An overview of the book of Romans
Books of the Bible – Lesson 45
AUTHOR: The Apostle Paul. It was written from the city of Corinth while Paul was visiting that city.
THEME: “The Gospel of God Is for the Gentiles as well as for the Jew.”
KEY WORD: LAW 78 x RIGHTEOUSNESS 39 x FAITH 62 x
There are more Old Testament quotations in Romans than in all of the other Epistles put together. (70).
DATE: 58 A.D.
Before we get into Romans let’s examine an overview of the Pauline Epistles or the books of the Bible that God used the Apostle Paul to pen.
THE EPISTLES OF PAUL
An Overview of the Letters of Paul
As the LORD chose Abraham, a non-Jew, to be the father of the Jews, so God chose Paul, a non-Gentile, to be the Apostle to the Gentiles (Rom. 11:13; 15:16; Gal. 2:7; Eph. 3:1-8). God revealed to Moses the laws for the nation of Israel on Mt. Sinai and it appears God revealed the doctrines for born again believers to Paul on Mt. Sinai (Gal. 1:17). These doctrines were kept secret until they were first revealed to Paul (Rom. 16:25-27; Eph. 3:1-8).
The Epistles of Paul are the preserved letters that were written to seven churches and three men (Acts 23:33-34). The chronological order of these letters provide a pattern for the growth of the believer (1 Cor. 3:1; Eph. 5:1; 1 Tim. 1:2; 4:12; 2 Tim. 2:2; Philemon 9). The last two letters are very short in content. There are few Christians who become students, soldiers, and servants of Christ. As in nature many young animals die so in Christianity many young die on the vine through deception. In Christianity and in sports few attain the prize of a champion.
The themes of each letter mark the steps of growth for the NT Christian. Romans reveals the foundation truth of justification by grace through faith in the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. The new birth of the believer begins a new life through the power of the regeneration of the Holy Ghost. The next letter to follow Romans is written to baby or carnal Christians. A newborn babe in Christ innocently proclaims his new faith in Christ. The joy and peace of the forgiveness of sins, the promise of eternal life in heaven, and the love for the Saviour compel the new creature to witness for Jesus Christ. The new believer often reaps some firstfruits and people often express their happiness for the person’s renewed happiness.
The firstfruits cause the new convert to entertain thoughts of the ministry. The theme of the next book is the ministry, but the ministry is portrayed by corruption, persecution, reproaches, suffering, and trouble. The ministry is a sacrificial call to service. As the believer continues to grow he notices the apathy amongst the church; therefore, he questions the salvation of the apathetic Christian. He is tempted to develop a checklist in order to prove salvation. Galatians is preserved to combat the error of using outward circumstances and convictions in order to determine the inner workings of the Spirit (John 3:8; Gal. 5:16-26). The theme of Galatians is a believer is not only justified by grace through faith, but the believer is also sanctified by grace through faith. A believer can commit heinous sins as the lost and still be saved, but he forfeits inheritances for the kingdom (Rom. 8:17; Col. 3:23-24; 2 Tim. 2:12; 2 Peter 2:6-8).
Ephesians provides a detailed study of the salvation of the believer and the proper method of growth and service through the fullness of the Holy Ghost and the word of God (Eph. 5:18; Col. 3:16). The by-products of love for God and His word are joy and peace (Rom. 14:17). Joy is the theme of Philippians and it is the outward characteristic that sinners observe most in the believer. The joyous Christian is warned in Colossians to beware of philosophy, tradition, and vain deceit in the Laodicean age.
The two letters to the Thessalonians provide the fundamentals of the faith for a model walk and work of the believer. An holy life is necessary to walk with the holy God and the truth of the Second Coming of Christ aids greatly in that walk (1 John 3:1-3). The letters to Timothy instruct the soldiers and students of Christ in the leadership of the church. The major orders are to take heed to thyself and to thy doctrine (1 Tim. 4:16; 5:17; 2 Tim. 2:15; 3:15-17). The letter to Titus is like a field manual for the soldier on the battlefield.
