Romans, a doctrinal expos'e of the christian life.

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    • #4383

      Doctrine cannot be separated from how we live. I believe after careful observation, that the doctrines discussed in Romans are really an instruction on the Christian life. A failure to see this has put Romans strictly in the theorizing realm for some. Yet the pattern in which Paul discusses his doctrine fits the pattern for the things we encounter in Christian living.

      The first doctrine that Paul deals with at length is the doctrine of sin. This isn’t accidental or coincidental, because the first thing a person has to be confronted with in search for salvation is their sinfulness, and not their sinfulness alone, but the universal sinfulness of the whole human race. Man will kick against this doctrine and despise it, convinced that there is goodness within himself, something redeemable that he can bring into his salvation with him, but the Bible is very explicit in declaring there is none good no not even one!

      To reject this doctrine is to reject all the other doctrines, man must start here, and receive the toughest doctrine of all, if he is to continue all the rest, a rejection of this doctrine has caused the stumbling of many, and ultimately also the rejection of the grace of God! A person cannot receive the doctrine of the grace of God if he does not first receive the doctrine of sin! A person may have claimed to have done so, but not in reality, if they have rejected the doctrine of sin.

    • #4384

      The next doctrine which covers the heart of the book is the doctrine of justification. This is the doctrine that brings deliverance and relief to the undeserving sinner. Because we are unworthy and there is no good work we can do to merit salvation, justification by grace alone through faith alone is the only way we can be declared righteous before a Holy God.

      Unfortunately the doctrine of justification has been abused in our day and used as a license to sin. The result of this evil is caused by people not understanding the doctrine of sin, for if we understood the true nature of sin, we would not be using grace to continue in it.

      it is true that the undeserving sinner is declared righteous before God through nothing he has done, but this does not give us license to sin, but rather a sure, unshakeable foundation for continuance in the righteousness that is brought through sanctification.

      The position of the believer is unchangeable, because the righteousness of another has been attributed to us, because our sin was also attributed to Him. It is this truth that gives us the courage and confidence for sanctification. May we embrace fully and unreservedly the doctrine of justification, though it has been abused much in our day!

    • #4385

      The next doctrine that is covered extensively is the doctrine of sanctification. As believers we are called to live a righteous life, to no longer be living for our sin but to be living for God.

      Paul doesn’t hide the fact that there will be a battle involved in this. Chapter 7 covers this struggle extensively, and chapter 8 shows us that it is through living by the Spirit that we overcome the works of the flesh. So we have the doctrine of sin, the doctrine of justification, and the doctrine of sanctification, the order which we often deal with in the Christian life.

      There are more doctrines in the book of Romans, but these are the three that deal with the righteousness of God, the theme of the epistle.

    • #4386

      Romans 1:1a Paul,

      Paul’s letters were all written with his name attached to them. Though it is debatable whether he wrote Hebrews. By very nature it would be very strange to write letters anonymously. They are by rule personal in nature, though Most of Paul’s letters are also written with an official tone, as is Romans, declaring and explaining the gospel which he preached.

      Paul is his roman name, which makes sense considering he was addressing the Church of Rome, and that he was also Apostle to the Gentiles. His Jewish name was Saul, which he never uses, once he became the Apostle to the Gentiles.

      There is a precious meaning to the name Paul which covers Paul’s spiritual attitude. Paul was small in his own eyes, and did not consider himself to be of any importance. In fact he considered himself to be the least of the Apostles because he had formerly persecuted the church. See 1 Corinthians 15:9. In another place Paul also refers to himself as the chief,(worst) of sinners. This was one reason why Paul was used so mightily by the Lord! See 1 Timothy 1:15.

      Paul’s humble attitude is in stark contrast to the false Apostles who like to promote themselves and puff themselves up! This is one of the ways we can tell the true from the false.

      Paul is a great example to us of the kind of mindset we are supposed to have.

    • #4387

      Romans 1:1b a servant of Christ Jesus,

      The first title Paul claims is a title of humility. The Greek word is doulos, which would be better translated slave. This can be seen in the meaning of the word, [from the word study KJV.] A doulos is “one who is in a permanent relation of servitude to another, his will being altogether consumed in the will of the other.” The verb douloo, “to make a slave or servant, to subject, to subjugate, to be dependent.”

      In this first verse, the word has a good meaning, but it is also used in relation to bad servitude as well. Paul uses this word in seven different places in Romans and I will point them out to you,

      Rom 6:16,17. NKJV, Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that ones slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?
      17.But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered.

      Rom 6:19,20 NKJV. I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh, for just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.
      20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.

      The only kind of slave that is truly free is the one who is a slave to the Lord Jesus Christ. If we refuse to serve Him, to be His slaves, you may rest assured that you will become enslaved by something else! your will will become consumed by another, or by your own sinful desires, what is commonly called addiction today, Paul refers to as enslavement. You have become a slave perhaps to alcohol, to drugs, or to some other vile sin? The only pathway to real freedom is to become a slave to Jesus Christ, a full and unreserved surrender to Him.

      You may say, He is asking for too much! But you may rest assured that if you don’t give your whole life to Him, you will be consumed by something else! There is no neutral ground here! No spiritual Switzerland. This is all out war! My friend your only safe place is a full submission and full surrender to the Lord Jesus Christ! This is what God has always intended for you and me. Perhaps this is why you are currently in bondage to your sins? Because you are not currently a doulos of the Lord Jesus Christ! A man cannot serve two masters, he will love the one and despise the other! Jesus is such a Master that He will not allow us to share allegiance with another. He requires our whole beings and our whole life! Lets give Him this today, for it is only when we do this we find freedom!

