by Darrel Cline (darrelcline biblical-thinking.org)
Chapter # 1 Paragraph # 2 Study # 3 (Focus is upon 1:5) Lincolnton, NC February 29, 2004
There are no differences between the Textus Receptus and the Nestle/Aland 26. The translations vary at "Now" vs. "But"; at "commandment" vs. "charge"; at "charity" vs. "love"; and at the Textus Receptus' replication of the word "of" before each of the genitives.
Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
But the end of the charge is love out of a pure heart and a good conscience and faith unfeigned:
1. The "Now/But" issue arises from the fact that the Greek connective that is behind these translations introduces somewhat of a "hitch" in the flow of thought. It is very mildly adversative and serves to mildly direct the thought-flow in a manner that introduces some idea that may not have been naturally assumed by the reader. [Picture a stream flowing along: "and" simply keeps the flow going; "now/but" turns the flow a bit to the right or left; "BUT" (the stronger adversative) serves to turn the stream radically so that it may even be going back the way it came.] Both the English "now" and the "but" do that to some degree. The point is that Paul wanted, at this juncture in his message to Timothy, to bring up the objective of his instructions so that Timothy would, if he had not already done so, remember that even the charge to stop certain kinds of teaching was only done because there is an effective way, and a vain way, to bring folks to where God wants them...and the speculations of the teachers simply weren't going to do that.
2. The "end" brings to mind the issue of "objective". What is the goal? The problem with "ends" is that they are usually not final ends; normally an "end" is simply an objective that will serve to bring about another objective. As such, it is only an "end" in a relative sort of way. If I have the "end" of good nourishment (which is really a servant-end to good health, which is really just another stopping place along the way to "a satisfying physical life", which is really just another stopping place....), a servant-end to that end is shopping for food, which, in turn, requires getting into the car to go to the grocery store, which, in turn, requires going to work to make the money to buy the car, which, in turn, requires... I hope we get the point. Most "ends" are "servant objectives" along the way to the final end, and, as such, are simply "means to the final end". In our text, instructing/charging certain men to stop teaching in a certain way, is, itself, both an "end" and a "means to an end" in that the string of things they are setting in motion will not bring folks to where God wants them to be and getting folks to where God wants them to be is another "end" along the way of innumerable "ends" until we get to the final objective.
3. The "end" is "of the charge/commandment". The word is used again in 1:18 and carries the idea that Paul's words constitute, at the very minimum, a declaration of Truth, and, beyond that, the concept that Truth requires response: it is a commission to act along prescribed lines.
4. That brings us to the fact that the words of the text introduce several "ends". The bigger one is "love", but, as Paul lays it out, this "end" requires that we achieve three lesser, but crucial, "ends": a clean heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith. And, behind all three of these is the reality that only legitimate "doctrine" can initiate the development of these three which are stops along the way to "love" which is also just another stop along the way.
a. So, what is "love"?
1) Specifically and minimally, it is the value placed upon a specific object always in respect to other specific objects and always in respect to the larger "love".
2) Generally and maximally, it is the system of values held by a person.
a) The system is generally in flux and vacillates based upon variables which tend to set first one thing up as important and then another.
b) There does tend, though, to be a core to the system that is pretty much set.