“Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. That good thing which was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.” 2 Timothy 1: 13-14.
As Paul writes to the young preacher Timothy his words are a stark reminder of our greatest responsibility. As Ministers of the Gospel we are commanded to “hold fast” or “hold tightly” to sound doctrine. The word that Paul uses in this passage “sound” comes from the Greek word hygiaino from which we get our word hygiene. As its name implies the word means “purity”, “clean”, or “Uncorrupted”. The Word of God contains a pure, uncorrupted and timeless message of the mission of God to redeem mankind from its defilement. The Gospel is still good news and the message still resonates in the heart of the lost person. In these days of moral decay and societal licentiousness it is critical that our message be powerful, consistent and biblically focused. The temptation is for the church to water down the message in order to reach more people. Some are preaching a gospel that offers salvation without any commitment, repentance or disruption to the hearers. I want to encourage my fellow believers to hold fast to sound doctrine in these turbulent times. Paul rightly states that the gospel has been committed to us and the indwelling Holy Spirit is a reminder of our irrevocable duty. It is our duty to speak loudly about issues that are adverse to clear Scriptural teaching. Not to be rudely confrontational, angry or preachy, but certainly holding forth the doctrines and moral absolutes that have been passed down to us. We preach a message that has not changed since Genesis. Noah preached it, Moses preached it, David wrote about it, the prophets prophesied of it, the disciples died for it, Paul took it to the ends of the earth and now it has been committed to us. Regardless of how debased society becomes let us hold unswervingly to the original message of the cross. No other message has had the impact on this world like the Gospel message. God relentlessly pursued us through the life, death and resurrection of his Son Jesus Christ and has brought us back to himself. Hold fast to this truth, keep it pure. It has been committed to us from generations and it is our highest privilege to tell it to the next generation.