In a well-furnished kitchen there are not only crystal goblets and silver platters, but waste cans and compost buckets—some containers used to serve fine meals, others to take out the garbage. Become the kind of container God can use to present any and every kind of gift to his guests for their blessing.
If, therefore, someone cleanses himself from these things, that person will be a vessel for honor, having been sanctified, useful to the master, prepared for every good work. If anyone cleanses himself of these things, he will be a vessel for lofty use, dedicated, beneficial to the master of the house, ready for every good work.
Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things , he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. All who make themselves clean from evil will be used for special purposes. So if someone cleanses himself of such behavior, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart, useful for the Master, prepared for every good work. Suppose someone stays away from what is common. Then the Master will be able to use them for special purposes.
They will be made holy. They will be ready to do any good work. Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work. Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.
And it is not unusual for the Holy Ghost to represent the church of Christ un der that similitude. Sometimes the church is consi dered as a building it self. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these, he will be a vessel for honor—sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. Here Paul speaks of the negative: These are some of the uses, that the master may have occasion to put these vessels of the sanctuary unto: Firstly, God is represented as a potter.
If a man lives a clean life, he will be like a dish made of gold. He will be respected and set apart for good use by the owner of the house. If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work. But if a man purges himself from such fellows, he will be a vessel sanctified unto honour, meet for the Lord and prepared for all good works.
All who cleanse themselves of the things I have mentioned will become special utensils, dedicated and useful to the owner of the house, ready for every good work. So if people purify themselves from dishonourable things, they will become vessels for honour, made holy, pleasing to the master of the house, fit for every good work. But you, Timothy, must not see your life and ministry this way. Your life and ministry must not be disgraced , for you are to be a pure container of Christ and dedicated to the honorable purposes of your Master, prepared for every good work that he gives you to do.
If any one purifies himself from what is ignoble, then he will be a vessel for noble use, consecrated and useful to the master of the house, ready for any good work. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these, he will be a vessel for honor—sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. So tell them, if they will clean up their lives and purify themselves from dishonorable teachings that lead people astray, then they can become honorable vessels, consecrated and useful to the Master, made ready for every good work He has in store.
So if a person keeps himself clean from these things, he will be like a dish that is used for a fine work.
It is kept as a better dish for the head man of the house, and it is ready for any good thing he wants to use it for. Therefore, if any man cleanseth himself from these [Therefore if any man shall cleanse himself from these], he shall be a vessel hallowed into honour, and profitable to the Lord, ready to all good work [ready into all good work].
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Print Twitter Facebook Email. Click the button below to continue. Hymeneus and Philetus, who had erred from the truth, and were for teaching their error to others, which was this, viz. But upon it observes, That it was no great wonder, if there were some such hereticks and false teachers in the church; for it was no more than we should meet with in any great house, vessels, or utensils of different kinds, some to honour and some to dishonour; as in the verse preceeding my text: In a great house says he there are not only vessels of gold, and of silver, but also of wood, and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour.
Here the apostle carries on the metaphor he had begun in the foregoing verses; representing the church of God under the similitude of a great house, and Christ as the master of it; and the members, especi ally the ministers of the gospel, as vessels in it; which if they would be vessels unto honour, sanctified and fitted for the master's use, and prepared to every good work, must be throughly purged and cleansed.
And they are vessels unto honour indeed, who are not only sanctified, set apart and consecrated to that holy service, but are also fitted for the master's use, even prepared, qualified and dis posed to every good work that he shall set them about. But now in order to this, a man must be purged and cleansed: This may suffice to introduce the scheme of my present discourse: And as for a fuller explication of the words, it shall be under the several observati ons which I shall be obliged to speak very briefly to. The church of God is as it were a great house, of which Christ is the head and master.
The vessels unto honour, are such as be ing sanctified and set apart, are fitted for the master's use, even prepared unto every good work. The apostle makes a comparison between the church and a house, in the foregoing verse, and carries on the metaphor in my text, speaking of the vessels and the master of the horse. And it is not unusual for the Holy Ghost to represent the church of Christ un der that similitude. Sometimes the church is consi dered as a building it self. Thus says the apostle to the church of Corinth Ye are God's building, 1 Cor.
And particular saints are called lively stones, that make up the building, 1 Pet. Ye also as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house. In whom all the building fitly framed together, groweth into an holy temple in the Lord. But then at other times the church, when it is re presented under the metaphor of an house, intends not the building it self, but those that live in, and belong to the house; even the family or houshold. Thus we read of the house of Cloe, 1 Cor. And thus the church is called the houshold of God, Eph. So that we may indifferently consider the church of Christ either as the house it self, or as the houshold, even those that make up the family of Christ.
And considering the church as an house in one sense or other, Christ is the owner, head and master of it. But Christ as a son over his own house, whose house are we, that is we christians, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoycing of the hope firm unto the end. So that the church of Christ is his house: He is the master, the owner and the governour of it. It be longs to him by all imaginable right whatsoever. This spiritual house, the church of God, is Christ's by gift; for it is made up of those whom the father hath given unto him, Joh.
