I mentioned last Lord’s Day that I’m budgeting minutes to memorize the Pastoral Epistles. If I learn about five verses a week it will take 49 weeks, giving me a few to spare before the end of the year. We’ll see. But one of the benefits is the meditation on things you might tend to skip over, like the basic letter ingredients that start 1 Timothy 1:1-2.
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by command of God our Savior and of Christ Jesus our hope,
To Timothy, my true child in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. (1 Timothy 1:1–2 ESV)
Beyond the repetition-happy nature of mentioning God and God and Christ Jesus and Christ Jesus, the qualifiers stand out.
- God our Savior
- Christ Jesus our hope
- God the father
- Christ Jesus our Lord
We default to Jesus as Savior, God is often Maker or Judge, but the Son has the Father’s nature. I wouldn’t pair Savior with hope, an office and a virtue are not parallel, so Savior and Redeemer or righteousness and hope. Father makes the most sense, especially in relation to Christ, though again, Christ is Lord. So between the both Persons: our Savior, our hope, our Lord. He is ours. (see also Psalm 95:7)
Plus we get grace, mercy, and peace, the salutationary trifecta. Christians, we have the best and #blessed God, we have a bounteous salvation, more than a few reasons to rejoice at the Lord’s Table.