Saturday, July 11, 2009

Romans 1: 7-17

"To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. God, whom I serve with my whole heart in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God's will the way may be opened for me to come to you. I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong— that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith. I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so until now) in order that I might have a harvest among you, just as I have had among the other Gentiles. I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome. I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith." (Romans 1: 7-17, NIV)

Kung Fu Cat



Regarding Faith: Every time we sin, we are demonstrating, at that moment, a lack of faith/trust/confidence in God. Every time we worry, we are also demonstrating a lack of faith in God.

Verse 7: "CALLED to be saints." This speaks of Election.

Verse 13: "I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so..." The result of God keeping Paul from going to Rome is the book of Romans. (If Paul had gone to Rome, he might never have written this letter.)

Verse 17: "...a righteousness that is by faith from first to last..." For cults or anyone who says that faith alone is not enough to save a person. This is the verse God used to bring Martin Luther to become regenerated.

Some have said that all people need to know is that God loves them; that it's not what we believe that matters, but what we do; that the social teachings of the Bible are what's important; and that doctrine merely divides. But if that were true, Paul would not have written Romans (which is a theological letter, as opposed to 1 and 2 Corinthians or Galatians, that deal with problems in the churches). The problem is not that people need to know that God loves us (many unbelievers have heard that God loves them). And yes, some people do doubt sometimes that God loves them. But the real problem is that we do not love God, just as Luther discovered. We resist God vigorously because we don't want Him to rule over our lives, and we resent any meaningful attempts He makes to do so. One person summarized Romans as "Man's Total Ruin in Sin" and "God's Perfect Remedy in Christ."

6 comments:

thekingpin68 said...

'Regarding Faith: Every time we sin, we are demonstrating, at that moment, a lack of faith/trust/confidence in God. Every time we worry, we are also demonstrating a lack of faith in God.'

I cannot claim innocence.

satire and theology said...

'But the real problem is that we do not love God, just as Luther discovered. We resist God vigorously because we don't want Him to rule over our lives, and we resent any meaningful attempts He makes to do so.'

We need regeneration, justification and sanctification.

satire and theology said...

Yea I had a cat and dog that would scrap. A German Shepherd Husky and house cat. They fought for the attention of the humans, and for territorial ego.

Nitewrit said...

Jeff,

I have heard many children in my life tell their parents, "You don't love me", because the parent wouldn't buy them a toy they wanted or take them somewhere they wished to go or asked them to do something they didn't want to do (I probably did this myself as a child). Some parents give in, not just once but over and over again, and of course the child never stops asking. Parents who can't say no quite possibly don't love their children. But even so, the child may never love the parent either, but only want they can get. He child comes to equate things as love, but things break and things bore and thus the child never knows love. And the child seldom stops and thanks his parents. Why should the child, it's expected as owed to him or her.

This seems to be a lot of people's approach to God. If life is going their way, fine. But when they don't get something they want or trouble comes, it is God's fault. God doesn't love them. They never ask do I love God? How have I showed my love?

People will see some terrible act committed by men and say if God were loving, He wouldn't let such things happen. Yet if God sometimes does intervene in their lives and prevent them for pursuing a course which would lead to disaster, they still say God doesn't love them because he didn't answer their prayer the way they wanted.

Exactly right, they say, "we don't want Him to rule our lives, and we resent any meaningful attempts He makes to do so." And then they blame God when their lives fall apart.

Larry E.

Jeff said...

Thanks very much, Russ, for your generous comments!

Jeff said...

Nitewrit (Larry),

Very good analogy, and I totally agree! Thanks!