The Three I Am’s of Paul
14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Notice Paul’s four I might/ I may
A. His Intent – vs. 10
- 10 Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
B. His Imparting – vs. 11
- 11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
C. His Inspiration – vs. 12
- 12 That is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me.
D. His Increase – vs. 13
- 13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
I. Paul’s Debt
Paul was aware of one fact. He had an obligation to the world.
No amount of witnessing, soul-winning, preaching, missionary work, alleviates our duty to the world.
Paul wrote this letter to the Romans near the end of his third missionary journey.
Historians believe it was written from Corinth Greece during AD 57.
He had already traveled all over the known world THREE TIMES!
He had walked thousands of miles, traveled in ships, been imprisoned, beaten, you name it.
Yet, he still felt the overwhelming pressure of a debt to the rest of the world.
Paul had started numerous churches.
He had led literally thousands to Christ.
He had trained and mentored pastors, appointed elders, wrote epistles, fought battles.
Yet he had this overwhelming burden to make sure that the unsaved world heard the gospel.
II. Paul’s Desire
A. It was a Passionate Desire – as much as in me is…
B. It was a Prepared Desire – I am ready…
- 1 Peter 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
C. It was a Preaching Desire – I am ready to PREACH the gospel
- Romans 10:15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
D. It was a Personal Desire – …to you that are at Rome also.
Paul had a global ministry.
He thought on a global scale.
SEE verse 5, verse 8
III. Paul’s Delight
Paul felt compelled to state that he was not ashamed of the Gospel.
He knew that there was a stigma attached to being associated with the gospel.
There was a stigma associated with being a preacher of the gospel.
There was a stigma attached to being an Apostle.
I Corinthians 4
- 9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.
- 10 We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.
- 11 Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace;
- 12 And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it:
- 13 Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.
To the contrary, Paul was not ashamed of the Gospel.
In Paul’s writings, (from Romans 1:1 to Hebrews 13:25), Paul used the word GOSPEL 70 times!
He was not ashamed of the Gospel.
In fact, he started the book in chapter 1:1 writing that he was a servant, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel.
Rather than being ashamed, he took great delight in the Gospel.
- He called it the Gospel of God in verse 1
- He called it the Gospel of his Son in verse 9
- He called it the Gospel of Christ in verse 16
It was the POWER OF GOD UNTO SALVATION!
The gospel is the secret weapon.
The word POWER here is dunamis – the root word for DYNAMITE.