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1 Timothy 2:1-8 - Bible Study Fellowship Lessons

Instructions on Prayer

Chapter 2:1-8

1 First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, 2 for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. 3 This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time. 7 For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying) as a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

Therefore I want the men in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension.


Key Words

·        ALL                                  6

·        MEN                                 4

·        PRAYERS                        1

·        PETITIONS                     1

·        THANKSGIVINGS        1

·        ENTREATIES                 1

·        MEDIATOR                    1

·        RANSOM                        1


The Appeal to Pray

Pray for All Men

Instructions on Prayer


       I.            Exhortation to Prayer                                  1-2a

    II.            Results of Prayer                                          2b-4

 III.            Basis of Prayer                                             5-6

 IV.            Paul’s Commission                                      7

    V.            Conclusion                                                    8

Cross References, Questions, Observations

1.      First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men,

Mt 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Ephesians 6:18

18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,

Romans 15:30? Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me,

a)     Though Paul gives the instruction to prayer for all men, why doesn’t he give any specifics on what to pray?

b)     Paul lists four distinct aspects of prayer. How do they differ?

                                i.      Entreaties: from the Greek word “to lack”, “to be deprived”, or “to lack”. In particular all unbelievers lack and have a desperate need for salvation. The entreaties are seeking avert evil.

                             ii.      Prayers: were making request for good.

                           iii.      Petitions: from a word that means “to fall in with someone” or “to draw near so as to speak intimately”. It is the word used for the Spirit’s and Christ’s intercession for us.

Romans 8:26

26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words;

Hebrews 7:25

25 Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

Petitions were to plead on behalf of another.

                           iv.      Thanksgivings: were given for blessings already received

c)     What are some specific things we should be praying for others?

1)     Possible Prayer List

Monday         Outreach/Ministry

Tuesday         Christian Leaders

Wednesday   Governing Authorities

Thursday       Tasks

Friday             Family

Saturday        Personal Walk

Sunday           Salvation for Lost

2.      for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.

Proverbs 21:1 The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He wishes.

Romans 13:1 Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. 3 For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; 4 for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. 5 Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing.

a)     How does a tranquil and quiet life result from praying for those in authority?

b)     What is the distinction between “tranquil” and “quiet”?

Tranquil refers to an inner quality regardless of external circumstances.

Quiet refers to a freedom from external circumstances.

c)     How does this goal of leading a tranquil and quiet life guide us as we consider our involvement in various “movements” or “causes” such as:

                                i.      Pro-Life

                             ii.      Traditional marriage

                           iii.      Legalized gambling

                           iv.      Civil Rights

                              v.      Prohibition

d)     What are some “causes” that Christians might be involved with here in China?

1)     1 Timothy was written sometime between 63 and 66 AD. Nero was the Roman emperor from 54 to 68 AD. During this period Christians were experiencing increasing persecution. It’s with this in mind that Paul places special emphasis on prayer for those in authority.

2)     This is the first of 10 times that Paul uses godliness (eusebia) in his writings. All 10 occurrences are in the pastoral epistles.

Godliness - reverence, respect, piety towards God, godliness

3)     During times of persecution and social upheaval, Christians are sometimes called on to die for Christ. Do you think it’s more difficult to die for Christ or live for Christ?


3.      This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,

1 John 5:14 This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.

Psalm 18:46

46 The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock;

And exalted be the God of my salvation,

Psalm 25:5

5 Lead me in Your truth and teach me,

For You are the God of my salvation;

For You I wait all the day.

Psalm 27:9

9 Do not hide Your face from me,

Do not turn Your servant away in anger;

You have been my help;

Do not abandon me nor forsake me,

O God of my salvation!

Micah 7:7

7 But as for me, I will watch expectantly for the Lord;

I will wait for the God of my salvation.

My God will hear me.

Habakkuk 3:18

18 Yet I will exult in the Lord,

I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.

a)     What is it that is good and acceptable in God’s sight?

                                i.      Is it the prayer?

                             ii.      Is it the tranquil and quiet life?

                           iii.      Or is it godliness and dignity?

b)     What are some prayers that are not good and acceptable in God’s sight?

                                i.     Matthew 6:5?“When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

Luke 18:9 And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’

                             ii.     James 4:3?You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.

                           iii.     Proverbs 28:9?He who turns away his ear from listening to the law, Even his prayer is an abomination.

c)     Why does Paul refer to God rather than Jesus as our Savior?

