Temporal Blessings
1 Timothy 4:8
For bodily exercise profits little: but godliness is profitable to all things, having promise of the life that now is…

I. GODLINESS IS PROFITABLE FOR THE OBTAINING OF ALL TEMPORAL GOOD THINGS THAT WE STAND IN NEED OF. In that catalogue of the Christian's possessions and treasures, which St. Paul has drawn up (1 Corinthians 3:22).

1. As to riches. "The blessing of the Lord it maketh rich (Proverbs 10:22). To all this we may still add, that religion brings contentment to the mind, and "godliness with contentment is great gain" (1 Timothy 6:6). If it does not bring the estate to the mind, it brings the mind to the estate; and that is much the same thing, it is altogether as well. Thus it is that "a little that a righteous man hath, is better than the riches of many wicked" (Psalm 37:16). And he is truly richer with a little, than the others are with a great deal.

2. To honour and good reputation. A blessing which the wise man rates at a higher price than gold and silver, or any of the riches of this world (Proverbs 22:1).

3. Pleasure. "Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace" (Proverbs 3:17).

(1) As to bodily health, without which we can neither enjoy ourselves, nor anything.

(2) A peaceable mind, If the mind be not in tune, the sweetest harmony will make no music in our ears. I must not here pass by an objection or two which may possibly be made against the pleasantness of religion. One is, that it requires some difficult and distasteful duties, as repentance, self-denial and mortification. But as well may one object against the pleasantness of health, because it may be sometimes necessary to take distasteful medicines, either to recover or to preserve it. Another objection against the pleasure of godliness is taken from the uncomfortable lives of some godly persons.

II. GODLINESS IS PROFITABLE FOR THE LIFE THAT NOW IS, TO SUPPORT US UNDER TROUBLES AND AFFLICTIONS WHENEVER THEY BEFALL US. Here let us inquire what those peculiar supports under afflictions are, which are the proper fruits of godliness. They are chiefly these —

1. The testimony of a good conscience. This, St. Paul tells us was his rejoicing in all his tribulations, and at last in the near views of death (2 Corinthians 1:12).

2. A sense of pardon and reconciliation with God is a further support under worldly troubles. Pardon takes away the curse from affliction, and a sense of pardon is a sovereign balm to ease the anguish of the mind.

3. The comfortable hope of heaven, where these present afflictions shall be felt no more, and where they shall be abundantly compensated with fulness of joy for ever.

4. There are the supporting influences of the good spirit of God, which are promised in the gospel to all believers.

III. THAT IT SECURES A SANCTIFIED USE OF AFFLICTIONS, AS WELL AS A HAPPY ISSUE OF THEM; which is therefore a present, as well as a future benefit.

(D. Jennings.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

WEB: For bodily exercise has some value, but godliness has value in all things, having the promise of the life which is now, and of that which is to come.

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