I Obtained Mercy

Paul writes about the mercy he obtained through Christ in 1 Timothy chapter 1. His personal testimony should remind us of the mercy we have also received.

You can play, download, or read the transcript of this Take Note Podcast below.

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I Obtained Mercy

1 Timothy 1:12-17

  • The Apostle Paul is writing to Timothy in the book we’ll discuss today
  • And Paul, in the short section we address, is praising God for His mercy
  • He is reminding Timothy of the mercy he has received
  • He is reminding anyone who reads it after Timothy of the mercy they have received
  • Today, it serves as our reminder
  • We’re in 1 Timothy 1:12-17
  • “I Obtained Mercy” is the theme
  • The most unusual people are selected by God and used in His ministry
  • This has been the case from the very beginning
  • His mercy and grace are at play in the lives of all His servants
  • And it is only by them that we are made usable
  • Paul the Apostle was greatly used by God
  • But look at his background
  • He was hardly the ideal candidate by man’s standards
  • Perhaps he was the last one we would have imagined to be the servant he was
  • What happened?
  • Our text begins to explain…

1 Timothy 1:12

12  And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; 

  • No one has a place in ministry that is not given by God
  • We serve at His direction and at His choosing
  • He knows our faithfulness or lack thereof and provides enablement
  • All our resources for success come from Him
  • For this, He deserves to be thanked
  • Paul was thankful for his place of service
  • Partially, because it was so unlikely
  • Do you remember his testimony?
  • He begins to explain…

1 Timothy 1:13

13  Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. 

  • When Paul was a religious, but lost man, he blasphemed against God, persecuted God’s people, injuring them
  • He deserved punishment for this, but received none
  • This is mercy
  • He did these things because he didn’t believe in Jesus and because he was ignorant about who the Messiah was
  • But he did it
  • You don’t have to be committing these types of sins to be considered “in need of mercy”
  • All are sinners
  • The wages of sin is death
  • All must pay for their sin
  • When we don’t, it is because of God’s mercy
  • There was more at work here, just as there is more at work for any believer in Christ
  • Let’s read on…

1 Timothy 1:14

14  And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 

  • The word for exceeding abundant is overflowing
  • Grace is a gift from God, which we don’t deserve
  • And that gift overflowed in Paul’s life
  • And with the grace came the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus
  • We’re getting a picture of all God does when He saves us and sets us to work in the great commission
  • No matter what our background or depth of entrenchment in sin
  • He pulls us out
  • Setting us aside for His use
  • Because of mercy we avoid punishment
  • Because of grace we are given an immeasurable gift
  • All comes through God’s son Jesus
  • Who took the punishment we deserved for sin on the cross
  • And it seems Paul is constantly aware of this…

1 Timothy 1:15

15  This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. 

  • Here is a true statement that should be accepted without question, Paul declares
  • Jesus came into the world to save sinners
  • Paul regards himself as the worst of them
  • Chief of sinners
  • But we are really no different
  • We are all sinners by birth and sinners by choice
  • Violating His law, missing the mark, acting as our own gods, far from Him
  • For each of us, the story is different, but there is no human story without sin
  • And this sin is more than enough to separate us from God for good
  • For He is altogether holy
  • Nothing defiled or unclean enters His presence
  • This is the wonder of Jesus
  • Leaving heaven to dwell among us
  • A sinless man among none but sinners
  • Submitting Himself to an unjust execution
  • Willingly dying in our place and for our sins
  • Paul had first-hand experience…

1 Timothy 1:16

16  Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting. 

  • Paul is indeed an example to us
  • A trophy of God’s grace
  • A testimony to the mercy and longsuffering of our God
  • One who shows us no one is too far gone
  • His grace extends even unto us
  • For it extended to Paul, right?
  • God deserves praise for all this…

1 Timothy 1:17

17  Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

  • We know that this merciful God is the eternal King
  • He rules forever
  • He is not seen by mortal eyes
  • The only-wise God
  • Worthy of honor and worthy of glory
  • Paul’s personal testimony should remind us of this
  • Our personal testimony should constantly remind us
  • We are the recipients of wonderful gifts
  • Gifts that can only come from Christ

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