With the one exception of Jude, this title occurs only in the pastoral epistles.

1 Timothy 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus according to the commandment of God our Savior, and of Christ Jesus, who is our hope,

1 Timothy 2:3? This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,

Titus 1:3? but at the proper time manifested, even His word, in the proclamation with which I was entrusted according to the commandment of God our Savior,

Titus 2:10? not pilfering, but showing all good faith so that they will adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in every respect.?

Titus 3:4? But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared,

Jude 1:25 ?to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.



4.      who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

2 Peter 3:9? The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

2 Samuel 14:14? For we will surely die and are like water spilled on the ground which cannot be gathered up again. Yet God does not take away life, but plans ways so that the banished one will not be cast out from him.

John 1:12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Rom 9:18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.

Ezekiel 18:32

32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord God. “Therefore, repent and live.”

19 You will say to me then, “ Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?” 20 On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it? 21 Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use? 22 What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? 23 And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory,

John 6:44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day.

a)     Since God is sovereign and He desires all men to be saved, why aren’t they?

b)     Can someone come to the knowledge of the truth without being saved?

1)     God’s desires are not synonymous with His sovereign decrees. For example, God clearly doesn’t desire men to sin. Sin is an abomination to Him. Yet, He has not decreed that men shall not sin. Why? Because His purpose to glorify Himself overrides His desire for all men to be saved and for none to perish. He is glorified when He justly executes His wrath against sin and condemning unrepentant sinners to hell.

5.      For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,

John 17:3? This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 5:44 How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and you do not seek the glory that is from the one and only God?

John 10:30 I and the Father are one.”

Acts 19:26? You see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost all of Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away a considerable number of people, saying that gods made with hands are no gods at all.

Deuteronomy 6:4?Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!

James 2:19? You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.

a)     What would you reply to a Muslim when he says that they worship one god, Allah, but Christians worship three?

b)     Why must God and man have a mediator?

                                i.      Man is separated and alienated from God by his sin.

                             ii.      Sinful man cannot survive in a holy God’s presence.

1)     God is One being, One essence, but three persons.

6.      who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time.

Matt 7:13 “ Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. 14 For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

1 Timothy 4:10

10 For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers.

Revelation 22:17

17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.

Mark 10:45?For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Mark 14:24

24 And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.

Isaiah 53: 12 

Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many,?    and he shall divide the spoil with the strong,?because he poured out his soul to death?    and was numbered with the transgressors;?yet he bore the sin of many,?    and makes intercession for the transgressors.

Hebrews 9:28

28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.

Romans 5:15

15 But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man's trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many.

Mt 5:44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Acts 17:24 The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.

Gal 4:1 Now I say, as long as the heir is a child, he does not differ at all from a slave although he is owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by the father. So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world.But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,

a)     Who is the “all” in this verse? Who are the “many” in Mark 10:45? Christ’s atoning death was for all and unlimited in its sufficiency, but its application was limited specifically to the elect.

b)     All men experience God’s grace in a temporal sense, but only believers experience it in an eternal sense.

c)     What implications, if any, does this have for us?

d)     In what way was this the “proper time”?

1)     All experience the grace of God in the following ways;

·        Common grace

·        Compassion

·        Admonition to repent

·        Gospel Invitation

7.      For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying) as a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

1 Cor 12:11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills.

Eph 4:11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ;

a)     Was Paul’s appointment unique or does the Lord appoint each of us for a special role?


8.      Therefore I want the men in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension.

Isaiah 1:15 “So when you spread out your hands in prayer,

I will hide My eyes from you;

Yes, even though you multiply prayers,

I will not listen.

Your hands are covered with blood.

1 Kings 8:22

22 Then Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in the presence of all the assembly of Israel and spread out his hands toward heaven.

James 5:16b The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. 18 Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit.

a)     What does it mean to “lift up holy hands” when we pray? It literally means unpolluted. Our hands represent the activities of our life, so this is saying that we should come to God with a holy life.

1)     Many postures for prayer are acceptable as related in the Scriptures.

·        Prostrate

·        Kneeling

·        Standing

Key Verse

1 First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men,

Central Teaching

Understanding that Jesus is the one and only mediator between God and men, we are urged to pray for all men since God desires for all men to be saved,


Pray for the salvation of President Obama, the supreme court justices, and the senator and representatives. Hu Jintao, Wen Jiabao

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