Some Christian leaders seem unaware of anything, except their own work. They give no attention to what God is doing through other people, or in other places.
Paul did not have that attitude. He saw his own work as just a part in Godís great plan (1 Corinthians 3:5-11). Godís plan is to bring all things under the perfect rule of Christ (Romans 8:18-23; 1 Corinthians 15:24-27). Paul knew about the limits of the work that God had given him to do (2 Corinthians 10:13-16).
Paulís special work for God was among people who were not Jews (11:13). The Jews are Israelís people, from the family of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. All the first Christians, including Paul, were Jews. However, even before Paulís birth, God chose him to bring the message about Christ to people who were not Jews (Galatians 1:15-16; Acts 26:16-18).
Although that was Paulís task, God was using his life to do something even greater. God was working, by means of Paul, to bring people who were not Jews into a right relationship with him (God). However, in addition, some Jews would see that and they would want the same kind of relationship with God. Paul was eagerly praying for that to happen (10:1).
However, even that was only part of Godís much greater plan, which is for their whole nation (11:11-12; 11:25-26). These things astonished Paul, because of what they proved about the greatness and the wisdom of God (11:30-35).
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© 2018, Keith Simons.