Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Snippets from Romans 1

Three snippets that jumped out at me from Romans 1:1-17 as I was meditating on it.

(1) 'Called to belong to Jesus Christ' (verse 6) - I love this idea of belonging! Verse 5 makes it clear that the proper response to the gospel is obedience to Jesus, but this goes alongside the idea that Christians are the Lord's very own.

(2) 'I am bound both to Greeks and barbarians' (verse 14) - this is obscured in the NIV which has 'Greeks and non-Greeks'. Paul makes it clear that his calling as apostle to the Gentiles was to all Gentiles, regardless of social standing or educational background. I wonder what Paul would make of the British evangelical church, which seems to be so skewed to the middle classes.

(3) 'I am not ashamed of the gospel' (verse 16) can apparently be accurately rendered 'I am not disappointed by the gospel'. As Paul reflects on his apostolic ministry and all it has involved as he has sought to plant it into the lives of many Gentiles, he can say that he has not been disappointed by the gospel. Why? Because the gospel does what it says - it brings salvation for all people, based solely on faith.

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