A few years ago the psychology Department of Duke University carried on an interesting experiment. They wanted to see how long rats could swim. In one container they placed a rat for which there was no possibility of escape. He swam a few moments and then ducked his head to drown. In the other container they made the hope of escape a possibility for the rat. The rat swam for several hours before finally giving up. The conclusion of the experiment was just the opposite of our common conclusion. We usually say, “As long as there is life, there is hope.” The Duke experiment proved, “As long as there is hope, there is life.”

Beloved, we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and stedfast and entering into that which is within the veil; whither as a forerunner Jesus entered for us, having become a high priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek” (Heb. 6:19-20). That is why our Hope declared, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (Jn. 14:6).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts | Leave a comment



1 Timothy 1:12-17


Are you someone who has contemplated becoming a Christian, but wondered…

  1. Would God forgive you for the terrible things you’ve done?
  2. Could you live the kind of life God desires of you?

There is a man who serves as an example for you…

  1. Of the grace and mercy that is available for you
  2. Of the faith and love that you can have in Jesus

His name is Paul, and in 1 Timothy 1:12-17 he describes how his own conversion is “A Pattern for Would-Be Christians.”



Note Paul’s former life…

  1. He was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent (violent) man… 1 Timothy 1:13
  2. Approved of the death of Stephen… Acts 7:58; 8:1
  3. Making havoc of the church in Jerusalem… Acts 8:3
  4. Persecuting Christians even to Damascus… Acts 9:1-2
  5. Persecuting even to the point of imprisonment and death… Acts 22:4
  6. Enraged against Christians, compelling them to blaspheme… Acts 26:9-11
  7. His goal was to destroy the church of God… Galatians 1:13
  8. He was indeed “chief” of sinners…1 Timothy 1:15

Yet the grace of the Lord was “exceedingly abundant” and he obtained mercy! … 1 Timothy 1:14, 16

  1. What about your life?
  2. Yes, you have committed sin
    • Romans 3:23
    • James 2:10
      • Perhaps you are a good, moral person like the Eunuch, Cornelius, or Lydia
      • Perhaps you are a murderer and blasphemer like Paul was

In either case, Jesus came to into the world to save sinners… 1 Timothy 1:15

  1. The grace of the Lord is exceedingly abundant… 1 Timothy 1:14
  2. The Lord is long-suffering
    • 1 Timothy 1:16
    • 2 Peter 3:9

Will you not let Paul’s pattern move you to obediently believe on the Lord for everlasting life? … 1 Timothy 1:16

  1. There is no sin too great, no crime so heinous, that cannot be forgiven by the grace of the Lord!
  2. The conversion of Paul serves as evidence that no matter who you are or what you’ve done, you can be saved. 


Note Paul’s service to Christ…

  1. The Lord put Paul into the ministry… 1 Timothy 1:12
  2. To bear witness to what he had seen… Acts 26:16
  3. To turn people from the power of Satan to God… Acts 26:18
  4. He became a pattern of the faith and love that is possible in Christ… 1 Timothy 1:14
  5. He cooperated – was obedient – with the grace of God… 1 Corinthians 15:9-10
  6. Striving to be the best he could be… Philippians 3:12-15
  7. Learning contentment, finding strength… Philippians 4:11-13

Paul provides the example of a life of faith and love that leads to peace… Philippians 4:9

What about your life?

  1. If you are already a Christian
    • Are you experiencing the faith and love that is Christ?
      • Faith that comes from the Word of God?… Romans 10:17
      • Love that comes by being taught of God? … 1 Thessalonians 4:9-10
    • Are you following the pattern of Paul?
      • Cooperating with the grace of God to turn from sin?
      • Ever pressing onward toward spiritual maturity?
      • Faithful to whatever ministry the Lord places upon you?
  2. If you are not yet a Christian
    • Why not take the step of faith like Paul did?
      • He did what the Lord commanded him – Acts 22:16
      • He started anew, walking by faith and not by sight… 2 Corinthians 5:7
    • Why not accept the love that is available in Jesus?
      • The love of God, your heavenly Father… 1 John 4:10-11; 5:2-3
      • The love of Jesus, your wonderful Savior… John 15:9-10

Will you not let Paul’s pattern move you to grow in faith and love? … 1 Corinthians 11:1


Note that Paul was moved to respond to the grace of the Lord in two ways…

  1. He thanked Jesus Christ… 1 Timothy 1:12
  2. He praised God… 1 Timothy 1:17

Shall we not respond to the grace of God in the same way?

