Stay away from those who have foolish arguments, who talk about useless family histories, or who make trouble and fight about what the Law of Moses teaches. These things are useless and will not help anyone.
But ·stay away from [avoid] foolish ·arguments [controversies; debates] and ·talk about useless family histories [L genealogies; 1 Tim. 1:4] and ·arguments [quarrels; disputes] and ·quarrels [fights] about the law [1:10, 14; 1 Tim. 1:3–7]. Those things are ·worth nothing [unprofitable] and ·will not help anyone [empty].
Stay away from those who have foolish arguments, who talk about useless family histories, who make trouble and fight about what the law of Moses teaches. Those things are worth nothing and will not help anyone.
For we ourselves have known what it is to be ignorant, disobedient and deceived, the slaves of various desires and pleasant feelings, while our lives were spent in malice and jealousy—we were hateful and we hated each other. But when the kindness of God our saviour and his love towards man appeared, he saved us—not by virtue of any moral achievements of ours, but by the cleansing power of a new birth and the moral renewal of the Holy Spirit, which he gave us so generously through Jesus Christ our Saviour. The result is that we are acquitted by his grace, and can look forward to inheriting life for evermore. This is solid truth. Subjects like this are always good and useful but mind you steer clear of stupid arguments, genealogies, controversies and quarrels over the Law. They settle nothing and lead nowhere. If a man is still argumentative after the second warning you should reject him. You can be sure that he has a moral twist, and he knows it.
Don’t get involved in arguing over unanswerable questions and controversial theological ideas; keep out of arguments and quarrels about obedience to Jewish laws, for this kind of thing isn’t worthwhile; it only does harm.
I want you to put your foot down. Take a firm stand on these matters so that those who have put their trust in God will concentrate on the essentials that are good for everyone. Stay away from mindless, pointless quarreling over genealogies and fine print in the law code. That gets you nowhere. Warn a quarrelsome person once or twice, but then be done with him. It’s obvious that such a person is out of line, rebellious against God. By persisting in divisiveness he cuts himself off.
But keep away from foolish disagreements. Don’t argue about family histories. Don’t make trouble. Don’t fight about what the law teaches. Don’t argue about things like that. It doesn’t do any good. It doesn’t help anyone.
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