Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.1 Timothy 6:12 NIV
I love this verse and the way it describes the Christian life. But all too often we take a much more passive approach. So long as I have accepted Jesus as savior, am somewhat regular in attendance at church, and do mostly good things, I am good. But Paul’s instruction to Timothy is quite unlike that. “Fight the good fight.” “Take hold of eternal life.” Both of these expressions are much more active.
Fight the Good Fight
I do not believe that it is only select people, like Timothy, who are called to fight the good fight of the faith. Ephesians 6:10-18 echoes this idea of fighting for the faith, and it is directed towards all believers. We are called, not to be fans sitting in the bleachers and watching professionals duke it out. Instead, each of us needs to lace up the gloves and contend for the faith. Don’t passively live as a believer. Be actively engaged as a disciple of Christ; bearing witness to his love and mercy; taking up your cross daily.
Taking Hold of Eternal Life
At first, you might wonder why Paul would tell Timothy to take hold of eternal life. Is he not already saved? Doesn’t he already have eternal life? But I don’t think that is really what Paul is telling him here. Rather than obtaining eternal life. Paul is telling Timothy to run the race that has been set out for him (2 Tim. 4:7). As believers, we have a way of life that has been set before us. We need to grab hold of it and follow it.
Do you just go through your day, seldom thinking about what God has for you to do in the day? All too often, I do. Paul challenges us to be more than that. Actively live your life as a follower of Jesus. Pursue him. Come alongside him and fight the good fight of the faith.