“For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am.” – 1 Corinthians 15:9-10
Do you think Paul’s sin and his past weighed on him? I do. I think he thought of it often. I think Satan used it as a tool to trip him up from time to time. To get him thinking about what a terrible sinner he was and to get him out of the way. Why? Because Paul was such a powerhouse for Christ!
Remember who Paul was? He was a religious fanatic and killed Christians and promoted the killing and stoning of Christians. Then Jesus got a hold of him and changed his life. People even knew his reputation for these things and now he had to live with that past. Jesus says when we are forgiven our past is wiped away. But, Satan does not forget and many times we do not forget either.
In the book of Ephesians, Paul writes to the church in Ephesus and talks to them about putting on the full armor of God (see Ephesians 6). One of the pieces is the helmet of salvation. That helmet needs to be put on daily as a reminder to guard your mind with the truth that you have been redeemed by God’s grace. Like Paul says, “I am who I am” now by the grace of God. Paul also writes that he “leaves what is behind and goes on to what lies ahead” (see Phil.3).
The Bible tells us we have the ability and power to “take our thoughts captive”. We are to think about what is good and God given, just read Philippians chapter 4. This is not positive confession or positive thinking, these are biblical truths.
Are you being reminded of your past and your failures today? Are you letting them take root in your heart and defeat you? I’ve heard it said that when Satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future. I say, when he reminds you of your past, forget him, remind yourself of YOUR future. Your future in eternity in heaven with our risen Lord and Savior! The Bible says we are more than conquerors already. May we put on the helmet of salvation today and remember we are forgiven and the battle is already won!