First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all who are in high positions, so that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and dignity. This is right and is acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself a ransom for all —this was attested at the right time.1 Timothy 2:1-6
As a young child, I grew up in a Christian home – two older sisters, a younger brother, and two parents who cared deeply for me. My parents both showed their love toward me in different ways. My mother showed it through rocking me to sleep as a baby, scratching my back, making cinnamon rolls for me to come home to after school, and writing little notes of encouragement when I needed it most. My father loved me by teaching me to be responsible and how to do things: how to drive a tractor, build a tree house, jump start a car, and read my Bible.
I noticed these acts of love even while I was young. But one act of love that my parents showed me was not so obvious: discipline. It was difficult for my mother to discipline me at times, but she knew it was for the best. My father, however, seemed to have no trouble in recognizing the value of it, as it was a sure way to teach me the right way to do things. As a result, I often had arguments with my father, especially early on in high school. At times, my mother would step in and help us to see the other’s perspective. She would remind me that I needed to respect my Father even when I did not understand why. And she reminded my father that he needed to be patient with me and remember that I was his child.
In a way, my mother was acting as a mediator between my father and me. If you were to Google the word “mediator”, you would find that a mediator is a person who attempts to make people involved in a conflict come to an agreement. After reading 1 Timothy chapter 2, you will notice that this concept of a mediator can be understood from a Biblical perspective. In the context of 1 Timothy, a mediator is someone who represents God to humans and vice versa – and who removes all alienation between them by offering himself as “a ransom for all” (verse 5-6). This “someone” is Jesus Christ (verse 5).
Whenever we sin, God’s holiness demands justice. Our sin alienates us from God (Genesis 3:9). But Jesus steps in and says, “It’s okay, I have already paid for their sins.” God’s wrath is satisfied and we are able to partake in the riches of God’s salvation. All alienation is removed and we are able to dwell with God. Similar to the picture of my parents, Jesus steps in and reminds God of who we are – children of God by grace through faith in his Son’s death and resurrection. What a beautiful example of a true act of love! Let us reflect on this act of love this advent season, remembering that we have a mediator in Jesus Christ and a Father who loves us because we are his children.