The Importance of Reading Romans

“One can almost write the history of Christian Theology by surveying the ways in which Romans has been interpreted.” Joseph Fitzmyer, Romans, xiii.

Because Romans is the longest of the New Testament epistles it has major influence on Christian theology. Fitzmyer is not exaggerating. In fact, most of Christian soteriology is based on the book of Romans. Is it possible to fully describe “salvation by grace through faith” using only the Jewish Christian letters? Even the Gospels themselves do not present a fully developed view of salvation. For many evangelical Christians, Romans is more or less equivalent to the Gospel! One of the basic ways to present the Gospel is the “Romans Road.”

The importance of the book can be demonstrated by examining popular systematic theologies. There far more references to Romans than any other New Testament book (and in some cases, more than the whole Old Testament!) Although the book only focuses on Paul, in N. T. Wright’s recent Paul and the Faithfulness of God, there are twenty-two columns of references to Romans, there are twenty-eight columns for all of the other Pauline letters.

Romans BibleThe importance of the book can be seen in church history. Just two examples, there are others. Augustine was converted to Christianity when he opened up the Bible and randomly read Romans 13:13-14, “Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Augustine said “it was as if a light of relief from all anxiety flooded my heart. All the shadows of doubt were dispelled” (Confessions, translated by Henry Chadwick; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992, 153).

When Luther read Romans and was stunned by the grace of God. As he began to study Romans and to understand how the “righteousness of God” in Romans 1:17 applied to other areas of salvation, he began to question medieval Catholic doctrine, leading to the Protestant Reformation. The study of Romans in this case led to one of the greatest dividing pints in world history!

In Luther’s own words,

This epistle is really the chief part of the New Testament, and is truly the purest gospel. It is worthy not only that every Christian should know it word for word, by heart, but also that he should occupy himself with it every day, as the daily bread of the soul. We can never read it or ponder over it too much; for the more we deal with it, the more precious it becomes and the better it tastes (Martin Luther, Preface to the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans)

Michael Bird used this same quote in the preface to his recent commentary on Romans, and it appears frequently in introductions to the book. I realize this sounds a little bit like hype, since I am introducing a series on Romans. Like anyone who rehearses this information at the beginning of a book on Romans, I have a vested interest in exciting people about our study. But a study of Paul’s letter to the Romans really is exciting and will reward those who diligently study the book.

As you have read Romans in the past, what are some of the most significant verses in the book to you? What has impacted your understanding of God his faithful actions providing salvation for sinners? Are there verses which have shaped the way you think about your life as a Christian?

33 thoughts on “The Importance of Reading Romans

  1. I fully concur about the vital place of Romans in theology and church history. To Augustine and Luther, I might add the “most influential theologian of the 20th Century” (to many), Karl Barth. It was his commentary on Romans, first released in 1919 (one yr. after end of WWI), that “fell like a bombshell on the playground of the theologians” (mostly liberal, but also traditionalists). Unsettled everyone, and probably launched neo-orthodoxy.

    If one knows Barth’s work at all, the big emphasis is centrality of Christ and of grace, similarly to Luther (tho he was Reformed, not Lutheran).

    As to readings of Roman: used to drive me crazy (still could, if I let it). Though Paul’s most “systematic” or fully-developed theology, it is anything but tight logically. Often enigmatic. I know this will sound outlandish to many of your readers, Phillip, but it’s only slight overstatement to say, when combined with his other “genuine” letters, that it shows Paul was inventing an entirely new theology. Claiming, of course, it was by revelation. I’m not saying God didn’t use him positively. But that “revelation” claim has to be taken with a very large grain of salt, if thought of as meaning what most traditionalist (Evangelical, orthodox, RC, etc.) people mean by it.

    • I had Barth included in my class lecture, and I plan on name-checking him from time to time. I am trying to read the commentary along with my lectures, but I anticipate the semester will catch up to me.

      “It is anything but tight logically” – we talked a little bit about that in class, one problem is Paul’s “logic” is rabbinical, not western and post-Enlightenment.

