12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.
The faith we have been given by God, by which we are saved is not a passive faith. It’s the kind of faith that produces in us the active desire to please the one who has displayed the glory and beauty of his love, or as John put it “we love him, because he first loved us.” So then that give of faith stirs up within us a desire, a longing, a passion to fight temptation, to kill, or as the old theologians put it mortify, our sin, to put off the old and put on the new (Col. 3). The faith we have been gifted with is a fighting faith, it is an active faith, it is a working faith. So Paul here encourages Timothy to fight, to take hold of eternal life, to strive for that prize. We to are to set our sights on eternal life, that is on Christ through whom eternal life comes. We are to fight and war against our fleshly desires that turn us away to the distractions of life and the sin that so easily entangles us (Heb. 12). Our motivation is love, our passion is holiness, our desire is eternal life, our joy is in Christ. So fight the good fight of the faith so that you too can say with Paul – “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (II Tim. 4:7).