An apostle set apart for the gospel
Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, (Romans 1:1)
Paul begins his letter to the Romans in traditional Hellenistic fashion by identifying himself. Unlike most of his New Testament epistles, however, he not only states his name and defines himself as a servant of Christ, but also claims to be one called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God (Ro 1:1).
Paul did not choose to be an apostle. While he was still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, suddenly a light from heaven shone around him and Christ revealed himself (Ac 9:1, 3). The Lord said of him, “He is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel” (Ac 9:15).
God drafted and appointed Paul to this position, and God set his agenda. He would be a custodian and preacher not of his own message, but of God’s good news to sinners.