Most students of the Bible are familiar with the fact that the gospel records each present Christ in a unique way. Matthew presents Christ as King, Mark as a Servant, Luke as a Man, and John as God. It's my belief that this same view is presented in Paul's pastoral epistles. So the New Testament is divided into 18 parallel letters (9 Hebrew and 9 Pauline). As this study will show, there also seems to be an 8 fold parallel divison (4 Gospels and 4 Pauline Pastoral letters). The gospel accounts present Christ manifest in the flesh while the pastoral epistles present Christ manifest in our flesh.
I Timothy corresponds to Matthew.
The theme is: KING
In the Pastoral Epistles, the word King is only mentioned in I Tim. – 1:17; 6:15 ; also 2:2
In Matthew, Christ is presented as the ROYAL RULER.
The word “rule”; “ruleth”; “ruling” occurs only in I.Tim. – 3:4,5,12; 5:17
I Tim. Uses other kingly terms:
· “Charge” – 1:3,18; 5:7,21; 6:13 ,17 (6x’s) Used only once in the same sense in II Tim 4:1
· “Command” – Used only in I Tim. 4:11
· “Commandment” – 1:1,5; 6:14 (3x’s) Used once in Tit. 1:3
· “Law” – 1:7,8,9 (3x’s) Used once in Tit.3:9 Only in I Tim. is it used positively
· “Subjection” – 2:11 ; 3:4 Used only in I Tim
· “Honour” – 1:17 ; 5:3,17; 6:1,16 (5x’s) Used twice in II Tim.
· “Piety” – Def: Reverence, honour, veneration – 5:4 Used only in I Tim.
Wealth is associated with Kings. “Rich”; “Riches” found only in I Tim – Ch.6
In the gospels, the phrase “two or three witnesses” found only in Matthew – Matt.18:16. This phrase found in I Tim.5:19. Also, in Matt.26:60, the phrase found in relation to those who were false witnesses against Christ.
The Phrase “The labourer is worthy of his reward” found in I Tim.5:18 is found also in Matt.10:10. (It’s also found in Luke 10:7)
In I Tim.6:13, a government official, Pontius Pilate, is mentioned.
The two books where the genealogy of Christ is found, Matthew & Luke, parallel the two books of the Pastoral Epistles, I Timothy & Titus, where references to genealogies are found.
Also, the two books of I Timothy & Titus contain the qualifications for ministry. In I Tim., official titles are found – “Deacon(s)”, “Elder”, & “Bishops”. Eight references to these titles in I Timothy. Only two in Titus and none in the other two books.
Also, the word “office” is only found in I Tim. (3x’s)
The word “teach is predominant in I Timothy. It’s used 6x’s. It’s used twice in II Timothy and once in Titus.
The word “doctrine” also predominant in I Timothy. It’s used 8x’s. It’s used 4x’s in II Timothy and 4x’s in Titus.
II Timothy corresponds to Mark.
The theme is: SERVANT
The word “serve” is found only in II Tim – 1:3
The word “master” also found only in II Tim speaking in relation to us as servants of the master – 2:21
The word “servant” found in 2:24 ; also in Tit.1:1. Found also in Philemon but in the opposite sense.
In Mark, Christ is presented as the Suffering Servant:
· “Suffer” – 1:12 ; 2:9,12; 3:12 (4x’s) Used once in I Tim.
· “Affliction” – Found only in II Tim – 1:8; 3:11 ; 4:5
· “Tears” – Only in II Tim – 1:4
· “Persecution” – Only in II Tim – 3:11 ,12
· “Endure hardness” – Only in II Tim – 2:3
· “Chain” – Only in II Tim – 1:16
Christ also presented in Mark as the Wonderful Worker:
· “Workman” – Found only in II Tim – 2:15
· “Soldier” – Only in II Tim – 2:3,4
· “Husbandman” – Only in II Tim – 2:6
· “Without ceasing” – Only in II Tim
· “Prayers night and day” – Only in II Tim – 1:3
· “In season”; “Out of season” – Only in II Tim – 4:2
· “Work of an evangelist” – Only in II Tim – 4:5
Mark is mentioned only in II Timothy. Luke is mentioned also but Mark is commented on as being profitable for the ministry.
Titus corresponds to Luke.
The theme is: MAN
The word “steward” is found only in Titus. It’s used 6x’s in Luke. (Once in Matthew)
The word “speak” used in Titus rather than words like “command” – 2:1,15; 3:2
The human side is seen more in Titus as in Luke:
· “Love their husbands” – Only in Titus – 2:4
· “Love their children” – Only in Titus – 2:4
· “Keepers at home” – Only in Titus – 2:5 – In I Tim. it says “Guide the house”
· “Lovers of good men” - Only in Tit.1:8
· “Lover of hospitality” - Only in Tit.1:8
· “Kindness” – Only in Tit.3:4
· “Deacon” & “Elder” not found in Titus. Elders found once – 1:5
Luke 1:1 says “set forth in order” and v.3 says “in order” Titus 1:5 says “set in order”
Philemon corresponds to John.
The theme is: SON OF GOD
The story of Philemon seems to be a type of the cross. Paul is presented as the mediator between Philemon and Onesimus.
The divine transactions that took place on the cross are now seen manifested through the life of the apostle Paul. The issues of identification, substitution, imputation, and justification are presented in the book of Philemon.
V17 – “receive him as myself” – Identification & Imputation
V18 – “put that on mine account” – Substitution
V17 shows the justified sinner. He has the righteousness of the justifier imputed to him.
V18 shows the sin of Onesimus imputed to Paul. Paul, like Christ, pays the penalty.
Well, these are my notes thus far. Let me just mention of few other things of interest.
As you know, the gospels are represented by the four faces of the Cherubim. Matthew - Lion, Mark - Ox, Luke - Man, & John - Eagle. Interestingly, I & II Timothy, the two books that correspond to Matthew & Mark, the Lion and the Ox are mentioned. However, they don't parallel exactly because the Ox is in I Timothy & the Lion is in II Timothy. Also, the Lion in II Timothy is a reference to Satan. Maybe that has something to do with it. I just thought it was interesting because the Lion and the Ox are the only two animals mentioned.
Another thing I found interesting is that the word "spirit" is not found in Titus. In fact, it's the only book in Paul's epistles where the word is not found. I don't know if there is a significance to this but thought it worth mentioning.
There are a few things in the pastoral epistles that don't match but the same could be said of the gospels. For example, Christ is presented as King in all four gospels but it is obvious that the emphasis in Matthew is Christ's Kingly position. I think there is enough evidence to show the parallel design in the pastoral epistles.