The Epistle of ROMANS
1. We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak [spiritually immature], and not to please ourselves.
Literal: We then that are strong ought to bear or carry the infirmities of the weak or immature, and not to consider ourselves.
2. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification.
Literal: Let everyone of us please or think what is good for his neighbor in the sense of edifying.
We are better off to think good thoughts of people than bad thoughts. Bitter thoughts make you feel worse and result in broken fellowship. Don't only think about pleasing yourself, but focus on pleasing others after all of your affairs are in order. When you have the opportunity to bless someone, take advantage of it.
3. For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.
'Reproach' means 'to blame for something or to bring shame upon; to rebuke'. The word 'fell' in the Lexicon means 'to throw one's self upon'. Christ was not concerned about himself but of doing God's Will. This is a key to the more than abundant life that you must learn to apply in your life. Get your mind off of yourself and on to helping others. Keep doing your best and watch out for the old man when you are making good progress. He doesn't want to die or lay dormant -- you must reckon him dead by your deliberate effort. The verse is saying that even the accusations that people suffered, Christ bore them as best as he could. And these people were people who were also reproaching Christ.
People may never recognize your new man and may always treat you according to your old ways. Continue to quietly go about your own business ignoring the influence these people are trying to have on you. As is stated in Romans, the old man is like a dead body tied to your body. You have to reckon him dead and push him aside until Jesus Christ returns the second time.
4. For whatsoever things were written aforetime [before Pentecost] were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.
Literal: For whatsoever things were written aforetime (before the day of Pentecost) were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.
Remember that the things that were written before Pentecost were written FOR OUR LEARNING and are not addressed to us, the Church of the Body of Christ.
This point is greatly misunderstood in most Bible teachings. All Scriptures in the Old Testament are addressed either to the Judeans or to the Gentiles because the Church of God had not yet come into existence. The Old Testament is therefore FOR OUR LEARNING. Remember that the Gospels are also 'for our learning' since they came before the day of Pentecost. God expects us to study and therefore 'rightly divide' His Word. All Scripture is either 1) FOR OUR LEARNING or is 2) WRITTEN DIRECTLY TO US.
5. Now the God of patience and consolation [comfort] grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:
Literal: And may God, the source of endurance and encouragement (comfort), give or grant you that you may be likeminded (on the Word) and agree with one another according to Christ Jesus or after the manner of Christ Jesus.
Jesus Christ and God wants us to be likeminded on the Word and have the same thoughts in this area of our mind. Of course, our personalities are different. That is why we are not to judge one another. Everyone has different tastes and living habits. We are to be likeminded on the Word.
6. That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Literal: So that with one mind (one accord) and one mouth or voice you may glorify and give praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
7. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.
Literal: New English Translation -- In a word, accept one another as Christ accepted us, to the glory of God.
8. Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of [to] the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers:
Literal: Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister to the circumcision for the truth of God, to establish or confirm the promises made to the patriarchs.
The first part of this verse needs to be studied. We do not belong to the circumcision because we are born again of God's Spirit. Jesus Christ did not come to start the Church on the day of Pentecost -- he came as a minister TO the circumcision. He was the completion, the fulfillment of the Old Covenant, the Old Testament.
Jesus also sent out the 12 apostles only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. When the 70 in Luke Chapter 10 were commissioned, they were sent to Israel only. Jesus Christ's entire ministry was to Israel, the circumcision. That's why the first part of verse 8 says what it says.
New English Translation -- I mean that Christ became a servant of the Jewish people to maintain the truth of God by making good His promises to the patriarchs.
The prophecy of the patriarchs was established by what Christ did -- he fulfilled the law.
9. And that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy; as it is written, For this cause I will confess to thee among the Gentiles, and sing unto thy name.
Literal: And at the same time to give the Gentiles cause to glorify God for His mercy; as it is written: For this cause or because of this, I will confess fully to thee among the nations, and sing unto thy name.
The last part of this verse in the Interlinear says: "and thy name will I praise." This is a quote from:
II Samuel 22: 50 -- Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O Lord, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name."
10. And again he saith, Rejoice, ye Gentiles, with his people.
Literal: And again, it says, Rejoice ye Gentiles with his people.
This is a Quotation (a figure of speech) from the beginning of Deuteronomy 32: 43.
Deuteronomy 32: 43 -- "Rejoice, O ye nations, with his people: . . . . . . . . ."
11. And again, Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles; and laud him, all ye people.
Literal: And again, Praise the Lord all ye Gentiles (nations) and applaud Him and praise Him, all ye people.
This is a Quotation from Psalms.
Psalms 117: 1 -- O Praise the Lord, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people.
12. And again, Esaias saith, There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that shall rise to reign over the Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles trust.
Literal: And again, Esaias saith: There shall be the root of Jesse, and he that shall rise and raise his banner to reign or govern over the Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles trust and have hope.
This a Quotation from Isaiah.
Isaiah 11: 10 -- And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.
I would like to point out a figure of speech here referred to as 'CONTRAST'. Notice that there is a banner raised aloft in contrast with the 'root' which is the lowest point. Christ rose from the lowest to the highest point. The 'root of Jesse' was Jesus Christ. So there are two (2) figures of speech in this verse: 1) Quotation and 2) Contrast which marks the importance of this Scripture.
13. Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.
Literal: And may the God of hope fill (pleroo -- to capacity) you with all joy and peace by your believing that you may abound or overflow in hope (of the return of Jesus Christ), through or by the power (dunamis -- inherent) of the Holy Spirit (pneuma hagion).
