Romans 12:1-15:13

Monday, February 12, 2007

In relation to the previous 11 chapters

1. The first 11 chapters already made it clear that the life, which according to 1:17, For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, "The righteous shall live by faith," is the destiny of the man who is righteous by faith, is a life of obedience to God.

2. From chapter 3 to 6, it is clearly laid out that how can those whom God has mercifully decided to see as having died to sin go on living in it contently?

3. And as long as we remain in the flesh, we remain in a real sense the slave of sin - For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin (7:14) - but God has give us a righteous status in Christ and we are thus bound in his conscience to God's holy law.

4. In chapter 8, the necessity of obedience is set forth in terms of the gift of the Spirit. To be in Christ is to be indwelt by His Spirit, the Holy Spirit. One cannot have Christ without also having His Spirit - you, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him (8:9 ).

5. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit enables us to cry "Abba, Father" - For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" (8:15) - and to call the true, holy God 'Father' with full sincerity and seriousness, one needs to obey God's law. This is indeed the whole of Christian obedience. For to address God by the name of Father sincerely and with full seriousness involves seeking wholeheartedly to be and think and speak and do what is well pleasing to Him, and at the same time to avoid all that is displeasing to Him.

6. The obedience required of Christians is not just an obedience in principle but an obedience of thought and attitude, of word and deed, wrought in the concrete situations of life.

7. Exhortation to this kind of obedience is therefore necessary and it is such exhortation that we find in Romans 12:1-15:13.

The sub-themes

12:1-2 Appeal for total consecration
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. (12:1)

12:3-8 Humility and service in the body of Christ
So we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. (1:5)

12:9-21 The marks of a true Christian
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (12:21)

13:1-7 Submission to the authorities
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. (13:1)

13:8-10 Fulfilling the law through love
Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. (13:8)

13:11-14 Living as children of light
The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. (13:12)

14:1-12 Do not pass judgement on one another
One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. (14:5)

14:13-23 Do not cause another to stumble
Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother. (14:13)

15:1-13 The example of Christ
May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus. (15:5)


C.E.B. Cranfield, Romans 9-16, International Critical Commentary, (Great Britain: Cromwell, 2004): 592-4
Tokunboh Adeyemo (Gen. Ed.), Africa Bible Commentary, (China: WordAlive, 2006): 1368-74

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4 comment(s)

  1. Hey, #6 sounds a bit like playing the piano, too! Sounds like you have a good start on the paper.

  2. Hey, #6 sounds a bit like playing the piano, too!
    Hmmm ... it does eh?

    Sounds like you have a good start on the paper.
    I was tempted to just go to bed! but I pushed myself.

  3. I was surprised to hear from you already - I thought you were either up late or up early :) So confusing living a half day behind!

  4. I was up early and still at home, so I had time. I will be going to the dentist shortly.