Pax-Romana — 200 years of “Roman Peace” 27BC — 180AD
“This letter is from Paul, a slave of Christ Jesus, chosen by God to be an apostle and sent out to preach his Good News. God promised this Good News long ago through his prophets in the holy Scriptures. The Good News is about his Son. In his earthly life he was born into King David’s family line, and he was shown to be the Son of God when he was raised from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit. He is Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 1:1-4 NLT
“Through Christ, God has given us the privilege and authority as apostles to tell Gentiles everywhere what God has done for them, so that they will believe and obey him, bringing glory to his name. And you are included among those Gentiles who have been called to belong to Jesus Christ. I am writing to all of you in Rome who are loved by God and are called to be his own holy people. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.” Romans 1:5-7 NLT
Paul’s desire was to preach the Good News about Jesus so that we could receive grace and peace.
“For I have a great sense of obligation to people in both the civilized world and the rest of the world, to the educated and uneducated alike. So I am eager to come to you in Rome, too, to preach the Good News. For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew ﬁrst and also the Gentile. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to ﬁnish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”” Romans 1:14-17 NLT
Romans teaches us how to go from knowing nothing about God to fully living a Christian life.
1. The world is without excuse before God.
“But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.” Romans 1:18-20 NLT
Evolutionary accident or intelligent designer?
2. The world chose to worship things God created rather than the Creator.
Evolution is the worship of creation.
“Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles. So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.” Romans 1:21-25 NLT
3. The world was allowed to live outside of God’s best.
Why is there so much pain and suffering?
“Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done.” Romans 1:28 NLT
4. The worldly atheist and religious pretender will be held accountable.
“Since you judge others for doing these things, why do you think you can avoid God’s judgment when you do the same things?” Romans 2:3 NLT
“For merely listening to the law doesn’t make us right with God. It is obeying the law that makes us right in his sight… And this is the message I proclaim—that the day is coming when God, through Christ Jesus, will judge everyone’s secret life.” Romans 2:13-16 NLT
The worldly atheist and the religious pretender both need to establish a real relationship with God.
✓ Acknowledge the truth about God.
“For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew ﬁrst and also the Gentile. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to ﬁnish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”” Romans 1:16-17 NLT
✓ Give your heart to Jesus.
“For you are not a true Jew (Christian) just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the ceremony of circumcision. No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.” Romans 2:28-29 NLT