14. And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.
Literal: And I myself also am persuaded and have no doubt in my own mind, my brethren, that you yourselves are also full of goodness, filled (to capacity) with all knowledge, being able also to admonish (instruct, advise, warn) one another.
15. Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God.
Literal: Nevertheless, brethren, I have written to refresh your memory in part, and written somewhat boldly at times, because of the grace which was given to me of God.
16. That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.
Literal: For His grace has made me a minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the Word of God so that the worship which the Gentiles offer might be acceptable, being sanctified by pneuma hagion.
'Sanctified' here meaning to set in a state as opposed to being common or unclean; to put into a state corresponding to the nature of God.
17. I have therefore whereof I may glory through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God.
Literal: I have therefore grounds to boast in Christ Jesus pertaining to the things of God.
18. For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed,
Literal: For I will venture to speak only of those things which Christ has achieved through me to make the Gentiles obedient by word and work (deed and action).
Paul only cared to teach what he knew was right according to what Christ taught him so as to teach the Gentiles obedience to the Word. Paul wanted the Gentiles to not only speak the rightly divided Word of God, but also have their actions line up with what they spoke. He wanted them not only to be hearers but to be doers of the Word also.
19. Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.
Literal: This resulting in mighty signs and wonders by the power of God, so that from Jerusalem as far round as Illyricum, I have fully and completely accomplished preaching the gospel of Christ.
20. Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation;
Literal: Yes, it is my ambition and I have strived to preach the gospel to places where the very name of Christ has not been heard, for I do not want to build on another man's foundation.
21. But as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand.
Literal: But as it is written: To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand.
New English Translation -- They who had no news of him shall see, and they who never heard of him shall understand.
This is a Quotation from Isaiah.
Isaiah 52: 15 -- So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.
22. For which cause also I have been much hindered from coming to you.
Literal: New English Translation -- That is why I have been prevented all this time from coming to you.
The King James Version uses the word 'hindered' instead of 'prevent'.
23. But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come unto you;
Literal: But now, having no particular place any longer in these regions, and having a longing to come to you for many years;
The word 'place' here is referring to a spot or a particular place where one dwells.
24. Whensoever I take my journey into Spain, I will come to you: for I trust to see you in my journey, and to be brought on my way thitherward by you, if first I be somewhat filled with your company.
Literal: Whenever I take my journey into Spain, I will come to you for I hope to see you as I travel through, and to be brought on my way in that place with your support after being filled (pletho -- to overflowing) with your blessings.
25. But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.
26. For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia [Greece] to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.
Literal: New English Translation -- For Macedonia and Achaia (Greece) have resolved to raise a common fund for the benefit of the poor among God's people at Jerusalem.
These people took of their abundance, their plurality, and gave to the saints who were not so fortunate. This is the love of God in the renewed mind in manifestation in action. You don't have to give until it hurts -- you give of your plurality, your excess -- out of what you don't need to help others especially brothers and sisters in need. Tithing is a simple but great example of this principle of giving applied. The context here is pointing more towards how we are to work together and pray with and for each other. We are to strive together and build up one another, not ever to tear one another down or hinder one another. This is when the Word of God moves. This takes a great mature attitude concerning the Word. In the first place, you must be studying the Word with a diligent effort seeking God first in every aspect of your life. You must be trying your best and then God is able to move.
27. It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles had been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things.
Literal: They have resolved to do so and truly they are pleased, and indeed they are under an obligation to them (they are the poor saints' debtors). For if the Gentiles have been made partakers (share in common) of the spiritual things or treasures of the Judean Christians, the Gentiles then have a duty or obligation to contribute or minister to them concerning their material or fleshly needs/things.
Believers are to work together and to communicate openly. They have an obligation before God to help one another and to share in each other's abundance.
28. When therefore I have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I will come by you into Spain.
Literal: New English Translation -- So when I have finished this business and delivered the proceeds under my own seal, I shall set out for Spain by way of your city.
The New English Translation uses the word 'proceeds' while the King James Version uses the word 'fruit'.
29. And I am sure that, when I come unto you, I shall come in the fullness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.
Literal: New English Translation -- And I am sure that when I arrive I shall come to you with a full measure of the blessing of Christ.
30. Now I beseech you, brethren, for [by] the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for [by] the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me;
Literal: But I exhort or implore you brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by spiritual love, or the love that the Spirit inspires, that you strive together with me in prayers to God for me.
In other words, Paul is saying to be his allies in his fight -- to stand with him and to pray with him and for each other. This again shows what things can be accomplished for God when we stand together and are likeminded on the Word. There can be no strife and no jealousy but an atmosphere of teamwork doing all for the glory of God in unity inspired by the love of God which thinks no evil.
31. That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints;
Literal: That I may be delivered from those that are disobedient (unbelievers) in Judea and that my service which benefits others for Jerusalem may find acceptance with God's people, the saints.
32. That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed.
Literal: That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God and l may be refreshed with you.
New English Translation -- So that by His will I may come to you in a happy frame of mind and enjoy a time of rest with you.
33. Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.
How is the God of peace with us?
Philippians 4: 9 -- Those things which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
DO what you learn, receive and hear from God's Word and THEN the God of peace shall be with you.
I Thessalonians 5: 23 -- And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto (at) the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
This concludes Chapter 15 of Romans. You can see the importance of the body of Christ working together. The Word of God can't move effectively unless this happens. Where there is envy and strife, there is confusion and every evil work. On the other hand, where there is unity of the spirit and likemindedness on God's Word, we will have God's peace and joy and live the more than abundant life.