Romans – the Gospel
Romans as the name suggests was written to the church in Rome. The letter was likely written after the Corinthian letters. The Roman church was comprised of Gentiles with Jews occupying a substantial minority of the congregation.
The main theme of the letter was the basic gospel being Gods plan for salvation and sanctification for all. The purpose for the letter is as follows:
- Preparation for Paul’s visit to Rome
- Presentation of a basic system of salvation
- Explain the relationship between Jews and Gentiles in the context of God’s plan
Romans is therefore an excellent follow up to Galatians as we build upon the knowledge of our salvation and its subsequent consequences.
Week ending – 19/10/2014
Romans 1:1-17 – Paul’s Introduction of:
- His Concern for the Romans
1. In Rom 1:1-8 how does Paul describe himself and his mission?
Describes himself as:
– Servant of Jesus Christ: the Greek, doulos, denotes one who is a slave – one who gives himself up for the services of another
– Called to be an apostle: a delegate or messenger, one sent forth with orders – Acts 9:15-16
– Set apart for the Gospel of God: the gospel – the good news
- To fulfil his role as an apostle which is to call people from among all the gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith
2. In Rom 1:1 Paul mentioned that he is set apart for the gospel, what does he say about the gospel?
– It was promised in the OT (the Holy Scriptures) through the Prophets
– The gospel was in regards to the Son of God (declared to be as such through the Spirit). The declaration was punctuated by the resurrection.
– The Son of God also had a human nature that was of David’s line
– Power of God for the salvation of all who believes v.16
– Reveals a righteousness from God (that is by faith) v.17
3. How does Paul seek to relate to the Roman Church and what is his aim for building this relationship?
– Paul acknowledges the Romans as those loved by God and called to be saints – i.e. they are Christians
– He is thankful because the faith of the Romans are being preached all over the world
– Despite not having the opportunity to visit, Paul has maintained pray for the Romans
Paul’s aim is to visit the Romans to:
- Impart spiritual gifts to strength the Church – v.12 seems to suggest that the strengthening is a result of faith which brings mutual encouragement
- Build a harvest
- Preach the Gospel
Paul in his introduction contextualises the rest of his letter. He has introduced; himself as an apostle who has been called to preach the gospel; the gospel and what it represents; his concern and intentions in writing to the Romans. Following the introduction is the question of why we need the gospel.