Let’s open up with Romans – The Key to Scriptures
Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God— the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his earthly life was a descendant of David, and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name’s sake. And you also are among those Gentiles who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.
To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be his holy people: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 1:1-7 (NIV)
This book shows God’s redemption plan.
It outlines the need for a redemption plan (we are all sinners), the redemption plan (Jesus Christ’s work on the cross), our growth, God’s sovereignity and the application for our lives today (service).
Let’s start in Chapter 1, verse 1, where Paul gives us his “credentials” to preach the Gospel. Paul is chosen by God to be an apostle to share the message of the Gospel – the Good News. And it is “The” Gospel. In case you may not know what I am referring to, the Gospel gives us eternal salvation and is this:
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
Romans 10:9-10 (NIV)
It’s that simple. Just Believe.
Yet somehow we manage to complicate it! Believe and confess. This is all that is required. You don’t have to be “good enough.” In fact, none of us will ever be “good enough” but thankfully our loving Father’s redemption plan took that into account when He sacrificed His one and only Son in our place. It is NOT ABOUT US at all. It is always about JESUS. Once we realize this truth, we can rest easy in His presence.
Getting back to Romans, in verse 3, we see that Paul chooses to show us that Jesus is a descendant of King David. Why is this important? It shows us the human lineage of Jesus through King David down through Joseph, husband of Mary. Side note, you can see this record of Jesus’ ancestors in Matthew 1 (David is referenced in Matthew 1:6 and Joseph in v. 16).
Jesus had to be born as a man to be able to take our place on the Cross. He was fully God but He was also fully man. When He walked on earth, He chose to set aside His Deity to be like us. This is very important to understand. If Jesus walked as God during His earthly ministry, He would not have been someone that we could imitate. As it was, He chose to walk as man and He showed us how to live our lives.
Jesus is our perfect role model.
4 and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 1:4 (NIV)
In verse 4, Paul shows us that Jesus was raised from the dead through the power of the Holy Spirit. And guess what?? We have this same power that raised Jesus from the dead (see Ephesians 1:19-20). I know this is really hard to comprehend but it is true. His Word tells us so and we believe what we read by faith. Every word in the Bible is put there by God Himself. He may have used men to do the writing but He guided the pen (see 2 Peter 1:20-21).
5Through Christ, God has given us the privilege and authority as apostles to tell Gentiles everywhere what God has done for them, so that they will believe and obey him, bringing glory to his name. 6 And you are included among those Gentiles who have been called to belong to Jesus Christ. Romans 1:5-6 (NLT)
Romans 1:5-6 above are from the New Living Translation, a different version of the Bible, than at the very top. I like looking at different versions and comparing. Sometimes a different version will open up a verse more than another. I think these verses are like that – in the NIV at the top of this post, it is not quite as clear as it is in the NLT version here. We are given the privilege and authority to be apostles and we are called to share everything that God has done for us so that we bring Him glory. Did you catch that?
We are told to share what God is doing in our lives.
This is called our witness. When we share those things that He is doing in and through us, it inspires others. There is something powerful about the words of our mouth. When others hear, it sets off a chain reaction. We are responsible to share. So don’t hold back. If God does the smallest thing in your life, share it. It may be that one piece that another person needs to hear. God places us where we are and He puts the people around us for His divine purpose.
We are each to be bold and share with one another.
Finishing up with these first seven verses in Romans, we see that Paul tells the believers in Rome that they are to be God’s holy people. This goes for us too. We are also called to be God’s holy people. You are holy and I am holy – because of Jesus Christ.
May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace!
I hope you enjoyed this post as we begin to explore His Word together. We’ll pick up with verse 8 in the next post.
Stay in the Light and the Love Always,