1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from what we believe; they will follow lying spirits and teachings that come from demons.
2 These teachers are hypocrites and liars. They pretend to be religious, but their consciences are dead.*1
3 They will say it is wrong to be married and wrong to eat certain foods. But God created those foods to be eaten with thanksgiving by people who know and believe the truth.
4 Since everything God created is good, we should not reject any of it. We may receive it gladly, with thankful hearts.
5 For we know it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.
6 If you explain this to the brothers and sisters,* you will be doing your duty as a worthy servant of Christ Jesus, one who is fed by the message of faith and the true teaching you have followed.2
7 Do not waste time arguing over godless ideas and old wives' tales. Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness.
8 Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important, for it promises a reward in both this life and the next.
9 This is true, and everyone should accept it.
10 We work hard and suffer much* in order that people will believe the truth, for our hope is in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and particularly of those who believe.3
11 Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them.
12 Don't let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you teach, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.
13 Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them.
14 Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecies spoken to you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you.
15 Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress.
16 Keep a close watch on yourself and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right, and God will save you and those who hear you.
Read 1 Timothy 5