“The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.”  1 Timothy 1:15 (ESV)

When springtime thunderstorms roll through the area, I have occasionally been woken up at night, not by the storms, but by one of my kids crawling into my bed. As most children do, they look to mom and dad for security, protection, and comfort in time of need. They need someone they can trust, especially in their most critical moments and for the most important things.

Throughout his three years of earthly ministry, Jesus used children as positive examples of faith and trust (Matt. 18:1-6, Mk. 10:15). When I read the first part of Paul’s letter to Timothy, I can’t help but think of the child-like level of trust and security that we also can put into Paul’s statement--that Jesus really did come to save sinners! John Calvin wrote of this verse, “For when he, who had been a fierce and savage beast, was changed into a pastor, Christ gave a remarkable display of his grace, from which all might be led to entertain a firm belief that no sinner, how heinous and aggravated so ever might have been his transgressions, had the gate of salvation shut against him.” However “heinous and aggravated” our sins may be, our hope is forever in the work that Jesus did on the cross to save sinners (Luke 19:10). Paul reminds Timothy and us with this incredible thought that our sins, no matter the degree or amount, were fully paid for on the cross of Jesus because he loved us first (1 John 4:19).

With a child-like faith, we can fully trust and accept the saving work of Christ in our lives to be complete. We can set our hope fully on Jesus (Rom. 5:2, 1 Pet. 1:13), even when we go through hard times or experience doubt. Satan would like nothing more than to shake our full confidence in this truth. The old hymn writer poetically gives us a wonderful reminder of God’s promise and work in our lives as believers in Christ:

When Satan tempts me to despair,
And tells me of the guilt within,
Upward I look, and see Him there
Who made an end of all my sin.
Because the sinless Savior died,
My sinful soul is counted free;
For God, the Just, is satisfied
To look on Him and pardon me.

As children jump from the edge of the pool this summer into your waiting arms or crawl into your bed at night looking for security from a storm, we can celebrate, as Paul did, the grace and mercy of Jesus with the same level of confidence and trust. Jesus died to save sinners and our “sinful soul is counted free; For God, the Just, is satisfied to look on Him and pardon me.”                      

by Eric Adams, Deacon

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