By Theodore Epp
In Romans 1:14-16 Paul made three significant statements about himself. First, he said, "I am debtor" (v. 14). He realized he had an obligation because he had seen the truth concerning Jesus Christ. Those of us who have been reconciled to God through the blood of Jesus Christ have a ministry of reconciliation--we have an obligation to take the message to others (see 2 Cor. 5:18-20). When we stand before Christ to give account, our faithfulness to this type of ministry will no doubt be one of the chief concerns.
Second, Paul stated, "I am ready" (Rom. 1:15). It's one thing to sense an obligation and even to be willing, but it is another thing to be ready. Readiness involves a mental attitude--putting ourselves at God's disposal to do His will.
Third, Paul said, "I am not ashamed" (v. 16). He was not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is a clear and strong reference to the great doctrine that the Holy Spirit, through Paul, established by irrefutable logic in the succeeding chapters of Romans; that is, the doctrine of justification by faith. Or one may simply call it the doctrine of salvation by grace.
"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear" (1 Pet. 3:15).