Faithful 'til the end
As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:6-8
From our text, Paul was able to make it through this difficult trials and challenges he faced in his life because of His hope, which was not found this earth, but in heaven. He knew that there was more than just this life, therefore he knew and trusted in the promise of Heaven. This is exactly what Paul was referencing in verse 8, “And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.” In order for us to be able to make it through this life we must cherish the hope of His coming. For Paul, this hope of Christ’s coming will help him remain faithful until the end. God called His disciples to be faithful as His witnesses. “And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). This was the command but at the same time also a prophecy that every person who claims to be Christ’s follower shall be witnesses to the very last tribe on earth. When the Lord Jesus Christ preached what was known as the “Olivet Discourse,” He gave what will hasten His coming. “And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). When temptation to give up arises because trials in life are beginning to get overwhelming, remember the promise of His coming and cherish the hope of Heaven. Our goal is to live a faithful life. Let us not stop in having a desire to live lives that are pleasing to God. In this world, there are many things that we may encounter that could derail us from the course that we are on. Let us remind ourselves that there is a life we are anticipating free from heartaches and trials. “He will swallow up death forever! The Sovereign Lord will wipe away all tears” (Isaiah 25:8). “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever” (Revelation 21:4). When doubts begin to creep into your mind remember the promise of His coming. Remind yourself that one day all those that placed their faith in Christ will always look forward to His coming. Each day that passes by makes us one day closer to eternity. “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up” (Galatians 6:9).