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"...Behave thyself in the house of God" (I Timothy 3:15)>

The word "behave" would involve one's example both in and out of the assembly. The conduct of many during the worship service and the example they set on the outside of the assembly suggests they are in need of Paul's admonition to young Timothy, "These things write unto thee...that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of truth" (I Timothy 3:15). This does not suggest that Timothy was unruly or disrespectful during the services of the church or that he was a bad example on the outside of the church assembly. The word "behave" also involves following God's divine directions for His church: its worship, the organization of the church, etc. The instructions here given by Paul would guide Timothy in how the church was to be organized, the proper way of worship, the kind of preaching God expects and demands of His preachers, etc. These divine instructions would guide Timothy in making sure that everything in the Church is as God wants it, and not as foolish men may wish to have things. Furthermore, Timothy (as well as all Christians) was to be a good example to others. Timothy's conduct was very important, especially from the standpoint that he would be looked upon as Paul's representative. Thus, Paul told Timothy, "Let no man despise thy youth: but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity." (I Timothy 4:12).

These words refer not to Timothy alone, but to all in the church of our Lord, and they most assuredly would also involve one's conduct during the services of the church as well as their conduct on the outside of the assembly.

Many need to learn to behave themselves during the Bible class and the worship service. One is not showing proper respect for God when they talk, pass notes, laugh, etc., during the services of the church. They are not behaving themselves as they ought, and are actually disruptive to the Bible class and worship service. Every Christian must be careful about their behavior while the services of the church are going on lest they should embarrass themselves and shame the rest of the congregation. Also, they need to be careful about their behavior so that they do not distract others from learning more about the truth and obeying the Gospel. Furthermore, one who is not a proper example outside of the assembly is not behaving himself/herself as God has directed. Good Christian soldiers must never behave in a way that would not be pleasing to God or in a way that would bring shame and reproach upon the church of our Lord.

Christians must behave themselves while in the assembly. Anything else is to show disrespect and contempt for God's ways. Christians must behave themselves outside of the assembly so that they may be good examples to those who are unbelievers.

Tim Arthur

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