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Monday, August 11, 2003

Edifier du Jour-1 Timothy 1:12-17
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. 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. 15 It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all. 16 Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.
I don't think bad, bad Saul of Tarsus was the baddest man in the whole damn town of Jerusalem, but Paul claims he was the head sinner. His point is that if God could change his heart, he can change anyone's. So don't think your so sunk in sin that God can't reach down to where you are. I think Paul gives himself a bad rap here; Saul was serving God the best he saw fit prior to the Road to Damascus encounter with Jesus, the problem was that he was a devout Jew who thought Jesus was the most recent in a long line of false messiahs. Once Jesus hit him upside the head with his presence, Paul changed his attitude towards Jesus and was as zealous in spreading the new faith as he had been to stop it. The zealot for a false cause can sometimes be easier to move than the apathetic, for the zealot is at least on the move.

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