Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Paul's Ambition

“And thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation, but it is written, “Those who have never been told of him will see, and those who have never heard will understand.” Romans 15:20-21.

If we claim to follow Christ, then Paul's ambition should be ours as well. The root of the great commission in Matthew 28 is to become witnesses of Christ. To be a witness of Christ is to preach His gospel through the power of the Spirit and to live it as well. 

The word 'ambition' suits well for this difficult task (actually 'impossible' suits best but since God is with us, that'll do 😊). Difficult is a word that puts emphasis on great efforts, engagement and passion unto something. Paul and the rest of the disciples managed to spread the Word throughout the world even with difficulty! Through the help of the Spirit, Paul knew what to do in order to accomplish this goal. 

1. Paul worked on it. I mean really worked on it. In his letter to the Romans, he says “This is the reason why I have so often been hindered from coming to you. But now, since I no longer have any room for work in these regions, and since I have longed for many years to come to you, I hope to see you…” (Romans 15:22-24a).  Paul was longing to visit the brothers in Rome but the ministry of the gospel of Christ hindered him.  This was not the kind of hindrance that forced him to stay in Corinth, rather Paul set it to himself, a thing to be done before doing any other.  He was focused on the task and the task of completing it. He made efforts in reaching out to people, not only to those who were within his reach, but also to those he was able to go to. He saturated the territory where God had put him with the good news.  I say it was laborious but the Spirit was there to aid and strengthen Him, just as He is now with us.

Where did God put you now? Are you making every effort to reach out for those who don't know Christ yet?

2. Paul asked to be prayed for.  
“I appeal to you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered from the unbelievers…” these were written by Paul to Romans (15:30-31a), an appointed apostle of Christ. Regardless of our calling in Christ, we need the prayers of other believers too.  Paul is specific that the church should strive together in prayer for this command that God had given us all. We must pray for each other to be brought to opportunities to declare Christ and declare it with the power of God.

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