The letter to Philemon is the shortest letter and the last letter of doctrinal issues for the NT believer. It reveals the highest calling for any saint as true servants of Christ. A bondservant accepts all of the circumstances of life with joy and peace because they fulfill the will of his Master (Rom. 8:28; Phil. 4:11; Col. 4:1-6; 1 Thess. 5:18; Philemon 1-9).
PAUL’S EPISTLES HAVE A GENERAL PATTERN OUTLINE
Introduction – Text, Story behind text and/or definitions of words
Information (Doctrine) – proof of the truth
Application (Practical application of the Doctrine taught)
THEMES OF THE EPISTLES PENNED BY PAUL.
I and II Thessalonians
Romans, I and II Corinthians, Galatians
Colossians, Ephesians, Philippians, Philemon
I and II Timothy, Titus
NOW LET’S SPECIFICALLY DEAL WITH THE BOOK OF ROMANS
Paul was soon to visit the city of Rome on his 3rd Missionary Journey. From Corinth he writes the Christians in Rome announcing his coming and listing the truths that he will preach while he is with them. In other words, the epistle is simply a letter written in advance telling them of his coming and of the doctrines he will preach. Who were these Christians and who founded this church?
The Roman Catholic Church teaches that Peter had started this church and had lived in Rome for 25 years. However, there is no evidence of his ever being in Rome. If Peter had been in Rome and Paul was writing a letter to his church, why didn’t Paul include Peter in his greeting? The Apostle Peter is not mentioned in the entire letter. Also, if Peter had established this church in Rome, why was Paul so anxious to go there and preach to these people, when his philosophy of his ministry is revealed? (Romans 15:20) Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation:
Others believe that Paul had started the church. Though he may have had an indirect part in this church, he had never yet been to Rome.
Who founded this church? The Holy Spirit did, and He began this work on the day of Pentecost. In Acts 2:10, we have the various nationalities of the Gentiles who were converted through the preaching of Peter in the power of the Holy Spirit. Among these people are “strangers of Rome.” A group of Romans were converted in Jerusalem and returned to Rome and gathered together. In addition to these people, Paul was responsible for winning hundreds of people to Christ in various cities, many of whom were originally from Rome, such as Priscilla and Aquila. Many of these eventually gravitated back to Rome, the capital of the world at that time.
The book of Romans is one of the richest in doctrine in all the Bible and has been responsible for mightily influencing Christianity.
Romans is the first and foremost of the letters of Paul. The epistle forms a sure foundation for the born-again Christian. The theme of the epistle is the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:16). The keyword of the letter is righteousness. The righteousness of God is the Lord Jesus Christ and the righteousness of God is the prerequisite for eternal life in heaven. The self-righteousness of man is the basis for all the religions of the world (Rom. 10:1-4).
The letter begins with the sinfulness of mankind. All men are guilty before the Lord God and deserve the fiery judgment of God (Rom. 3:19), but the righteousness of God is offered freely by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus. Imputed righteousness and justification are bestowed to the believer at the moment of salvation (Rom. 4:5; 5:1). The word justification is kin to the words judgment, justice, judge, jury, justified, and just. Justification is an act that lawfully declares one to be free of sin. The simplified expression is just-as-if-I’d-never-sinned. The punishment of sin is expunged from the record of the believer. After justification the most vital duty of the believer is to walk an holy life on earth (Rom. 6:17-18; 7:12-25; 8:29). Many practical principles of holy living for the Christian are recorded in the last five chapters of the epistle.
Paul wrote the blindness of the nation of Israel and the conversion of the Gentiles in chapters 9-11; however, the national blindness of Israel is not permanent because the epistle to the Hebrews records the amended doctrines for the Jews during the Tribulation.
Why did Paul write this book? Paul had a great desire to go to Rome and planned on such a visit while eventually desiring to go to Spain. This letter was written for several reasons.
Romans 1:10‑11 Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
To instruct them in the basic doctrines of the Christian faith and help guard them against false teachers.
