Not purloining - Μη νοσφιζομενους· Neither giving away, privately selling, nor in any way wasting, the master's goods. The word signifies, not only stealing but embezzling another's property; keeping back a part of the price of any commodity sold on the master's account. In Acts 5:2, we translate it, to keep back part of the price; the crime of which Ananias and Sapphira were guilty. It has been remarked that among the heathens this species of fraud was very frequent; and servants were so noted for purloining and embezzling their master's property that fur, which signifies a thief, was commonly used to signify a servant; hence that verse in Virgil, Eclog. iii. 16: -
Quid domini faciant, audent cum talia Fures?
"What may not masters do, when servants (thieves) are so bold?"
On which Servius remarks: Pro Servo Furem posuit, furta enim specialiter servorum sunt. Sic Plautus de servo, Homo es trium literarum, i.e. fur. "He puts fur, a thief, to signify a servant, because servants are commonly thieves. Thus Plautus, speaking of a servant, says: Thou art a man of three letters, i.e. f-u-r, a thief." And Terence denominates a number of servants, munipulus furum, "a bundle of thieves." Eun. 4, 7, 6. The place in Plautus to which Servius refers is in Aulul., act ii. scene iv. in fine: -
- Tun', trium literarum homo,
Me vituperas? F-u-r, etiam fur trifurcifer.
"Dost thou blame me, thou man of three letters?
Thou art a thief, and the most notorious of all knaves."
It was necessary, therefore, that the apostle should be so very particular in his directions to servants, as they were in general thieves almost by profession.
Not purloining - Not to appropriate to themselves what belongs to their masters. The word “purloin” means, literally, to take or carry away for oneself; and would be applied to an approbation to oneself of what pertained to a common stock, or what belonged to one in whose employ we are - as the embezzlement of public funds. Here it means that the servant was not to apply to his own use what belonged to his master; that is, was not to pilfer - a vice to which, as all know, servants, and especially slaves, are particularly exposed; see the word explained in the notes at Acts 5:2.
But showing all good fidelity - In laboring, and in taking care of the property intrusted to them.
That they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things - That they may show the fair influence of religion on them, in all respects, making them industrious, honest, kind, and obedient. They were to show that the effect of the religion which they professed was to make them better fitted to discharge the duties of their station in life, however humble; or that its influence on them was desirable in every respect. In this way, they might hope also that the minds of their masters might be reached, and that they might be brought to respect and love the gospel. Hence, learn:
(1) that one in the most humble walk of life may so live as to be an ornament to religion, as well as one favored with more advantages.
(2) that servants may do much good, by so living as to show to all around them that there is a reality in the gospel, and to lead others to love it.
(3) if in this situation of life, it is a duty so to live as to adorn religion, it cannot be less so in more elevated situations. A master should feel the obligation not to be surpassed in religious character by his servant.
The end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. 1 Peter 4:7. SD 346.1
The admonition to the Israel of today is, “The end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.” “Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you. Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.” Resist the enemy; do not be seduced by his flattering inducements and presentations. It is the work of the human agent to be strong, not in his own finite strength, but in the strength of the Lord, in the power of His might.... SD 346.2Read in context »
When ministers adorn the doctrine of Christ our Saviour, and when physicians reveal in words and works, and in their influence, the healing grace of Christ, when the Saviour is revealed as the One altogether lovely, a great work will be done in behalf of other souls. God calls for truth in the inner sanctuary of the soul, that the whole being may be a representation of the life of Christ.... CH 634.1
I entreat my brethren and sisters who are ministers or physicians, to work out in their lives the precious principles of truth, that others may take knowledge of you that you have been with Jesus and have learned of Him who is pure and holy and undefiled, without rebuke in a sinful and corrupt generation. Then many will be turned to the Lord through the earnest efforts made in their behalf by those who know the truth. CH 634.2Read in context »
Shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things. Titus 2:10. OHC 274.1
Everyone who names the name of Christ is to adorn the doctrine of Christ our Saviour by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit.... Possessing this, you will have favor both with God and with men. OHC 274.2Read in context »
At his second arrest, Paul was seized and hurried away so suddenly that he had no opportunity to gather up his few “books” and “parchments,” or even to take with him his cloak. And now winter was coming on, and he knew that he would suffer with cold in his damp prison cell. He had no money to buy another garment, he knew that his end might come at any moment, and with his usual self-forgetfulness and fear to burden the church, he desired that no expense should be incurred on his account (Sketches from the Life of Paul, 327). 7BC 921.1
16, 17. Paul and Nero Face to Face—Paul and Nero face to face!—the countenance of the monarch bearing the shameful record of the passions that raged within; the countenance of the prisoner telling the story of a heart at peace with God and man. The result of opposite systems of education stood that day contrasted—a life of unbounded self-indulgence and a life of entire self-sacrifice. Here were the representatives of two theories of life—all-absorbing selfishness, which counts nothing too valuable to be sacrificed for momentary gratification, and self-denying endurance, ready to give up life itself, if need be, for the good of others (The Youth's Instructor, July 3, 1902). 7BC 921.2
*****Read in context »