      As for “that it shows Paul was inventing an entirely new theology…” you might be surprised if you knew some of more quiet readers of this blog! There are quite a few who would say the church starts with Paul, rather than at Pentecost.

  2. There are so many great verses in Romans that I have known for as long as I can remember. I grew up with many of them memorized, and now as I ponder those verses, I realize that I view them in a completely deeper more meaningful way. It is very helpful to go back to verses you have not read in a while to see if you can uncover a different meaning or purpose for that verse to have been written, so that is what I did.

    First of all, Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” In this verse, I think it is important to remember that God first wants our love and devotion, and then the rewards come after that, yet ultimately God’s will must be done.

    Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” The gravity of this verse is often overlooked. It is truly unbelievable that Christ would die for us, but even more so that he would die for sinners, but that is what we were. Paul explains that it is uncommon for someone to die even for a righteous person.

    Romans 8:38-39, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons….will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” This is also a popular one that I have heard many times throughout the years, and is quite powerful. It is an extremely hopeful verse that reiterates the wonder of God’s selfless love, and Jesus’ gift of redemption.

    The book of Romans has definitely impacted my theology in a major way, and all three of these verses have shaped my beliefs as a Christian. They have each given me incredible hope, and now that I look back at them, I am even more encouraged.

  3. Though I do agree that the book of Romans is full of many foundational truths to the Christian theology, I do not agree with Luther’s energetic take on the book. Luther believes that Romans is the “purest gospel” and the “chief part of the New Testament.” I believe that without the Gospels and Acts, Romans would therefore mean nothing and we wouldn’t have the teachings of Jesus to indicate how beautiful the book of Romans really is. The ideas all come from the teachings of Jesus and that is something we need to keep in mind when reading through Paul’s letters. Many people take Paul’s letters as almost Gospel themselves, but he is not the main source of these teachings, he simply puts what has already been taught and heard into a new light to give a fresh look at the Christian life and beliefs. A great passage, Romans 14:7-8, gives evidence of such things that whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. Our guidance is supposed to come from God and that is how Paul lived and we see him as a great example. Though filled with many great inspired words, we should not see the book of Romans as the height of the New Testament, though is indeed still a very important book to study all the same, it just should be under the correct mindset that one does so.

  4. Many of the verses in Romans have significance to me. Romans is by far my favorite book in the Bible and many of the verses are important to me and the things I have experienced.

    Some of the verses that stand out to me when they are referenced in sermons and when reading through Romans itself. I have many of the verses in Romans highlighted and underlined in my own Bible purely because there are so many significant verses that I try to model my life after. Some of these verses include:

    Romans 5:8 which says, “But God demonstrated His own love for us in this while we’re still sinners Christ died for us.” I consider this an important verse because it truly is one of the pillars for salvation in the Christian faith. Christ loved us while we were unlovable.

    I have entirety of Romans 6 highlighted purely because it discusses dying to sin and becoming alive again through righteousness and I feel as a Christ-follower that I should model my life after those verses as I go through my life to live my life as an example of Christ now that I am saved by His grace.

    I have many of the verses in Romans 8 highlighted also because it talks about the love that God has for us (Romans 8:38-39) and talks about purpose (8:28) and the strength of God and I feel that they exhibit the character of God and Romans 8 also talks more about salvation which is essential to the Christian faith.

    There is also Romans 12:2 which says “Do not be conformed any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will.” This verse stands out because as a renewed Christian it discusses another essential part of the Christian faith because it is talking about being in the world not of the world which is another part of the faith.

    When reading through Romans there are many significant verses that are essential to the Christian faith and to my own faith with Jesus as a Christ-follower.

