Posted on 01/15/2016
Be advised my notes on this chapter are more in depth then most of the other chapters. Originally this one was more concise, but someone asked me a question, which necessitated that I go into more detail. This post contains Definitions and *ENDNOTES to help clarify some of my reasoning, which naturally can be found at the END of this document.
PLEASE READ MY “Study Guide Reason’s Acknowledgements and Disclaimers” (which can found near the beginning of my posts on this site) if you have not already read them.
The Apostle's Commission.
1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, 2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) 3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made 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 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name: 6 Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ: 7 To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
SIMPLY BEAUTIFUL: At first glance, these first 7-verses seem to be just an introduction. However; given more than a cursory reading, we find Paul preaching the gospel from the moment he begins to write.
The Apostle Paul is the consummate preacher, he is a master builder, which never ceases to labor*1 . It’s almost as if his motto was; Always Be Preaching!
1 Corinthians 15:10 But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which [was bestowed] upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.
Let’s take "heed"(a closer look) how a “Wise Master Builder”*2 builds a foundation.
The key to these seven verses is in the first verse, see words: 1) SERVANT,
2) JESUS 3) CHRIST, 4) CALLED, 5) APOSTLE, 6) SEPARATED and
7) GOSPEL of God.
SERVANT – a.) a slave, but not by force, by CHOICE, hence this definition- b.) metaph., one who gives himself up to another's will those whose service is used by Christ in extending and advancing his cause among men c.) devoted to another to the disregard of one's own interests. Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If ,any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Luke 9:23 And he said to [them] all, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. Mark 8:34 And when he had called the people [unto him] with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. ALL IN RELATION TO THE Kingdom of God. There are many FOLLOW ME phrases quoted by the New Testament Writers, obviously a favorite saying of our Lord.
JESUS – Jesus, Jesus, the Son of God, the savior of mankind, God incarnate; ...
CHRIST, Christ is Ancient Greek translation of the Hebrew word Messiah, the Son of God , the anointed, THE PROMISED ONE (as in the promise from the beginning). What Abraham believed by FAITH, What God promised to David in 1 Chronicles 17:11-13 KJV
 And it shall come to pass, when thy days be expired that thou must go to be with thy fathers, that I will raise up thy seed after thee, which shall be of thy sons; and I will establish his kingdom.  He shall build me an house, and I will stablish his throne for ever.  I will be his father, and he shall be my son: and I will not take my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee:
CALLED - called, invited (to a banquet). It is not a coincidence that the FOLLOW ME statements in the SERVANT definition above are all given by JESUS around the times that he Preached and Fed the Multitudes.
APOSTLE - a delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders, IN THIS CASE TO preach the GOSPEL.
SEPARATED – a.) to mark off from others by boundaries, to limit, to separate, b.) in a good sense: to appoint, set apart for some purpose
GOSPEL - good tidings or we would say GOOD NEWS. In relation to: the kingdom of God and THE PROMISE having already been set up by what CHRIST did; In other words the preaching of (concerning) Jesus Christ as having:
1) suffered death on the cross
2) to provide eternal salvation for whosoever will
3) because he was restored to life
4) and exalted to the right hand of God in heaven,
5) making intersession for you and I
6) as prophesied by the PROPHETS of OLD.
7) AND that he will return to receive the kingdom of God which he established by the CROSS.
I LIKE THE WAY CHRIST PUT IT HIMSELF CONCERNING HIS RETURN John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, [there] ye may be also.
SEE HOW IT ALL FITS. AND I THOUGHT AT ONE TIME THIS WAS A SIMPLE INTRODUCTION OF WHO PAUL WAS or IS at the time of the writing.
Paul is not simply introducing himself, He is PREACHING THE GOSPEL from the moment he begins to write.
NOTE: Psalms 132:11 The LORD hath sworn [in] truth unto David; he will not turn from it; Of the fruit of thy body will I set upon thy throne. See also: 2 Samuel 7:12 & Luke 1:32,33
Paul's Love to the Roman Christians.
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 any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you. 11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established; 12 That is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me. 13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles. 14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise. 15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
FIRST: Paul is thankful for faith of the Romans, even though he has not yet in person met with them. HE DOES LATER we find this first physical meeting between Paul and some of the Roman Church recorded in Acts 28:15 And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as far as Appii forum, and The three taverns: whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage. So we know the letter to the Romans had its effect upon them. He also tells them he has a good report of them made by elders which have had some contact with there church.
