hope for sinners
"You can depend on this as worthy of full acceptance: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." —1 Timothy 1:15
Paul was the worst sinner in the world (1 Tm 1:15), "an extreme case" (1 Tm 1:16). He was "a blasphemer, a persecutor, a man filled with arrogance" (1 Tm 1:13). Paul is "an example to those who would later have faith" in Jesus (1 Tm 1:16). Because the Lord changed Paul, He can change anybody — even your spouse, child, boss, enemy — even you! No matter how many abortions have been committed, how many children abused, how many millions left to starve, the Lord can change anything by changing anybody.
Almost everyone believes in the power of the world, the flesh, and the devil to pervert the human person. Nevertheless, as great as this power is, it is finite. God's power to convert the human person is infinite. He will not take away our free will, but the power of Jesus' death and resurrection is so awesome as to keep us from putting too much emphasis on our rebellious will (see 1 Jn 4:4).
Paul's conversion is a sign of hope. We never have to give up on ourselves or on the most hardened sinners. Jesus' grace is sufficient (2 Cor 12:9). There is no chaining His word (2 Tm 2:9). There is nothing impossible for Him (Lk 1:37). Jesus' love never fails (1 Cor 13:8).
Be hopeful. Jesus saves.
Prayer: Father, may I expect Your mercy to triumph over justice (Jas 2:13).
Promise: "Each man speaks from his heart's abundance." —Lk 6:45
Praise: "I am the servant of the Lord. Let it be done to me as you say" (Lk 1:38).
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape on Immaculate Heart of Mary on audio AV 19-1 or video V-19.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 18, 2015
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.