1 Timothy 1:12a "I thank Christ Jesus our Lord...."
Point of Application: Thanking Jesus will result in a lifestyle of worship.
I get this thought from what Paul says in the closing part of this particular portion of 1 Timothy 1:12-17. Notice what he writes in verse 17 - "Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God,be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." Today's post considers why we must t.h.a.n.k Jesus Christ. We will consider three reasons to thank Jesus today and then two more tomorrow.
The strength that Jesus gives is not only for times of ministry, but throughout those seasons of the Christian life when we are at our weakest. After all, it is in those weakest of times that we learn His grace is sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:9) Only when we have abandoned the mirage of self-sufficiency will we be able to say with the Apostle: "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.' (Philippians 4:13) So let's thank Christ Jesus for times of strengthening and then secondly...
We read in the second part of 1 Timothy 1:12..."because He considered me faithful, putting me into service." It is in 1 Timothy 1:13-14 that Paul expands upon the significant circumstances surrounding His calling to ministry. Before the heavenly call of ministry, Paul's call to salvation came first. The point of these verses is to underscore the fact that out of all the people in the world who were least likely to be the greatest spokeman for Jesus Christ, it was Saul of Tarsus. As Paul relays in 1 Timothy 1:13a "even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor." I love the phrase "even though". Why? Because whatever will come after that "even though" phrase will totally overule whatever Paul had once done prior to his conversion.
We read in the latter part of 1 Timothy 1:13 and the beginning part of 1:14 "Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; 14 and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant...". Mercy is God not giving to us what we deserve. What is it that everybody deserves? As a Christian there are three things I deserve: death, hell and the grave. God chose me in His mercy. Because of God, the wrath that I deserved was spared. The Gospel is awesome because of God's choice to show mercy. Wrath being withheld from all who believe is awesome news. But now the Gospel is awesome for another reason - grace. Grace is God giving to us what we don't deserve. Grace cannot be earned, only received. Saul of Tarsus was not looking for Jesus, if anything, he was doing all he could to destroy Christianity. Nonethless on the way to hell, so-to-speak, the King from Heaven met Saul in physical, post-resurrected form and engaged him in grace. Thus we can thank Jesus for awesome salvation, heavenly calling and times of strengthening.