Have you ever heard someone say, “I’m too far gone to be saved”? It’s almost always an ashamed individual looking over their life and thinking that they have sinned too much. They carry too much baggage for God to handle. They truly believe in their hearts and minds that God could and will never forgive them. One can understand how someone who has lived a particularly sinful life could feel this way. However, I believe this idea that one has become too far gone is not founded in God’s plan of redemption for mankind and for that, those who feel this way should read and rejoice!
Paul writes this to Timothy in 1 Timothy 1:8-11, “Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.”
Paul states that the law, the gospel of Jesus Christ and the new covenant established through His sacrifice, was not laid down for the just but the unjust. That those who are “too far gone” are exactly the people who God made the plan of redemption for. Paul comes to this conclusion of his own part in this redemption plan in vs 15-16, “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.” As we may remember, Paul was once waging a war against God’s people as Saul, yet Jesus’ sacrifice also covered himself. As lawless and sinful as he was, God’s plan to restore Paul to glory became a tool/example with which Paul would now be able to spread the gospel effectively.
God offers mercy and restoration through Jesus to those who believe they are too far gone and, in this, we should all have hope, “For all of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.” Romans 3:23. This week, remember the type of God we serve and display Him in your lives and conversations. Take the opportunities to tell people about the merciful and loving God who forgives, loves, and restores glory to people who believe they are too far gone.