [Gk. Ephesos—‘desirable’]. An important seaport city of the Roman province of Asia. In the NT it is mentioned in Acts 18:19–28; 19:1, 17–20; 20:16f.; 1 Cor. 15:32; 16:8; 1 Tim. 1:3; 2 Tim. 1:18; 4:12; Rev. 1:11; 2:1. (Ephesus. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised.)
Read 1 Timothy chapter 1.
How does Paul describe:
(a) His role/calling?
(b) God and Jesus?
What was Timothy’s mission in Ephesus?
What’s more important, the command, or it’s goal? Why or why not? What is the connection between the command and the goal?
How can a person be sure to develop the kind of love that comes from a pure heart, good conscience, and sincere faith?
In your opinion, does Paul sound arrogant when he says that the gospel has been entrusted to him? Does this set him up as better than others? Why or why not? How do verses 12-17 impact the answer to this question?
Based on this passage, 1:3-11, what does it mean to use the law properly?
How was Paul trustworthy, when it was God’s grace that was “poured out” on him–grace that included Paul having faith and love? What clues from the text support your answer?
The lynch pin of this chapter is found in verse 15: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” For you personally, how is the “trustworthy saying” in significant?
Check 1 Timothy 4:14 for “prophecies once made about” Timothy. It’s clear that others spoke into Timothy’s life, affirming God’s calling in his life. Based on this passage, why would it be important for Timothy to recall them?
Has anyone ever spoken into your life like this? What did they say? What was it like?
Based on all the teachings in this passage, how can a person avoid shipwrecking their faith?
What do you think Paul means when he said that he handed them (Hymenaeus and Alexander) to Satan? Does this mean it’s ok to give up on people? Why or why not?
From With The Word, a devotional by Warren W. Wiersbe:
The work in Ephesus was not easy, and Timothy wanted a new assignment; but Paul urged him to stay where he was and get the job done (1:3). The next time you want to abandon your assigned place, consider the arguments Paul gave Timothy for staying where he was.
For the work’s sake (1–11). What Paul warned the Ephesian elders about had come true:false teachers were in the church (Acts 20:28–30). The pastor’s job is to warn them and teach the people the truth. If he abandoned the flock, Timothy would be a hireling and not a shepherd (John 10:12–13).
For the Lord’s sake (12–17). Jesus died to save sinners, and He lives to equip and enable His servants to do the work of the ministry. The same God who empowered Paul could empower Timothy—and can empower us today. God is faithful!
For our own sake (18–20). God had equipped Timothy, called him, and given him a solemn charge. There was a battle to fight, and he dare not run away. If we flee the post of duty, we rob ourselves of opportunities to grow, to serve, and to glorify God.
When the winds of adversity blow, set your sails in the right direction, and let Christ handle the rudder. Otherwise, you may be shipwrecked.
Responsibility — Someone defined responsibility as “our response to God’s ability.”