15:8 as to one untimely born. This self-deprecating remark may be an ironic criticism of the Corinthians who held Paul in low esteem (2:1 note). What the apostle means is suggested by the phrase “last of all.” The appearances of the risen Lord had ceased, and Paul was a persecutor of the church when he received his calling to be an apostle (Gal. 1:13, 23; Phil. 3:6; 1 Tim. 1:13–16). Although Paul had not been with Jesus during His earthly ministry, he was granted the privilege of seeing Jesus risen from the dead, and was commissioned as an apostle with a special ministry to the Gentiles (Acts 9:3–5, 15; Gal. 1:15, 16). What Paul says strongly suggests that the apostolic office was a unique, foundational gift to the church (Eph. 2:20).