  1. Thanking God by rendering obedience to the gospel of Christ?
  2. Praising God by growing in the grace and knowledge of Christ?

Then perhaps the Lord can also use us as “A Pattern for Would-Be Christians” … 1 Timothy 4:12

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Sermon Outlines, Timothy | Leave a comment


Have you ever felt that you just didn’t have the heart for something?

Late one night, a man had gone to a party and had too much to drink, so he decided it would be best to walk home. He found a shortcut through a poorly lit cemetery and, in the darkness, stumbled into an open grave. He tried to climb out but the walls were too slippery. Again and again he fell back into the grave. Finally, in exhaustion, he settled in a corner to wait for sunlight.

A few minutes later, another man in the same condition was cutting through the cemetery and fell victim to the same grave. He, too, tried desperately to climb and claw his way out, and he was equally unsuccessful.

As he was about to give up in hopeless resignation, he heard a voice from the darkness of his pit: “You may as well give up. You’ll never get out of here.”
But he did – with lightening speed!

Spiritually speaking, fear can motivate us to do the things we think we do not have the heart or the desire to do. The Hebrew writer declared, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb. 10:31). Shouldn’t the fear of meeting the Almighty in the Judgment cause one to want to be prepared for this day? Shouldn’t it motivate us to want to be faithful unto the Lord? “The sinners in Zion are afraid; trembling hath seized the godless ones: Who among us can dwell with the devouring fire? who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings?” (Isa. 33:14). My friends, “fear God, and keep his commandments; for this is the whole duty of man” (Eccl. 12:13).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts, Uncategorized | Leave a comment


The average child laughs 400 times a day.

The average adult laughs 15 times a day.

What happens in life that makes adults lose their laughter?

Do we quit laughing because we are old, or do we get old because we quit laughing?

Inspiration says, “A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, But by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.” (Pro. 15:13).

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts | Leave a comment


1 Timothy 1:8-11

A. A major problem in the early church was a proper understanding of the law of Moses
1. Some Jewish Christians sought to bind it upon Gentile Christians… Acts 15:1-6
2. Some Jewish Christians continued to observe certain elements of the Law… Acts 21:20

B. The issue prompted several epistles from Paul
1. To the church at Rome
2. To the churches in Galatia
3. To the church at Colosse
4. To the Hebrew Christians in Palestine (if Paul be the author)

C. It was evidently a problem in the church at Ephesus…
1. Where Paul left Timothy… 1 Timothy 1:3-4
2. Where some strayed as in their use of the Law… 1 Timothy 1:5-7

D. A similar problem often exists today, where people…
1. Fail to understand the purpose and limitations of the Law of Moses
2. Use the Law of Moses in ways that are not lawful

E. But as Paul writes, the Law of Moses is good when used lawfully… 1 Timothy 1:8-11

F. From his words in this text and elsewhere, let’s examine first…

1. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for wisdom regarding salvation through faith
a. As Paul wrote later in his second epistle to Timothy… 2 Timothy 3:14-17
1) Referring to the Scriptures Timothy knew from childhood
2) An obvious reference to the Old Testament, including the Law of Moses

b. Appeal was often made to the Old Testament in discussing the nature of salvation
1) As when Philip preached Christ to the eunuch… Acts 8:30-35
2) As when James spoke at the conference in Jerusalem… Acts 15:13-17
3) As when Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome… Romans 4:1-8

c. We can learn much about our salvation in Christ from the Law of Moses!

2. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for doctrine
a. There is much we can learn about God in the Old Testament
1) His omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience – cf. Psalm 139
2) His longsuffering and mercy, His justice and righteous indignation – cf. Psalm 103
3) His providential workings in the affairs of nations and men – cf. Daniel 2,4,5

b. There is much we can learn about mankind
1) The origin and fall of man – cf. Genesis 1-3
2) The weakness of man and need for redemption… Psalm 51

c. We can learn much about God and our need for Christ from the Law of Moses!

3. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for reproof, correction, instruction in righteousness
a. The Law contains principles of righteousness that remain true throughout time
1) Condemning such sins as murder, fornication, homosexuality, kidnapping, lying, etc.
2) When admonishing Christians regarding basic principles of righteousness, the apostles often appealed to the Old Testament
a) Romans 12:19-21
b) 1 Peter 3:8-12
c) Hebrews 12:4-7

b. The Law reveals much about sin
1) The nature and spread of sin… Galatians 3:19
2) The condemnation of sin… Romans 3:19-20

c. We can learn much about sin and its terrible consequences from the Law of Moses!

4. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for learning and admonition…
a. As Paul in his epistles to churches in Rome and Corinth
1) Romans 15:4
2) 1 Corinthians 10:11-12
a) The Old Testament was written for our learning, that we might have hope
b) The Old Testament was written for our admonition, that we might not fall

b. God’s dealings with Israel serves as an example for the church today
1) As God’s elect, corporate Israel received the promises, but some individuals did not
2) As God’s elect, the church as a whole will be saved, but as individuals we must make our calling and election sure
a) 1 Peter 2:9-10
b) 2 Peter 1:10

c. From the Law we can learn much about the very real danger of apostasy! – e.g., Hebrews 3:8-4:1

5. Yes, “the law is good, if a man use it lawfully.”

6. What then would be some examples of the Law of Moses being used improperly?

1. The Law of Moses is used improperly for foolish arguments
a. What Paul described as “vain talking,” the result of ignorance… 1 Timothy 1:6-7

b. What he described as “foolish questionings, genealogies, strifes, and fightings about the law” (Tit. 3:9)

c. Have you noticed how often false teachers appeal to the Old Testament to broadcast their false doctrines?

2. The Law of Moses is used improperly for justification from sin
a. This was the error of the Judaizing teachers, who demanded that Gentile Christians must be circumcised and keep the Law of Moses… Acts 15:1, 5

b. It renders the death of Christ meaningless… Galatians 2:21

c. Seeking justification (salvation) by the Law separates one from Christ! … Galatians 5:4

3. The Law of Moses is used improperly for binding such things as its feasts and sabbaths
a. Paul evidently had no problem with Jewish Christians (including himself) observing various elements of the Law as a personal matter while the temple was still standing
1) Acts 16:1-3; 18:18, 21; 21:18-26
2) 1 Corinthians 9:19-20

b. But he drew the line when attempts were made to bind such on Gentile Christians
1) Galatians 2:3-5
2) Colossians 2:16

c. For the death of Christ broke down the Law which divided Jew and Gentile… Ephesians 2:14-16

d. Some have sought to bind various Jewish feast days, the Sabbath, dietary restrictions upon the church; this is an unlawful use of the Law of Moses!

4. The Law of Moses is used improperly for authority in worship
a. Some have appealed to the Law to justify various practices in their worship
1) For example, separate priesthood, special clothing, building of temples
2) For example, burning of incense, instrumental music, even animal sacrifices

b. Yet the New Covenant ushered in a more spiritual worship
1) As Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well… John 4:20-24
2) The worship under the Law of Moses:
a) Was “symbolic for the present time” … Hebrews 9:9
b) Contained “fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation” … Hebrews 9:10

c. To appeal to the Law of Moses as authority for any practice in worship fails to recognize that the time of reformation has come!

A. As Paul wrote to the brethren at Rome… Romans 7:12

B. Even so, the Law had its limitations…
1. It was designed to be temporary, until the coming of Christ – Galatians 3:19, 23-25
2. It could not provide true redemption from sin… Hebrews 9:9; 10:1-4

C. Thus, the Law of Moses today is not designed to make one righteous (1 Tim. 1:9), for true justification and sanctification comes only through the work of Christ

D. Our understanding and application of the Law must be governed by and in harmony with the sound doctrine and gospel teachings of the apostles… 1 Timothy 1:10b-11

E. Appreciate the lawful use of the Law of Moses, and benefit thereby, while being careful of its unlawful use!

Tom Moore

Posted in Sermon Outlines, Timothy, Uncategorized | Leave a comment


The story has been told, many times, how that at dawn an old man was walking along the beach. He noticed, at a distance, a young man throwing starfish into the ocean.

After a while the old man caught up the other and asked, “Why are you throwing the starfish back into the ocean?”

“Because they will die if they feel the midday sun.”

“But there are thousands of miles of beach and thousands of starfish. How can your puny efforts make any real difference?”

The young man stopped and looked at the starfish in his hand. After a moment, he threw it into the sea and said, “It makes a difference to this one.”

Friends there are millions needing the gospel – millions who need to hear the saving message (Mk. 16:15-16). There are hoards of people who need an encouraging word (Heb. 10:24-25), and many others needing our prayers lifted in their behalf (Phil. 1:4). Let us not be discouraged and give up due to the vast numbers. Try to make a difference in the life of someone each day. It will make difference to them.

Whose life will you make a difference in today!

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts, Uncategorized | Leave a comment


A city boy visited his cousin who lived on a farm in the country for the first time. The city boy had never seen wheat growing in a field. It was an impressive sight for him, the wheat golden brown and ready for harvesting. He noticed that some of the wheat stood tall in the field, whereas some of it was bent low, touching the ground. The city boy said to his cousin, “I bet the ones standing tall are the best ones, aren’t they?” His cousin smiled knowingly and reached over and plucked the head of one of the tall-standing wheat stalks and one that was bent to the ground. He rubbed each of them and the city boy saw that the tall one was almost empty of seeds. But the one bent to the ground was full of the promise of a rich harvest.

Christians are like this wheat ready for harvest. Those who stand tall in pride and arrogance have little to offer for the cause of Christ. But Christians who are bent over in humility are full of good needs and promise. There are too many Christian who throw their shoulder out of socket patting themselves on the back. Many are looking for the “high profile” job – wanting to be noticed. But, the truly faithful servant will serve even when no one is looking. The humble servant will not want to draw attention to himself but unto the Lord.

Jesus said, “Even so ye also, when ye shall have done all the things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which it was our duty to do” (Lk. 17:10), and “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 5:3). “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time” (1 Pt. 5:6).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts | Leave a comment



1 Timothy 1:5


The idea of “commandment-keeping” is not a popular one among many people today

  1. Some equate it with what they call “legalism”
  2. Others look at keeping any kind of commandment as an unpleasant task
  3. Perhaps a carry-over from childhood?
  4. Where they feel like they were constantly being “commanded” to do things?

Yet keeping the commandments of God should not be looked upon by Christians in this way…

  1. 1 Timothy 1:5
  2. What is the purpose or goal of any commandment from God?
  3. Is it only to enjoin blind obedience?
  4. Or is there a noble purpose behind the commands?

Our text, 1 Timothy 1:5, says there is a purpose, so let’s examine what Paul reveals about “The Purpose of the Commandment”



Not for “disputes”

  1. Which is as far as some go with the Word of God!
    • They study it, discuss it, debate it, defend it
    • In Bible class, conversations, publications, etc.
  2. But, unless they obey it, all is in vain!
    • They fail to fulfill its ultimate purpose: to produce love!
    • Their religion is a vain religion, not a pure religion… James 1:22-27
  3. The purpose of all revelation and the test of all religion is character and conduct.

The goal of God’s commands is love

  1. Both love for God and love for man… Matthew 22:35-40
  2. Concerning our love for God
    • It begins with, but goes beyond adoration, praise and devotion
    • True love for God is realized when we keep His commands
      • 1 John 5:3
      • John 14:15, 21
  3. Concerning our love for man
    • It begins with, but goes beyond any active good will or affection we might have
    • True love for man is also realized when we keep God’s commands… 1 John 5:2

So the goal of any command of God is love. Not just any love, but a love that springs forth from a good source


From a pure heart…

  1. Pure” can also be translated “clean,” suggesting that which is from impurities
  2. To love with such a heart requires purification, which comes obedience to the truth… 1 Peter 1:22-23
  3. Have our souls been purified by obeying the truth? If not…
    • We will be plagued by spiritual impurities (e.g., greed, covetousness, envy, pride)
    • We will be unable to love God and man as we should
  4. Those with ‘pure hearts’ are the ones who will be truly blessed… Matthew 5:8

From a good conscience

  1. Conscience” is defined as “that process of thought which distinguishes what it considers morally good or bad, commending the good, condemning the bad, and so prompting to do the former, and to avoid the latter.” – Vine
  2. The love God desires is that which comes from a person with a “good conscience
  3. To have a “good” conscience, it must be properly set
    • Like a clock, it is accurate only when properly set
    • Otherwise it might lead us astray
  4. To have a “good” conscience, it must be properly cleansed
    • For no matter who we are, we are sin
      • God says so… Romans 3:23
      • So does our conscience… Romans 2:14-15
      • Any who deny this have “rejected” or “seared” their conscience… 1 Timothy 1:19; 4:2
    • What can ‘cleanse’ our conscience?
      • Not any OT sacrifice or worship… Hebrews 9:9-10
      • Rather, the blood of Christ… Hebrews 9:14
  5. Only with a conscience “cleansed” from dead works can we really:
    • Love both God and man
    • Love with a pure heart and good conscience!

From a sincere faith

  1. Some translations use “unfeigned” instead of “sincere” (ASV, KJV)
  2. Notice how it is translated elsewhere… Romans 12:9 (without hypocrisy)
  3. The word “faith” involves two interrelated concepts:
    • A strong conviction in that which is believed
    • A strong trust in the object believed
  4. A “sincere faith” or “faith unfeigned” would be:
    • A true, honest to God, conviction
    • A true-hearted trust in God and Jesus
  5. This kind of faith comes only from the Word of God
    • Romans 10:17
    • John 20:30-31
  6. Without such faith, the love God desires is not possible!


What kind of religion do you have?

  1. One that consists in little more than religious talk?
  2. Or one that produces genuine love for God and man, manifested in deeds?

If you desire the religion that pleases God, it must be the kind that expresses itself in love:For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love” (Ga 5:6)

  1. Yet that kind of love comes “from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith”
  2. This is the goal of every command of God

Who dare says that keeping the commandments of God are not important?

Are you willing to let the commands of God create in you “love from a pure heart, from a good conscience and from sincere faith”?

Posted in Sermon Outlines, Timothy | Leave a comment


General Douglas MacArthur wrote…

“Build me a son, O Lord, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak, and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid; one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat, and humble and gentle in victory.

“Build me a son whose wishbone will not be where his backbone should be; a son who will know Thee and that to know himself is the foundation stone of knowledge. Lead him, I pray, not in the path of ease and comfort, but under the stress and spur of difficulties and challenge. Here let him learn to stand up in the storm; here let him learn compassion for those who fail.

“Build me a son whose heart will be clean, whose goal will be high; a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men; one who will learn to laugh, yet never forget how to weep; one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past.

“And after all these things are his, add, I pray, enough of a sense of humor, so that he may always be serious, yet never take himself too seriously. Give him humility, so that he may always remember the simplicity of greatness, the open mind of true wisdom, the meekness of true strength.

“Then I, his father, will dare to whisper, I have not lived in vain.”

Paul said, “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Posted in Devotional Thoughts, Family, Uncategorized | Leave a comment


In the aftermath of one of the most tragic ferry accidents in recent history, a story of heroism and selfless sacrifice is beginning to take shape. It’s the story of a young woman, Park Jee Young, just 22 years old.

Two years after the death of her father, Park dropped out of college to help support her family. She took a job with a ferry company, and was just recently promoted to serve on the ill-fated Korean ferry, the Sewol, which sank off the coast of South Korea last week (April 16, 2014).

The ferry was carrying 476 people, most of them high school students from the Danwon High School in Ansan City. The students were on a class trip to a nearby resort Island. After initial search and rescue attempts, more than 300 of the passengers are either dead or missing and presumed dead.

While nearly half of the ferry’s 22 crew members have been arrested in connection with negligence and dereliction of duty, Park gave her life to save as many passengers as possible. CNN reports:

By witness accounts [she] helped passengers escape and distributed life jackets — one after the other to students — as the stricken ferry began to sink. When she ran out of jackets, she ran to the next floor to grab more. When she was asked why she wasn’t wearing a life jacket, Park said that crew members would be last and that she had to help others first …

Even more amazingly, it was her quick thinking and assessment of the gravity of the situation which led so many to safety.

In an interview with CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield, survivors described the scene and her actions. They recounted how the severe listing of the ship nearly immediately turned walls into floors. Passengers were panicked and disoriented. A large, open door now created a gaping hole in the new “floor,” and it was too wide for passengers to safely step or jump over it. One crew member was laying on the floor nearby, grasping a mic and instructing passengers to stay put, and telling them they would be fine if they just stayed where they were.

Park instinctively knew that staying put was not an option. Witnesses say she grabbed some keys from her fellow crewman and forced the door shut, then locked it to be sure it stayed that way. She then led nearly 50 desperate passengers across it, creating, as one grateful survivor described it, a “bridge to safety.” She was standing right by the exit, he said, yet she refused to save herself, insisting that the needs of the passengers came first.

Alongside the flowers at her memorial is a simple message, “We will always remember your sacrifice.”
Spiritually speaking, Jesus is our “bridge to safety.” While the whole world was saying stay put and everything will be fine, He realized the gravity of the situation and took action. He knew that staying put in our separation from God was not an option, so He gave His life to close the gap between us and God. Like Park Jee Young, He put himself last in order to save as many as possible.
Just as Park Jee Young’s family “will always remember [her] sacrifice,” we are called to perpetually remember Jesus’ sacrifice each Lord’s Day as we gather at the Lord’s Table to observe communion.

“And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he brake it, and gave to them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore

Posted in Devotional Thoughts, Uncategorized | Leave a comment