To explain the difference between the Church and Israel which would guard them against legalistic Jews.
To teach them concerning their Christian duties toward one another and to the government.
To assure them concerning any slander they may have heard about him. Romans 3:8
The first is Romans 1-11 which is strictly doctrinal. In these chapters Paul lists the great doctrines of the faith.
The second division includes chapters 12-16. This division is completely different from the first, as it deals with the practical aspects of the Christian life.
In other words, the apostle spent the first eleven chapters stating the wonders of salvation and the last five chapters stating what we ought to do as Christians because of that wonderful salvation.
Romans 12:1‑2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed
by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
In Romans 12:1 the word “beseech” means “beg.“
The word “therefore” connects it with the first 11 chapters. In other words, Paul is begging because of the wonderful doctrines found in the previous chapters.
The words, “by the mercies of God,” actually mean, ‘1because of the wonderful mercies listed in the first 11 chapters.“
The word “present” means “yield.“ In other words, because of the wonders of the early chapters, we should yield our bodies to God.
The word “sacrifice” goes back to the sacrifice of the Old Testament. The Jew would offer an animal as a dead sacrifice to God. God wants a living sacrifice from us. His Son has already offered the dead sacrifice as a penalty for sin. Now He wants the living sacrifice from us, that is, in service for Christ.
The words, “holy, acceptable,” also go back to the Old Testament. The lamb that was offered had to be acceptable to God and without blemish. God wants our living sacrifices “holy, acceptable unto Him.” We are not supposed to sow our wild oats when we are young and then go to church when we get older. You are not supposed to give God a wasted burned out wrecked life. You are to give God your life while it is holy and pure.
In Romans 12:2 the word “conformed” means “fashioned.“ Because of the wonders of the first 11 chapters, we are not to fashion ourselves after the world.
The word “world” means “world setup,” “world system,” “the pattern of things in the world,” etc.
The word “transformed” is the same word that is used in Matthew concerning the transfiguration of Christ when He received His glorified body. We are to be as different from this world as Jesus was in His glorified body.
Notice in Romans 12:2b that this is the way we can find the perfect will of God for our lives.
Following these verses (Romans 12:1, 2), the Apostle Paul lists the way we can live this kind of a life. Statement after statement is given as to the way the Christian should live. For example, read Romans 12:9-21. You will find the outworking of the kind of sacrifice that the Lord is asking for in Romans 12:1, 2.
Looking backward from Romans 12:1, 2 we have all the doctrines of grace. Because of these doctrines, we are to build the kind of life that Paul in Romans 12-16 is asking us to live. For example, there is the doctrine of the depravity of man in chapters 1-3, the doctrine of justification in chapters 4 and 5, the doctrine of sanctification in chapters 6 and 7, the doctrine of the Holy Spirit in chapter 8, and the doctrine of the sovereignty of God in chapters 9-11. There are many other doctrines, such as propitiation, etc. All of these great doctrines of the faith are doctrines of grace. Because of what God has done for us in His great mercy, we are to do something for Him.
In other words, chapters 1-11 tell us what God has done for us in Salvation.
Chapters 12-16 tell us what we are to do for Him because of what He has done for us.
III. SOME KEY WORDS IN ROMANS. Romans is written basically to Gentile Christians. The Lord is saying that there is no respecting of persons with God. He is not only the God of the Jews, but also the God of the Gentiles.
Consequently, the word “all” is a key word.
The word “whosoever” is a key word.
The word “none” is a key word.
Notice the all-inclusiveness of these words. We are all bunched together. We are all sinners; none is righteous. There is no respect of persons with God. Paul is trying to let the Gentile nations know that salvation is not just a Jewish thing’; it is also for the Gentiles.
PAUL’S READINESS. There are three “I am’s” in Romans 1 that tell us of the readiness of Paul to go to Rome.
“I am debtor.“ Romans 1:14. Paul owed a debt to the Greeks and barbarians as well as to the Jews. He was coming to pay that debt.
