“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
“Keep Yourself Free from Sin”
(Please read 1 Timothy 5:22)
Here was a pointed instruction indicating not only the requirement for being pure but also Timothy’s personal responsibility for his own purity. The first point becomes more emphatic when we consider Timothy’s credentials. He was an outstanding young man, one who had been thoroughly grounded in the truth during his formative years, who had a good reputation among the churches, and whom Paul regarded as his “beloved and faithful child in the Lord.” Even so, he still had to exert his own efforts to remain true to his calling.
Of course Timothy received help from the Lord, and Paul’s letters themselves show something of the loving encouragement Timothy received from brothers and sisters in Christ; but only Timothy could keep Timothy free from sin.
Like Timothy, we have available to us both divine and human assistance, but there is simply no basis for anyone to think that simply being a nominal, “fringe” member of a good congregation guarantees him or her good standing in the eyes of the Lord. So we need to give a lot of thought, on a continuing basis, to the idea of keeping ourselves free from sin. This responsibility, after all, is not much unlike the duty to “keep oneself unstained by the world,” which in James’s capable definition is a large part of “pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father” (James 1:27, NASB).
Don’t you want to pray now for the Father’s help in keeping free from sin today?