  5. While growing up I never fully understood why it was so important to memorize Bible verses and understand what they were saying. As time has passed, I have come to really appreciate what the Bible has to offer. Adam Shultz brings up a great point when he says that verses can mean and help people in so many different ways. God has given us His word in order for it to be a guide and support for us in this life that will undoubtedly go in different directions then we expect. The book of Romans is one of my favorite books in the Bible simply because it offers so much direction,truth and encouragement. Romans 8:38-39 is a verse that I find myself going back to constantly as well as sharing with friends who are struggling and feeling that they have gone too far in their sin. It is an incredible feeling of peace to know that NOTHING at all can ever separate us from God. I find reassurance in that truth. Another verse that hits home for me every time I read it is Romans 2:1 “You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse!” This is such a great reminder that we are no better then the person we are condemning. I have personally struggled with being judgmental in my life so when I read this verse I am left speechless because I honestly have no right to be thinking poorly about someone else. God speaks to us through His word and it is so powerful! These two verses and so many others have really shaped my life as a Christian and have caused me to strive to live according to how God wants me to and would be proud of.

  6. I think that Romans as a guide for salvation produces some of the most quotable material for Evangelical Christians. I learned like a lot of kids whose parents make them go to AWANA, all of the Romans Road verses before I knew that it was the Gospel. When I was in middle school is when I first learned the “Share Jesus Without Fear” method by Bill Faye, and I was able to use the Romans road to share the good news with friends and students in my own youth group, some of them coming to faith in Christ. I think that God works in the heart of people differently and through our experiences we all understand Romans differently. We come to the book seeing the verses that impact our lives as truth gripping us to make a decision in our faith and relationship with Christ. The verses that I memorized as a child: Romans 1:16, 3:23, 5:8, 6:4, 6:18-23, were definitely the verses that helped me to understand more about my faith although I had already accepted Christ. I do think that Romans has more to offer. Just reading through Moo and trying to understand the Roman culture that Paul was writing to, and then seeing the perspective we read from today can take away from the original meaning. I think that verses that I have been reading for years can still jump out at me and have a deeper meaning the more I gather from cultural context and also a deeper understanding of God’s love for us through the entire letter of Romans and not just picking out verses like the Romans road.

    I really like what Andi says. That Romans in the context of the teachings of Jesus in the Gospels and Acts is for a lack of the word I am searching for…”beautiful”. Romans is the light and a guide for salvation for many but we need to remember that salvation comes through Christ and that Paul is writing Holy Spirit inspired therefore he is taking the teachings of Jesus and making them applicable to the Gentiles. I would like to hear testimony from someone who has come to faith from just reading the Gospels without the influence of Romans.

  7. Romans truly is a wellspring of knowledge regarding the person of Christ and the importance of His sacrifice, the authority of God, and the power of the Holy Spirit in a Christian’s life. One of my favorite chapters in Romans (and it deals primarily with what Jesus’ death achieved for Christians) is chapter 6. All my life I have dealt with reoccurring sin that has put me under the weight of guilt time and time again. I love this passage because it declares that I am free from sin. This is not because of anything I could have done on my own. I am set free solely by Christ’s death and resurrection. However, the Apostle Paul makes sure to cover up a few loopholes Christians may have thought of regarding sin. In verse 15, one can read that, even though Jesus forgives our sins, Christians cannot stay in a life of sin. The reason for this comes from the “enslavement to righteousness “that they experience following their conversion to Christianity. Christians are then supposed to obey the commands God has given His children and pursue righteous things because the fruit of becoming a slave to Christ “leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.” (Romans 6:22) The pursuit of righteous things becomes more and more of a priority in my life the more I read this chapter.

