Monday in the Twentieth Week of Ordinary Time

Romans 15:14-33

To Remind You

Paul is now hastening to the end of this long letter to the church in Rome.  It seems fitting that his most theologically comprehensive writing would be addressed to the imperial city, the capital of the world.  He has made his case that justification is by faith in the atoning work of Jesus Christ, that upon regeneration the life of the Christian is a Spirit-filled life wherein we die to sin and live to God, that God’s redemptive plan has always included both Jew and Gentile, and that we should receive one another in the church despite our failings, lifting one another up in prayer and encouraging one another in anticipation of the day of our Lord’s return.  Paul now rejoices over the work that God has accomplished through him as a minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, God’s purpose for which was to “bring the Gentiles to obedience.”  We must understand that the bringing of people to faith in Christ Jesus is the bringing of them to obedience—only made possible by the Spirit’s work upon that person, of course.  Still, Scripture understands that the embracing of the gospel of those people so moved by the Holy Spirit is the same as the bringing of those people to the obedience of God as they are transferred from darkness to light, to the kingdom of His dear Son.

Paul goes on to speak of his plans to travel to Rome to see the church with the hope of being refreshed and sent off by them to preach the gospel in Spain.  He felt that he had finished his work in Asia Minor and Greece and needed to move westward.  Perhaps he wanted to use the Roman church as his new base for mission work in that endeavor.  But at the moment, Paul was headed to Jerusalem to deliver the love gift from the Gentile churches to their brethren in Judea in hopes that all would go well, even asking for the believers in Rome to pray for the success and well-being of his journey.  We read of this journey and all the goings-on in Acts 21:17-28:31.

Two brief points to consider: 1) Paul writes that he had written to the Roman church boldly by way of reminder.  When your pastor stands up to preach on Sunday morning, his task is to say nothing new but to remind you of the things you have learned from the Holy Scriptures.  Paul reminds Timothy of the faith that dwelt in both his mother and grandmother and pleads with him to “guard the deposit entrusted to you” (1 Timothy 6:20; 2 Timothy 1:3-5); and, 2) That we as Gentiles have come to share in the spiritual blessings of the Jews, namely the sacred Scriptures, the covenant, the promises, and, of course, the Messiah.  May we share with them all we have to give and most of all pray for their embrace of the same Messiah who came for them.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

Leave a Reply