Paul also sets an example of prayer one for another by mentioning his praying for them REGULARLY.
SO FOR WHAT PURPOSE IS PAUL LONGING TO SEE THEM AND WRITING THIS LETTER?
That they may be ESTABLISHED! 1) to make stable, place firmly, set fast, fix
2) to strengthen, make firm
3) to render constant, confirm, one's mind
WHO ARE THE GREEKS and BARBARIANS v. 14
GREEKS - the name embraces all nations other than Jews that made the language, customs, and learning of the Greeks their own; the primary reference is to a difference of religion and worship.
Note: We can trace the reasoning for these distinctions all the way back to the BABYLONIAN CAPTIVITY of the Hebrews, via the PROPHETS*3 . What the Jews thought the Babylonians intended for evil, God meant it for good, that many might be saved.*4 Had the Jews not been taken captive by the Babylonians and had they not destroyed Jerusalem, we would not have all the conquest by EARTHLY KINGDOMS as prophesied. This led to the Greek language being established as the predominate written language, for all of the know world at that time. (See history of Babylon, Medes/Persians and later Alexander the Great(Greek) and the consolidation of it all by the ROMAN EMPIRE. If you have never studied the succession of nations as detailed by DANIEL in the Old Testament, then you need too. This succession of kingdoms is extremely important in understanding Old Testament Prophecy! Additionally the establishment of the Greek alphabet as the predominate written word is extremely important for the spreading of God’s Word. Our Bibles today are mostly translated from Septuagint Greek Manuscripts (Old Testament) completed around 200 BC and the 1ST Century AD Original Greek New Testament Manuscripts.
BARBARIANS - used by the Greeks of any foreigner ignorant of the Greek
language, whether mental or moral, with the added notion after the Persian war, of rudeness and brutality. The word is used in the N.T. without the idea of reproachfulness. Some for whatever reason, whether it be due to their mental capacity for understanding i.e. education or because of a strong teaching or geography or whatever did not fall completely under this GREEK/ROMAN domination are still not left out by God. As could be evidenced by the day of Pentecost where every man heard them speak the wonderful works of God in their own language are NOT LEFT out of the GRACE of GOD or should I say LEFT BEHIND.
NOTE: Although the modern day LEFT BEHIND books make for good fiction, it is my belief they are totally out of context with Bible teachings. All things necessary for the fulfillment of Old Testament Bible Prophesy where accomplished by Jesus: Luke 16:16 The law and the prophets [were] until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. What did Jesus say; Matthew 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
Paul further expounds on this in; Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
Paul's Discourse on Justification by faith.
Remember according to our outline JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH is the context thru chapter 4! I POINT out our context HERE because it is easy to forget the context as we examine all the details. SOMETIMES it helps me to to read the chapters in reverse order, so I may better comprehend what the Bible is teaching.
THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO HUMMMMMM!
DON’T FORGET to go to Acts Chapter 7, when teaching this chapter : STONING STEPHEN he (Stephen) basically said the same thing Paul is saying. Ironic isn't it, this Paul which consented to Stephen's death, ends up spending his own life preaching the same message.
Power of God
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. 17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Paul’s declaration that he is not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ and what the gospel REVELS to Us. He tells us that it was to the Jew first and then to everyone else. Later in Romans he expounds upon this and tells us how “God has included all men under sin” that we might all receive the PROMISE of God’s Grace by FAITH. I like the way he explains it in: Colossians 3:11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond [nor] free: but Christ [is] all, and in all.
The Excellency of the Gospel.
19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them. 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world 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 that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four footed beasts, and creeping things. 24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. 26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate*5 mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
NOW verses 19-32 are DEEP WATERS. Diving into these deep waters full grown SWIMMERS can come up with only one inescapable conclusion. "Left to our own devices we are all bad enough." (J. T. Russell) Theologians have long termed the concept Paul is relating here as: "The TOTAL DEPRAVITY of ALL mankind." Not for a particular sin only. Not a particular group or ethnicity, like Jews or Gentiles. IF YOU STUDY THIS IN DETAIL YOU SEE HE IS MAKING A REFERENCE TO IDOLATERS. Idolatry is the greatest common denominator for most sin. Idolaters give themselves totally over to fulfilling the lust of the flesh, it makes very little difference what the idol actually is, and ultimately an idolater is saying they know better than God. Again his example shows we are ALL without excuse. The Lord has in some fashion revealed himself to all mankind. As testament to this Paul uses the CREATION as its own witness of God. It is not the absence of truth that damns, but rather the despising of truth! The light has shined and the light still shines! John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. NOTE TO SELF: Think and speak about the Stoics, Epicureans, and Gnostics, also Zoastarians and others who had a knowledge of God, which most if not all turned into their own manmade god and WORSHIPED the Creature (themselves) more then the Creator. We could also mention the EGYPTIAN religion, Greek Mythology and any other religion which man (probably with satins help) conjured up after falsely interpreting the obvious clues left by God. And I will just barely mention Adam, which fell after having all the clues.
