“Alexander the metalworker did me a great deal of harm. The Lord will repay him for what he has done. You too should be on your guard against him, because he strongly opposed our message.” (2 Timothy 4:14+15/NIV).
Love keeps no record of wrongs. That is what we are learning from Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 13.
I have tagged my posts on this part of verse 5 with the word ‘Forgive’. Now here is another aspect.
Paul did not seek to retaliate. He left things for God to judge.
We are not told details about what the coppersmith Alexander had done to Paul. Obviously, it was not too difficult in those days to do something that would be harmful to a prisoner who was about to face the Imperial Court of Emperor Nero.
Paul is concerned with the ongoing of the Christian message. That is why he is mentioning the incident to his co-worker Timothy. He is warning Timothy to be cautious. This man Alexander might be inclined to further activities against the spreading of the Christian gospel.
Christians are encouraged to forgive others. Yet this does not mean we have to be foolish.
Paul devoted his life to the cause of the good news of Jesus Christ. He wanted to help his friend Timothy in carrying on proclaiming this message even after Paul’s decease.
Give your whole life to God! Pursue spiritual goals! Seek to further the Christian cause!
Be wise in dealing with other people. Don’t get carried away by bitter feelings and resentment.
Be cautious when necessary. Avoid needless battles.