  8. The Romans Road is so common amongst evangelistic movements. I think it is so important and looked up to because of its full explanation of who Jesus Christ is and what He came to do, and why. It answers so many different questions for both believers and non-believers. People question why Christ-followers are the way they are, and it goes back to the “thesis statement” of Romans in 3:21-26, showing the righteousness of God and why we have the ability to be righteous in His eyes (Longenecker 174). Paul does a fantastic job of explaining the gospel and the power of God in Romans, which is yet another reason we easily will jump to Romans if we do not have clarity on the gospel (Longenecker 190).
    Romans 8 is very significant for me. Before I fully grasped what a relationship with Jesus looked like, it didn’t affect me like it does today. Now understanding and having a relationship with the Holy Spirit, Romans 8 is powerful to see what life is to look like and what power we have with the Holy Spirit by our side. This passage is the main one that has truly shaped my Christian walk, because the closer I get with Jesus, the more and more I see Romans 8 play out in my life and change the atmosphere around me.
    Studying Romans also allows me to refer to the gospel in a way that is chronological and makes sense when I explain it to someone else. It also emphasizes the importance of faith, rather than works. I am able to clearly see why Christ died, what life was like before Christ, and how I get to live today because of His great sacrifice.

  9. I agree that Romans is an extremely influential and important book of the bible, some verses that have stood out to me in the past are, Romans 12:2 and Romans 5:8. Romans 12: states, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” What stands out to me in this verse is it’s current relevance to today’s society, a society in which people are so absorbed in everything but God. This verse has always stood as a reminder to myself, that when I get caught up in the desires of the world, that God’s will should be my sole purpose on earth and I should not become consumed with the narcissistic, materialistic culture we live in. The next verse that has stood out to me is Romans 5:8, which states, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” this verse touches me deeply every time I read it, it reminds me of the sacrifice that was made on my behalf, and it also reminds me of God’s unconditional love, he was willing to lose his own son, for me. Romans is a key source from which I go to, to remind myself of God’s teachings and what he wants for my life.

  10. I agree that the book of Romans is extremely beneficial to understand salvation and the Gospel. Even more so I believe that it is an outstanding guide for living the Christian life. There is so much hope in the book of Romans, hope that comes with submitting yourself to Christ. One of my favorite verses within it that has helped me throughout my Christian walk is “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Romans 8:18). The reason this verse has impacted my life so greatly is because of the fact that this world is so imperfect and so broken which is something that is revealed to me more and more each day. Our lives are full of heartache, death, insecurity, uncertainty, sickness and so many more horrible things that happen because of our sinful nature. This verse gives me so much hope that the sufferings in which we endure will all be worth it in the end, because they are nothing in comparison to the glory that is to be revealed to us in heaven. Another one of my favorite verses in Romans is “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (Romans 8:26). There are so many times when I am feeling so desperate in prayer for myself or someone else and I can’t find the words to say. It is so comforting to me that even if we speak mumbled or jumbled in a way that others would not understand us, the Spirit always will. We don’t even have to utter words, our pain and aching is enough for the Spirit to know what we are trying to say, or our excited and our joy!

  11. Romans is one of the most powerful books that speak to us about the magnificent work God has done for us through His Son, Jesus Christ. One of the most important passages of the book comes from that of chapter five. Here, we are told from scripture that we can have “peace with God”. But how is this possible? IT is not, but only through the fact that God sent His Son, Jesus, to die in our place as a sacrifice for the sins of the world. Not only did Jesus do this, but He did so while He was hated by those He was dying to save. In our human life, it is rare that a friendship develops to such an extent that one would die for another. How much more unlikely would it be that a mere man or woman would die for someone that hated them? EGAD! Impossible. One might venture to guess that the mere willingness to do this for us, alone from the actual act, was divine in nature, as no man would ever be so selfless. Perhaps one of the other most important passages of the book comes from chapter seven, where we are affirmed to be free from the law. While we were still in the world, we are told that we “bore fruit for death”, that is, spiritual death. However, since we are now alone in Christ, we bear fruit for Him. What a joy and privilege it is to bear good, righteous fruit for the Prince of Peace. It is the least we can do for the one who saved our very lives…

