READ: 1 Timothy 1
THINK: Observations from Oswald Chambers:
The Real Thanks of the Worker
1 Timothy 1:12 “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord . . .”
Everything that God has created is like an orchestra praising Him. “All Thy works shall praise Thee.” In the ear of God everything He created makes exquisite music, and man joined in the paean of praise until he fell, then there came in the frantic discord of sin. The realisation of Redemption brings man by way of the minor note of repentance back into tune with praise again. The angels are only too glad to hear that note, because it blends man into harmony again (see Luke 15:10). Praising God is the ultimate end and aim of all we go through. “Whoso offereth praise glorifieth Me.” What does it matter whether you are well or ill! Whether you have money or none! It is all a matter of indifference, but one thing is not a matter of indifference, and that is that we are pleasing to the ears of God.
Paul had got back again by way of repentance into tune with God (cf. 1 Timothy 1:13), and now he has his base as a worker in thanksgiving to Christ Jesus; his whole life has been brought into perfect relation to God.
The Realised Test of the Worker
1 Timothy 1:12 “who hath enabled me . . .”
The test of the worker is that he knows he has been enabled by the Lord Jesus, therefore he works and learns to do it better all the time. The realisation that my Lord has enabled me to be a worker keeps me strong enough never to be weak. Conscious obtrusive weakness is natural unthankful strength; it means I refuse to be made strong by Him. When I say I am too weak it means I am too strong; and when ever I say “I can’t” it means “I won’t.” When Jesus Christ enables me, I am omnipotently strong all the time. Paul talks in paradoxes, “for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
The Recognised Truth by the Worker
1 Timothy 1:12 “for that He counted me faithful . . .”
To recognise that my Lord counts us faithful removes the last snare of idealising natural pluck. If we have the idea that we must face the difficulties with pluck, we have never recognised the truth that He has counted us faithful; it is His work in me He is counting worthy, not my work for Him. The truth is we have nothing to fear and nothing to overcome because He is all in all and we are more than conquerors through Him. The recognition of this truth is not flattering to the worker’s sense of heroics, but it is amazingly glorifying to the work of Christ. He counts us worthy because He has done everything for us. It is a shameful thing for Christians to talk about “getting the victory”; by this time the Victor ought to have got us so completely that it is His victory all the time, not ours. The overcoming referred to in the Book of the Revelation is not the personal overcoming of difficulties but the overcoming of the very life of God in us while we stand resolutely true to Him.
The Responsible Trust of the Worker
1 Timothy 1:12 . . . “putting me into the ministry.”
The ministry is, the “glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.” If I am going to be loyal to that trust, it will mean I must never allow any impertinent sensitiveness to hinder my keeping the trust. My trust is the glorious gospel for myself and through me to others, and it is realised in two ways: in the perfect certainty that God has redeemed the world, and in the imperative necessity of working on that basis with everyone with whom I come in contact.
PRAY: Thank God today for redeeming you and for giving you purpose and ability to participate in the grand life-giving endeavor that is the church of Jesus Christ and it’s mission in this world.