I was reading through 1 Timothy chapter one this morning and I came to verses 15-16. In this passage the Apostle Paul describes himself as the “worst of all sinners”. It says…
“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life.”
In this passage we see that God is a God of second chances. Before Paul came to Christ he was know as Saul of Tarsus. He was known for arresting Christians and destroying churches (Acts 9:1-2).
We see elsewhere in the Bible that he was very ambitious in Judaism and was second in rank amongst his peers. His driving passion was to stamp out the new group of people who were known as followers of “The Way” or followers of Jesus.
As he was one of his journeys he was met on the road to Damascus by Jesus Himself. A light blinded him and Jesus spoke to him saying “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” (Acts 9:4). As you can imagine this was a major turning point for Saul who became known as Paul!
Paul then got adopted into this new group of Jesus followers and before long he was preaching to the Jews and converting them to Jesus. He was able to show them that Jesus was the Messiah they had been waiting for (Acts 9:20, 22).
Over the next 20 years or so we see that Paul became one of the greatest missionaries of all time. He planted many churches and taught many people how to follow Jesus personally. He even came to be known as the Apostle to the Gentiles (1 Timothy 2:7). He also wrote much of the New Testament as we know it today.
The thing I love about the story of Paul is that it is so much the story of God and mankind. God in His infinite love for us is able to look past our sin, our hatred, our bigotry, our violence and He is able to reach out to us where we are at…just like He did to Saul/Paul.
God is a God of second chances. No matter who we are or what we have done, He stretches out His hand from eternity and invites us to Himself. He wants to restore us, love us, guide us, lead us and be our friends. He wants to adopt us as His children.
If you are reading this today and you are wanting to experience the God of second chances personally, I would encourage to visit my “finding salvation” page. God loves you and He wants to offer you a new start today. He wants to give you a second chance.
PS. A version of this message is available in MP3 here