Fight the Good Fight

Posted: August 24, 2015 in Uncategorized
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Battle Ready

There is a war.  An evil that is fighting against us.  Each of us have a responsibility in this war.  We are to stand firm.  To allow God to use us as tools and instruments in the ultimate victory that is inevitable.  We are not called to fight against the enemy with anything but the word of God in this war.  But there is another fight going on.  Not an evil fight, but a good fight.  One where we are called to action, to do more than stand firm, to initiate a cultural change.  Paul charges Timothy to fight this fight.  1 Timothy 1:18-19 “This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophesies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, holding faith and a good conscience.”  This is a good fight.  An honorable fight.  A necessary fight.  But it starts in an unlikely fashion.

Let’s take a look further into the book of 1 Timothy.  1 Timothy 6:11 “But as for you, O man of God, flee these things.  Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness.”  Paul urges Timothy to resist the desire of wealth and the tickling of ears to pursue these positive attributes that are listed.  We have already established that a war is raging.  But how often do we contribute to the war?  How often do we create unnecessary battles among one another?  These battles stem from pride, selfishness, humor, and the putting down of others to make ourselves look good.  This ought not to be.  We should be fighting alongside one another as brothers in arms!  Ready to fight the battles with one another.  Did you know there are television shows dedicated to how bad you can put someone down?!  We are in the war together.  Battle brings men together, so as soon as we realize that we are battling together, I think we will begin to work together.

1 Timothy 6:12 “Fight the good fight of the faith.  Take hold of the eternal life of which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”  There is a good fight we wage.  It is not a fight of killer blows, haymakers, and knockout punches.  It is a positive and uplifting fight.  Don’t get me wrong, there is a fight full of those things, but those are coming at us not from us.  The fight that is coming from us is full of righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, and gentleness.  We all start out fighting the evil fight.  We come out of the womb ready for this fight.  But fighting the good fight comes from a conscious decision.  Did you see what Paul said?  The good confession was made, and that is when we took hold of eternal life.  That is when we became equipped with the Fruit of the Spirit.  Before then we were stuck with the vegetables of the flesh.  Now, we have the ability to participate in the good fight, the honorable fight.  Do too many of us choose to continue in the evil fight though?  I don’t know, maybe.

Paul then charges Timothy.  He doesn’t just tell him to fight he gives him specific instruction.  1 Timothy 6:13-14 “I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Paul charges Timothy to keep the commandment.  But before that, he reminds him of Jesus’ interaction with Pilate.  This is when Pilate is asking him about being king of the Jews and Jesus tells him that what he has said is right.  Taking in consideration that Jesus accepted and acknowledged his role as Messiah, even in the face of death, means that we can as well.  This commandment that Paul speaks on is the command to fight to good fight of the faith.  To remember that command and not to let go of it.  Not to become comfortable or loosen our grip on it.

It is like the person who had to use a port-o-potty.  They really had to go and they were going to be in there more than a couple of minutes.  While in there they got their phone out to check their Instagram and play a game to help pass the time.  At first they were very concerned with keeping their phone firm in their hand so as not to let it fall.  But as the seconds and minutes went by, they became more comfortable.  Wouldn’t you know it, as they were getting up to leave, cur-plop!  The phone falls.  What do they do?  Well, they go in for it, only to have their phone, and now their hand covered in a bright blue stain.  As they exit the port-o-potty, everyone that sees them is able to know exactly what happened without them having to say a word.

When we begin to loosen our grip on fighting the good fight, we fall into the evil fight, which stains us.  It becomes obvious which fight we are fighting and in order to get back into the good fight, it takes time and a lot of cleaning power.  We keep fighting the good fight because we know that Jesus will return.  When he does, we do not want to have been fighting our whole lives a fight we were never meant to fight.

Paul gives us insight into what happens when we fight the good fight and our time comes.  2 Timothy 4:7-8 “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.”  Fighting the good fight, though not our nature, is worth the fight.  There is no comparison to the reward of the good fight and the reward of the evil fight.  One we cannot win, the other we are given grace, forgiveness, and the strength and power from God to complete.  We get to replace our helmet for a crown.  See how different they are?  One is open and signifying position while the other is simply protecting from force.  The good fight ends with a position that we do not deserve and that we will ultimately give back to the one truly worthy.

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