“I am ready.“ Romans 1:15. In other words, because he was a debtor in verse 14, he is ready t9 pay that debt in verse 15.
“I am not ashamed.“ Romans 1:16. Because he is a debtor in verse 14, he is ready to pay his debt in verse 15, and he is not ashamed to do so in verse 16. Let every Christian say, “I am debtor,” “I am ready” and “I am not ashamed.”
PAUL’S MESSAGE. Romans 1:16-18.
His message included the power of God in verse 16.
His message included the righteousness of God in verse 17.
His message included the wrath of God in verse 18.
Notice the all-inclusiveness of his message. He came in the power’ of God to preach the righteousness of God and to warn of the wrath of God to those who refuse His righteousness.
CONCLUSION: There are many Scriptures that teach the all-inclusiveness of the book of Romans. For example, Romans 1:16, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” Notice the words, “also to the Greek.” Romans 2:11, For there is no respect of persons with God. Notice “there is no respect of persons.” God is including everybody. Romans 3:19, Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them that are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Notice the words, “all the world.” Again, He is including the Jew and the Gentile. Romans 3:29, Is He the God of the Jews only? is He not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also. Notice especially the words, “Yes, of the Gentiles also.” Then there are other verses also, such as Romans 3:10; 3:23; 5:12; etc. There is Romans 10:13 which mentions “whosoever.” Salvation is for all. All have sinned. All have come short of the glory of God. All must stand before God. All may be saved. All who are not saved will suffer the wrath of God.
A few individual lessons from Romans
Romans 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
Biblical separation it’s from the errors of the world unto the truth of the word.
Romans 1:13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
The phrase I would not have you ignorant occurs seven times in the Scriptures. Six of these occurrences are by Paul (Rom. 11:25; 1 Cor. 10:1; 12:1; 2 Cor. 1:8; 1 Thess. 4:13) and one occurrence is by Peter. God does not want Christians to ignore these truths. This truth reveals the hindrances of Satan in the ministry (let means hindrance – 2 Thess. 2:7).
Romans 2:1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
The accusation of being judgmental stems from a judgmental person. Everyone judges, but the Lord God admonishes proper judgment (Matt. 7:1-5; John 7:24; 12:48; 1 Cor. 2:15).
Romans 2:5-6 But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;
6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds:
The righteous judgment of God occurs partially on earth, but the final judgment will occur at the Great White Throne Judgment (Dan. 7:9-10; Rev. 20:11-15). The accountability of man to God is mocked by the professors of higher learning (Acts 24:25; Rom. 1:22). The questions of these scoffers are: Where do the heathen go? What about little children? What happens to the heathen without the Bible? The heathen have much more sense than the said professors. God created the conscience as a check on wrongful actions. But the conscience can be defiled, seared, and weakened (1 Cor. 8:7; 1 Tim. 4:2; Titus 1:15). Pagans understand the punishment of violating moral laws (Gen. 12:14-20; 20:3-6; Jer. 42:2-4). When a gentile follows his good conscience, God reveals light to him (Acts 10:1-6). When the light is accepted, more light is revealed. Light rejected becomes lightning. God does not charge a person with sin unless there is a law established in the heart and mind (Rom. 4:15; 5:13). This is often called the age of accountability. Children prior to this age and understanding are safe in the righteousness of Jesus Christ (Gen. 3:5; Deut. 1:39; 2 Sam. 12:23).
Romans 2:12-16 For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;
13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)
16 In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.
A good conscience accuses one of wrong doing. A good conscience is weakened when the person excuses himself by self-justification and self-righteousness (Prov. 16:2; 20:6). A good conscience is purified and strengthened by the blood and word of God (Phil. 1:9-11).
Understanding the importance of your conscience and the Holy Spirit that lives within you is very important.
The next few paragraphs will help doctrinally and practically with this:
God is so good to us in helping us flee sin. Hence, He uses everything within His disposal to let us know that sin is wrong and is not for our own good. There are several things that God uses in a progressive way to keep us from sin and to convict us of evil.
