Thursday, July 7, 2011
“And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 1:14 KJV).
Are you bothered by past failures and sins? Plagued by shame and guilt? Sin destroys. It rips apart friendships and marriages and it causes heartache and bloodshed. Furthermore, it robs us of peace and joy. Oftentimes, those we love most are the people we hurt the most. Those who love us the most usually hurt us the most. How do we deal with these sins? Send them to the cross of Christ!
Our Apostle Paul was once a wicked, hell-bound sinner. Saul of Tarsus tortured, imprisoned, and even killed Christ’s followers (Acts 22:19,20; Acts 26:9-11; Galatians 1:13). Until his dying day, Paul never forgot his past. He had caused believers to suffer tremendously. How did he survive that guilt and shame during his 30-plus years of ministry? He sent it all to the cross of Christ!
In 1 Timothy 1:13, Paul discusses his persecuting those saints. Today’s Scripture says, “the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.” No matter what Paul had done in the past, the Lord forgave him according to His exceeding abundant grace, faith, and love.
Verse 15 says: “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.” Christ came to save sinners. Paul recognized that he was a wretched sinner, but a sinner was the only person the Lord Jesus Christ could save!
Today, by faith, we follow Paul, the first sinner to become a member of the Body of Christ. We too have been saved and forgiven according to God’s exceeding abundant grace, faith, and love. If someone wrongs us, or we wrong someone, send it to the cross of Christ, where God dealt with all sin, for all men, for all time. Christ died to “put away [our] sin by the sacrifice of himself” (Hebrews 9:26).
Beloved, send it to the cross of Christ where it belongs!