“Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.” – 2 Timothy 4:8
The previous verse of our verse today is a very famous verse. However, we tend to not focus on the verse after which is our verse today. We most of the time focus on the verse before this because maybe we think that it’s actually a very nice verse to hear. As human as we are, we love the idea of good poetry. So, that is why we always love to choose a verse that sounds good. Yet we must understand that our verse today is as important as the verse preceding. Paul, as the writer of this letter, indeed, had lived his life following the footsteps of Christ.
Now, as he knew that he would depart and be with the Lord soon, he wrote his spiritual son, Timothy, a letter to remind him of what he should do. Just as the popular verse before this, Paul confidently said that he has fought the good fight of faith and has finished the race. As we can observe, Paul declared this with pure confidence that he indeed will be with the Lord, because he knows that it is not because of him why he will be able to be with the Lord but only because of the grace of God. So, with this declaration, he then explained in our verse today, why he has this confidence. He carefully noted and declared that he kept the faith.
So, because of the faith he kept while keeping Christ always in his center, he knew that he would be given the crown of righteousness. The most crucial part of this is we might have misunderstood that Paul has declared that he is righteous for keeping the faith. However, we must understand that it is not because of his own works that made him righteous, but it is because Christ made him righteous and because he had kept the faith, believing that he is saved, he is purified, he is made holy and righteous, that will then bring him into eternal life. Again, only through Christ, we have been saved, not by our works. Thus, Paul wrote this letter to Timothy and even to all of us to remind us that we are saved by grace through faith and that faith, we have to keep this faith. We have to remember that it is possible for us to back slide and we have to remember that our faith needs to be taken care of.
In order for us to remain in the faith, we have to feed our souls and always read the Word. We have to always follow Christ and let Him lead us. Let’s keep the faith and continue to fight the good fight of faith because we will then receive the crown of righteousness in which the Lord of righteousness will judge. This was a promise before but this is still true to everyone who longed for the appearance of Christ again. Therefore, give glory and honor to Christ and always desire and follow Him with all your heart. Become more and more like Him and let Him have control. So we might be like Paul who can confidently declare that we will be with God through Him.
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