Paul’s View of his Ministry

Romans 15:14-22

At this point, Paul shifts entirely the focus of his message; what has been persuasive in nature now becomes more of a personal reflection. I hope you have read these verses, because we can glean a great insight about Paul’s attitude and frame of mind in general and then compare his attitude to our own.

Verses 14-16 begin this reflection in an interesting way: Paul acknowledges that his recipients are fully able to not only understand, but to instruct one another in matters concerning faith in Jesus Christ. Yet, he tells them that he has boldly repeated certain things to them in this letter, so that they might appreciate them fully, so that they might remember the amazing grace of our Lord.  He has done this by the grace God has given him as the Apostle to the Gentiles, and why was he sent as Apostle to the Gentiles? He did it so that they might be an acceptable offering to God. Notice that in all of this discussion, Paul is motivated to endless work for the sake of God’s purpose, and the well being of others; not for himself.

Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God. I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done— by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God.

Romans 15:17-19a

What does Paul do when he is serving God; where does his strength come from? He glories in Christ in his service; he is not taking glory from his own “greatness”. What is Paul willing to speak of? He is willing to speak only of what God has done through him, not what great things he himself has done. Whatever Paul may have accomplished for Christ has been done through the power of the Holy Spirit.

I should imagine that each one of us, and that certainly includes me, could benefit greatly by having a similar attitude.

Once again, he mentions that he has always wanted to work where no one else has already preached the Word, among Gentiles who have not yet heard about Jesus. Interesting isn’t it? God’s purpose is that the Gospel should be proclaimed to all people, and here is the great Apostle to the Gentiles, not only teaching this as a fact, but also putting it into action and going into mission fields where he had to start completely from scratch so that God might be glorified among the Gentiles. Here, dear reader is an example to follow: We should seek out ways to serve God’s purpose in a manner that would bring Him maximum glory, even though this may require greater effort from us; such is the lot of a servant of God, and a glorious lot it is!

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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