Conflict and Courage

Daily Devotional

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Colossians 4:7-14

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1 John 2:15.

Among Paul’s assistants at Rome were many of his former companions and fellow workers. Luke, “the beloved physician,” ... was with him still.... Demas and Mark were also with him....

Since the earlier years of his profession of faith, Mark’s Christian experience had deepened. As he had studied more closely the life and death of Christ he had obtained clearer views of the Saviour’s mission, its toils and conflicts. Reading in the scars in Christ’s hands and feet the marks of His service for humanity, and the length to which self-abnegation leads to save the lost and perishing, Mark had become willing to follow the Master in the path of self-sacrifice. Now, sharing the lot of Paul the prisoner, he understood better than ever before that it is infinite gain to win Christ, infinite loss to win the world and lose the soul for whose redemption the blood of Christ was shed. In the face of severe trial and adversity, Mark continued steadfast, a wise and beloved helper of the apostle.

Demas, steadfast for a time, afterward forsook the cause of Christ. In referring to this, Paul wrote, “Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world” (2 Timothy 4:10). For worldly gain, Demas bartered every high and noble consideration. How shortsighted the exchange! Possessing only worldly wealth or honor, Demas was poor indeed, however much he might proudly call his own; while Mark, choosing to suffer for Christ’s sake, possessed eternal riches, being accounted in heaven an heir of God and a joint heir with His Son.18

If we would permit our minds to dwell more upon Christ and the heavenly world, we should find a powerful stimulus and support in fighting the battles of the Lord. Pride and love of the world will lose their power as we contemplate the glories of that better land so soon to be our home. Beside the loveliness of Christ, all earthly attractions will seem of little worth.19

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