They are also his by purchase; for the church of God is what he has purchased with his own blood, Acts They are his also by conquest; for it is by his al mighty power and grace that they are rescued out of the hands of their spiritual enemies, bro't out of the kingdom of satan into the kingdom of the Son of God. They publickly own and profess him for their lord and master, and promise obedience to his commands. He looks upon them as his particu lar care and charge, and gives his orders, directions and commands to them, even all the laws, statutes and ordinances of the Gospel.
He sets them their service, and gives every one his work to do. And then as a good housholder he makes provision for his church; not only for their bodily, but for their spiritual sup port and comfort. He takes care that they be fed with the bread of life. They eat and drink at his table, and are cloathed with his righteousness, as well as fed by his grace, and he takes care that every one has his portion in due season.
The Ministers of the Gospel may be and are considered as vessels or instruments in this house. I say vessels or instruments, because the word used in my text for vessels, signifies also any instrument, as Criticks observe; especially any instruments or uten sils of a family, as well as those excavated ones that do more strictly go under the name of vessels.
The ministers of Christ are set forth under various characters, and their office represented by very diffe rent metaphors; some importing the honour, others the labour, and others the usefulness of their office. They are represented sometimes as angels, Rev. And this is not the only place where ministers are represented under this humbling metaphor: For thus says the apostle, 2 Cor. We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that is the treasure of the gospel, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. And the apostle Paul might well make use of this metaphor, because the Lord himself de clares of him in particular, that he was a chosen vessel unto him to bear his name before the gentiles, Acts 9.
So that ministers may be looked upon, and ought, in order to keep themselves humble, to look upon themselves but as vessels in the house: And they may well be looked upon as such; for they are but as vessels or instruments that the great master of the houshold makes use of, for the benefit of his church. They are vessels as they are of God's forming and not of their own; and all formed and fashioned as he pleases; some of larger and some of smaller size and capacity, just as seems good in his sight, and will best answer the several uses they are to be put to in his church.
Moreover, they are vessels, as whatever is con tain'd in them is not their own, but what they re ceive: If they are filled with knowledge and wisdom, with gifts and graces, it is not from themselves any more than any empty vessel can fill itself. A vessel is capable of receiving, and that is all that can be said of us; for what have we that we did not re ceive?
All ministerial accomplishments are given to ministers: Every good gift, and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the father of lights, Jam 1 Again, they are vessels as they not only are made to receive and contain, but also to pour out again, to convey and dispense to others. This is the use of vessels, not only to receive and contain, but to pour out again as there is occasion.
Their business is to deliver as well as receive. I delivered unto you that which I received of the Lord, says the a postle, 1 Cor Paul was a chosen vessel to bear Christ's name, and to convey his gospel, and the way to salvation by him to the Gentiles. And this is the business of every chosen vessel, to convey the knowledge of Christ, to dispense his gospel, and his ordinances unto the people, according as they have received them; every one according to his capacity, and the measure he has received.
Furthermore, ministers are vessels as they are of no use, nor are they imployed any farther than Christ, the great housholder, sees cause to make use of them. The vessels or instruments of a house can make no use of themselves, nor are they of use any further than the master of the family sees cause to occupy and improve them: Again, they are vessels as they are only the means and instruments of any real saving benefit flowing to the church by them.
They are not the efficient cau ses, but only the instruments of the conversion of sin ners. They can't beget faith in any, nor bestow sav ing grace upon them, but are only instruments in God's hands, by which God works such a gracious change in them. Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but mi nisters by whom ye believed? And this is the case with the choicest vessels that God has among his ministers: But how much more common is it for them by some violent distemper, or some sudden stroke of the divine hand, to be dashed in pieces like a potter's vessel before that time?
Among the ministers of the Gospel some are vessels unto honour, and some unto dishonour. As in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth, and some to honour and some to dishonour, so it is in the church of Christ, with respect unto the ministers of it. Vessels of gold and silver in a house are to the ho nour of the master of the house, as they set forth his rich estate: Such ministers by their doctrines and by their lives do much to display the honour of Christ: They set forth the glory of his person, the glory of his offices as our re deemer, the glory of his wisdom, of his power, and especially of his grace in the redemption of sinners.
Hence the apostle says of such golden vessels, 2 Cor. They are the glory of Christ. And nothing tends more to do a proper bottom to religion, and recommend it to the esteem, the choice, the love and practice of a People, than its being brought to them in such golden vessels, that is, able ministers of the new testament, who are not only able by acceptable words to set forth the excellency of it, but also recommend it by their own example. Such ministers by their shining gifts and graces reflect a very plea sing lustre upon religion, and adorn the doctrine of God their Saviour in all things.
They are vessels unto honour, as they are such on whom God will confer special marks of honour. Vessels of gold and silver are unto honour, as the master and owner of them puts honour upon them, by taking particular care of them that they be not lost or abused, and by providing more honourable shelves and closets for them in the house.
