For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.

April 20, 2017

Here, Paul writes to his mentor Timothy. Paul was imprisoned in Rome when he wrote this epistle. He had already appeared before Nero for his preliminary hearing. During his trial, no one came to his defense. He was soon to be sentenced to death – and knew it. This was to be his last will and testament. Paul considered

his execution an offering. The Greek word here –spendo – means drink offering sacrificed to God. Paul, likewise, did not see his death as an ending, but a departure – a transition from the abundant life to the everlasting life. Our last years, months, days of life – when death is imminent – will reveal our true character and aspirations.

 

Just days before his death Gandhi wrote, “All about me is darkness; I am praying for light.”  Contrast the words of the great preacher D.L. Moody whose last recorded words were, “This is my triumph; this is my coronation day! It is glorious!” 

 

What will be the words of your last will and testament? Will they be words of faith and hope, or words of doubt and despair? The way to blessed assurance is exemplified by the life and death of Paul.“ I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” Firstly, be a fighter for the Lord. Resist and withstand, and you will stand. Secondly, be a marathoner for the Lord. The race to glory is not a sprint –  it is a lifetime journey. Thirdly, be a faithful steward of the Lord. You may lose your way; you may lose some battles; you may lose some friends, but keep the faith . Why? - Because He who keeps us is faithful.

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