Sunday, March 25, 2007

Paul writes:

1 Timothy 1:12-14 12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service; 13 even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. And yet I was shown mercy, because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; 14 and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus.

This text is amazing. Paul is expressing his joy and thankfulness that God has entrusted him with a ministry for His name's sake. In fact, even in v.12, Paul notes that "I give thanks," but literally in the Greek it reads, "I have thanksgiving/grace." Though Paul was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor (a dioktein; that is, one who is pursuing something with the degree of fervency as an athlete would so as to receive the prize), and a violent aggressor (hubristein).

In v.14, the first word in the Greek is uperepleonasen which literally means: "overfulfilled," "overflowing," "to abound exceedingly." This is what Paul is saying. Paul is known for taking a word and placing prepositions in front for added emphasis (as is the case here). Thus, Paul is so ecstatic and joyful that the Lord Jesus Christ has entrusted a ministry to him that he literally says that the grace of God is "superabundant."

Have you thought in recent times that God's grace toward you is superabundant? We all - even in the womb - were to be destined for the wrath of God in the eternal flames of hell. Why? Because of our sin. Yet because the grace of God was superabundant towards us (out of his sheer grace), we have been born again to a new hope. God's grace is this great. God's grace is this abundant. It covers every sin. It leaves NO sin excluded. For those who trust in Christ, the grace of God truly is superabundant.

May we be those who bathe in the superabundance of God's grace towards us. For we are unworthy! But his grace far surpasses our unworthiness!
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