Psalms 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.
WARNING WARNING WARNING
PLEASE LEAVE YOUR PRECONCEIVED NOTIONS AT THE DOOR BEFORE WE CONTINUE FURTHER.
MANY PEOPLE ARE GOING TO DISAGREE WITH ME ON THE FOLLOWING. PLEASE BEAR WITH ME AND LISTEN TIL THE END.
I AM ABOUT TO USE LANGUAGE WHICH MAY NOT BE POLITICALLY CORRECT.
Contrary to popular opinion Romans 1 IS NOT the "HOMOSEXUAL " chapter.
"Let me make one thing perfectly clear" (Quote attributed to Richard Nixon), before I go any further. The Bible DOES NOT condone Homosexuality, likewise it does not condone illicit Heterosexuality, whether it be adultery, unwed sex or any act of fornication. The Bible clearly tells us that God is love and to demonstrate His love to mankind, He gave his only begotten Son, while we were yet sinners*6 . The Bible progressively reveals Gods plan for his creation in every way possible. As part of that step-by-step revelation the Bible uses the Union of a man(Husband) and a woman(Wife) as an analogy for Gods love for His Church .*7
The above statements being said condemning the "GAYS" is not the main point of the Sodom and Gomorrah story.
The Sodom and Gomorrah story is a JUDGEMENT METAPHOR*8 . Any time we see these cities referenced in the Bible, we should immediately think about the LORD coming in judgment.
Gods true prophets repeatedly use the story as a judgement metaphor.
I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies: they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none doth return from his wickedness: they are all of them unto me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.
Remember how the story goes in Genesis Chapter 18, the LORD tells Abraham he is coming in judgement against the wicked people of Sodom and Gomorrah. Faithful Abraham immediately begins to beg the LORD to spare the place. His humble argument is there may be righteous men among them. Of course there's not even ten righteous men in the cities, but the LORD does spare Abrahams Nephew "JUST"*9 Lot, and most of his family. One might ask how is Lot righteous? As far as that goes how is Abraham righteous? Lot "just", good grief, look at the guy, look at the place he chose to live and work in. And therein lies the clue, JUST(see endnote # 9). Abraham and Lot are not self-righteous, the are JUSTIFIED! Both men have a righteousness which is not their own, it is a foreign righteousness given to them via another means, by someone else. This righteousness is graciously given as a gift*10 . It is a righteousness, not of their own design. It is "JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH".
Therefore the scriptures conclude Abraham*11 believed In the LORD and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Now there is much more to this part of the story, but I will try to leave that for another time. (Hint: Who is Abraham pleading with?) As for the native inhabitants at Sodom and Gomorrah, well they like all unrepentant sinners believed in SELF! Also take note what Abraham did not do! He did not jump up and down in judgement shouting kill, kill, kill. He did not bring a railing accusation against the people of Sodom and Gomorrah!
Jude 1:9 KJV
 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.
The Word of God has already judged that all are guilty of sin. Even though we are not to bring a railing accusation against sinners that does not mean that we approve or sanction sin.
We see this exemplified in the early part of the Sodom and Gomorrah story found In Genesis Chapter 14. It is important to note that the LORD has not changed Abraham's name at this point, he is still called Abram! In Chapter 14 we find Chedorlaomer king of Elam, plus his confederates at war against the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah plus there allies. As part of this war the people of Sodom and Gomorrah and all their goods are taken away captive, Abram's Nephew Lot being numbered among the captives. When Abram hears that Lot, plus his family have also been taken, he marshals his own house and strategically defeats the oppressors. Note that after this victory two kings come out to meet Abram, one is Bera king of Sodom, who tempts Abram with worldly goods. The other is the most mysterious character in the whole Bible, one Melchizedek*12 king of Salem. We are told a lot about Melchizedek in a few short verses of Genesis 14:
1. He is the king of Salem*13
2. He is the priest of the most high God.
3. He blessed Abram.
4. He received tithes from Abram!
What a contrast of persons coming out to greet Abram.
