When I was in grade school, my friends and I considered ourselves creative. We “came-up” with the following grade scale in an effort to confuse our parents. We decided as a group to tell our parents that the school had changed the grading system. Now the letters on our papers and report cards represented the following:
A = Awful
B = Bad
C = Common
D = Delightful
F = Fantastic!
Somehow our parents never really believed us.
Recently while reading 1Timothy 6:11-12, “But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” (ESV). I thought about “F is for Fantastic!”
There are Four Concepts that begin with the letter F that Paul tells Timothy will benefit him as a man of God.
1. Flee. Flee the things he just wrote about. Specifically things that draw people away from God such as the desire to be rich and love of money (1Ti 6:7-10). In other passages we receive encouragement to flee youthful desires, desires of our sensual nature, and the Devil himself. Actually if we “resist the Devil, he will flee from us.”
2. Follow. Getting away from sin is not enough, we need to pursue, chase after, make certain things our prey. Those things Paul lists as righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, and gentleness. You are intelligent enough to know what Paul means.
3. Fight. Fight the good fight of faith. Yes we are to live at peace, but we cannot be passive. We must fight against the desires of our own flesh. We must fight against the principalities and powers of this present darkness. We will on occasion have to defend the Faith delivered once for all. That is why Paul would tell the Ephesians to put on the whole armor of God (Eph 6:10-18).
4. Faithful. The fight is about faith and in 1Ti 6:14 Paul tells Timothy, ” . . . keep the commandments . . .” Be faithful!