This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.
[1 Timothy 1:15]
The story of the slave-ship captain John Newton is well known, and the words of his famous hymn come as no surprise: “Amazing grace! How sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; was blind, but now I see.” John Newton’s salvation surprised many people but none as much as John Newton himself. He might have claimed the title “chief of sinners” for himself if the apostle Paul had not claimed it first.
Recommended Reading: Acts 22:1-5
No greater testament to the grace of God exists than when a life like John Newton’s or the apostle Paul’s is interrupted and dramatically changed. As famous as Paul became for building up Christians, he was equally famous for tearing them down before meeting Christ. He became known to theologians as the “apostle of grace” because he never seemed to get over the fact that he, the “chief of sinners,” had been saved by the Lord he had once persecuted.
But it is not just the worst sinners who are trophies of grace. Because all have sinned (Romans 3:23), every soul saved is saved by amazing grace.
Grace, grace, God’s grace, grace that will pardon and cleanse within;
Grace, grace, God’s grace, grace that is greater than all our sin.
[Julia H. Johnston]
~ Dr. David Jeremiah ~