1 Timothy 3:15
But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
a. ASV: But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how men ought to behave themselves in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
b. YLT: And if I delay, that thou mayest know how it behoveth thee to conduct thyself in the house of God, which is an assembly of the living God -- a pillar and foundation of the truth,
d. Amplified Bible Classic: If I am detained, you may know how people ought to conduct themselves in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and stay (the prop and support) of the Truth.
1. “But if I tarry long…”
a. But [Strong: 1161 dé, deh; a primary particle (adversative or continuative); but, and, etc.:—also, and, but, moreover, now (often unexpressed in English).]
b. if [Strong: 1437 eán, eh-an'; from G1487 and G302; a conditional particle; in case that, provided, etc.; often used in connection with other particles to denote indefiniteness or uncertainty:—before, but, except, (and) if, (if) so, (what-, whither-)soever, though, when (-soever), whether (or), to whom, (who-)so(-ever).]
c. [I] tarry long [Strong: 1019 bradýnō, brad-oo'-no; from G1021; to delay:—be slack, tarry.]
2. “...that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God…”
a. [that thou mayest] know [Strong: 1492 eídō, i'-do; a primary verb; used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equivalent G3700 and G3708; properly, to see (literally or figuratively); by implication, (in the perfect tense only) to know:—be aware, behold, × can (+ not tell), consider, (have) know(-ledge), look (on), perceive, see, be sure, tell, understand, wish, wot.]
b. how 4459 pōs, poce; adverb from the base of G4226; an interrogative particle of manner; in what way? (sometimes the question is indirect, how?); also as exclamation, how much!:—how, after (by) what manner (means), that. (Occasionally unexpressed in English).]
c. [thou] oughtest [Strong: 1163 deî, die; 3rd person singular active present of G1210; also deon deh-on'; neuter active participle of the same; both used impersonally; it is (was, etc.) necessary (as binding):—behoved, be meet, must (needs), (be) need(-ful), ought, should.]
d. [to] behave [thyself] [Strong: 390 anastréphō, an-as-tref'-o; from G303 and G4762; to overturn; also to return; by implication, to busy oneself, i.e. remain, live:—abide, behave self, have conversation, live, overthrow, pass, return, be used.]
e. in [Strong: 1722 en, en; a primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), i.e. a relation of rest (intermediate between G1519 and G1537); "in," at, (up-)on, by, etc.:—about, after, against, + almost, × altogether, among, × as, at, before, between, (here-)by (+ all means), for (… sake of), + give self wholly to, (here-)in(-to, -wardly), × mightily, (because) of, (up-)on, (open-)ly, × outwardly, one, × quickly, × shortly, (speedi-)ly, × that, × there(-in, -on), through(-out), (un-)to(-ward), under, when, where(-with), while, with(-in). Often used in compounds, with substantially the same import; rarely with verbs of motion, and then not to indicate direction, except (elliptically) by a separate (and different) preposition.
g. [the] house [Strong: 3624 oîkos, oy'-kos; of uncertain affinity; a dwelling (more or less extensive, literal or figurative); by implication, a family (more or less related, literally or figuratively):—home, house(-hold), temple.]
h. [of] God [Strong: 2316 theós, theh'-os; of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively, a magistrate; by Hebraism, very:—X exceeding, God, god(-ly, -ward).]
3. “...which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”
a. which [Strong: 3748 hóstis, hos'-tis; from G3739 and G5100; which some, i.e. any that; also (definite) which same:—X and (they), (such) as, (they) that, in that they, what(-soever), whereas ye, (they) which, who(-soever).]
b. is [Strong: 2076 estí, es-tee'; third person singular present indicative of G1510; he (she or it) is; also (with neuter plural) they are:—are, be(-long), call, X can(-not), come, consisteth, × dure for a while, + follow, × have, (that) is (to say), make, meaneth, × must needs, + profit, + remaineth, + wrestle.]
c. [the] church [Strong: 1577 ekklēsía, ek-klay-see'-ah; from a compound of G1537 and a derivative of G2564; a calling out, i.e. (concretely) a popular meeting, especially a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Christian community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both):—assembly, church.]
d. [of the] living [Strong: 2198 záō, dzah'-o; a primary verb; to live (literally or figuratively):—life(-time), (a-)live(-ly), quick.]
e. God [Strong: 2316 theós, theh'-os; of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively, a magistrate; by Hebraism, very:—X exceeding, God, god(-ly, -ward).]
f. [the] pillar [Strong: 4769 stŷlos, stoo'-los; from στύω stýō (to stiffen; properly akin to the base of G2476); a post ("style"), i.e. (figuratively) support:—pillar.]
1). Galatians 2:9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
2). Revelation 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
g. and [Strong: 2532 kaí, kahee; apparently, a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words:—and, also, both, but, even, for, if, or, so, that, then, therefore, when, yet.]
h. ground [Strong: 1477 hedraíōma, hed-rah'-yo-mah; from a derivative of G1476; a support, i.e. (figuratively) basis:—ground.]
i. [of] the [Strong: 3588 ho ho, including the feminine he hay, and the neuter to to in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom):--the, this, that, one, he, she, it, etc.]
j. truth [Strong: 225 alḗtheia, al-ay'-thi-a; from G227; truth:—true, × truly, truth, verity.]
1). Albert Barnes Commentary: The pillar and ground of the truth - There has been no little diversity of opinion among critics whether this phrase is to be taken in connection with the preceding, meaning that "the church" is the pillar and ground of the truth; or whether it is to be taken in connection with what follows, meaning that the principal support of the truth was the doctrine there referred to - that God was manifest in the flesh. Bloomfield remarks on this: "It is surprising that any who have any knowledge or experience in Greek literature could tolerate so harsh a construction as that which arises from the latter method." The more natural interpretation certainly is, to refer it to the former; and this is supported by the consideration that it would then fall in with the object of the apostle. His design here seems to be, to impress Timothy with a deep sense of the importance of correct conduct in relation to the church; of the responsibility of those who presided over it; and of the necessity of care and caution in the selection of proper officers. To do this, he reminded him that the truth of God - that revealed truth which he had given to save the world - was entrusted to the church; that it was designed to preserve it pure, to defend it, and to transmit it to future times; and that, therefore, every one to whom the administration of the affairs of the church was entrusted, should engage in this duty with a deep conviction of his responsibility.