No one serving in the army gets entangled in everyday affairs; the soldier's aim is to please the enlisting officer.
And in the case of an athlete, no one is crowned without competing according to the rules.
It is the farmer who does the work who ought to have the first share of the crops.
Think over what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in all things.
Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David—that is my gospel,
for which I suffer hardship, even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But the word of God is not chained.
Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, so that they may also obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
The saying is sure: If we have died with him, we will also live with him;
if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he will also deny us;
if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.
Remind them of this, and warn them before God a that they are to avoid wrangling over words, which does no good but only ruins those who are listening.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)