Running the Race of Life -- To Win!
God has designed a strength-training program for each of us and uses it to build our spiritual endurance so that we can share in His holiness. He wants us to get in shape to win the race of our life and receive the eternal rewards only He can give.
The Second Step – Becoming a Runner
The Bible calls the Christian experience a race that requires endurance. To have endurance, a Christian must be "in shape" spiritually. God has a training program that gives Christians the way to exercise their spiritual capabilities and learn to be partakers of His holiness.
In 2 Timothy 2, Paul brought up four perspectives to illustrate valuable concepts of the victorious Christian life.
Here is an excerpt of the second of these perspectives: The Runner
Paul referred to this perspective in 2 Timothy 2:5 ‘Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules.’
Paul was apparently quite the avid sportsman. I can imagine if he were around today, he’d be in his jail cell watching SportsCenter on a big screen HDTV. He talked about athletic competition, running in particular, in most of his New Testament letters. He often used the runners of the ancient Greek Olympics to illustrate the Christian experience as one of purpose, discipline, and endurance.