We are rolling now! Our reading takes us all the way through Romans, today: chapters 9-16.
Chapter 9 is an incredible look at how passionate Paul was for his Jewish family. He makes some powerful statements regarding his feelings. The same is true of chapter 10.
Chapter 11 includes a beautiful analogy of how Gentiles are “grafted” into God’s family. Chapter 12 begins with the well recognized admonition for us to: “offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship. (2) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will.” That is pretty much what we all need – right? We need to know God’s perfect will for our lives.
Chapter 13 reminds us that we are supposed to submit to all authority because authority is established by God. I think chapter 14 is one of the least understood chapters in the Bible. In essence, it says, we are accountable to one another for our behavior. Some behaviors that may not be a sin for us become sin if that behavior causes someone else to stumble. In other words, you can’t just do whatever you want. You have to take into account your responsibility for the stability of others. Romans 15:1-2 says, “We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2 Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. 3 For even Christ did not please himself…”
I think the most profound verse in the last chapter is verse 17: “I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.”
Romans is awesome. I Corinthians tomorrow will be just as great.