For this reason, I remind you to kindle anew the gift of God, which is in you by the laying on of my hands. 7For God has not given us a spirit of cowardice, but of power, and of love, and of self-control. Therefore you should not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me, His prisoner; but suffer together for the gospel, according to the power of God, (1 Tim 1:6-9, Ber Lit)
“The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.” MLK
“The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.” MLK
We might have read the Timothy text and thought about a fear of heights, or spiders, or even dying. However, the text here is neither of those things. Paul is reminding Timothy, be strong, don’t ever be a coward, bowing down to the powers of this world.
Dr. King’s issue was not with those who were evil; their intent was there for all to see. His problem was the Christian that remained silent, and worse still took on a spirit of cowardice in the warfare of the kingdom of God, against injustice and oppression.
It’s here where the words of Jesus shout loudest. “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to ‘set[j] a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” (Matt 10:36-39)