Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12 (NIV)
Paul is pointing to a specific time, remembered by many people, when Timothy confessed faith in Jesus Christ. Most likely this would have been his baptism.
Since the day of Pentecost, Christians have confessed faith in Jesus through baptism, which is a sign and seal of our union with Christ.
The Bible says: “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Rom. 10:9). From the earliest times, people made this confession at baptism: “Jesus is Lord.”
A confession of faith is more than an opinion. It’s more like vows in a marriage, or like receiving citizenship of a country. That is the significance of baptism. In the presence of witnesses you confess that “Jesus is Lord” and you receive the sign of one who has been crucified with Christ and raised to new life in him.
This is not a private matter. Baptism is a public confession before witnesses. The role of the witnesses is to remind you of your confession. Just as it is the role of bridesmaids or groomsmen who stand up at a wedding to remind the bride and groom of their vows when marriage goes through its inevitable challenges, so it is our task in the church to remind one another of our confession that Jesus Christ is Lord.
Have you made this confession? If you have, remember who you are—God’s man, God’s woman. If not, talk to a pastor about being baptized. Move your faith from holding a private opinion to making a public confession.