2 Timothy 2:8-15
2:8 Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David–that is my gospel,
2:9 for which I suffer hardship, even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But the word of God is not chained.
2:10 Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, so that they may also obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
2:11 The saying is sure: If we have died with him, we will also live with him;
2:12 if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he will also deny us;
2:13 if we are faithless, he remains faithful– for he cannot deny himself.
2:14 Remind them of this, and warn them before God that they are to avoid wrangling over words, which does no good but only ruins those who are listening.
2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved by him, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly explaining the word of truth.
Staying true to the Gospel and living it out is not an easy task. There are moments in which we face in life that cause us to question or even doubt God’s faithfulness and His word. However, it is during those season of trails that our faith is proven to be genuine and true. Paul here is saying that regardless of his hardships and the battle he’s facing, God’s word still remains to be true and powerful. Furthermore he makes it a point to say that even when we fail be be faithful to Him, He remains faithful to us.
Paul did not allow for the storms of life to divert his faith and trust in God’s word. A the end of this passage we see that he is trying to encourage Timothy to do the same. Remaining strong and steadfast during a time of trial is what truly allows for us to experience God’s amazing power and control in our lives.
Our faith will always be challenged. Whether it is by a circumstance, a false notion we hear, influences from our friends around us, we need to always go back to the word of God and trust in its all sufficient truth and power that it can play in our lives.
There is an old slogan that says, with great risks come great rewards. I would ad inversely that great risks can also come with great negative consequences. Being a servant of the gospel requires us to give up everything for Christ and we will encounter those who are inspired by such things and we will encounter those who want to harm us. There is a resistance to the gospel in this world because it is the Devil’s kingdom. We should expect that those who serve the gospel are met with opposition.
Yet, Paul reminds us that our service will result in an eternal harvest.
Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, so that they may also obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
We do not labor in vain. Do not be discouraged when the world oppresses you. Rather, rejoice in the fact that your faithfulness means others will spend eternity in heaven.
[Featured image from http://amos37.com/cost/]