The work of the Christian never ends.
Some people might take issue in connecting work with Christianity. There are a
great number of verses that speak of the work of Christ on the cross, the
saving grace that Jesus shares with believers, and the loving patience of God
that waits for the faithful to come home. While it’s true that “faith comes by
hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17) and “it is by grace you
have been saved, through faith” (Eph. 2:8a), “We remember before our God and
Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your
endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thes 1:3). We remember
that for Christians, work, labor, and endurance are vital parts of our lives.
Christians have a call to live holy and righteous lives (Mt.
6:33) but what we might not realize is that living righteously means more than
just striving to live without sin, it means doing the work of God. In part, we
do the work God has set for us by believing (John 6:29). Life doesn’t stop at believing, at having
faith, at trusting in the blood of Christ. Life continues. And we are to
continue living out our faith not just by what we don’t do, but by what we are
Timothy was a believer. He was raised in a believing home by a faithful mother and grandmother. They believed and they taught Timothy what to believe and how to trust in God. Timothy trusted God, but his faith didn’t leave him where it found him. Timothy would go on to become a trusted companion of Paul, serving side-by-side with Paul in the preaching of the Gospel and the ministry to many congregations.
Even after all this had taken place, Timothy’s work hadn’t
ceased. He continued, and in Paul’s first letter to Timothy, he was charged to
continue continuing! After all he had accomplished, there was still work to be
done: “But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness,
godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.” (1 Tim. 6:11).
The work of the Christian never ends. Timothy was told, as
we are, to PURSUE – that is, to continue, to keep on, to chase after, to strive
for, to reach for, to never give up, to never think that the working has
reached its completion. How are you pursuing righteousness in your life? Are
you pursuing godliness? How does your pursuit of faith and love show itself in
how others see you?
As we think on these things, let’s remember to always keep pursuing, knowing the work of the Christian never ends.