OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER 1) To be impressed with the all-sufficiency of the gospel 2) To see how God's wrath may be directed toward our society today SUMMARY As is the custom in most of his epistles, Paul begins by extending greetings and offering thanks. Identifying himself as a bond-servant of Christ, he mentions his apostleship and its mission in the gospel of God concerning His Son: to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles (1-6). Addressing the recipients of his epistle as "all who are beloved in Rome, called as saints," he extends to them the popular two-fold greeting of that day: "grace" and "peace" (7). He is thankful for their well-known faith and reveals his desire to visit Rome and to proclaim the gospel there (8-13). The motivation behind that desire is his sense of obligation and bold conviction that the gospel is God's power to save (14-17). The mention of "salvation" naturally leads to the need for all men to be saved. Paul begins to demonstrate this need on the part of the Gentiles. He explains that because of the Gentiles' failure to acknowledge the eternal power and divine nature of God as revealed in the world around them, and for their subsequent pride and idolatry, they were therefore exposed to God's wrath from heaven (18-23). This wrath manifested itself in God simply letting them reap the fruits of their vanity. By giving them over "to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts," "to vile passions," and "to a debased mind," the result was such corruption that even those who knew better were caught in its clutches (24-32). OUTLINE (adapted from Jim McGuiggan) I. INTRODUCTION & THEME (1-17) A. CONCERNING PAUL (1-5) 1. His place in life: servant & apostle (1) 2. His story in life: the gospel of Christ (2-4) 3. His purpose in life: to produce obedience based on faith (5) B. CONCERNING THE ROMANS (6-15) 1. Paul's description of them (6-7) 2. Paul's report of them (8) 3. Paul's deep desire to visit them (9-10) 4. Paul's reason and eagerness to visit them (11-15) C. CONCERNING THE GOSPEL (16-17) 1. Its respectability: nothing to be ashamed of (16a) 2. Its nature: the power of God (16b) 3. Its aim: salvation (16c) 4. Its scope: for everyone who believes (16d) 5. Its content: the revelation of God's righteousness through faith (17) II. THE GENTILES' NEED OF SALVATION (18-32) A. WICKED MAN DISHONORING GOD (18-23) 1. Wicked man stifling God's revealed truth (18-19) 2. Wicked man despising the testimony of nature (20) 3. Wicked man ungrateful and foolish (21-22) 4. Wicked man given to idolatry (23) B. HOLY GOD "GIVING UP" ON WICKED MAN (24-32) 1. Giving them up to disgusting uncleanness (24-25) 2. Giving them up to lesbianism and homosexuality (26-27) 3. Giving them up to debased minds and all unrighteousness (28-32) WORDS TO PONDER gospel - literally, "good news;" in the NT it denotes the good tidings of the kingdom of God and of salvation through Christ (VINE) grace - "favor, goodwill, lovingkindness;" as used in reference to God's favor toward man, it's freeness is stressed; i.e., unmerited favor faith - "trust, conviction;" produced by God's Word (Ro 10:17), it expresses itself through obedience and love (Ro 1:5; Ga 5:6) power - from the Greek word dunamis (from which derives "dynamite"); "strength, ability" righteousness of God - 1) God doing that which is right (cf. Ro 3:25- 26); or 2) God's way of making one right with Him (related to the concept of "justification," declaring one to be "not guilty;" cf. Ro 4:6-8) REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER 1) List the two main points of this chapter - Introduction (1-17) - The Gentiles' Need Of Salvation (18-32) 2) How was Jesus declared to be the Son of God? (4) - With power, through His resurrection from the dead 3) What was the objective of Paul's apostleship? (5) - To bring about the obedience of faith among all nations 4) Why did Paul want to go to Rome? (11-12) - To see them and share in their faith together 5) To whom was Paul obligated? (14) - Both to Greeks and barbarians, both to wise and unwise 6) What is God's power to save? (16) - The gospel of Christ 7) Why is it God's power to save? (17) - In it the righteousness of God is revealed 8) What two invisible attributes of God are revealed in nature? (20) - His eternal power and Godhead (divine nature) 9) How does God express His wrath? (24,26,28) - By "giving people up" to their own sinful passions 10) What one sin in particular is an indication that God's wrath toward man is in full force? (26,27) - Homosexuality
[Rom 1:1-32 NKJV] 1 Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called [to be] an apostle, separated to the gospel of God 2 which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, 3 concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, 4 [and] declared [to be] the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. 5 Through Him we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name, 6 among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; 7 To all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called [to be] saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Desire to visit Rome
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world. 9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of His Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers, 10 making request if, by some means, now at last I may find a way in the will of God to come to you. 11 For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift, so that you may be established-- 12 that is, that I may be encouraged together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me. 13 Now I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that I often planned to come to you (but was hindered until now), that I might have some fruit among you also, just as among the other Gentiles. 14 I am a debtor both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to wise and to unwise. 15 So, as much as is in me, [I am] ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also.
The just live by faith
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "The just shall live by faith."
God's wrath on unrighteousness
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown [it] to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible [attributes] are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify [Him] as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man--and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; [they are] whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
v17 from Habakkuk 2:4