9.3 Timothy -- a Gospel for the Unworthy

The heart of his message to Timothy is:

           Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners -- of whom I am the worst.  But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life (1 Tim 1:15-16).

            ...God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.  For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men (1 Tim 2:3-4).

These verses are the engine at the heart of Paul's Gospel -- they define its content and its urgency, which is reflected in the ministry of Paul:

           For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure.  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (2 Tim 4:6-7).

          

If there is any racial teaching in this book, it is that God has mercy on the most unworthy people, and that He desires all men and women to be saved.   For this reason Paul, like Jesus himself, made his life an offering, for the sake of reaching as many people as possible with the message of God's mercy.