The conscience says, “You shouldn’t do that.” so you quit, but it does not tell you what you SHOULD do. The Bible teaches us that the conscience can become seared and depraved. Hebrews 9:14, “How much more shall the blood of Christ, Who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” Consequently, one should be very sensitive to his conscience and obey that righteous instinct not to do evil.
“You should not be here, but this is the TYPE PLACE you should be.” Now the Bible does not give the EXACT place, but it does give us the TYPE of place that we should go. The conscience says, “You should not do this.” The Bible comes along and says, “That’s right. You should not do that, and this is the type of thing you should do.” It does, however, stop short of telling us EXACTLY what good thing to do and WHERE TO DO IT.
The conscience says, “You are in the wrong neighborhood.” The Bible comes along and underlines the words of the conscience and goes farther and says, “Not only should you not be in this neighborhood, but this is the type neighborhood to which you should go.” In a sense, the Bible then becomes the grade school of conviction.
A man is driving too fast on the highway. He does not know the speed limit and his speedometer is not working, and yet something tells him that he is driving too fast. This is the conscience. He then sees a speed limit sign and his speedometer begins to work, so he finds not only that he is driving too fast but exactly how fast he is driving. The speed limit sign and the speedometer symbolize the Word of God. He then notices another driver who is driving carefully within the speed limit. This typifies Jesus, the pattern of the Spirit-filled life. Then he asks the Holy Spirit to tell him WHERE to drive and EXACTLY HOW FAST to drive.
In summary, the conscience tells us what we should NOT do. The Bible comes along and verifies the con-science and adds the type thing we SHOULD do. Jesus comes along and shows us the perfect EXAMPLE. Then the Holy Spirit tells us WHICH good thing we should do and which acceptable area is God’s place for our lives.
If one leaves out the Holy Spirit, he may drive properly in the wrong place. If one leaves out the Bible and the Holy Spirit and trusts only his conscience, he may come out of the wrong place but not know where to go and will no doubt, sooner or later, return to the place where he should not be. Hence, the wise Christian will be careful to listen to his conscience concerning evil. He will examine the Scriptures to find Bible principles that tell him what not to do and what to do. He will study the life of Jesus and ask the Holy Spirit to help him become more and more fashioned in His likeness. Then day by day and moment by moment he will walk in the Spirit, asking the Holy Spirit that EXACT place that he should be and the exact thing that he should be doing.
Romans 2:28-29 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
This distinction is between a Jew according to race or religion. The Gentiles do not replace the Jews in regards to the promises of the kingdom of Heaven. The Jewish remnant inherits the millennium promises, not the apostate Jews (Ezek. 33:24-29; Rom. 9:27; Heb. 6:12).
Romans 3:1 What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision?
The Bible is an Oriental Book written by Jewish men with the customs of the Orient.
Romans 3:4 God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.
God wrote the rules of court for the White Throne Judgment (John 12:48); so that, no man or woman has any excuse. Arrogant and foolish people will judge the Lord at this judgment, but God will answer every argument until the person is speechless and guilty (Matt. 22:46).
Romans 3:21-22 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
The righteousness of God is the fulfilled work of the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom. 10:4). The righteousness of God is imputed on the record of the believer at the moment of faith in Christ. God also declares the convert justified in his sight. Justification is a judicial decree of God whereby God justly declares a center righteous who believes on Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:1).
Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
A believer in Jesus Christ is justified by faith, not by wafer, war, water, wealth, or works.
Romans 5:8-9 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
The love of God was manifested at Calvary when the Lord Jesus died for sinners. The love of God never overrules the holiness and justice of God. When a sinner rejects the Son of God, God Almighty damns that sinner to hell (John 3:36). A sinner must voluntarily accept the love of God through the Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
These questions are asked by people who do not believe the doctrine of the internal security of the believer. They have failed to believe the words of Romans 4-5 and they have failed to study the Judgment Seat of Christ (Rom. 14:10-12; 1 Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Cor. 5:10-11).
