Under Gods Command

1 Timothy 1:18-20 Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, holding on to faith and a good conscience.  Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith. 

 20) Among them are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme. 

 We don’t know who Alexander was.  He may have been an associate of Hymenaeus.  Hymenaeus’s error is explained in 2 Timothy 2:17, 18.  He weakened people’s faith by teaching that the resurrection had already occurred.  Paul says that he handed both of these men over to Satan, meaning that Paul had removed them from the fellowship of the church.  Paul did this so that they would see their error and repent.  The ultimate purpose of this punishment was correction.

Lets Bring it Home: The church today is too often lax in disciplining Christians who deliberately sin.  Deliberate disobedience should be responded to quickly and sternly to prevent the entire congregation from being affected.  But discipline must be done in a way that tries to bring the offender back to Christ and into the loving embrace of the church.  The definition of discipline includes these words: strengthening, purifying, training, correcting, perfecting.  Condemnation, suspicion, withholding of forgiveness, or permanent exile should not be a part of church discipline.

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