I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.
“Remember my chains”
Was Paul trying to get people to feel bad for him? No, most likely not. As we examine his other writings, we see Paul speak on how his chains have become useful for his cause to spread the Gospel.
Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
When the Apostle says “Remember my chains” he is calling into minds of his readers what he has had to go through himself because of Christ. He takes an unpleasant circumstance, and turns it around as a pulpit to preach on and inspire these fellow believers.
Paul who saw these believers as his worthwhile investments, uses his personal story and life circumstance not to get people to pity hin but inspire them and propel them to higher ground in Christ.
We all find inspirational the stories of people who endure things that are difficult with a good outlook.
Paul could have felt sorry for Himself, yet rather he takes the very chains that confine him and uses them to preach the Gospel of Christ with. This was his zeal and passion! So when pain fuels passion, greatness can follow. When that heavy load and rugged cross on your shoulders is lifted in the power of Christ, it becomed no burden but can be seen as a blessing!
So many in our times would tie themselves to trees for an environmental cause they are passionate about, yet many of these same people may make fun of those who suffer for their faith with a good perspective? Yet there is no cause I think greater then this Gospel. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, so that whomsoever will believe in him, shall not perish but have eternal life!”
Yet Christ was hung, he did not chain himself to a literal tree with ropes, yet he tied himself up on the cross by ropes of love, knowing we could not be saved any other way.
God only could accept a perfect sacrifice to take away our sin and guilt. He was not merely a tree hugger with the possible fate of a bulldozer, he actually took the full brunt force of God’s wrath toward sin, not to save trees but human lives.
Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a pole.” He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.
Now many would maybe give their lives yo save trees maybe, but Jesus gave His life to save you reader. He saw your life as worth saving. Many would save trees by dying for them maybe in our day, yet trees cannot do anyone any wrong. Jesus saw your offenses and sin as wrongs done toward Himself. Many love animals and pets and things that cannot wound us. Yet Jesus loves you though your sins deeply wounded Him.
He loves you even as you are in your sin, but says “Turn to me and receive newness of life. Let me forgive your sins and enjoy my love for you that is a gift”