  12. As discussed above, the book of Romans was pivotal in the shaping of the Christian theology and is constantly helping Christians through their walk with Christ day to day. Though there is a lot of text that can be transformational, those who read the text have different portions that stick out to them and are more meaningful to their lives. Personally, the passage of Romans 7:13-25 has been encouraging and helpful for me in relating to Paul as a person, but also understanding why I need Christ. This passage describes how we are at war with ourselves and the flesh, and how even the “God-given instruments of goodness and holiness and righteousness can be conscripted by the power of Sin to perpetuate its tragic purposes” (Longenecker & Still, 2014, p. 184). It meant so much for me growing up because I could not understand why I kept doing the things that I so desperately hated, so my Mother showed me this passage. It reminded me that not only am I not alone in struggling with sin and the flesh, but it is the very reason why I need to accept the gift of salvation! It’s the reason that I can celebrate that I have the love of God and praise him who created me. Since then, I have looked back on this passage, and I am reminded of how far I have come, but I am also humbled, knowing that I will always be in need of Christ because of the “wretched man” (woman) that I am.

  13. Romans is arguably one of the most influential ancient documents of all time due to the message it preaches about salvation to everyone who believes (Longenecker, 165). Even prior to taking this class, Romans 8 has always been my favorite passage. I love the end of the chapter which says, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (vs. 38-39). Though I am a sinner and have struggled with numerous things throughout my life, I can live in complete comfort knowing that nothing either within our outside of my control can separate me from God’s love. I have the tendency to seek out comfort and peace and in our world those luxuries can be few and far between. I love that Romans promises a security that God offers that is absolute and unending. No matter what is going on in this life, I can live knowing that God is my constant despite the constant changing in the world.
    In addition to this passage, many other passages in Romans have shaped the way that I identify Christianity. Romans has taught me that Christianity is for everyone (1:16) and God died for us despite our flaws, sins, and imperfections (5:8). No matter what this world says and does, we must live by the commands that God gives us. Our commitment is to God and this world (12:1) and while that may be difficult to do at times, it is so rewarding in the long run. In addition to all the people that Longenecker lists (pg 165), my life has definitely been impacted by the truths that Paul speaks in Romans.

  14. The book of Romans is full of conformations regarding the fruits that comes with being a Christian. As a follower of Christ there are moments where we tend to fall short or second guess ourselves. Therefore, having scripture that keeps us reassured and grounded in the spirit is so important in our faith walk. Satan does nothing better than try to fill us up with lies. The only way to combat when this happens is by knowing scripture like the back of our hand. One of my favorite pieces of scripture in this book is, Romans 8:38-39, which states how there is no power that can separate us from the love of God. How powerful and unconditional of a love must God have for us to make such a bold statement. Which is one of the fruits that comes with being a child of God. Another verse that comes to mind is, Romans 12:2, this tells us not to conform to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of our mind. The fruit that comes with this is understanding how vital it is to not focus so much on the temporary pleasures the world has to offer. Instead, we need to focus on the preparing for our eternity with God. These two verses are a constant reminder that God is present and He is faithful. No matter what His grace is sufficient and more than what we deserve but given to us anyway. As a Christian I need to focus more on God’s love for me and work to grow closer to Him every day.

  15. Reading Romans and this post makes me think of the study of Romans I did when I was a summer camp counselor. As a camp staff, we went through the Romans road and that is how we focused on sharing the gospel to incoming kids. Going through this study and applying it inside my cabin with the girls I had really showed me how faithful God is. I did not feel prepared or equipped to be a counselor but God really worked that summer and did so many amazing things in my camper’s lives. The verses we focused on were in chapter 5 when Paul talks about our sin. That everyone has sin and having an understanding of our sin. But most importantly (which was a learning and growth experience for me as well) our need for Jesus, our need for salvation in verse 12, the why behind salvation. Then in chapter 6 the freedom we can find in Christ, and we can no longer be slaves to sin (v. 6). Through this experience, God really showed me His amazing faithfulness and I think that is why I find so much comfort in chapter 3. Through being a camp counselor I failed a lot (in life I fail a lot) but God still used those failures for good. My fear in life that I struggle with is being good enough and chapter three reminds me that I will never be good enough without Jesus, verse 22, (“This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe,”) has shaped the way I live life, not on my own but with faith in Christ I am good enough.

