Today’s reading is: Rom. 12-16
Romans Chapter Twelve
- Having completed his lament for Israel, Paul returns to his present Gentile audience and proclaims the ministry of the Church (Rom. 12:1ff.).
- The Church functions as a priesthood, with each believer as a living and holy sacrifice (Rom. 12:1).
- Each believer-priest must be transformed so as not to be conformed to this (present evil) age αἰών aiōn #165 (Rom. 12:2a; Gal. 1:4).
- Each believer-priest becomes a demonstration of the will of God (Rom. 12:2b).
- Each believer-priest becomes a demonstration of humility (Rom. 12:3).
- The priesthood of the Church operates as a body, with individual members fulfilling their designed role (Rom. 12:4-8).
- General principles for harmony within the Church are then outlined (Rom. 12:9-21).
Romans Chapter Thirteen
- General principles for the Church’s relationship to the world are also outlined (Rom. 13:1-10). Subjection to governmental authorities is not optional!
- Above all, the Church is to be mindful of the imminency of Christ’s return, and the urgency of living the life of holiness (Rom. 13:11-14).
Romans Chapter Fourteen
- The accountability of each believer before the Lord serves to establish the priority of mutual edification (Rom. 14).
- With respect to matters of personal opinion, believers need to accept the manner through which other believers apply their faith (Rom. 14:1-9).
- We are not qualified to judge one another, as the Lord Jesus Christ will judge our lives (Rom. 14:10-12; 2nd Cor. 5:9-10).
- The primary means by which believers build one another up is to consciously keep themselves from creating stumbling blocks for their fellow believers (Rom. 14:13-23).
Romans Chapter Fifteen
- In addition to keeping stumbling blocks out of the way, we are to bear the weaknesses of those without strength, following the example of Christ (Rom. 15:1-13).
- Paul turns his attention to the believers in Rome, and has confidence in their application of this doctrine (Rom. 15:14).
- Paul explains that this epistle, indeed his entire ministry, was according to the will of God, in reaching out to the Gentiles for Christ (Rom. 15:15-29).
- Paul urges the believers in Rome to pray for his opportunity to come and minister among them (Rom. 15:30-33).
Romans Chapter Sixteen
- Chapter 16 contains personal greetings to believers in Rome (Rom. 16:1-16).
- Phoebe is the only deaconess (fem.sing. διάκονος diakonos #1249) mentioned by name in the New Testament (Rom. 16:1,2; cf. 1st Tim. 3:11).
- Prisca & Aquila were Paul’s companions both in Corinth and in Ephesus (Rom. 16:3-5a; Acts 18:2,3,18-21,26).
- Andronicus & Junia (husband/wife) [possibly Andronicus & Junias were brothers] were fellow Benjamites, fellow prisoners at one time, and fellow apostles, otherwise unknown in the New Testament (Rom. 16:7).
- Rufus was most likely the son of Simon of Cyrene (Mk. 15:21). His mother had been like a mother to Paul at some point in time.
- Paul also warns them to be on guard against trouble-makers (Rom. 16:17-20).
- Paul sends greetings from a number of people with him, and Tertius the scribe also sends a greeting (Rom. 16:21-23).
- The Book closes with a benediction appropriate to the Dispensation of the Church (Rom. 16:25-27).