One is a king of sinners and one is a king of peace.
One is offering material wealth and one is offering Blessing.
One is offering bondage and one is offering freedom.
One represents the kingdoms of this world. One represents the most high God.
And when put to the test Abram's faith never wavered, he simply lifted up his hand unto the LORD, the most high God, declaring God to be the possessor of heaven and earth and the less was blessed of the better*14 .
In LIGHT of ALL this INIQUITY there is NO WAY we could be justified by OUR OWN WORKS!!!!! THIS IN SUMMARY IS THE POINT OF WHAT PAUL IS MAKING IN HIS EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS.
Lamentations 4:6 KJV For the punishment of the iniquity of the daughter of my people is greater than the punishment of the sin of Sodom, that was overthrown as in a moment, and no hands stayed on her.
Jesus SAID THE SAME THING in his Sermon on the Mount.
Matthew 5:20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed [the righteousness] of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
GO Back and study it if you don’t believe me.
James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one [point], he is guilty of all.
Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
Definitions Verses 19-32
Recompense - 1) a reward given in compensation, requital, recompence
Reprobate - unfit for, unproved, spurious, reprobate
Convenient - becoming, not natural
1a) adultery, homosexuality, lesbianism, intercourse
with animals etc.
1b) sexual intercourse with close relatives; Lev. 18
1c) sexual intercourse with a divorced man or woman; Mr 10:11,12
2) metaph. the worship of idols
2a) of the defilement of idolatry, as incurred by eating the
sacrifices offered to idols
Covetousness - greedy desire to have more
Maliciousness - 1) malignity, malice, ill-will, desire to injure
2) wickedness, depravity
2a) wickedness that is not ashamed to break laws
3) evil, trouble
Debate - contention, strife, wrangling
Deceit- craft, deceit, guile
Malignity - bad character, depravity of heart and life
covenant breaker - 1) uncompounded, simple
2) covenant breaking, faithless
implacable - cannot be persuaded to enter into a covenant
Strong's Greek Definition for # 96
96 // adokimov // adokimos // ad-ok'-ee-mos //
from 1 (as a negative particle) and 1384 ; TDNT - 2:255,181; adj
AV - reprobate 6, castaway 1, rejected 1; 8
1) not standing the test, not approved
1a) properly used of metals and coins
2) that which does not prove itself such as it ought
2a) unfit for, unproved, spurious, reprobate
Strong's Greek Definition for # 1384
1384 // dokimov // dokimos // dok'-ee-mos //
from 1380 ; TDNT - 2:255,183; adj
AV - approved 6, tried 1; 7
1) accepted, particularly of coins and money. P
2) accepted, pleasing, acceptable
In the ancient world there was no banking system as we know it
today, and no paper money. All money was made from metal, heated
until liquid, poured into moulds and allowed to cool. When the coins
were cooled, it was necessary to smooth off the uneven edges. The
coins were comparatively soft and of course many people shaved them
closely. In one century, more than eighty laws were passed in
Athens, to stop the practice of shaving down the coins then in
circulation. But some money changers were men of integrity, who
would accept no counterfeit money. They were men of honour who put
only genuine full weighted money into circulation. Such men were
called "dokimos" or "approved". (Donald Barnhouse)
THINGS THAY MAKE YOU GO HUM! Notice how the English language (spelling) has changed over time. We spell labor thusly, but our particular version of the KJB (See 1 Corinthians 15:10 above) had a variant “laboured”, which we no longer use.
See 1 Corinthians 3:10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
See second verse of this chapter (Romans 1:2).
Genesis 50:20 KJV
 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive
See Definitions specifically Strong's # 96 and # 1384
Romans 5:8 KJV
 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
See Ephesians 5, Revelation 21:2,9 and 22:17
Matthew 10:15 KJV
 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.
2 Peter 2:7-11 KJV
 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:  (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)  The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:  But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they , selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.  Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord. …
Ephesians 2:8 KJV
 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Genesis 15:6 KJV
 And he believed in the Lord ; and he counted it to him for righteousness.
Romans 4:3 KJV
 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Genesis 14:18 KJV
 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God.
Psalm 110:4 KJV
 The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
Hebrews 5:6 KJV
 As he saith also in another place , Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
Also Hebrews, 5:10, 6:20, 7:1,10,11,15,17 and 21.
Strong's 08004// Mlv//Shalem, Salem means peace, Jewish commentaries tell us it is Jerusalem!
Hebrews 7:7 KJV
 And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better.