  16. As I continued throughout the years to read and reference from the book of Romans, I got a deeper understanding of the theological significance of the verses. Almost every book I read during my time at Grace has impacted the way I interpret scripture. There are always keywords in verses I miss, and later show up to be a vital part of that scripture. Usually, after a class discussion or reading the class material, I figure out the amount of influence that specific word had on the verse. However, one of the verses I’ve referenced in the past that now has come up in Thinking Through Paul is Romans 12:1-2. The first time this verse was presented to me, I did not think much of it besides that it flowed nicely with an idea in my paper. Now examining this verse through Longenecker’s perspective, I see a new dialogue being presented that was nothing like the first time I read this verse. Keyword Longenecker gravitates his reader’s attention to is “Gods mercy” and “transformed” (Longenecker, 189). The significance behind Romans 12:1-12 is that God’s mercy is for anybody willing to offer themselves to God and be transformed by Him. It does not matter what sector of society one comes from as long as they are willing to pull apart from the world and present themselves holy in front of God; they can be saved.

  17. This blog post points out the many important factors the book of Romans contains. The book has shaped Christian theology and helped form the ideals of many theologans. The book of Romans is also used as a guide for many Christians today. I often see references to this book in books and hear references in sermons. To me, the book of Romans is foundational to my faith. There are so many verses that contain elements of the Gospel. Romans 6:23 and Romans 10:9 tell us how belief in Jesus will give us eternal life. I believe that reading the Bible can transform your life and Romans is a book that has personally shaped my walk with Christ. One of my favorite verses in all Scripture is Romans 8:38-39. Knowing that nothing can ever separate me from the love of God is very impactful. It gives peace, confidence, and strengthens my faith in the Lord. I think that this book is also easy to understand. I can remember memorizing verses and reading from Romans ever since I was a young kid. All of these elements of Romans make it a very influential part in the lives of many believers.

  18. Though we need to be careful to not put any book of the Bible over other books, Romans has been quite impactful throughout Christian history, and that is an understatement. Bruce Longenecker and Todd Still describe it well in their book, Thinking Through Paul: A Survey of His Life, Letters, and Theology, by stating that the sixteen chapters of Romans is an expression of God’s good news and God’s plan to bring about salvation to anyone who believes (Longenecker, Still, Pg. 165). P. Long’s blog post describes it in extreme detail, even highlighting vastly impactful people who they themselves were impacted by Paul’s letter to the Romans. Recently, I myself have been impacted by and meditating upon Romans chapter 12. Within chapter 12 we find what our lives ought to look like as believers of Christ Jesus, that because of our salvation we ought to present our bodies as a living sacrifice and not conforming to this world, our minds being renewed so that we may know the will of God (Romans 12:1-2). This passage impacts and adds to my understanding of how I ought to live as a Christian, and the rest of Romans 12 goes even further in details. However, verses 1-2 gives me plenty to contemplate. That, though I can never be perfect until I see God, through God’s mercy I can present my life to Him as a living sacrifice, that is spiritual worship. What an amazing and interactive concept, that our spiritual worship is not merely a once done, but instead an interactive spirituality that as we live our lives as a sacrifice for God, we worship Him. Romans 12:1-2 has not only impacted how I live my life but has also furthered my understanding of God and His faithfulness. As Paul writes in verse one, it is through God’s mercies that I can present myself as a living sacrifice. Through God’s mercies of sending Jesus to die for my sins, I can through Jesus have relationship with God, knowing what His will is so that I may live to please Him. Not because I have to, or because God somehow needs me to please Him, but because God desired a relationship with me thus I get to present my life as a living sacrifice.

    • I choose just a couple that really stuck out to me in a quick moment. There is so much good in Romans and especially Romans 12;1-2. We live in a world that has standards that it is trying to set on us and we are in a everyday battle with the flesh. We live in this world, but we are not of the world. God wants us to live a life that Glorifies him. We are the difference that shows why conforming to the ways of the world is bad. We accept Christ and we are transformed by the renewal of our hearts. This is another great example of encouragement and growth from Romans.

  19. The biggest thing that always comes to mind when I think of Romans and what I have read is the Roman road explanation of salvation. I already know how to explain it in a way that is personal to me, but this gives me a way to shape it in a way that give God the glory. Romans really gives the solid guide lines of how to best live our lives and share why we live the lives we are living for Jesus.

    The first verse that really sticks out is Romans 3:23 and that we are not worthy of the gift God has given us. I remember every day and it’s not in a way that I discourage myself, but that I remind myself how much God truly loves me. This powerful and all loving God can have anything he wants in this world, but he wants me. Someone who will always be a sinner and will never be perfect no matter how hard I try. God gave us the most important thing a father can give up. We can ignore this gift and forever be separated from him or we can repent and be with God in eternity. (Romans 6:23).

    These are just a few of many verses that stick out to me from Romans and they are encouraging reminders of a gift that I don’t deserve, but God loves me so much that he still gives it.

  20. Before taking this class of Pauline Literature, I already had an idea that Romans was full of heavy topics and controversy. I also knew that Romans carried the path to salvation through the Roman road. Those are verses I had to memorize while I was young and they have even stuck with me today. One of my favorite passages is in Romans and has been something I’ve been holding on to recently because of the hope it gives me.
    Romans is full-on heavy topics and controversy because it addresses some of the most debated topics in theology. For example, the idea of whether we were chosen by God or if we have the choice to believe in God. this can be found in Romans chapters nine through eleven. But that’s not my point. Romans is full of so much information with our relationship with God. one of my favorite passages in Romans is Romans 5:1-5, this is about being justified through faith. We are made righteous in God’s eyes because we believe in him. And therefore we can have peace because the Holy Spirit has been given to us. When we go through any suffering, I have peace because I know I am being sanctified through it all because I have been justified.

  21. Romans 12:2 has been a verse that has shaped the way I think about my life as a Christian. To be who God wants me to be and to do what He wants me to do and not who the world wants me to be or what the world wants me to do. A verse that has impacted my understanding of God’s provision of Salvation is; “For the wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:23). It is obvious that people are going to die at some point in their life, but as time quickly passes away it can be difficult for people who are distracted or busy with their life to acknowledge that they will also pass away. It can be hard to grasp the concept of death. My Theology Professor said, “Death is not natural and is contrary to God.” God allowed sin, but God from His love gives / provides eternal life to all who choose to love and follow Him. God’s gift of His son to the world is beautiful. As God’s gift is for all, I understand as a person who is saved that I am to reflect Him to the world and to not dampen the opportunity to share Christ with those I am around.

  22. Romans is definitely one of the most impactful books when it comes to Christian theology. There are a ton of great verses in their and especially in today’s church. While there is a lot of sound and tight theology contained within the book. It can be easy to elevate Romans above other books in the Bible. I think that Romans is used and influences us as much as it does due to the fact that Paul wrote it. Modern Christians tend to lean on Paul’s teachings of what Jesus said than the synoptic Gospels. Romans 3:23 is probably one of the most quoted verses of the BIble. ROmans 4:7-8 are great verses that i have really started to commit to memory since they are reminders that we are only blessed if we have truly accepted Christ as our savior.

  23. There are many reasons why the book of Romans is important for Christian scholars and students alike. Most of Christian soteriology is derived from the book of Romans (Long, 2019). This book has had a very important impact on my walk as a Christian. Romans 10:9-10 played a huge part in my salvation story. The verse says, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” This verse literally tells us how to be saved and sums up the gospel into one passage. Another passage that had played an important role in my spiritual walk is earlier in chapter 8 of Romans in verse in verse 38. The verse tells us that nothing in this world can separate us from the love of God. This passage has allowed me to be inspired to be faithful through all of the trials of life.
    The book of Romans has affected my theological standpoints, especially concerning salvation and the gospel (which are some of the, if not the most important themes in the book.) It would be smart for any Christian scholar or just regular believers (although I believe that all Christians should be somewhat of a scholar) to read and understand Romans.

