But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness. 1 Timothy 6:11 (NIV)
Timothy was a young man, probably in his thirties, and he was given the task of leading the church in Ephesus.
He has a massive responsibility! He has to stop those who are teaching false doctrine, sustain a ministry of the Word and prayer, lead other leaders, grow in his own faith, oversee the care of widows, and help God’s people grow in godliness with contentment.
We know that by temperament Timothy was timid and shy (2 Tim. 1:7). He was not forceful or confident by nature. Timothy may also have suffered from a gastric problem. Paul says, “Use a little wine because of your stomach” (1 Tim. 5:23).
Timothy must often have felt that he was in over his head or at the end of his rope. Maybe you know what that feels like. How do you sustain what God has called you to do year after year? How do you keep going when you feel overwhelmed, with discouragements on every side?
We might expect Paul to say something like: “Timothy, flee from all this and pursue righteousness.” But he says, “You, man of God, flee from all this and pursue righteousness” (6:11). That would have gotten Timothy’s attention!
The phrase “man of God” was used to describe some of the great heroes of the faith, including Moses (Dt. 33:1), Samuel (1 Sam. 9:6), David (Neh. 12:24), and Elijah (1 Kgs. 17:18). Do you think Timothy felt he belonged in that company?
Paul says, “Timothy, remember who you are. You are God’s man. I want you to think and speak and act and live as God’s man, because that is who you are!
What about you? Do you think you belong in this company?