Paul’s letters to Timothy have always been encouraging to me. I read them fairly often, and I found myself this morning reading II Timothy. Just about all of my Bibles that I read from regularly have numerous hi lighted or underlined areas, especially in both letters to Timothy, yet I still find myself continuing to mark new verses or remark verses every time I read them. Today, in II Timothy was no exception. There is just comfort that I find in the words penned from Paul to Timothy, especially as a minister. Not only do I find comfort, but I also find encouragement to continue preaching and teaching, because it is my calling.
As I was reading this morning, however, I came across a verse that I was somewhat unfamiliar with. There were no hi lights or underlinings to be found. Maybe because it was toward the end of the letter, and a lot of times I find myself skimming the closings of Paul’s letters, because he is just closing out with greetings from fellow Christians. Or I had read it but it just never really stuck out to me before. But in the Bible I was reading from this morning, I hi lighted II Timothy 4:18.
In the two verses previous to it, Paul is explaining that no one came to his defense when he was on trial in Rome the first time. That is, no one except God, and God had “delivered him from the lion’s mouth”. Then Paul wrote the verse that struck me in a great way this morning. He wrote, “The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
After reading that, Paul’s words there have been rolling around in the back of my mind the rest of the day. While I was busy finishing my sermon for Sunday, and reading other things to help build my leadership, this verse just stayed floating in the back of my mind. I was not concentrating on it, or even really thinking about it at all, but there it was.
As Christians, we face attacks almost on a daily basis anymore. They are increasing more and more in this country as well. We are told all the time that we need to be tolerant of everyone else, without any understanding of why we do not support things. We are seen more for what we might be against, than what we are for. And for that last part, we have created that and need to change that perception as much as we can.
But none the less, we are facing more and more attacks from those that do not believe in God, or do not put Him first in their lives. It is easy to get beat down by that as well. The more the attacks come, the easier it is to believe that we are on our own. Sometimes, as Christians, we attack each because we are hurt by the attack of the world as well. We have to stop doing that. We need to be united under Jesus.
Paul’s words here have stuck out to me today because it is a great reminder that no matter what comes our way in this world, God has our backs. One way or another, He is going to rescue us from every evil attack, and we have heaven awaiting us at the end of this life, no matter how tough this life actually gets.
That is why Paul can write a few verses earlier something that I think we all want to be able to say at the end of our lives. II Timothy 4:7-8 reads, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Now there is in store 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 longed for his appearing.”
Thoughts From a Crosseyed Jesus Freak