This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; ~1 Timothy 1:18
Paul wrote 1 Timothy to assist and instruct a young pastor in his oversight and leadership in the church. Timothy had to deal with numerous issues that were touchy and difficult. He needed courage and wisdom in dealing with these issues correctly and decisively. Paul was helping his young protégé in the ministry in taking courage as he contended for the faith once delivered to the saints.
We see the encroachment.
We are in a spiritual war. Peter described it as “fleshly lusts, which war against the soul.” Paul said that it is not a battle “against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” The enemy is encroaching on biblical doctrine. The enemy is encroaching on biblical values. The enemy is encroaching on biblical attitudes and a walk in the Spirit. The enemy is encroaching on the biblical family. The enemy is against all righteousness and against God Himself. It is a war for the soul of the sinner and against the gospel going forward.
We see the encouragement.
Paul gave Timothy a charge. There was his previous instruction. He referred to this as “the prophecies which went before on thee.” Paul taught him regarding the tactics of the spiritual enemies we must deal with. There was his present injunction. Paul told him that he must “war a good warfare.” Nehemiah said it best when he said, “Fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses.” In war, we must be equipped with our weapons: the Word of God, prayer, discernment, and the whole armor of God. In war, we must watch and pray, lest we enter into temptation. In war, we must have a shovel in one hand and a sword in the other.
We see the encounters.
Paul told Timothy that we must war by holding faith and a good conscience. Timothy was charged to war against doctrinal heresy. He was charged to war against a lowering of standards in the church. He was charged to war against trends of the day that were unscriptural. He was charged to war against those who sought to redefine the ministry of the church and the qualifications of those who serve the Lord full time. Dr. Curtis Hutson said that the ministry is where the servants of God are building and battling at the same time.
We see the end result.
Paul said, “That thou by them mightest war a good warfare.” What he meant was that you’re in the war to win and not to lose. We must be prayerful in war. We must be patient in war. We must be prudent in war. We must be prepared for war. We must be careful that we let God fight for us. “The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the LORD.” There are times we must confront an issue and accept the bumps that come our way. Good warfare is dealing with sin in a righteous manner. Good warfare is not carelessly leaving doors and windows open for the enemy to enter through.
War can be discouraging. In war, we will see casualties. However, in war, we are to fight the good fight of faith. After having done all, stand!
Have a courageous God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Job 38-39