14 I myself am convinced, my brothers and sisters, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with knowledge and competent to instruct one another. 15 Yet I have written you quite boldly on some points to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me 16 to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles. He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. 17 Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God. 18 I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done— 19 by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ. 20 It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else’s foundation. 21 Rather, as it is written: “Those who were not told about him will see, and those who have not heard will understand.” 22 This is why I have often been hindered from coming to you
Do you know? I always thought of Paul as a church planter/builder/teacher. But this passage reveals Paul’s clear and succinct purpose statement – go where the gospel isn’t. (v20)
What about me? Do I stay in the safe place and serve only in the church, where people have heard and received the gospel? Do I invest my time in “preaching to the choir”? Do I see my life outside the church, where my neighbours, friends and workmates who have never heard the gospel, as my highest calling?
Lord, thanks for your servant Paul and his example. Show me how I can do the same – to go where the gospel isn’t.
Written by Boudy Van Noppen