In this one sentence, at the very beginning of his letter, Paul lays out so much of his beliefs and theology. He could have just said, “Dear Church at Rome, it’s me Paul.” He could have, but he didn’t.
He begins by identifying himself. He is Paul not Saul. No longer is he the zealot Pharisee and persecutor of Christ’s followers. No longer is he sent forth by the power of the Jewish leadership. He is now Paul, an apostle (meaning “one who is sent off”) not by the Great Sanhedrin, but by Jesus. The same Jesus who was persecuted, prosecuted, tortured, and executed at the will of the Jewish hierarchy.
As Paul gave witness to his transformation through the power of Christ, so are we to share our testimony of our transformation. For some of us it may be a dramatic 180° turn around. For others it may have been only a 1° adjustment in our life path that sets us straight with God’s will. No matter the degree of change, our transformation is what we are to share. This is not the gospel according to long dead men, but OUR gospel of what Jesus means to us.
- Prayer. Most gracious and loving God, we praise you and thank you for our salvation. We recognize that even if we were only slightly off your straight and narrow way, we would have missed the way that leads to life eternal with You. Help its to show others the Way the Truth and the Life. Amen
- Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives