“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity” – 1Timothy 4:12 (NIV).
Setting a good example is a theme that runs throughout the Bible. When Moses was handing over the baton to his chosen successor, he shared, “Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law. They are not just idle words for you—they are your life. By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess” (Deuteronomy 32:46-7). Moses expected the Israelites who had seen him lead them through the wilderness draw from his life’s lessons to live successfully.
Following the last supper and after washing the disciples feet, Jesus said, “I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you” (John 13:15). What is important here is to note that the actions of Jesus had always a message in them for the disciples to reflect on and possibly adopt.
This particular theme was equally expressed by the Apostle Paul who wrote to the Philippians, “Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do” (Philippians 3:17). A key point here is that Paul looked at his life as setting a good model for his followers.
When a life has no meaning or purpose it’s lived carelessly, without minding of its actions and their impact on others. Many worldly people live just like that. They will say most anything and behave as carelessly, unmindful that others are watching and may adopt any destructive habits of theirs.
For the Christian it is different. As our lives are drawn from the example set by Jesus, we too have an obligation to live while setting a good example to draw others to Christ!
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, as you set a good example for us may my life be lived while ever setting a good example for others to follow you, this I pray in Jesus’s name.