Wednesday

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” (v. 16)

Psalm: Psalm 37:12-29


Background

Paul’s letter to the Romans is great to read if you want to explore Christian faith. It covers many subjects including sin, forgiveness, Baptism, spiritual gifts and spiritual growth, love, discipleship, evangelism and government.

Verse 16 is so bold and encouraging. Paul’s message was not only for the Jewish people but also for the Greek, as it was important for Paul to get this message across.

The good news (“gospel”) is explained in Romans 1:3-4: "the gospel concerning his Son, who was ascended from David according to the flesh and was declared to be Son of God with power according to the spirit of holiness by resurrection the dead, Jesus Christ”. Basically, the good news is that we have a Lord who took all our sins away as he died on the cross for the sake of our souls – and that is not the best bit, we have new life. We have love and life in a God who cares so deeply for us.

Verse 20-21 say that since the beginning of creation people knew God yet they continued with their wickedness. They never worshipped God so therefore in their foolishness, they worshipped false idols (verses 22-23). Verses 24-25 could be referring to Adam and Eve. Originally, the natural naked body was nothing to be ashamed of, but in their foolishness and worship of creatures “God gave them up in the lustre of their hearts to impurity, to the degrading of their bodies among themselves” (v. 24).

The people of Rome (who Paul was planning to visit) knew the truth about how they could be reconciled to God through the salvation that comes from Jesus Christ, yet they ignored it and continued to do the wrong things. As a child, I knew it was wrong to push that big red button but I pushed it anyway! Why do we do these things? I guess because we are human: yet by reading Romans, we are always reminded of the right way to go.

In the NRSV Bible, this chapter has the titles “The Power of the Gospel” and “The Guilt of Humankind”. Today’s passage reminds us that we are human and we make mistakes. And that’s why we have Jesus, a person whose life and ministry set an example of how we should be. We should always strive to be Christlike, whilst recognising we are human and have flaws. Our God loves us all - brilliant eh.


To Ponder

  • “For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” The good news is for everyone – it was not just for the Jews back in Jesus’ day and even now it is not for the select few, it is for everyone. How would you explain this to someone else?
  • What does ‘salvation’ to mean to you? How would you describe it to others?
  • How will you challenge yourself today to say, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith”?
  • Pray that you may be guided by this passage today.
Previous Page Tuesday
Next Page Thursday