“Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.”
It is not enough to “watch,” but the church should also “stand fast in the faith.” This is the second of five commands in this section. A hot-and-cold spiritual life is a spiritual instability. Paul previously challenged the Corinthians to “stand in the gospel” (15:1,2). Christians are not to stand on anything less than the gospel.
in the faith,
The word “faith” has a definite article prefacing it, giving it the meaning of the content of faith. The issue is about what we believe. “The faith” is the contents of the Word of God. This faith is the faith of doctrinal content, the faith of truth, not trust. Some Christians of the first century were “carried about by every wind of doctrine” (Ep 4:14). There are many strains of doctrinal distortion today among evangelicals. Whenever we inject human viewpoint into the Word of God, we weaken the faith.
Co 2:6-7, 6 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, 7 rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.
Jude 3, Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.
Believers need to take a stand spiritually.
We must know who we believe, what we believe, and even why we believe. The Christians life is not based on fairy tales, fiction, or feelings but upon a well-grounded faith. “By faith you stand” (2 Co 1:24). We believe what we believe because God said it in His Word. Many Christians today have very little spiritual stability. The latest Christian fad tosses them to and fro by every wind of doctrine, by every fancy of man, by every theological drift. It is the mentality of “if it sounds good, go for it.” It is utter superficiality.
1 Ti 1:12, For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
Once Christ captivates a Christian, He captures his heart and mind, and God’s Word molds his life. This is narrow-mindedness, but it is biblically-based Christianity. There is nothing as broad as God, but there is nothing as exclusive as God. There is only “one God,” not many gods. That is why the Bible places such emphasis on the oneness of God. Mutually exclusive truth brings stability to the Christian life.
Eph 6:11-14, 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,
Php 1:27, Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel,
Php 4:1, Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved.
Co 4:12, Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
1 Pe 5:12, By Silvanus, our faithful brother as I consider him, I have written to you briefly, exhorting and testifying that this is the true grace of God in which you stand.
If Christians do not develop an appetite for the Bible, they cannot develop into spiritually mature believers. Christians cannot live on spoonfuls of the Word; they need daily doses of spiritual vitamins and minerals. The soul needs food just as the body needs food.