Passage: 1 Timothy 6:11-21
Speaker: Mitch Kim
Series: Truth Over Spin
The Fight Of Faith
Is there a fight to your faith? Since church is on the weekends it is easy to consider matters of faith as “leisure.” Matters of leisure should be comfortable, uplifting, and encouraging for us. We work during the week, so we want to relax on the weekends; as a result we want faith to be easy. Yet our faith demands a fight. We are to “flee these things…pursue righteousness…fight the good fight of the faith” and “take hold of the eternal life to which you are been called” (1 Tim 6:11–12). Faith clearly is not an expression of or excuse for passivity; faith is expressed with fight. And it is only as we do this that we will “guard the despot entrusted to” us (6:20). What does that fight look like? As we conclude 1 Timothy, we see that our faith demands a fight even when costly to find true life.
First, in our faith, we must fight (1 Tim 6:11–12). While the problems in Ephesus abound, Timothy is addressed and challenged, “Flee these things.” Every no needs a yes, so instead we “pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness” (6:11). This pursuit is the “good fight of faith” (6:12) and the means by which we “take hold of the eternal life to which you were called” (6:12).
This fight, though is costly, and we must fight even when costly (6:13–16). 1 Timothy began with a costly call to remain in Ephesus for Timothy and combat opposition (6:13), and this call is reiterated “in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus” (6:13). This call and witness is as costly as that of Christ Jesus himself who “before Pontius Pilate made the good confession” (6:13). Just as Jesus made his confession in the face of great opposition, so we must make the good confession without reproach “until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ” (6:14). And we fight even when costly as we remember that Christ will appear again (6:15–16).
We fight even when costly to find true life (6:17–19). The rich are specifically addressed here, not to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches “but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy” (6:17). We are to “do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share” (6:18) so that we might “take hold of that which is truly life” (6:19).
When we fight even when costly to find true life, then we will “guard the deposit entrusted to” us (1 Tim 6:20). So much is arrayed against us. But the good deposit of faith has been entrusted to us. And we are not simply to hide this deposit in a hole somewhere but fight to make it our own. May our faith be marked by such fight.