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Scripture Reading:  1 Timothy 1:3-7


The Purpose of the Commandment



1.  Goal:  “The purpose toward which an endeavor is directed; an objective.”

2.  1 Tim. 1:5:  The goal of God’s commandment is love (with corresponding traits – pure heart, good conscience, sincere faith).

3.  Men put law & love against each other (law v. love), but God links them:

  a.  Josh. 22:5:  Careful obedience is loving the Lord.

  b.  Psa. 119:97:  God’s law as the object of man’s love.

  c.  Psa. 119:165:  Those who love God’s law have great peace.

  d.  Rom. 13:8-10:  Love fulfills law.

4.  Truth & love come together in Christ (Jno. 14:6; 1 Jno. 4:8).



  A.  Love is Active Good Will toward God and Others.

    1.  Jno. 14:15, 23 – Keep the word of Christ.

    2.  1 Jno. 2:5 – Love is completed in obedience.

    3.  1 Jno. 5:3 – His commands are not a burden due to love.

  B.  Remain Sound in Doctrine in order to Love Correctly, 1 Tim. 1:3-11.

    1.  1:3 – Teach no other doctrine (Gal. 1:6-7; 2 Jno. 9).

    2.  1:4 – Truth is the basis of faith & thus, godly edification.

    3.  1:6-7 – When we stray from truth, the “purpose of the commandment” is forfeited & unattainable.

    4.  1:8-10 – Law is good when used properly:  Sound doctrine.

    5.  1:11 – The glorious gospel (apostolic, Gal. 1:8-9).

    6.  2 Jno. 1-6 – Truth & love produce the obedient Christian life.



  A.  A Pure HeartJas. 4:8 (Matt. 5:8).

    1.  Heart is the seat of one’s will (Heb. 4:12); our life reflects our heart, Prov. 23:7; Matt. 12:35 (cf. Jas. 3:13-16).

      a.  Pure:  Free of corruption, sin & guilt, Acts 2:37-38.

      b.  Filled with pure thoughts & motives, Phil. 4:8 (Col. 3:16).

    2.  Why am I obeying the commands of God?  (Prov. 3:1-8)

      a.  Love for God does not break God’s commands, cf. Matt. 5:19.

      b.  Neither does love from a pure heart obey hypocritically or self-righteously, Matt. 5:20 (6:1).

  B.  A Good Conscience.

    1.  The conscience is our moral compass:  When trained in the purity of truth & love, our conscience is “good” (useful)…

    2.  A conscience that knows the commands of God but does not obey (do) them is the difference between an intellectual consciousness & a moral consciousness, 1 Cor. 8:1-3, 7-13.

    3.  We obey God’s commands in order to mold our conscience into a life of love – an active life of considering others before ourselves (1 Cor. 9:22; 10:31-33).

      a.  That is love out of a good conscience!  Gal. 5:14

      b.  Refusing to love & obey God’s word sears conscience (1 Tim. 4:1-2).

    4.  cf. 1 Pet. 3:21 – Baptized to have a good conscience (Heb. 9:22).

  C.  A Sincere Faith.

    1.  Faith is the expression of our trust in God; the active response to truth in one’s life, cf. Jas. 2:18.

    2.  Sincere:  “unfeigned, undisguised,” genuine, not pretended or impersonated – cf. 2 Tim. 1:5.

    3.  Loving obedience from a sincere faith is reverent, not pretentious, Col. 3:22-23; it is generous (simplicity), not self-serving, 2 Cor. 1:12 (2:17); 8:8.



1.  Lk. 16:15God knows our hearts; He knows whether our obedience expresses love for Him and others out of a pure heart, a good conscience & a sincere faith; or whether we pretend to love Him, His truth & others.

2.  “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”...“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’” -Lk. 10:25, 27

3.  Eph. 6:24:  Grace to all who love Christ in sincerity.


-Expanded from “The Goal” by Ron Adams, Thursday’s Thoughts (25Aug05)