by Pastor Lito Villoria
DATE: June 11, 2017
After Paul affirmed his identity (a prisoner for Christ) and purpose (an apostle to the Gentiles), he digressed to discuss the mystery of the union of the Gentiles with the Jews. The Gentiles, who were formerly “outcasts” in God’s family (2:12-13), were now “fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promises in Christ.” This was made possible through the gospel of Christ. God’s grace guarantees our message will not return void (cf. Isaiah 55:10-11) (vv. 1-6).
Paul asserted he was a minister of the gospel by divine appointment, not by mere personal choice (cf. 1 Timothy 2:7). He was appointed, not based on merit, but by grace (cf. 2 Timothy 1:9). As such, he can accomplish his task by God’s enabling power (cf. 1 Corinthians 15:10, Hebrews 13:20-21). God’s grace guarantees our ministry will not be in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58) (v. 7).
Paul acknowledged his mission to proclaim the gospel of Christ. The church has a vital role in God’s kingdom work. It has the task of world evangelization. God’s grace guarantees our mission will not vary (vv. 8-13).
In this section, Paul emphasized God’s grace in the most emphatic way (vv. 2, 7, 8). In life, challenges are bound to occur. But because Christ lavished His grace upon us at the cross (1:7ff), there is no challenge so overwhelming that His grace cannot overcome!