16 But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. 17 To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

18 This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19 holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, 20 among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.

1 Timothy 1:16–20 ESV Read More

While Paul recognizes the grace of God, He also understands that not everybody is going to choose to follow Jesus. There are people that are going to reject God for whatever reason and not live for the truth. Sometimes they will give in to the list of awful things in verses 9–10 that we read a few days ago, but sometimes they won’t.

Look at what Hymenaeus and Alexander did. Paul says they basically rejected holding onto their faith and a good conscience. Part of that activity involved what Paul called “good warfare.”

It can be a fight or a war sometimes, can’t it? We can think we are losing losers as we lose to this temptation or this weakness. Sometimes our faith can seem as weak as whether we ate the right thing for dinner not. Sometimes it feels like your whole walk with Jesus can be sidetracked if your spouse looks at you wrong.

Well, keep reading backward. Christ is displaying His perfect patience in us. He doesn’t want you to struggle. He wants you to show off His eternal life in this dark world. His eternal life is salvation for…guess who…anyone who struggles and calls on His name!

So Hymenaeus and Alexander gave up the struggle. Whatever their blasphemy was is to be exposed as such. Were they ascribing blessing or power to something besides God? Were they doing something that their conscience knew was wrong but they decided they would rather do that than follow Christ?

Find some older, wiser Christian people and ask them how to not shipwreck your faith. You might get some wonderfully practical advice.

You may even get a charge like Paul gave here to Timothy.

  • Hold on to your faith
  • Preserve a good conscience
  • Wage the good warfare in your soul
  • Have confidence in the patient grace of Christ that has not left you

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