Paul begins his letter by asserting his apostleship, his authority. He was an authorized messenger with an authoritative message sent my the King. An apostle is an ambassador for the King of kings. We don’t have apostles today. We also see that Paul says that he is an apostle of Jesus Christ. This reminds us of a couple of things.
- Paul wasn’t always Paul and he certainly wasn’t always an apostle. Recall that Paul had once been a Pharisee, a ruthless persecutor or terrorizer of the early church. He was no friends to Christians and was going door to door to arrest Christian men and women. It was while he was doing this that this individual was arrested and blinded by the risen and exalted Lord Jesus Christ. He was dramatically converted.
- Perhaps obviously, this wasn’t Paul’s own doing. Saul of Tarsus was not seeking God, he wasn’t asking questions about Christianity and he was in desperate need of God’s saving grace. He had no peace with God or of God but he didn’t know it. So Paul became an apostle by the will of God.
It has been said that God doesn’t call the equipped but that he equips the called. The calling of Paul to be a Christian was of the sovereign will and intervening grace of God in Christ. The calling of Paul to be an apostle was also of the sovereign will and grace of God. Our conversion is of grace, it is God’s doing, not our own lest anyone should boast (ch.2). Our callings, whatever it might be (coal miner, fireman, pastor etc.) are also of God. He gives us the wisdom and the inclinations to pursue our callings.
Lets seek God’s glory where He has placed us and thank Him for His amazing grace.