Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Rom 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
Rom 1:2 which he promised afore through his prophets in the holy scriptures,
Rom 1:3 concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh,
Rom 1:4 who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead; even Jesus Christ our Lord,
Rom 1:5 through whom we received grace and apostleship, unto obedience of faith among all the nations, for his name's sake;
Rom 1:6 among whom are ye also called to be Jesus Christ's:
Rom 1:7 to all that are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
In the first seven verses of the book of Romans we see Paul introducing himself and in doing so he explains his qualification and his reason for service. In like manor I'd like to introduce myself as I begin this series on the Book of Romans.
I am Bill Taylor, former Specialist Fifth Class of the Killer Spades, Bravo Company of the Two. Two Ninth Assault Helicopter Battalion, the First Air Cavalry Division, U.S. Army. I was first called of God in November of 1966, the night my best friend took an 81mm mortar in the chest. I ceased resisting my LORD's call January the first of 1990 and have been faithful since that day.
Recently, I have been accused of acting like a fifteen to seventeen year old angry young man by a gentleman, who, from his picture, appears to be quite a bit younger than I. The reason for his remarks are because, while I take a great deal of patients with New Christians, I lack the same patients with those that refuse the meat of the Word and continue to suck the bottle for milk. Much the same as an unnamed preacher friend of mine, I want people, after five years or less in the Word to put on their Big Boy Panties and to grow in the faith. You might find these words harsh but God has not called anyone to feast eternally on the milk of the Word.
I will seek to go all the way through the Book of Romans, as when Paul wrote this letter to the Roman Believers, he wrote what has come to be known as The Christian Manifesto. Neither being Paul nor Jesus I am certain to not cover every point, I'm still in the process of growth myself. Please feel free to email me or to post on the Internet any amendments you believe to be helpful.
Rom 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is proclaimed throughout the whole world.
Rom 1:9 For God is my witness, whom I serve in my spirit in the gospel of his Son, how unceasingly I make mention of you, always in my prayers
Rom 1:10 making request, if by any means now at length I may be prospered by the will of God to come unto you.
Rom 1:11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
Rom 1:12 that is, that I with you may be comforted in you, each of us by the other's faith, both yours and mine.
Rom 1:13 And I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you (and was hindered hitherto), that I might have some fruit in you also, even as in the rest of the Gentiles.
Rom 1:14 I am debtor both to Greeks and to Barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish.
Rom 1:15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you also that are in Rome.
Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Rom 1:17 For therein is revealed a righteousness of God from faith unto faith: as it is written, But the righteous shall live by faith.
Here, as in all of Paul's letters we see him offering up a prayer, this is such a valid demonstration of the behavior suitable for a Christian. Today, far to often, the world rules in our church assemblies and in our daily lives. My family prays before meals and we pray for others where-ever we might be and repeatedly we have been spoken to about doing so. The world is watching us and they notice when we act like our leader, Jesus.
Now, there is a final section to Romans 1 and because I have grown in my faith to the point that I believe every word of the scriptures and yet, still live in this Time/Space Continuum, I am often accosted by Christians for being cruel.
Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hinder the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 because that which is known of God is manifest in them; for God manifested it unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse:
Rom 1:21 because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither gave thanks; but became vain in their reasonings, and their senseless heart was darkened.
Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
Rom 1:23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God for the likeness of an image of corruptible man, and of birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.
Rom 1:24 Wherefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts unto uncleanness, that their bodies should be dishonored among themselves:
Rom 1:25 for that they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
Rom 1:26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile passions: for their women changed the natural use into that which is against nature:
Rom 1:27 and likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another, men with men working unseemliness, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was due.
Rom 1:28 And even as they refused to have God in their knowledge, God gave them up unto a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
Rom 1:29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Rom 1:30 backbiters, hateful to God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Rom 1:31 without understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, unmerciful:
Rom 1:32 who, knowing the ordinance of God, that they that practise such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but also consent with them that practise them. (ASV)
The Bible used by Jesus, Peter, Paul, John and the others did not include the books of the New Testament and if we will pay attention as we read, those of us that do, we will notice that the New Testament in our modern day copy of the scriptures is commenting on how to apply the Old Testament, the Bible Jesus used, to our lives. The same is certainly true here.
It is stupid for me to need to be careful of quoting or seeking to apply this passage or any other passage to Christian life, but that is exactly where I find myself. A careful reading of the 613 Mosaic Laws or of this commentary on them proves that any Law Breaker, lacking the forgiveness of our LORD deserves death. But each time the LORD puts it on my heart I am reviled and called cruel, mean and unforgiving. The reason... I have just condemned the homosexuals to Hell.
Never mind the Fornicator, the Rapist, the Murderer, the Thief and on and on, I have attacked the favored sinner of the day. There are a multitude of excuses, offered up as reasons for sin, they are all lies according to the Word of God. I need not give my personal, childhood history here, the Bible records that God said so and that is he end of it, we are to avoid all and say it again 'all' manor of sin.