Called To Be An Apostle
“Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,” 1 Corinthians 1:1 NKJV
Great verse right? I know that on the surface there does not appear to be a lot there, but think on these things. Paul says that he was “called” to be an apostle. This reminded me of the verse in the Amplified Bible where Paul has called us to serve Jesus daily. There we see the use of the word “summons” (Ephesians 4:1). Daily we have a call or a summons from Him to serve in whatever He has prepared for us to do. Paul was summoned to be an apostle, and we all have a spiritual call on our lives.
You have a spiritual call, and the spiritual gifts invested by Him to fulfill that call. The above verse also has another kernel of strength for us. I always italicize the Word when I write it in text so that it stands out. However, in the King James and the New King James, there are few words from the text that are italicized already. Here it is from the New King James:
“Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,”
Notice that the words “to be” are italicized in the front end of the verse. When words are italicized in the Bible, it is the translator’s way of letting us know that these words were added from the original text to make it grammatically correct in English. So we can really read that verse as, “Paul, called an apostle”, without the words “to be”.
He was called to be an apostle by God, but there is also a great truth revealed in reading it without the grammatical addition. Paul was also called AN apostle. What is the difference? Both are true, He was called to be an apostle by God, but as Paul realized that call and answered it, ”he was an apostle”. At the moment Paul accepted the call, he was that which God called him to. He had all the power and authority of an apostle.
You have a call to serve Him and you also will grow in that role He has called you to as you step fully into it. But even now, you are endowed with the qualities of the call He has for you. Now that is exciting!
J Todd Hostetler