Romans Chapter 1

September 13, 2012

This Preaching in Shorts Bible study is on Romans. Each chapter is read verse by verse with the major points highlighted and discussed.

You can listen to the study by clicking here

Romans 1:1-32 (NIV)
1 Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God– 2 the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures 3 regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David, 4 and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. 5 Through him and for his name’s sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith. 6 And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ. 7 To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. 8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. 9 God, whom I serve with my whole heart in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you 10 in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you. 11 I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong– 12 that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith. 13 I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so until now) in order that I might have a harvest among you, just as I have had among the other Gentiles. 14 I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. 15 That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome. 16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” 18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. 24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised. Amen. 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. 28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

This chapter starts out with some awesome promises of God. Salvation is available to us, not as something we earn but which can be received only by faith. Salvation is a gift. It is the heart of the Good News. God loves us and had made a way for us to be in relationship with Him forever in Christ. Paul will examine these great promises in depth in the book of Romans, but he first wants to make sure that we understand why we need this salvation. Apart from Christ, we are all spiritually dead. Without salvation, we have no spiritual life. We stand guilty and condemned before a Holy God. Apart from salvation by faith in Christ that God offers us we have no hope.

Romans 1:1-2

As the title makes clear, Paul writes this letter to the church in Rome. Paul has not been to Rome, this is not a church that he started. What he does in this letter is provide to the church in Rome a systematic presentation of the Christian faith.

Romans 1:3-5

Paul provides a quick summary of the Good News. His life, death and resurrection have opened the door of God’s grace to be poured out on us that we might have life with God now and forever.

Romans 1:6-8

Those who receive this Good News of Jesus are invited to belong to the family of God. We become His people.

Romans 1:9-16

Paul was eager to preach the gospel and he was not ashamed of it. It was a message of salvation, it had life-changing power, and it was for everyone.

Romans 1:17

The Good News shows us the righteousness of God and His plan for us to be saved, that our relationship with Him is made right by trusting Christ. “From start to finish,” God declares us to be right with him because of faith and faith alone.

Romans 1:18-32

Paul then takes on the challenge of demonstrating the spiritual deadness of humanity. Our understanding of salvation is based upon our awareness of our utter lost-ness apart from Christ. Paul points out that we do not die spiritually because of sin, our sins demonstrate that we are spiritually dead.

Rather than read the list of sins and activities written in these verses and self-righteously point our fingers at others, we need to see that we have all made the list. We are all broken and in desperate need of the love and mercy and grace of God. We cannot try and justify away our sin, we need the help of the Holy Spirit to help us to live by doing the next right thing. We need to embrace the Good News and live for God in Christ now and forever.

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