Romans 6:3-4 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
There are two separate baptisms in the context and neither have anything to do with water. The real baptism is the baptism of the Holy Ghost into Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 12:13). Water baptism simply pictures the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus.
Romans 6:11-12 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
Christians who yield to sin have failed to reckon or believe themselves to be dead unto sin. When tempted by sin, just say out loud by faith, In the name of Jesus Christ, I reckon that I’m dead unto sin and alive unto God.” The Holy Ghost sanctifies the believer (1 Cor. 6:11).
Romans 6:21-23 What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death.
22 But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.
23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
An inner change at salvation is a renewed conscience. This causes the new convert to hate things that he used to love and love things that he used to hate. Sincere Christians do not brag about sin; they are ashamed of their sin.
Romans 7:1-3 Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
Paul compare the regulations of divorce with spiritual circumcision, the separation of the flesh and the soul at salvation (Deut. 24:1-4; Col. 2:11-12). The practical application is about marriage divorce and remarriage (Matt. 19:9). The death of a spouse is automatic grounds for divorce (loosed – 7:2). A woman is an adulterous when she marries another man without a lawful divorce from her husband (2 Sam. 12:10, 15, 24). The doctoral application reveals the flesh and the soul are married before salvation. The lost are considered IN the flesh (Rom. 8:9), IN sin (John 8:21, 24), and IN Adam (1Cor. 15:22). The believers are IN the spirit (Rom. 8:9), IN righteousness (Eph. 4:24), and IN Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:1-2; Gal. 6:15). The soul is joined to the body before salvation, but during the rebirth of the believer the soul is loosed from the body through spiritual circumcision (Col. 2:11-12). When the soul is loosed or divorced from the flesh, the soul becomes joined or remarried to Christ. The soul becomes the bride of Jesus Christ because it is been regenerated by the Spirit (Ps. 34:2; 2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:32). Hence every saved person has experienced a divorce and remarriage at salvation.
Romans 7:14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
The struggle is between the body of flesh and the soul. The carnal man is the natural man who is unable to completely obey the law (1 Cor. 2:14; 15:44). The will of the man desires to obey the law, but the appetites of the flesh drives the man to surrender his better judgment to carnal passions. That will can be enslaved when one repeatedly yields to the carnal desires of the flesh (2 Tim. 2:26). Enslavement to sin and the subjugation of the will result in bondage of corruption (Rom. 8:21; 2 Peter 2:19). The believer is sanctified by the word of God and the Holy Ghost (Acts 26:18; 1 Cor. 6:11; Gal. 5:16-26; Eph. 5:26; Col. 3:9-10; 2 Tim. 2:19-21).
Romans 8:16-17 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
The inheritance of the heir is conditioned upon sanctification, suffering, and/or service for God (Luke 19:11-27; Acts 20:32; 26:18; Col. 3:24; 2 Tim.2:12). Eternal life is a gift of grace, but an inheritance and rewards can be forfeited (Gal. 5:17-21; 2 John 7-8; Rev. 3:11).
Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
The Holy Ghost is the interpreter of the words of God and the intercessor of the words of the prayers of the saint (John 16:13; Eph. 6:18; 2 Peter 1:20-21). No hierarchy of priests and prayer books are needed. Christ Jesus is the mediator and the Holy Ghost is the intercessor.
Romans 8:28 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.
This great promise reveals all of the circumstances in the life of the true believer are for his or her good (Phil. 1:6; 2:13; 2 Cor. 9:6-11; 1 Thess. 5:18). They may never understand why but all they have to focus on is loving God with all of their heart.
Romans 8:37-39 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The promise of eternal security of the born-again believer includes, without restriction, the promises of a sinless body, soul, and spirit in heaven and the power to overcome the worldly attitudes and actions in order to live a victorious Christian life (2 Cor. 7:1).
Romans 9:15-16 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
The context of the chapter is the nation of Israel; it is not individual salvation. Calvinists foolishly misuse this chapter for the heresy of unconditional election. The sovereignty of man over his free will can thwart the sovereign decrees of God (1 Sam. 23:11-13). The sovereignty of God has chosen the conditions for mercy and grace through the Lord Jesus. Any sinner can resist this free offer of grace (John 3:36; Rev. 22:17).
