The book entitled Getting To Know 1 Timothy, by Charles McGuckin, is a well done treatise on Paul’s first letter to Timothy. The author uses the King James Version for the major text, but does the explaining of the meaning of text by referring to the passages as they are rendered in a number of translations other than the KJV. This book is not for readers who dislike references to the more recent translations and paraphrases of the Scriptures.
The writer refers to many of the newer translations of the Scripture to explain the meaning of each phrase of the Bible text—and he is remarkably skilled at putting together a helpful tool for the study of this portion of God’s Word. The procedure used is a method called the “Socratic Teaching Method,” which is not as sophisticated as it may sound. The approach is to answer questions that are asked about the printed Bible text. The answers become the tool for building understanding of the words printed in bold type from the King James Version.
The first section of the 284-page book uses a verse-by-verse approach to seek to explain and apply the text. The middle section of the book treats the major themes found in 1 Timothy, and the final (smaller) section of the book uses a survey approach to summarize each of the chapters of 1 Timothy. I was impressed by the devotional quality of the book.
There are a few improvements that could be made. Already on pages 3 and 7, the word “Foreword” is misspelled, and on page 84 the wrong spelling for “to” is used. Only limited comment is made on a few passages, such as on 1:15 and 2:9. But in spite of a few shortcomings, the overall benefit of using this study tool ranks very high. It is easy to read, except that the format used for setting off the chapter and verse notations, could somehow be made more pronounced. The books are available by calling 877-311-5100, or by ordering from Amazon.com or from New Book Publishing.com for
Charles McGuckin is pastor of the Clay County Church of the Brethren in Middleburg, Florida. He has been a paramedic, a public school teacher, and a public school administrator.
–Harold S. Martin, Editor of the BRF Witness