Imagine for a moment you fell into a deep ditch and you can’t climb out. A rescuer hears your call for help, throws you a rope, and instructs you to hold it with all your might as he pulls you up. You feel the force of gravity pulling down on your body and your hands begin to hurt. Seeing your hands begin to slip your rescuer yells out, “Don’t let go!” You fight the temptation to let go and you hold the rope even tighter as you realize the only difference between living and dying is that rope.
This illustration truly conveys the essence of the message Paul is delivering to the Corinthian believers. He tells them to remember they were sinners “stuck” in the pit of sin but they received the Gospel, the news that Jesus came to rescue them from death. He sees the temptations, incorrect teachings, and the weight of the world attempting to pull them away from truth. He tells them the only way to be saved is to keep “holding fast” to the word he preached to them. In other words, the only way to get out of the pit is to keep holding the rope!
Paul communicates that faith which lasts for a short time and gives up is vain. It is faith that has no effect. Real, saving-faith, never lets go of the rope! Don’t let yourself drift from God! Hold fast to the truth of the Gospel!
It is the difference between life and death.
Steve Hannett is the founding Pastor of Abundant Grace Christian Church and Jesus Reigns International located in NJ. He carries a powerful apostolic, teaching, and healing anointing with signs, wonders, and miracles. He serves as local faculty with the Antioch School of Leadership, and is an apostolic leader with Christ Covenant Coalition.