Summary: This message is intended to alert us to the fact of spiritual warfare and give us information that wll help us in our spiritual battles.
War A Good Warfare
A. Our passage for this morning reads, This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme. 1 Tim. 1:18-20
1. Please note the words war a good warfare
2. Have you ever thought about your life of faith as a war?
3. I find that this war is being fought on two levels
a. First that of The Faith – the doctrinal premise and understanding gospel and God’s word
- It is what Jude was speaking about when he wrote Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. Jude 1:3
b. Secondly, there is the matter of our personal working out of The Faith in our own life as a life of faith
1) Here many of you, as well as myself at times, are saying “Oh, yah, it’s a war and it seems like I’m loosing most of the battles!”
2) And even Paul had problems at times, writing, For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Rom 7:19
c. Both are intimately intertwined with each other.
4. And as our passage shows, it is possible to dash our life vessel of faith upon the rocks and become shipwrecked!
B. So the question for us today might be:
1. How do we fight the good fight of faith – war a good warfare?
2. How do we keep from shipwrecking our faith?
C. Well, I don’t have all the answers but maybe we can find some encouragement and direction from Paul’s words to young Timothy.
1. As we study this passage it will help us to understand two things, which comprise our Outline for this morning: We Need To Understand
a. First, Some Dynamics of Spiritual Warfare
b. Secondly, Some Specifics for Spiritual Warfare
2. My hope is that God will open our hearts to the reality of Spiritual warfare and help us learn how to be victorious in it.
If you remember our last message in Habakkuk we said that the Life of Faith is a Fight. That imagery is pressed into use even more in our passage this morning. So to help us in this fight this warfare I think we need to understand a few things, beginning with
I. SOME DYNAMICS OF SPIRITUAL WARFARE, This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; Holding faith, and a good conscience;
A. First, I must state the obvious, spiritual warfare is war!
1. You must come to understand, that once you accepted Christ as Savior by faith – the battle began in earnest
a. All of life is a spiritual battle, but you just did not know it.
b. When you accepted Christ, you came head to head with the spiritual elements (not physical) that wanted you to be separated from God
2. Writing to the church at Ephesus Paul stated, For we wrestle (or war) not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Eph 6:12
3. And it is deed an all out war!
4. Again we find Paul writing, this time to the church at Corinth: For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 2 Cor 10:3-5
5. When we come to understand that our warfare is spiritual we are in a position to grow in our understanding on how to “do war”
B. Now we can move forward: In order to “war a good warfare” we must have a tried and true battle plan, in this case it consists of two things.
1. Paul told Timothy to “hold” other translations use “having, keeping, clinging or possessing”
2. The Greek word is in the present tense which points to a habitual or continual commitment.
3. What are the two things we are to hold? Faith and a good conscience