Paul made the above statement, in chapter 4 of his second letter to his spiritual son Timothy. Other references to Alexander the coppersmith can be found in 1 Timothy 1:20 and Acts 19:25-27).
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Numerous times that I have read this chapter, I have wondered what Alexander the Coppersmith did.
Could it have been because Alexander greatly withstood Paul’s words, opposing his message about Christ and the church? Or was it because Alexander organized against Paul because he, and the metal workers, were losing business as a result of Paul’s evangelism? The organization caused a riot, tears and trial for Paul. Or could it be that Alexander slandered Paul and instigated the people against him?
Whatever Alexander the coppersmith did, it is noteworthy that Paul did not seek a personal revenge; nor did he request his spiritual son to handle the issue on his behalf. But instead, he wisely turned the matter over to God for justice. (see Proverbs 20:22, Hebrews 10:30).
The point of this post is to implore us to surrender all wrongdoings, done to us, to God; whether the wrong is personal, against our family/families, our race, our finances, relationships, marriage, work/career, or business/es. I know that it is not easy and probably doesn’t come natural as we’ve been used to “taking charge.” But I have come to the realization, stemmed from acknowledging, the incessant messes I have made taking the matters up personally. That I now, prefer for God to handle my affairs. I finally realized the much-better job that He does when I leave it to Him.
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Human beings, by nature, prefer to take matters into their own hands either because we’re impatient or we desire instant justice, the need to be right, or all of the above.
You’ve probably heard statements such as “God is not going to come down to do it …” or “I must be a fool.” There are several utterances that stir up our ego to action that essentially ought to be ignored and for us to simply say, “thanks, but no.”
True that God won’t come down to do everything you need to handle yourself. But do you know, without any shadow of doubt, which ones you are to handle and the ones to give to Him to handle?
We know that God uses people to carry out His purposes and works on earth. Allow Him to choose who, but know when to do and when to surrender it to Him. He will often speak to you through His Word or peace. Please hands off if you have an unsettling! Constantly ignoring either the peace or unsettling could impact one’s ability to sense either or both. So please don’t ignore or shrug these off.
Also, a fool in the eyes of men/women, is a wise one in the eyes of God.
Anyways, Paul continues:
“At my first defense no one appeared on my behalf, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them! But the Lord stood by me and gave me strength, so that through me the proclamation might be completed and all the Gentiles might hear it. …” (2 Timothy 4:14-17)
This verse tells me that he was one-against-many; found himself solo on the other side of the room. Trade a minute and step into Paul’s shoes. What would you have done? Whatever you do, stand firm and remember that one with God is a majority.
“Hatred stirs up strife but love covers all sins” (Proverbs 10:12).
“Love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Peter 4:8)
““… See that none render unto any one evil for evil; but always follow after that which is good, one toward another, and toward all.”
1 Thessalonians 5:14-15
“Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord‘ ” (Romans 12:19).
My people, if we live our lives based on these scriptural foundations, we will all be easily forgiving of one another.
“Leaving retribution to God does not mean remaining silent about the harm that has occurred. Instead, Paul (and we too should) set an example to follow in naming the misdeeds, warning others, and then leaving retribution to the Lord.”
Whoever Alexander the Coppersmith represents in your life (our lives), today, I beseech you and us all to take a cue from Paul and leave it to God. His Grace is sufficient to help us.
May His Peace continue to guide us.