Romans 10:3-4 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.
Self-righteousness is the false basis of the religions of the world.
Romans 10:12-13 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
The new birth of the believer is like the birth of a baby (John 3:3-8). As a baby receives life through a complete reliance upon its mother, so every sinner is given eternal life upon a complete faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 16:31; Rom. 5:1-11; Eph. 1:12-14). As the baby cries out so the repentant sinner calls upon the Lord Jesus (2 Tim. 2:22). The growth of the baby depends upon its desires and nourishment (1 Peter 2:2-3; 2 Peter 3;18).
Romans 11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
The second area that Paul does not want to Christian to ignore is one of the seven mysteries of the holy Bible (Rom. 1:13; 1 Cor. 4:1-2). This mystery is the temporary blindness of Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles (Rev. 11:1-2). A Jewish remnant will be saved and the nation of Israel will be forgiven and delivered at the second coming of the Lord Jesus (Isa. 40:1-2; Jer. 50:20; Ezek. 36:24-38; Dan. 9:24; Joel 3:17-21; Acts 3:19-21; Heb. 8:8-12). Unbelieving Jews will be cast into hell as the enemies of Christ. Conceited and ignorant people believe that either God has forsaken Israel forever or that Israel mysteriously became white Anglo-Saxons (Jer. 33:17-18). Whoever claims to be Israel of Romans 11:26 must also claimed to be the blinded Israel of Romans 11:25 (Matt. 15:14).
Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
This is a reasonable service because the Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily suffered and died for the price of redemption (2 Cor. 5:14-21). The Christian is not to conform to the peer pressure of the fads and fashions of the world. Biblical Christianity resists the ecumenicalism of the new world order (Gen. 11:6-9; Ps. 2:1-4; Luke 12:51; Heb. 13:12-13; 2 John 7-11).
The perfect will of God is the ideal plan of service for the sanctified believer. It is the joyful fulfillment of the pleasures of God in the precise way that God wants it done (Rom. 15:32; Eph. 6:6; Col. 4:12; 1 Thess. 4:1-7; 5:18). The acceptable will of God is like Plan B when the servant forfeited or ruined Plan A, but God can still salvage acceptable work like Samson and David after the blunders with women (Heb. 11:32). The good will of God is a nice Christian fulfilling good works that the world may even accept; but, if it is not the perfect or acceptable will of God (Matt. 10:41; Gal. 6:10). God does not accept the works at the Judgement Seat of Christ. The good will of God is when Christians fear the complete sacrifice to the perfect will of God. They evade the prompting of the spirit, but they know they should do something for God as they make a good living for themselves so they do good works in order to appease their conscience. Fulfilling the goodwill of God is better than living a wicked life and the good works help the servants in the acceptable or perfect will of God. It is reasonable to honestly seek the perfect will of God from the heart because the Lord Jesus gave all for the believer. If the perfect is not available, it is reasonable to complete one’s life fulfilling the acceptable will of God (Col. 1:21-29; 1 Tim. 6:17-19). Seeking the acceptable will is better late, then never!
Romans 15:15-16 Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God,
16 That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.
Paul’s epistles are the primary source for sound doctrine for the born-again Christian. The mystery of the body of Christ was first revealed to the Apostle Paul (Eph. 3:1-8). The truths of salvation by grace and the church were written by the prophets, but they were not fully understood (Ps. 22:30-31; Isa. 55:1-3; Hosea 1:9-10; 1 Peter 1:10-12). The Song of Solomon contains doctrine about the Bridegroom and the Bride. The church began as an organization in Matthew 10:1–6 with the apostles and it became a living organism with the baptism of the Holy Ghost in Acts 2:1–4 (1 Cor. 12:28). The bigots in the hierarchy of Romanism attempt to keep the secret from all people. They ignore they’re supposed first pope when he admonished people to read and study the Epistles of Paul (2 Peter 3:15-16). The Epistle to the Romans is the absolute standard for doctrinal truths for the born-again child of God.
