Romans Devotional

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Day 2 - The Power of the Gospel

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Reading: Romans 1:16-17

Reflective Thoughts

The power of the gospel

Rome, at the time this letter was written, was a booming metropolis at the forefront of civilization. Population estimates are as high as 5 million people. So when Paul wrote "For I am not ashamed of the gospel" he was acknowledging the philosophical thoughts that countered the simple and powerful message of Christ-not unlike our situation today.

Most of the messages of our culture are counter to the message of the gospel. Pop culture worships sexuality apart from marriage. Academia worships reason apart from faith. The temptation to feel ashamed of the gospel may haunt us-but Paul offers an antidote. Remember and practice the power of God's righteousness given to you through your faith. How? Remember what God saved you from. What kind of life are you living now because of your faith in Him? And if you are not where you should be-through faith, trust Him for the life you can be living. You have a story. He provides all that you need to live the way He wants you to live. Get excited about that. And, get excited about what He is going to do today. There's no shame in that because it is more powerful than any message out there!

 

Day 1 - Living Like a Saint

Reading: Romans 1:1-15

Reflective Thoughts

Living like a saint

Paul opens His letter to the believers in the church in Rome by introducing himself as one who is "set apart" for the gospel. And then in verse 7 he calls the believers two things: "beloved of God in Rome and called to be saints." It's not hard to understand how the Apostle Paul was set apart for the gospel. His life was used by God throughout the entire Roman Empire. But what did He mean when he said the Roman Christians were "called to be saints"?

Have you ever thought of yourself as a saint? It's not a term we use too often today. But if you're reading from the NIV, you know that "saint" means holy, and holy, means set apart. So these people were 1) loved by God and 2) holy. These two characteristics go together because it is God's love that makes us holy.

1 John 14:9 explains it simply: "we love because He first loved us." What should be your reason for loving the unlovely co-worker? Forgiving the person who doesn't deserve forgiveness? Cleaning up someone else's mess without complaint? Allowing someone else to choose, even if you know better? If there's any reason, it's because He first loved you. His love continues to make you holy as you continue to live out His love through you.

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