Thus God sets a great value upon those ministers that are as vessels of gold and silver; he has a higher esteem of them, and sets his love more upon them, and delights to ho nour them. Them that honour me I will honour, says God, 1 Sam. He will put marks of honour upon them whilst they live, and afterwards he will crown them with glory and honour. Among the ministers of the gospel, some are vessels unto dishonour. And now these are vessels unto dishonour; these are a dishonour to Christ, a dishonour to the faithful ministers of Christ, a discredit to the church and to themselves: Vessels unto honour are such as being sancti fied and set apart, are fited for the master's use, even pre pared unto every good work.
Here is the character or account that the apostle gives of a good faithful minister, a vessel unto honour; that he is sanctified, separated and set apart to that service; and not only so, but fit for the master's use, and that is to be prepared unto every good work. So that a minister who is a vessel unto honour is,. A minister that is a vessel unto honour is one that is sanctified, consecrated or set apart for that holy office.
A vessel unto honour sanctified. This doubtless has reference to the vessels of the altar and tabernacle, that were all to be sanctified before they were made use of for the service of the sanctuary, Exod. So the Priests and Levites of old were set apart and sanctified to the holy services of the altar and taber nacle. And a great deal of ceremony and solemnity was used in the consecrating the priests, and separa ting them to their holy office.
And altho' these bur densome ceremonies of consecration under the law are abolished; yet even now ministers of the gospel are to be sanctified, and set apart to their holy office, and in solemn manner introduced into that sacred function. They are to be separated unto the Gospel of God, as the apostle says he was, Rom. Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work where unto I have called them. So that the solemn ordination of ministers is their sanctification or consecration or separation to the sacred office of the ministry: It is the regular intro duction and solemn investiture of them in their office.
So that every one that is thus solemnly ordained may be said to be a vessel sanctified or consecrated. But then this external sanctification supposes some thing that is internal and real. It signifies that God approves of them; that he sets them apart, and owns them for his ministers.
And then that they separate themselves to that office, and devote and give up themselves to that service; that they separate them selves from the other business of life, and give them selves wholly to these things. It is not sufficient to be sanctified and separated, unless we are fit for the use and service we are se parated unto.
What will it signify to be ordained and inducted into that holy office of the ministry, and yet not fit for the use; not capable of answering the ends and designs of it? Therefore if such would be vessels to honour, they must be meet for the master's use. The vessels of the sanctuary that were conse crated, were made fit for their several uses designed for them; so must ministers be fit for the use which Christ the master has for us, if we would be vessels unto honour. They must be in all respects fit for the service of Christ.
Throughout the writings of the Apostle Paul, we read of the struggle [a war at times] between the flesh and the spirit of a born again believer. The KJV uses an archaic phrase, but a powerful one: "meet for the master's use." The English adjective "meet" (used also to describe Eve as a "help meet for.
They must have that knowledge, that wisdom, and that grace that is necessary to make them fit for Christ to imploy, and to render them capable of performing the service he calls them unto. The master's use of ministers, or the business that he has occasion to use or imploy them in, is to bear his name, to make him known to the people, and the way to salvation by him, as it is laid down in the gospel. Their business is to shew men the way to Salvation; to turn men from darkness to light, and from the power of satan unto God.
And now ministers must be fit for this use and business. And must have that principle of love and obedience reigning in their souls, as will prompt and put them upon the faithful discharge of the trust re posed in them, and of answering all the good ends and purposes of their office. Without this it is im possible we should be fit for the master's use. For how can a man answer the end of enlightening and instructing others that is ignorant and in the dark himself?
And what is there that will put a man up on the faithful discharge of the ministerial office, but a principle of love and obedience to Christ? But with such a principle, the man will be fit for the master's use; for such a principle reigning in the soul, will carry the man forth to every kind of service that the master shall call him to. And this leads me to say. This explains the former head; for to be fit for the master's use, is to be prepared to every good work.
For what is the use the master has for his ministers? Why, it is for every good work; sometimes one good work, and sometimes another: And he that is not prepared unto every good work, is not entirely fitted for the master's use. Sometimes the master has occasion to use us, in such a work, and sometimes another; and therefore the minister must be prepared for every good work.
But now what a vast variety of work is there in the ministerial office, that the master does constantly, or may occasionally call us unto? There is the daily work and business of the study; giving our atten dance to reading, meditation and prayer, and com posing discourses for the publick instruction of the flock. The administration of the sacraments, and the consures of the church; visiting the sick; hearing the difficul ties and distresses that one and another may be la bouring under; clearing up their doubts, removing their ignorance, leading them out of their errors, scattering their fears, taking away their scruples, and leading them in the paths of righteousness and peace.
And besides these ordinary and common services of the minister, there are other services of a more difficult nature, that he may be called unto. Some times there are dreadful divisions and contentions to be healed. Sometimes there are gross and danger ous errors to be refuted, and the truths of the gospel to be supported and defended. And to men tion no more, sometimes they may be called, not only to bear testimony to the truth; but to seal it with their blood.
These are some of the uses, that the master may have occasion to put these vessels of the sanctuary unto: