Romans – Week 6 – Chapter 15
1 We who are strong must be considerate of those who are sensitive about things like this. We must not just please ourselves.
2 We should help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord.
3 For even Christ didn’t live to please himself. As the Scriptures say, “The insults of those who insult you, O God, have fallen on me.”[a]
4 Such things were written in the Scriptures long ago to teach us. And the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled.
5 May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus.
6 Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
7 Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory.
- Those who understand that real godliness is based upon spirit-led principles are referred to as “strong” and must set the example of Christ and to do so you must set aside your own feelings of the flesh so to not make another stumble.
- So then if we are strong, then we must use that spiritual strength to alter our lifestyles for the benefit of our “weaker” brothers and sisters.
8 Remember that Christ came as a servant to the Jews[a] to show that God is true to the promises he made to their ancestors.
9 He also came so that the Gentiles might give glory to God for his mercies to them. That is what the psalmist meant when he wrote: “For this, I will praise you among the Gentiles; I will sing praises to your name.”[b]
10 And in another place it is written, “Rejoice with his people, you Gentiles.”[c]
11 And yet again, “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles. Praise him, all you people of the earth.”[d]
13 I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
- The Old Testament always intended that the Gospel spread to the Gentiles. Here’s how we know:
- Psalms 18:49
- Deuteronomy 32:43
- Psalms 117:1
- Isaiah 11:10
- Why did Paul make it a point to show how the Old Testament always included racing out to the Gentiles?
- The “Born-again” Jews were having a hard time giving up their legalistic and ritualistic lifestyles, but the Newly saved Gentiles didn’t bring the same “baggage” to their Christ walk. Plain and simple, he is leveling the playing field to express how Jews and Gentiles can coexist without agitating each other.
14 I am fully convinced, my dear brothers and sisters,[a] that you are full of goodness. You know these things so well you can teach each other all about them.
15 Even so, I have been bold enough to write about some of these points, knowing that all you need is this reminder. For by God’s grace,
16 I am a special messenger from Christ Jesus to you Gentiles. I bring you the Good News so that I might present you as an acceptable offering to God, made holy by the Holy Spirit.
17 So I have reason to be enthusiastic about all Christ Jesus has done through me in my service to God.
18 Yet I dare not boast about anything except what Christ has done through me, bringing the Gentiles to God by my message and by the way I worked among them.
19 They were convinced by the power of miraculous signs and wonders and by the power of God’s Spirit.[b] In this way, I have fully presented the Good News of Christ from Jerusalem all the way to Illyricum.[c]
20 My ambition has always been to preach the Good News where the name of Christ has never been heard, rather than where a church has already been started by someone else.
21 I have been following the plan spoken of in the Scriptures, where it says, “Those who have never been told about him will see, and those who have never heard of him will understand.”[d]
22 In fact, my visit to you has been delayed so long because I have been preaching in these places.
- Paul FINALLY gets at why he’s writing this letter
- And exposes that his ministry is primarily to share the Gospel with the unreached Gentiles, as outlined in verse 20
23 But now I have finished my work in these regions, and after all these long years of waiting, I am eager to visit you.
24 I am planning to go to Spain, and when I do, I will stop off in Rome. And after I have enjoyed your fellowship for a little while, you can provide for my journey.
25 But before I come, I must go to Jerusalem to take a gift to the believers[a] there.
26 For you see, the believers in Macedonia and Achaia[b] have eagerly taken up an offering for the poor among the believers in Jerusalem.
27 They were glad to do this because they feel they owe a real debt to them. Since the Gentiles received the spiritual blessings of the Good News from the believers in Jerusalem, they feel the least they can do in return is to help them financially.
28 As soon as I have delivered this money and completed this good deed of theirs, I will come to see you on my way to Spain.
29 And I am sure that when I come, Christ will richly bless our time together.
30 Dear brothers and sisters, I urge you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to join in my struggle by praying to God for me. Do this because of your love for me, given to you by the Holy Spirit.
31 Pray that I will be rescued from those in Judea who refuse to obey God. Pray also that the believers there will be willing to accept the donation[c] I am taking to Jerusalem.
32 Then, by the will of God, I will be able to come to you with a joyful heart, and we will be an encouragement to each other.
33 And now may God, who gives us his peace, be with you all. Amen
- This is Paul’s itinerary
- Paul plans to hit up Rome on his way to Spain, but first he must make a stop in Jerusalem.
- We don’t have a record of Paul making it to Spain that I know of, but he did go to Jerusalem, and if you recall in Acts 21, that trip didn’t turn out too well.
- Then in Acts 21-28, Paul is escorted to Rome by a Roman Soldier- God will always find a way.