contentment1 Timothy 6:6 says that godliness with contentment is GREAT gain.  That's certainly not the usual definition of great gain in our society today.  Gain in our circles usually means the accumulation of money, power and material things.  What does it mean when Paul writes that godliness WITH contentment is great gain?   The word 'godliness' in Greek is "eusebia" which means "piety or reverence towards Yahweh".   What makes a person godly?  Does it happen immediately when we acknowledge Yeshua as Saviour and begin to follow Him?  Titus 2:11-12 tells us that the grace of Yahweh teaches us to live godly lives.  Living godly is not something that comes naturally to us as human beings, it it taught to us by grace.  Perhaps delving into the meaning of grace will shed some light on the subject.  When people think of grace they come up with all kinds of definitions and ideas about it.  The general consensus is that it denotes "forgiveness, no punishment or mercy".  The Hebrew word for grace is "chen" which can be translated "favour or kindness".  So it is the kindness of Yahweh that teaches us to live with reverence towards Him.  Amazing!  If there is anything lacking in our religious circles today it is the fear of Yahweh.  To fear Yaweh is to reverence Him and sometimes to even be afraid of Him (although many popular teachers will tell you otherwise).   Yahweh is not waiting to punish us - but if we stubbornly continually refuse to obey Him, He must punish us and we should be afraid if we reach that point.   The fear of Yahweh has so many blessings attached to it and we show our reverence for Him by our obedience to His instructions.  Yahweh said to Abraham when he was about to sacrifice Isaac ",,,now I know that you fear Yahweh, seeing you have not withheld your son..." (Genesis 22:12) .  So to recap...God's kindness {by giving us the Torah and His son Yeshua} towards us teaches us to reverence Him by obedience and this, along with contentment, brings us great gain.   Obedience is really key to living a godly life...I encourage you to look up the word "godly" in a concordance (biblos.com) and do a study on what it means to be godly and what you can expect from being godly - the answers might surprise you! 

 The second part of the verse (! Timothy 6:6) says that contentment is part of great gain.  The word 'contentment' in Greek is "autarkeia" which means "contentment or self-sufficiency".   Being content is simply being happy with what you already have and not desiring to be richer, more powerful, etc.   A  few verses after Paul tells Timothy what the consequences can be for not being content.  He says that "Those who desire to get rich fall into MANY snares and have even wandered away from the truth".  Is being rich wrong?  No, but the desire to be richer is very wrong.  Sometimes, we don't desire to be millionaires but we desire a better car, home, relationship status, job, etc because we believe that will make us happier.  If we can't be content with what we have and live lives of obedience to Yahweh out of reverence for Him, we will NEVER have great gain.   I have a plaque that reads "Happiness is wanting what you already have".  You may be thinking, " You have no idea how I live or what my life is like!"  I want to submit to you that has nothing to do with this scripture.  Contentment is not an adjective (feeling) it is a noun (state of being).  It is a CHOICE that we make no matter what our life is or has been like.  I have had some very difficult cirumstances in my life and I have not always been content - mainly due to the fact that I relied on feeling content, not making achoice to be content.  There was a time when all my friends were getting married and I was (and still am) single.   I had to choose to be content with my singleness and determine to follow whatever course Yahweh charted for my life's journey.  Do feelings of envy come?  Yep, but I don't allow them to fester and change my outlook on life.  The other meaning to contentment is self-sufficiency.  This means not relying on others to meet your needs (other than Yahweh of course).  I want to tread carefully here since I know that some may misunderstand my meaning.  I realize that many have to rely on others for a paycheck, child care, emotional support, etc.  However, I do believe that 1 Thessalonians 4:11 may help me make my point,  "...make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business".  Many of us lead anything but quiet lives; they are full of ringing phones, traffic, people talking and the media.  Some times, I think we pack more into our lives than we need!  The original translation says we need to "live quietly" (Greek word: hésuchazó ) which also denotes silence and rest.  If we are too busy to hear the voice of Yahweh, we are TOO BUSY!   Personally, I don't have a tv or a cell phone and I don't care to own one.   When I am in my car, I turn off my radio at times and just praise Yahweh with silence.  Sounds strange I know but remember that He speaks at times in a "still, small voice" and we won't hear it if the volume and speed in our life is turned up all the time.  The second part of the verse above is to "mind our own business"...some of us have trouble doing that!   Living simply and quietly involves not getting entangled in areas that we have no business in...yes, there are times when we must warn others about what is happening in their lives but often, we can easily get involved in gossip and poking our noses where it does not belong - especially us women.  The phrase "mind your own business" in the Greek is actually  "to work with your own hands" which connotes having a home business and/or keeping busy in physical labour.  An industrious person has little time to sit and fret over their relationship status or get involved in idle gossip.  My grandma use to say that "idle hands are the devil's tools".  Even though that might seem to contradict what I previously stated about resting, it actually adds to it.  We have become so busy doing uneccessary  things these days -things that wear us down and take up valuable time that we could be using to serve Yahweh.  I can be busy in my garden and commune with Yahweh at the same time.  I can drive and sing praise to Him.  However, I can't watch tv and pray at the same time.  I can't chatter about meningless things on the phone for hours and praise Him at the same time.  Our lives are filled with the wrong kind of busy-ness and we don't seem to know how to rest or listen for His voice very well.  That's one of many reasons that I am thankful for the Sabbath day...I can rest and completely turn my thoughts off of myself and my own life and focus on His goodness. 

So to recap what Paul said to Timothy (in my own words), "Timothy, living a life of obedience in the fear of Yahweh along with being thankful for what you have and independantly minding your own business is GREAT wealth".  I encourage you to begin thanking Yahweh for what you have and not complaining about what you do not have.  True wealth is in contentment.  The video below is a great reminder that our attitude affects every aspect of our life...today, make a CHOICE to REJOICE!