A Daily Email Devotional from the
by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam Three times in Romans 1:14-16, the Apostle Paul uses the phrase “I am”, and each one carries an important message for every true believer in Christ.
First, he says in verse 14: “I am debtor” — debtor to all men, to tell them about the saving work of Christ. But why was heindebted to people he had never even seen? For several reasons:
First, he had in his hand what they needed to be saved from the penalty and power of sin. If I see a drunkard lying across the railroad track and I do nothing about it, am I not a murderer if he is killed by the train? If I see a man drowning and I have a life buoy in my hand but do not throw it to him, am I not a murderer if he goes down for the last time? If I see millions of lost souls about me and, knowing the message of salvation, do not tell them, am I not guilty if they die without Christ?
Further, Paul felt himself a debtor to others, because the Christ who had died for his sins had also died for the sins of others. As he says in II Corinthians 5:14,15: “Christ died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him who died for them and rose again.”
Finally, the Christ who had died for Paul’s sins, had commissionedhim to tell others of His saving grace. Thus he says in I Corinthians 9:16,17:
“Woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! For…a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me” (ICor.9:16,17).
Paul could say further what every true believer should be able to say: Not “I am debtor, but“, but rather, “I am debtor…SO, as much as in me is, I AM READY…” (Rom.1:15). He was ready to discharge his debt because he had that with which to discharge it — the wonderful “gospel of the grace of God”. And he did indeed make this the message known to others with all that was in him.
And now the third “I am”: “I am debtor…So I am ready… For I AM NOT ASHAMED of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth…” (Ver. 16). Paul was always proud to own Christ as the mighty Saviour from sin. Do you know Christ as your Saviour? Do you tell others of His saving grace?