Chained to the Gospel!

Today’s Reading: Psalm 49-50, Romans 1

Today’s Reflection:  Romans 1:1   Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God.

The apostle Paul sets for all Gospel preachers, in essence, the foundational principles upon which our ministries should be built.  Namely, we are servants, we are called, and we are separated!  Allow me to look at these one at a time.  

First, what does it mean to be a servant of Jesus Christ?  Simply put, it is to be a slave, or to be one who is devoted to Christ to the disregard of his or her own interests.  Furthermore, it means “one who gives himself up to another’s will those whose service is used by Christ in extending and advancing his cause among men”.   In other words, it is offering to Christ the same surrender that Christ offered to His Father in the garden, when He said, “Not my will, but Thine be done!”  

Now, as to being called; you may indeed find one who is serving, who is not necessarily called to be a preacher.  However, you will never find one who is called, who is not also a servant of Jesus Christ.  You say you are called?  Then how do you serve Christ?  May it never be beneath us to humble ourselves as a servant to Christ in any manner in which He may lead us to serve.  For to be called is to be divinely selected and appointed.  

This means that Christ calls the shots for the Gospel preacher!  He calls, and He gives the orders!  He says what to say, what not to say, where to go, where not to go, what to do, and what not to do.  It would do us well as preachers of the Gospel to learn to discern the voice of God, and in so doing, learn to simply follow His orders; otherwise, we are not living up to the calling we claim to have.  

And lastly, let us look at what it means to be separated.  It means to be marked off from others by boundaries, so as to be limited and separated to that for which we are called.  It means to be appointed and set apart for the specific purpose of preaching the Gospel message.  In fact, Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:4 that “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”  

To me, these three words, when woven together so tightly in verse one of Romans, leaves literally no grounds for the preacher of the Gospel to do his own will.  May God help us to day to learn what it means to live a completely sold out life to Jesus our Lord! 

Floodgates of Heaven

copyright © by Gary D. Caudill