    • #4388

      Rom 1:1c Called to be an Apostle,

      It is true that the word kletos= called, has the meaning invited in the Gospels, See Mat 22:16. But in the epistles the word is always used in a much stronger way. It has the idea of being much more effectual than an invitation. Those who have been called in the epistles are believers, who were chosen before they were called. In other words when God calls, He is like a master marksman, He always hits the bulls eye and never makes a mistake.

      The word kletos is used four times in Romans, and is always used in this way. In this first place, Paul was a called Apostle, in other words he was an Apostle because he was called to be one.

      In the next place in which he uses this word, he refers to believers in Rome as the called,

      Rom 1:6 KJV, Among whom are you also the called of Jesus Christ. An effectual call is in view here, more than an invitation.

      In the next verse, he refers to them as called saints [holy, set apart ones.] verse 7. Being set apart by the calling, again shows us the effectual nature of the calling.

      The final place where this word is used is in Rom 8:28.KJV.

      And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.

      Here we see again, the effectual nature of the calling, in that the call causes all things to work together for good, in accordance with the purpose connected with the calling.

      We should find comfort and assurance in this, that God didn’t call us just by some invitation, but effectually and powerfully!

      • This reply was modified 7 years, 10 months ago by PastorPoad.
    • #4390

      Rom 1:1d KJV Called to be an Apostle,

      The word Apostle occurs 83 times in scripture, and 3 times in the book of Romans. Paul mentions he is an Apostle in this first verse, which puts an authoritative tone on the letter, and rightly so since he is describing what the message is, in which he has been entrusted with by Christ.

      In the N.T. the word is used in a narrow sense in describing the 12 Apostles. We know these twelve held a unique, foundational office, for the criteria laid down for this office by Peter in Acts 1:21,22, cannot be fulfilled today. It was required that the man was an eyewitness from the time of the baptism of John, until the ascension.

      Paul described himself also as an Apostle, as one born out of due time, in other words, though He had seen the resurrected Lord, who called him to this office, he hadn’t seen or been with the Lord prior to this as the others had. See 1 Cor 15:8.

      James the Lords brother was also considered to be an Apostle, and appears to carry the authority of an Apostle in the 15th chapter of Acts. He is included as an Apostle by Paul in Galatians 1:19.

      The ministry of Apostle in this restricted sense is no longer available, for the foundation has been laid, and will no longer be laid again. This can also be reflected by the fact that the Apostles had the authority to endorse and write scripture, which is a gift that is no longer available.

      The confusion in the church today over this issue, lies in the fact that the term Apostle is also used of others in the N.T. apart from the twelve, Paul and the Lords brothers. But it is best to look at these examples in a different, more restrictive sense, and not in the same way as the twelve.

      In Pauls day there were false Apostles as there shall also be in ours. In fact Paul helps us identify these false Apostles, by referring to them as super Apostles, these men and even some women will claim a superiority spiritually, and be puffed up and inflated by claims of what they have seen. All this bragging and boasting on their visions, dreams, and super spiritual experiences, shows them to be false, and not operating in the same spiritual humility as the true Apostles.

      The truth is, the true Apostles still minister among us by their teachings and writings, and it will do well for us to heed them, and build our lives and practices upon what they have said! Discernment in these days and a dedication to scripture is desperately needed!

      • This reply was modified 7 years, 10 months ago by PastorPoad.
    • #4392

      Rom 1:1 e KJV Separated unto the gospel of God.

      Separation for the believer so often involves us separating ourselves from negative things. Though this is an important aspect of this subject, we also need to pay attention to what we are separated unto. Paul was separated unto the gospel, to its study, meditation, his living by it, and his proclaiming of it. He had found the pearl of great price and it was worth giving his whole life for!

      The word separated is in the perfect tense, which means it was an action that was completed in the past, with existing results. Though the action of separating a person to himself is firstly performed by God, we have a role to play in this also, where we must separate ourselves unto God in dedication to Him, and to what He has commissioned us to do. Paul was a willing and active participant in the setting apart process.

    • #4393

      Rom 1:1 F Unto the gospel of God

      The gospel that Paul so wonderfully explains in this letter, is the gospel that comes from God. This is what gives his message such potency and power, that its from God!

      It is vital for us today, that we preach the same message Paul did. God doesn’t change so His message hasn’t changed, and we haven’t been given the authority to change or alter its content in anyway. We are simply called to echo and repeat what the Apostles have already proclaimed. If we do this, we may discover yet, that it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes!

    • #4394

      Rom 1:2 Which He promised beforehand through His Prophets in the holy scriptures ESV.

      The gospel that Paul had separated himself unto, had been promised beforehand in O.T. scripture. The prophesies of God in the O.T. are by very nature promises of what God is going to do. The gospel we have is in reality nothing new, but is as old as the Book! It is the same message that was preached to Adam, Abraham, Moses, David. We are now living in the fulfillment of those times. In other words the gospel that was promised to them has now been given to us. See 1 Pet 1:10-12.

      The term Prophets here is more broader in scope to how we often use it, when we refer to certain divisions of our Bibles, but it is referring to all of the O.T. The earlier as well as the latter Prophets.

      God has spoken through the Prophets in the Holy scriptures. Note where God is found to be found speaking, it is in the holy scriptures. We may find sure words there! TO live by the scriptures is to live by thus saith the Lord! It is there where we find Gods authoritative directives.

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