The above is virtually Paul’s concluding message in his first letter to Timothy, whom, at the beginning of his letter he called “my true child in the faith.” How few today know “that which is truly life” and, as a result of that realization “take hold of” it. [6 v.19]
Reading (& meditating) on God’s word daily is an essential part of being able to “take hold of that which is truly life.” Paul’s final chapter in his first letter to Timothy, contrasts the things which are not “truly life” with those which are! Today we are surrounded with things which are not.
As in those days, so today ” the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils.”[v.10] and causes us to lose our vision and grip on that “which is truly life” – and so we see, as in those days “some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
What we should highlight in our minds in today’s chapter is the positive advice Paul gives. After telling Timothy to “flee these things,” he writes, ” Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness.” [v.11] These are the essential ingredients in our character, in our attitude of mind – for they alone enable us to effectively, “fight the good fight of the faith” and as a result “Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called …” [v.12]
How many “have been called” yet fail to “take hold of … eternal life“? They go through the narrow gate and start on the narrow way – but wander off it because they fail to keep their feet (and their minds) on God’s way – an essential foundation to doing this is to read – and then meditate – on God’s word every day. All those who do this see Paul’s advice to Timothy as being equally for them – the vital need to “guard the deposit entrusted to” us. [v.20]
How great is the danger of “the deposit” of truth – and our resultant faith – of slipping from our grasp? Think of the warning Jesus gave to the believers at Sardis (Rev. 3 v2,3) “Wake up, and strengthen what remains … Remember … what you received and heard. Keep it … I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come …” Let us all make sure we have not lost our grip on “that which is truly life” – even more so as that “hour” appears to be ominously close.