Together in Christ: 'Caring for Widows, Our Families, and Others in Need' — 1 Timothy 5:3-4, 8

Friday, February 9, 2024

[You, as God's family,] take care of any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.

.  .  .

But those who won't care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.

— 1 Timothy 5:3-4, 8 NLT

Key Thought

God consistently emphasized throughout the Scriptures that His people must care for widows, the fatherless, and the foreigner among us. [1] In addition, the Scriptures speak consistently of respecting and obeying our parents. [2] God demands that we practice this honor, respect, compassion, encouragement, and support of our family members and also others who cannot care for themselves! [3]

The apostle Paul added to this Bible legacy. He taught Timothy and wanted him to teach others that we must care for widows in both our physical family and our spiritual family. In our passage today, Paul wrote Timothy, mentoring him as a young church leader, and emphasized what Timothy should stress to these new Christians and also how he should interact with different ages of Christians. [4] Paul's words were clear and to the point. If we, as God's family, don't care for our widows, especially those in our physical families, we behave in a worse way than unbelievers.

Caring for widows is one of our primary responsibilities as believers as we "show godliness at home and repay" our parents by making sure they receive what they need physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Caring for our widows is rooted in God's command to "Honor your father and mother" [5] and pleases God! [6] Let's show our love for God by loving our widows, in both our own family and other families!

[1] Deuteronomy 10:18, 24:17-21, 27:19; Psalm 146:9; Jeremiah 22:3; Zechariah 7:10.
[2] Exodus 20:12; Matthew 15:3-9; Ephesians 6:1; Colossians 3:20.
[3] James 1:27; Acts 6:1-7, 9:36-41.
[4] 1 Timothy 5:1-3.
[5] 1 Timothy 5:3-5.
[6] Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 5:16; Matthew 15:4.

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, thank you for giving us families to learn about You, your love, and our responsibility to love and honor others. Forgive me when I wasn't all I should have been to my parents. In addition, dear Father, please help me find other older men and women in my church family who need to be loved, encouraged, and supported. I want to display my love for You, dear Father, in the way I care for them! In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Deuteronomy 6:1-25
  • 1 Timothy 5:1-22

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Illustration

Illustration of 1 Timothy 5:3-4, 8 NLT — [You, as God's family,] take care of any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.

.  .  .

But those who won't care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.