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When a good man falls

I sat enraptured as the preacher completed his series on 2 Timothy. 'Guard the gospel' he'd called the series, and it was the first expository preaching I had ever heard. I was so thrilled at the power of the Word that I began to hope that, one day, I too might be able to give my life to preaching. I remember so well as the preacher reached 4.7 ('I have fought a good fight; I have finished my course; I have kept the faith' - we all used the AV in those days), he stepped back from the makeshift pulpit, looked around the room and said: 'When you're old, infirm and living in a rest-home and the students from the local Christian Union come to visit you, make sure you will be able to take their firm young hand in your frail old hand and fix their bright young eyes with your rheumy old eyes and say: "I have fought the fight; I have finished the race; there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness".'

Gary Benfold

There were times - many times - in those early days of my Christian pilgrimage when those words held me and brought me back to the road. I owe so much to that weekend's preaching; even now I'm profoundly moved as I recall it. It was more than 25 years ago; the preacher was Roy Clements, and it recently became public knowledge that he has left his wife for another man. How should we react?