Romans 16:25-26 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
OUTLINE OF THE BOOK OF ROMANS
THE PROBLEM OF MANKIND. Rom. 1:18-3:20
Wicked people are sinners.
Romans 1:26‑28 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
God searches the wicked people of this world and finds that they enjoy sin – they take pleasure in their sins of homosexuality, fornication, envy, murder, gossip, rebellion, and hating God.
Good people are also sinners.
Romans 2:1 Therefore thou are inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
This group of people are outwardly clean or morally good, so they have set themselves as judges of others. While they see themselves as being good enough to judge others, God says that the day is approaching “when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ.” (Acts 2:16) – In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.
God’s chosen people are also sinners.
Romans 2:21-24 – Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest a man should not steal’ dost thou steal? Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege? Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God? For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written.
God next directs His wrath to His own people, the Jews, and warns them against resting in the Law because they are all offenders of that Law. Their haughty spirit and pride in being Jewish has caused God to be blasphemed by the Gentiles.
Rom 3:22‑23 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
God here plainly tells the wicked, the good, the Jew and the Gentile -“there is no difference – all have sinned.”
Paul has now laid the groundwork for everything else that is to follow, because by revealing sin as a universal problem with mankind, God can now reveal a solution.
Rom 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Notice the key words in God’s solution:
“Justified.” Rom. 3:24 – This means to take a person to court and to declare the person INNOCENT. When a person gets saved, their sins are placed beneath the blood of Christ; God takes them to court as a sinner but no one can find the evidence; then they are declared to be INNOCENT – through the shed blood of Christ!
“Grace.” Rom. 3:24 – This refers to how God’s salvation is offered. It can’t be purchased nor earned by good works – it is offered as a FREE gift to anyone willing to receive it.
“Propitiation” Rom. 3:24 – This word can mean one of 2 things: it can refer to a satisfactory sacrifice or to the lid of the mercy seat. Christ was set forth as either and as both – He became the place where God was able to meet man – the place of blood.
“Remission” Rom. 3:25 – this means to cancel a debt or penalty. The blood has the ability to remove the penalty of our sins, and re-attach that penalty to the person of Christ. Every sin must be paid for – either by the person or by the Savior of that person.
Quite simply, God is informing every person that the only solution for sin is salvation. Our faith sets the machinery of God’s salvation in motion which brings about our justification – declared INNOCENT!
III. THE RESULTS AVAILABLE TO MANKIND. (Romans 6-8)
Any person who receives by faith the salvation available through Christ Jesus will receive several things.
(Romans 6:3) – We are to KNOW that we are in Christ.
(Romans 6:11) – We are to RECKON (reason) that we are dead to sin and self.
(Romans 6:13) – We are to YIELD (surrender) ourselves to God.
(Romans 7:18) – For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. Prior to salvation, there was no struggle in trying to please God, but with the indwelling Holy Spirit trying to conquer the flesh, we discover a war raging in our hearts! We want to do right and still end up doing wrong.
The power of the Holy Spirit. Rom. 8:26 – Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
The power of God. Rom. 8:31 – “what shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?”
The power of Christ. Rom. 8:35-37 – Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
Rom 11:8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.
Rom. 11:33-34 – O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counselor?
GOD’S DESIRES FOR MANKIND.
That we submit ourselves to the Lord as a living sacrifice. Rom. 12:1 – I BESEECH you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Our lives will then be lived according to His desires and pleasures and not our own.
That we submit ourselves to God-ordained authority. Rom. 13:1 – Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. The only time we are free to resist that leadership is when God’s leadership would be violated. (If a law is passed stating we can no longer meet as a church, then we are free to violate that law and therefore obey God. – Heb. 10:25)
Be lenient with others and hard on ourselves.
The book of Romans can be condensed into this one statement.
It tells us what’s wrong with us, how to fix it, and how to keep ourselves right with God.