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 (2 Timothy 1:12).
Gospel preaching has never been easy nor popular. Reading the New Testament, you can’t ignore how much the Apostle Paul suffered by preaching the gospel (1 Corinthians 15:32; 2 Corinthians 11:22-29). As he wrote his final letter to young Pastor Timothy, he admitted the very real prospect of death as a criminal. Yet he wasn’t ashamed of what he’d been preaching. No matter who abandoned him, Jesus would always stand with him.
Paul’s confidence didn’t come from his skill-set or pathway to success, a creed or mission statement, an “ism”or a denomination. His confidence came from a close, unbroken relationship with Jesus, to whom he’d given his life to talk about without concern for his own welfare. His confidence was firmly in Jesus: I know whom I have believed. Christianity isn’t about a set of beliefs, though such are necessary. Christianity is about the God-Man Jesus.
We are saved not by believing certain things, but trusting in a Person. Paul took everything he was and had and placed it in the hands of Jesus for safekeeping. Jesus would guard everything of value in Paul (specifically his eternal soul) until the day when Jesus rewards His faithful servants (2 Timothy 1:18; 4:8).