When you have something that you really like, such as a phone or your wallet, your treasure it and protect it very carefully. But do you know that God has given you something even more precious than any material possessions you own? He has given you the gospel. And He wants you to guard it diligently.
Fight the Good Fight of Faith
11 But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before[d] Pontius Pilate made the good confession, 14 to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.
17 As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 18 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, 19 thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.
20 O Timothy, guard the deposit entrusted to you. Avoid the irreverent babble and contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge,” 21 for by professing it some have swerved from the faith.
Grace be with you.[e]
In 1 Timothy 6, Paul charges Timothy, who was a young man whom God had given many responsibilities and gifts, to guard the gospel which gives eternal life. He was to do that :
In His own life, by:
- Fleeing from the love and corrupting power of money
- Pursuing godliness
- Fighting for the faith- his own and the whole of the gospel
- Obeying all of God’s commands
- Guarding the gospel by which he was saved
In that of his congregation
- Teaching them not to be proud
- Teaching them not to set their hopes on earthly riches
- Teaching to be rich in good works through being generous to others
Questions for Study
- How do you take care of something you really love, say your phone, or tablet, or computer, or your body?
- Paul wants Timothy to take care of something with all his heart and mind and strength, and he has repeatedly been telling him throughout this whole passage. He even refers to Jesus making a ‘good confession’ in the presence of Pilate. What was this confession and how does it relate to the thing Paul wants Timothy to guard? (1 Timothy 6 vs. 12, 13, 19, 21).
- In whose life is Timothy supposed to protect the faith?
- In what ways is Timothy supposed to guard the ‘faith’ or the gospel in his own life, and in that of others ? What things was he supposed to do, and what things was he supposed to avoid?
- How do you think you can practice these things in your own life? How do you ‘flee’ from ungodliness and love of money, and ‘pursue’ righteousness?
- What does the language of the text (pursue, flee, fight) tell you about how you are supposed to go about doing these things?