“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:5-6).

 

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Continued from My Roman Holiday: Romans 14.

“We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: ‘The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me’” (Romans 15:1-3). The apostle Paul has shown that the gospel has the power to transform Christians from the realm of sin and death into that of righteousness and life. But this transformation, as Paul has already noted  in Romans 6:11–23; 8:12–23 believers have been called to live out the righteousness so graciously granted us. God is working to conform us into the image of his Son (Romans 8:29); therefore, we are to participate in this process, as this transformation manifests in our daily lives. “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:5-6). Again, as Paul tells the Philippians: “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (12-13).

Romans 15 is full of any number of other revelations and wonderful truths worth exploring, but I have written what I believe the Holy Spirit has guided me to write.

Romans 15 speaks into our lives today; Paul’s appeal to the believers in Rome captures the heart of what it means to live as a Christian. Though Paul has yet to meet the believers at Rome, he expresses his confidence that they will even welcome his warnings as well as his admonishments; this confidence is based on what he has heard of their goodness. The gospel is a message of encouragement rooted in the utmost love. Until next time, and Romans 16!

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