Reliance, Encouragement, Faith Proclaimed

Hello, continuing my study in the Book of Romans. Glad to have you here. Click here for the rest of the series.

Today Romans 1:8-15

 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you 10 always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God's will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. 11 For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— 12 that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and mine. 13 I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as well as among the rest of the Gentiles. 14 I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. 15 So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.

Paul is thankful to his readers, the people in the Rome.  
Their faith is proclaimed in all the world.

Can you imagine it?
Having an apostle the stature of Paul praising you because your FAITH is proclaimed.  People talking about your faith. 

I hear that can I would be cool.  For people to see my faith and have THAT be what is talked about.  Imagine if that were the case for the church you were part of?   For the faith of your church to be a topic of discussion.. rather than the bickering or lack of service be the points mentioned.   YOUR FAITH!  Wow... that would just be very very cool. 

Paul tells his listeners, that God knows the truth, he prays for them all the time, and he asks God to allow him to get to visit with them.   He wants so badly to see them so he can strengthen them with some spiritual gift. 

The point being that they will mutually encourage each other through their faith.

Mutually encouraged by each other's faith.

Do you feel encourage by the faith seen in others?   Does your faith encourage others?
 I have to admit, I have felt encouraged by others... but I don't know if my faith is a point of encouragement for others.   I so often just see my weakness and faltering... but it's something to strive for eh?   To build up my faith, to see God more clearly so I can then more clearly show him to others.

Paul wants his readers to know this.  He wants so badly to come to Rome, but so far has been prevented from doing so.   He has so many obligations ... to the Greeks, the barbarians, the wise, the foolish...he wants to preach God's word to them all.   He is so eager to preach God's word to them as well. 

I can imagine the pressure Paul found himself under.  To have this strong compulsion to be out doing, and yet finding so many areas in which to be busy doing that he can't do it all.  He wants to go to Rome, but since he relies on God to help him find his way....he recognizes that God has not yet created a way for him to get there.  

Ah ... that reliance on God eh?
To have that reliance.    Oh... so much to learn from Paul eh?   To see that reliance, to have that strong desire to preach the gospel to everyone, to see the faith in others and be encouraged by it.  It's a good thing that.  :)

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  1. It also might be that Paul wanted so badly to come to Rome to help the defeat of an empire built upon a false faith. You might say that the old Rome was really conquered by Jesus and his message, not by any wars or barbarians. What arose from the ashes was the Byzantine Rome that cradled Christianity for centuries.
    What do you think?

    1. I don't know that Paul was thinking like that. I don't think he was thinking I want to defeat the Roman empire. It was, in my opinion, all about sharing the faith and promoting the gospel. :)


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