This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck, of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme. (I Timothy 1:18-20 NKJV)
This is what we are fighting for…The apostle Paul nearing the end of his life made a decisive statement to Timothy in the second letter that he, Paul wrote to Timothy. He said “I have fought the good fight and I have finished the race”.
Earlier before that, here in his first letter to Timothy he tells Timothy how to be able to make the same statement at the end of his own life. I believe we need to understand this clearly and practice it faithfully.
There are two things here, “the good fight” and “the race”.
It all began with Abraham, the father of faith. When he arrived at the land God had promised him, he dug a well but the people there, the philistines seized it. You see, in the desert, water is life. So understand the significance here; to dig a well is to provide life. To seize it and cover it up again is to fight life.
Later on, through the mouth of Jeremiah(Jeremiah 2:13) God declared Himself “the fountain of living water” and made it clear that the wells we dig for ourselves to satisfy our thirst are futile and needless. Later, Jesus would say to all those who are thirsty to come to Him, the fountain of living water and drink.
But before Jesus would say this, the prophet Zechariah(Zechariah 14:8) foretold of a time, a time when living waters will flow from Jerusalem, the city of God to water the rest of the earth.
Finally when that time came, Jesus declared, “he who believes in Me, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water, as the scriptures has said…”
My dears, God is the source of all that we(spirit, soul and body) need for life. All that men search for, long for and fight for are all in God who is generous enough to gift it packaged as Jesus Christ. And we are the channels of delivery.
So, what are we fighting for? What is “the good fight?” The prophet Habakkuk(Habakkuk 2:14), begins to answer that; God’s project is to cover the earth with the knowledge of His glory as the waters cover the sea.
In layman’s English it means, God wants people everywhere, to practically see and know the weight and greatness of His personality; how holy, powerful, loving, merciful He is, how gracious, wise and full of answers to all of man’s problems He is! Simply put; God wants to prove Himself. And He wants people to see this with their eyes, not hear it with their ears only.
I asked myself a question which I sense may be in your heart right now, “what about the fact that God wants people to relate to Him with faith, not by sight?”
Well Guess what? James gave an answer to that, faith without works is dead. God does not intend to keep telling people how He is this and how He is that with nothing to show for it. We are the ones He sent to make sure that doesn’t happen.
John tells us to let our lives so shine before men that they will see our good works and glorify God. That is “THE GOOD FIGHT OF FAITH”. As believers, we accept the truth of who and what God is to us and to the world by faith, then we must make the truth we have accepted about God real to the world. We must bring these truths into manifestation for the world to see, experience and believe. That is the good fight. Our mission is to make what we know by faith practical to the world.
The reality in the world, hunger, hatred, lack, sickness, hopelessness, injustice, and all sorts of evil and ills oppose the reality that faith in God speak of, realities like love, sufficiency, peace, health, hope, goodness, etc. The good fight of faith is what happens whenever someone with the Christ in them, overcomes the reality in the world with the reality in God. Are you in this fight?
Look around you, take some time to observe the world around you. What do you see? A sick world. A dying world. A world being crushed under the weight of its own bad and sinful choices. A world in darkness and confusion. A world in need of love. You see one tough wilderness filled with ugly realities.
I see a world in search of water that can quench their thirst. A world looking in all the wrong places for the very thing that you are carrying inside you. Out of your heart will flow rivers of living water. Out of the city of God will flow rivers to water the earth. This suffering world is desperately waiting for humans like you and me, people who have been awakened to their originality, their God-identity as given to them by God’s design at creation, reunited with their God-part by the reconciliation of Christ. It is waiting for each of us to start living up to our calling in life, our purpose by design.
Paul spoke to Timothy about “the prophecy that was given about him”. In layman’s terms, this means “the intention that preceded him”. I don’t know why you are here. I don’t know the reason why God sent you here. I can’t tell what are the things you must accomplish before your time on earth is done.
But what is that noble dream in your heart? What is that passion in you that keeps saying you can make a difference in a certain way. What is that gift you have, that deep inside, you are so sure that if you try and keep trying you can add value to the world and others?
Imagine yourself like Moses between a world in dire predicament and one of those realities that are blocking them from seeing the glory of God. The question to you is, “What is that thing in your hand?” For Moses it was a rod. You need to lift up the rod in your own hand to God NOW! Offer that talent, that dream, that gift or skill, that ambition, that position of yours, that qualification you have, that opportunity you have, that advantage that has been given to you, offer it to God. When God is in charge of that rod in your hand, you can divide a Red Sea with it. Paul said to Timothy, these instructions contained in this letter I have written to you will serve one purpose, it will guide you with regard to the rod in your hand, to fight the good fight.
I challenge you to Strike That Red Sea before you, let the world experience the goodness and greatness of God.
So my dears, your sitting time is over. It is time to realise that the church is a training ground for you, just like Midian was a preparation place for Moses. Rise up to your responsibility, your people are out there in dire predicament, they are in bondage awaiting their deliverer. Those who your music will capture, those who will be drawn to the appeal of your personality, those whose hope will be restored because of your phenomenal kindness and humanitarian tendencies. The list is endless! Their heart cry has reached God and He has seen their troubles. Now, God is sending just the right man for the job; YOU!
What is that thing you have in your hand? God says to you, “Together we can do wonders with it, just point it where I command and watch yourself turn into a ‘god’! After all, that’s what I made you to be; a lower version of me upon the earth.” Go after your dreams, live your life to the fullest, pour yourself out completely upon the earth. Don’t reserve your potentials, they are not needed in heaven, and yes, a few of them will be greatly needed inside the church, a larger number will be of very little use inside the church but, the greater number is needed out there in the world. Don’t keep your people waiting, go and get them!
All ye “gods” out there, hahahaha! Remember this; you don’t make the rules of engagement, neither does the world. God makes the rules. So don’t get this good thing twisted by ignoring and forsaking the Lord’s direction while you are out there doing “your thing”. This is “the race”; to remain attuned to the Spirit of God to the end.
Maintain faith and a good conscience before God all the way. Make your moves, take decisions in the battlefield not because the world says it’s ok or because it’s what you want, do it because this is what God will want you to do. Keep your ability to judge the moral quality of things in the sight of God sharp.
The word of God sharpens your conscience, make it your closest companion all through your life. Listen to it in church, study it for yourself, do whatever it takes to finish the race well.
Like Moses, whenever you can’t figure it out for yourself, go back and take the advice of Jethro the priest of Midian, no, I mean the man of God over you. That’s how not to end up like the guys Paul mentioned to Timothy, Hymenaeus and Alexander. I know you will live your life to the fullest. I know you will fight the good fight and I know you will finish the race well. God believes in you, so do I.
O LORD COME SOON.