Tag: saving sinners

To the King Eternal!

Scripture reading for September 24th:  1st Timothy 1

The letters of Paul to Timothy serve the church by giving pastoral insight into the ministry of a pastor and the qualifications of those in leadership.  When this letter was written, Paul was nearing the end of his own ministry and facing his final imprisonment in Rome.  Paul reminded Timothy of his own testimony to encourage him.

“As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies.  These promote controversies rather than God’s work–which is by faith.  The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.”  (1st Timothy 1:3-5)  Paul told Timothy that part of the work of a pastor was dealing with false teachers.   False doctrine (teachings about the faith) leads to controversies.  These tend to become about works, instead of faith.  Paul’s goal was Christ’s love that was the result of a pure heart founded on sound doctrine and sincere faith.

“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that He considered me faithful, appointing me to His service.  Even though I once was a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief.”  (1st Timothy 1:12-13)  Paul was also once a false teacher, bound by ignorance of the Truth of Jesus Christ.  God showed him mercy.  Paul wanted Timothy and us to know that, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–“.

“Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.”  (1st Timothy 1:17)  Paul worshiped Christ, the “King Eternal”, for His great mercy and love!

 

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Christ Came to Save Sinners!

Scripture reading for December 7th: 1st Timothy 1-3

Young ministers usually have lots of zeal for Christ and the work of the ministry.  Many go to several years of Bible training and graduate to go into the ministry.  Others may grow in maturity by serving in the church or in a ministry family.  Often, they have lots of head knowledge, but the real training is yet to come.  Older and wiser men and women in the faith wisely instruct and model ministry for them.  They help them to stay on track and keep them from being swallowed up by the culture or satanic oppression that attacks frequently.  The pastoral epistles of Timothy and Titus are aimed at young ministers and we all get to listen in!

Timothy was Paul’s true son in the faith!  (1st Timothy 1:2)  Timothy is named as co-author of six of Paul’s letters, as well as being the subject of two of them.  Timothy was a young man whose mother was a Jewess and father was  a Greek.  He was a traveling companion of Paul’s and had a pastor’s heart.  Paul wrote this letter to his son in the faith from prison in Rome to instruct him in proper pastoral leadership which requires courage and faith.

Paul began by warning Timothy to deal with certain men who were teaching false doctrine.  They were teaching myths and genealogies and were stirring up controversies.  (1st Timothy 1:3-7)  Some had wandered away from the faith and were involved in meaningless talk.  They must be dealt with by church leadership.  Some were reintroducing the law and mixing it with grace.  Paul emphasized the purpose of the law to Timothy.  The law was to be used to bring conviction on lawbreakers and drive them to Christ for grace.  The glorious gospel promoted freedom from the law through faith in Christ.

Paul shared with Timothy God’s incredible mercy toward his own life.  Paul had been a blasphemer and persecutor of Christians, even putting some to death!  God knew that Paul was acting in ignorance and revealed Christ and His mercy to him.  He then appointed Paul to the privilege of preaching the gospel.  “Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance:  Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–of whom I am the worst!” (1st Timothy 1:15)  What  incredible truth for each minister to acknowledge–saved by His grace, our serving is a privilege!

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