The Fight of Faith

January 2, 2016 Clay Rodgers No comments exist

Paul White

1 Timothy 6:12Italic
There are good fights and there are bad fights. Me against a wet paper sack is a good fight. Me against the Heavyweight Champion of the World…enough said. Paul told young Timothy to “Fight the good fight of faith”,thus marking the only time that Paul told Timothy to fight at all. He knew how to pick his battles, telling the church at Corinth that when he does fight, it is with purpose, “not as one that beateth the air” (1 Corinthians 9:26).When Paul referred to the Ephesian church putting on the armor of God, he tells them only to “stand”, but gives no reference to them being offensive (Ephesians 6:11-17). It is obvious that he believed in Christians fighting, but not in fighting a foe that you can see and touch. Rather, Paul knew that the believer’s greatest battle will be to maintain their faith in Christ Jesus.When we place our faith in Christ, we are resting from our own labors and sins. Instantaneously, we take upon us the character of Christ and allow the Holy Spirit to reign in our lives. Only after religion enters do we begin the vicious cycle of performance based Christianity, where we feel that we must do things to please God. This cycle takes our rest away from us, forcing us to “stay saved” with our diligent works. Soon, the joy that was so abundant and unspeakable upon conversion is gone with our latest failure.In regards to what you can do to help your situation, which is what everyone wants to know, Paul addressed the Hebrews by saying, “Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest” (Hebrews 4:11). This marks Paul’s token command to the church to labor. All of our effort in Christianity should be aimed towards entering into the rest that Jesus paid for at Calvary. Effort outside of that endeavor leads to frustration.The fight of faith is truly a fight to rest. Jesus’ statement to the disciples, “Ye of little faith” comes after they wake Him up during the storm on the Sea of Galilee (Matthew 8:26). Jesus was sleeping during a storm, and it was the cries of His precious disciples that awoke Him. His statement on faith was to ask them why they would take so little from Him when rest was theirs to be had. When Jesus is asleep in your boat, it is a good idea to ignore the storm and take a nap!
The opposite of rest is not work, it is unbelief. This is why faith and rest are so closely connected. Look at the rest of Paul’s statement in Hebrews 4:11, “…lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief”. When you fail to rest, you are full of unbelief; so the faithful are those who rest in who Jesus is and what He can do. The ones who fall are the ones who fail to enter into rest and that is because of their unbelief.Do you believe that Jesus has finished the work at the cross? If your answer is yes, then your sole battle as a child of God will be to never allow the enemy to take that rest away from you. He will try to steal it with the voice of condemnation and guilt, accusing you and deriding you. He will try to kill your joy and happiness with sickness and discouragement. He will also try to destroy your hope by causing you to focus on your storms instead of your Savior. Fight the fight to enter into rest. Rest on believer!

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