Knowing the Bible Series: Romans

Paul’s letter to the Romans
really systematically and meticulously outlines the sheer
breadth, the breathtaking heights, of the gospel of
justification by grace alone, through faith alone. It is, if
we can still use the word, an epic sweep of gospel
proclamation going all the way back to the covenantal history
of Israel. So Paul brings that covenantal context into the
church context that he’s writing to to explain to this mixed
church in Rome, Jews and also gentiles converted out of
paganism, how first of all all have sinned and fallen short of
the glory of God and that the cross is a great equalizer in
that sense, the ground is level at the foot of the cross. But
then through that takes us to the dizzying heights of grace to
say that God is still faithful, God keeps his promises and the
commitment that he has made in the Covenant is true and it’s
true in Jesus Christ. So as deeply as we’ve fallen, as low
as that gets, there is this great news of being united by
faith with Jesus Christ available to anyone who will
believe. So what we see in Romans
culminating almost in this peak of Romans Chapter 8, which is
one of the greatest passages in Scripture, is that in Christ we
are free from bondage, we are free from death, we are free
from sin, we are free from hell, and we are free from
condemnation. Anyone can get in on that so long as they have
saving faith in Jesus Christ. Then he talks about how these
things have practical implications, how the Gospel
doesn’t just promise us this sort of disembodied bliss but
brings the abundant life now, life in the spirit which is
available to all who believe in Jesus Christ. So it’s a great
letter from beginning to end. Simple, Martin Luther called it
the purest gospel but yet very complex. So in this study what
we’ve tried to do is show that the highlights and glimpses of
the complexity but give sort of a sense of just how breathtaking
and dizzying the grace of God and Jesus Christ is.

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