They want abstinence (1 Tim. 4:3)

“The hypocrite liars

Forbid marriage.

They demand abstinence

From foods

That God created

To be received

With thanksgiving

By those who believe

And know the truth.”

κωλυόντων γαμεῖν, ἀπέχεσθαι βρωμάτων, ἃ ὁ Θεὸς ἔκτισεν εἰς μετάλημψιν μετὰ εὐχαριστίας τοῖς πιστοῖς καὶ ἐπεγνωκόσι τὴν ἀλήθειαν.

Paul said, “The hypocrite liars forbid (κωλυόντων) marriage (γαμεῖν).  They demand abstinence (ἀπέχεσθαι) from foods (βρωμάτων) that God (ἃ ὁ Θεὸς) created (ἔκτισεν) to be received (εἰς μετάλημψιν) with thanksgiving (μετὰ εὐχαριστίας) by those who believe (τοῖς πιστοῖς) and know (καὶ ἐπεγνωκόσι) the truth (τὴν ἀλήθειαν).”  Only this letter to Timothy used this unique word μετάλημψιν, that means taking, receiving, sharing, or participation.  Paul then went after these lying hypocrites, who were forbidding marriage.  Paul wanted Timothy to know that despite his preference for the celibate life, he still thought that marriage was okay.  In fact, he castigated those who were trying to forbid it.  He also made a big deal about those who said that certain foods were forbidden to eat.  Paul pointed out that all food was created by God in his goodness.  The followers of Jesus Christ should receive all kinds of food with thanksgiving to God.  The Christians were the lucky ones who believed and knew the truth about God and Jesus Christ.  What is your attitude toward marriage and not eating certain foods?

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