English Standard Version
Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.
King James Bible
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
American Standard Version
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.
And evidently great is the mystery of godliness, which was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the spirit, appeared unto angels, hath been preached unto the Gentiles, is believed in the world, is taken up in glory.
English Revised Version
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, received up in glory.
Webster's Bible Translation
And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
Weymouth New Testament
And, beyond controversy, great is the mystery of our religion-- that Christ appeared in human form, and His claims justified by the Spirit, was seen by angels and proclaimed among Gentile nations, was believed on in the world, and received up again into glory.
1 Timothy 3:16 Parallel
CommentaryVincent's Word Studies
Without controversy (ὁμολογουμένως)
Lit. confessedly. N.T.o.
The mystery of godliness (τὸ τῆς εὐσεβείας μυστήριον)
(a) The connection of thought is with the truth (1 Timothy 3:15), and the words mystery of godliness are a paraphrase of that word. The church is the pillar and stay of the truth, and the truth constitutes the mystery of godliness. (b) The contents of this truth or mystery is Christ, revealed in the gospel as the Savior from ungodliness, the norm and inspiration of godliness, the divine life in man, causing him to live unto God as Christ did and does (Romans 6:10). See 1 Timothy 1:15; 1 Timothy 2:5; Colossians 1:26, Colossians 1:27. According to the Fourth Gospel, Christ is himself the truth (John 14:6). The mystery of godliness is the substance of piety equals mystery of the faith (1 Timothy 3:9). (c) The truth is called a mystery because it was, historically, hidden, until revealed in the person and work of Christ; also because it is concealed from human wisdom, and apprehended only by faith in the revelation of God through Christ. (d) The genitive, of godliness, is possessive. The mystery of godliness is the truth which pertains or belongs to godliness. It is not the property of worldly wisdom. Great (μέγα) means important, weighty, as Ephesians 5:32.
But the correct reading is ὃς who. The antecedent of this relative is not mystery, as if Christ were styled "the mystery," but the relative refers to Christ as an antecedent; and the abruptness of its introduction may be explained by the fact that it and the words which follow were probably taken from an ancient credal hymn. In the earlier Christian ages it was not unusual to employ verse or rhythm for theological teaching or statement. The heretics propounded their peculiar doctrines in psalms. Clement of Alexandria wrote a hymn in honor of Christ for the use of catechumens, and Arius embodied his heresy in his Thalia, which was sung in the streets and taverns of Alexandria. The Muratorian Canon was probably composed in verse. In the last quarter of the fourth century, there are two metrical lists of Scripture by Amphilochius and Gregory Nazianzen.
Was manifest (ἐφανερώθη)
More correctly, was manifested. The verb is used John 1:2; Hebrews 9:26; 1 Peter 1:20; 1 John 3:5, 1 John 3:8, of the historical manifestation of Christ; and of the future coming of Christ in Colossians 3:4; 1 Peter 5:4; 1 John 3:2.
In the flesh (ἐν σαρκί)
Justified in the Spirit (ἐδικαιώθη ἐν πνεύματι)
The verb δικαιοῦν, so familiar in Paul's writings, is found in the Pastorals only here and Titus 3:7. Its application to Christ as the subject of justification does not appear in Paul. Its meaning here is vindicated, indorsed, as Matthew 11:19; Luke 10:29. Concerning the whole phrase it is to be said: (a) That the two clauses, manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, exhibit a contrast between two aspects of the life of Christ (b) That ἐν in must have the same meaning in both clauses (c) That meaning is not instrumental, by, nor purely modal, expressing the kind and manner of Christ's justification, but rather local with a shade of modality. It expresses in each case a peculiar condition which accompanied the justification; a sphere of life in which it was exhibited and which gave character to it. In the one condition or sphere (the flesh) he was hated, persecuted, and murdered. In the other (the Spirit) he was triumphantly vindicated. See further the additional note at the end of this chapter.
Seen of angels (ὤφθη ἀγγέλοις)
Better, appeared unto or showed himself to, as Matthew 17:3; Luke 1:11; Acts 7:2; Hebrews 9:28. The same verb is used of the appearance of the risen Christ to different persons or parties (1 Corinthians 15:5-8). The reference of the words cannot be determined with certainty. They seem to imply some great, majestic occasion, rather than the angelic manifestations during Jesus' earthly life. Besides, on these occasions, the angels appeared to him, not he to them. The reference is probably to his appearance in the heavenly world after his ascension, when the glorified Christ, having been triumphantly vindicated in his messianic work and trial, presented himself to the heavenly hosts. Comp. Philippians 2:10; Ephesians 3:10, and, in the latter passage, note the connection with; "the mystery," 1 Timothy 3:9.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
manifest. Gr. manifested.
So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight.
By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, "That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged."
Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages
Jump to PreviousAngels Appeared Believed Body Christ Claims Confess Controversy Flesh Form Gentile Gentiles Glory Godliness Great Human Indeed Justified Manifest Mystery Nations Preached Proclaimed Received Religion Revealed Spirit Vindicated World
Jump to NextAngels Appeared Believed Body Christ Claims Confess Controversy Flesh Form Gentile Gentiles Glory Godliness Great Human Indeed Justified Manifest Mystery Nations Preached Proclaimed Received Religion Revealed Spirit Vindicated World
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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.