If we had to pick one person to model our Christian life after, who would it be? The obvious, and popular, answer would be Jesus Christ. After all, “He knew no sin” (2 Cor. 5:21). But it’s for that exact reason that it wouldn’t make sense to use Jesus as our pattern. Jesus said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). 1 Timothy 3:16 describes Jesus in the following, “God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” Jesus was God and “[God’s] way is perfect” (2 Sam. 22:31). Jesus was perfect, however, we all descended from Adam (man) and therefore have all sinned.
12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
Instead we have a more fitting pattern to follow. One who was well known for his sinful ways. The Apostle Paul.
1 Timothy 1:12-16
12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.
14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.
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.
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.
That’s not to exalt the Apostle Paul above Jesus in any way. Paul was a man, just like us. However, as you can see above he was the man who Jesus appointed as our pattern. Paul was “zealous toward God” prior to his conversion (Acts 22:3) and his faith never wavered thereafter. Let’s be like Paul and put on the “breastplate of faith”.
1 Thessalonians 5:8-10
8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.
To learn more about the pattern for your Christian walk join us for our weekly Bible Study.
Wednesdays - 5:30pm in the Rhinelander Goodwill Community Room