17 Sept. Romans 15:1-33

17 Sept. Paul explains his mission to the Gentiles.

"We who are strong in faith should help the weak with their weaknesses, and not please only ourselves. Let each of us please our neighbours for their good, to help them be stronger in faith. Even Christ did not live to please himself..."

"Patience and encouragement come from God. And I pray that God will help you all agree with each other the way Christ Jesus wants. Then you will all be joined together, and you will give glory to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ..."

"I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with much joy and peace while you trust in him. Then your hope will overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit."

"My brothers and sisters, I am sure that you are full of goodness. I know that you have all the knowledge you need and that you are able to teach each other. But I have written to you very openly about some things I wanted you to remember."

"I did this because God gave me this special gift: to be a minister of Christ Jesus to those who are not Jews. I served God by teaching his Good News, so that the non-Jewish people could be an offering that God would accept - an offering made holy by the Holy Spirit..."

"I preached the Good News from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, and so I have finished that part of my work. I always want to preach the Good News in places where people have never heard of Christ, because I do not want to build on the work someone else has already started..."

"This is the reason I was stopped many times from coming to you. Now I have finished my work here. Since for many years I have wanted to come to you, I hope to visit you on my way to Spain. After I enjoy being with you for a while, I hope you can help me on my trip..."

"Brothers and sisters, I beg you to help me in my work by praying to God for me... Pray that I will be saved from the non-believers in Judea and that this help I bring to Jerusalem will please God's people there. Then, if God wants me to, I will come to you with joy, and together you and I will have a time of rest. The God who gives peace be with you all. Amen."

          (Romans 15:1-33)

 

 

Paul is coming to the end of his letter, and he looks forward to visiting the believers in Rome in the not too distant future.

He reminds them that he has had to say some strong words to them, and he prays that they will make every effort to live in peace and harmony with each other: "I pray that God will help you all agree with each other the way Christ Jesus wants. Then you will all be joined together, and you will give glory to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ." (Romans 15:5-6)

But before he lays out his plans for his visit, he explains why his mission has been among the Gentiles: "I did this because God gave me this special gift: to be a minister of Christ Jesus to those who are not Jews." (Romans 15:15-16)

Paul then outlines the extent of his missionary journeys so far: “I preached the Good News from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum” (the region west of Macedonia – see Acts 17:13-14), “and so I have finished that part of my work. I always want to preach the Good News in places where people have never heard of Christ, because I do not want to build on the work someone else has already started” (Romans 15:19-20).

Paul goes on to say he now plans to visit the believers in Rome on a future journey while travelling to Spain. For the time being, however, he is going to Jerusalem to take gifts for the poorer members of the church from the believers in Macedonia and Achaia (northern and southern Greece) (see 1 Corinthians 16:1-4).

In the event, when Paul arrived in Jerusalem in the autumn of 57AD, he was attacked by some of the Jews and accused of blasphemy (see Acts 21:17-32). Arrested by the Romans for causing a disorder, he was imprisoned for two years in Caesarea (see Acts 23:23-35). When the Jewish religious authorities conspired to kill him, Paul appealed to have his case heard by the Roman Emperor (see Acts 25:1-12). And so Paul did eventually travel to Rome - not on his way to visit Spain, but under house arrest awaiting his trial before Emperor Nero.

The photo shows the Temple of Concord, the Arch of Septimius Severus and the Temple of Saturn in the Forum at Rome.

You can read more from Paul's Letter to the Romans @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/14-pauls-l…/pauls-mission/


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