1 Timothy 1:5
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
Some people find it hard to offer constructive criticism to others… especially if those being criticized are so blatantly in the wrong. Just because someone needs correction, however, doesn’t mean that you’re allowed to give it by whatever means you see fit.
Timothy was about to face some pretty arrogant men that would reject the message he was bringing to them from Paul. Knowing this, the Apostle gives young Timothy some timeless guidelines to follow. One the one hand, Timothy must immediately stop certain men from teaching “strange doctrines and endless genealogies.” On the other hand, however, his instruction must be presented lovingly, out of a pure heart and a good conscience, with a sincere faith.
From personal experience, I can tell you that any one of these guidelines can be hard to come by in the heat of the moment. To obtain all three of them at once is an even greater discipline to master. It’s a discipline we must strive to obtain though. When we blast fellow Christians or unbelievers for something they’ve done wrong, we inadvertently destroy our own witness to Christ. How many times have you blown up in the face of someone who wronged you or one of your friends? Have you ever silently cursed another religion or person for their sinful actions? How do you think the Lord saw your “instruction” to those individuals? Was it done in love?