But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear to myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry…
Life is a matter of very small account to anyone in comparison with duty doing; whether a man realises this truth or not. Whatever is worth living for is worth dying for, if dying be an incident to its pursuing. When the Roman general, Pompey, was warned against the danger of his returning from Egypt to Italy, to meet a new trouble in his own land, his heroic answer was: "It is a small matter that I should move forward and die. It is too great a matter that I should take one step backward and live." Life is never well used when it is held dearer than duty. He who would tell a lie in order to live is willing to pay a great deal larger price for his life than that life is worth to himself — or to others. Richard Baxter has Paul's idea when he sings, "Lord, it belongs not to my care," etc.
Parallel VersesKJV: But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
WEB: But these things don't count; nor do I hold my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to fully testify to the Good News of the grace of God.