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February 10, 2013
He Considered Me Faithful
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service, even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus. It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all. Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. (1Timothy 1:12)
Paul wrote to Timothy, a young yet faithful disciple, to instruct him in the need to teach others to be faithful disciples so that they might also teach others. Paul also puts himself forth as an example. The apostle was thankful that he had been considered faithful by the Lord Jesus. What does this mean? The word “consider” means, “supposed, thought, judged, or counted.” The word “faithful” means, “trusted, reliable, or dependable.” This is how the apostle was found.
Why is being considered faithful so important? This is extremely important for this is the basis upon which the Christian will be given the crown of life (Revelation 2:10; see also Revelation 17:14). So, Paul had this assurance. “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up 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 loved His appearing.” (2Timothy 4:6‑8). How about you? Do you have this same assurance?
God and Christ are both faithful. “Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.” (1Peter 4:19). “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1John 1:9). “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.” (1Thessalonians 5:23‑24). We have that kind of example before us, so we are without excuse.
It is possible for people to be counted faithful. Paul was. Others were, too. “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 1:1). “To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are at Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father.” (Colossians 1:2). We see over and over again these types of references made by Paul, Peter, John, and also by Jesus (1Corinthians 4:17; Colossians 4:7,9; Galatians 3:9; 1Peter 5:12; Philippians 4:17; Revelation 2:13; 3John 5). If these “regular” Christians were faithful, we can be faithful also.
We should be faithful in many things. We should be faithful in watching, just like Jesus instructed the apostles. “Peter said, “Lord, are You addressing this parable to us, or to everyone else as well?” And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and sensible steward, whom his master will put in charge of his servants, to give them their rations at the proper time?” (Luke 12:41,42).
We should be faithful in using diligently what we have. “His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’” (Matthew 25:21,23).
We should be faithful in obeying the Lord. “And when she and her household had been baptized, she urged us, saying, ‘If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house and stay.’ And she prevailed upon us.” (Acts 16:15).
We should be faithful in the little things, too. “He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” (Luke 16:10).
We should be faithful in the things of others. “And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?” (Luke 16:12).
We should be faithful in faith and in works. “So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer … By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, fellow heirs of the same promise; for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God.” (Galatians 3:9; Hebrews 11:8-10).
We should be faithful in all things. “Women must likewise be dignified, not malicious gossips, but temperate, faithful in all things.” (1Timothy 3:11).
We should be faithful in life. “Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.” (1Corinthians 9:26-27).
We should be faithful in everything we find Paul doing which was right since it is said that he was faithful.
Are you faithful? Do you live your life in the same manner as Paul. Timothy, and the other Christians about whom we have read? How do think the Lord Jesus considers you?
—S. Scott Richardson Sr.