by John E. Werhan
There are individuals who are organizing a concerted effort to remove religion from our nation. It is a sad reality that a multitude of people will follow these individuals into their ideology. Yet, this is nothing new. People throughout the ages have denied God for their own lust and desires.
The apostle Paul, writing to the preacher Timothy, encouraged him to stand strong in his faith.
“This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith. Among these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme” (1 Timothy 1:18-20).
In this context, Paul encourages Timothy to “fight the good fight, keeping faith and a good conscience.”
“Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10).
Paul knew the importance of standing firm in the faith and not allowing anything to lead us astray. The ultimate reward for the faithful will be the “crown of life” (eternity in the heavenly abode).
Yet, some like Hymenaeus and Alexander will reject God and his truth. Because of their rejection, they have fallen from grace (1 Corinthians 10:12, 1 Timothy 4:1-3, Matthew 13:41, 2 Peter 2:20-22).
In essence these individuals have chosen the way of Satan over the truth of God. Because of this they are left wanting. Note the concluding words in verse 20, “so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.” Truly, God wants all to come to repentance and to receive the promise of heaven (2 Peter 3:9).
Today, it is imperative that the righteous hold fast to their faith and reject those who choose to reject God and his truth. It is imperative that we reach out to those who have fallen prey to unrighteous ideology by snatching them from the fires of Hell!
“And have mercy on some, who are doubting; save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh” (Jude 1:22-23).
John preachers for the The Northeast church of Christ in Sentinel, Oklahoma.