Alexander the coppersmith did me great harm; the Lord will repay him according to his deeds. Beware of him yourself, for he strongly opposed our message. At my first defense no one came to stand by me, but all deserted me. May it not be charged against them! But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. So I was rescued from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen. 2 Timothy 4:14-18
We don’t know much about Alexander aside from his occupation and relationship to Paul. What is most important to catch here is how Paul handles a difficult situation. As any man lives out his mission in Christ, we are promised to meet opposition. There are a few important details to catch as you live with conviction.
First, Paul doesn’t name the deeds done. He’s wise to alert other believers that this man is in opposition, but he doesn’t defame him. Paul makes it clear that Alexander opposes the message Christ gave for Paul to preach. Second, Paul notes God’s role in this particular situation. God both came beside and strengthened him. The Lord became his rescuer. Third, the entire focus is on God. This is about His message and His defense. God uses men to communicate truth, and through Paul, he proclaimed the good news to the Gentiles. As you live out your mission in the context God placed you in, be wise, expect a challenge, and focus on God. Know that God defends.