Over the last couple days, we have had a look at how the gospel was revealed to Paul not by man, but by revelation from Jesus Christ. You can read more of this amazing encounter that Paul had in Acts 9. We have also had a look at how this gospel of grace needs to come to us by revelation. We heard the gospel, we accepted it, and Jesus revealed himself to us. We have also looked at how we should have an understanding of this good news, so that we can pass it on to others, that they too may have a revelation of Jesus.
To start off with in these verses, Paul starts to speak of his previous way of life in Judaism. Notice the language that Paul uses when talking about this: "I persecuted"; "I advanced"; "I was extremely zealous". It was all about self, and what he could attain by himself! However, notice how the language changes when he starts to talk of his life walking with Jesus: "God, who set me apart"; "God, who called me by His grace"; "God, who was pleased to reveal His Son in me." Paul's language has totally changed. He has come to know that a relationship with God was nothing that he could attain by himself, or get to through works, but was by grace alone! And so it was all about what God had done and was doing, and nothing about what he could do!
Now that we have seen this, I would like us today to have a close look at verses 15-16a: "But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles..." In the previous days, we have seen how God has revealed His Son Jesus to us. However, in this verse, we see how God wants to do more than reveal Jesus to us. He wants to reveal Jesus IN us!
For Paul, God was going to reveal Jesus in him as he preached the gospel to the Gentiles! God certainly has a sense of humour. This man, once a zealous and devout Jew, who would have grown up hating the Gentiles, who would probably have seen the Gentiles as the worst, destined for hell... this man was now going to preach the message of salvation to them, and Christ would be revealed in him.
Christ has been revealed to you... and he wants to be revealed IN you!