  24. Romans is the longest epistle in the New Testament which may give us the most influential information needed for Christian Theology. As history shows us the importance of certain situations in our own lives, we can see that the history of the church may show us how important the book of Romans is to Christianity today. Romans is a book that has many different verses including some that I have been able to memorize in the past and to this day still can recite some of those verses. One that comes to mind is Romans 3:23 which says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” This verse is very important to me, and I always recite it in my head when things are not going as planned. This is a book that I can always look to in times I need it because there are many places in Romans where you can go in hard times and in times when God is needed. Most people are taught that we can find our way to salvation while reading through the Gospel, but after reading your post and some of my research for the major paper proposal, we can also find salvation in the book of Romans as well.

  25. Romans is one of those books for me where every time I read it, I get something knew out of it. I agree that Romans is an influential book with Christian theology. Longenecker talks about how Romans is arguably one of the most influential ancient documents of all time due (Longenecker, 165). It covers a variety of salvation topics and controversial issues. I have quite a few verses memorized from Romans that stand out to me.

    One verse is Romans 6:23 which is a common one. It says that “The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). I like how Paul puts it simply that sin leads to death, but God’s gift brings eternal life. An important theological concept summed up into one powerful verse.
    Another verse I like is Romans 8:1-2. The whole chapter is one I really enjoy and look to often. But the first couple verses talk about there is no condemnation for those in Jesus because through Jesus the spirit has set us free from sin and death. I find these verses important and comforting in the sense that we do not have to live in condemnation for our past mistakes. We are set free from sin and shame through Jesus.

    An important verse to Christian belief and theology is Romans 10:9 which says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord’, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). This verse is significant because it talks about Salvation. Paul instructs us on how to be saved.

    Lastly, a verse I remind myself of often is Romans 12:2. This verse talks about not conforming to the world, but to be transformed. Through that, we will be able to know what God’s will is. This verse is an important one for Christians living in a society that is not majority Christian. It is important for us to live in a way that is not conforming to the world’s standards but is living in a way pleasing to God and following His will for our life.

  26. Blog Post #6
    I have read a great deal of Romans many times and I can agree that it is one of the most influential books of the new and old testament Bible. There are plenty of relevant verses that I find interesting and important to my life however the one that I think is most important and relevant to modern society and life would be that from Romans Chapters 12 and 15. Chapter 12 is all about “God’s people in community and the world” (TTP 178). One verse that resonates with me from Romans 12 that is in direct relation to how we need to live would be that of “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). This verse is important to me because Paul is saying that we should not live our lives according to the patterns and influences of society. This is a very pivotal statement because in modern society like today there are so many distractions and false idols that people spend so much of their time focusing on. Whether it be following and living their lives according to the lives of celebrities and athletes to focusing so much on new Iphone and Shoes drops. None of these materialistic things matter for we can not take them with us when we reach Judgement day, therefore we need to focus our attention on Christ and live out our lives according to the Word.
    The next thing that resonates with me would be the Romans chapter 8, for this whole chapter talks about life in the spirit. Therefore there are plenty of important verses throughout this chapter that I found very moving. One of which comes from Romans 8: 1-2 “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8: 1-2). This is a very important verse because God sent his only son in order to free all mankind from sin and death and that we would all be alive through His spirit, and His spirit is inside all of us therefore we must live our lives according to Him and His ultimate sacrifice. Longenecker and Still portray it perfectly stating “God raised Jesus, so too the presence of the spirit lives in the lives of Jesus-followers ensures that he will do the same for them in the future” (TTP 186). This is important for when we die God will raise us too and we will be intimate in familial relationship with Him.

  27. It is crazy to think that Christian theology and soteriology would be almost non-existent if it were not for the letter Paul wrote to the Roman believers. As is mentioned in our class notes, we would not be able to describe salvation through faith if we only had the Jewish Christian letters like Jude. I find the conversion story of Augustine to be quite a dramatic one! He was living very much in the world, yet one day after hearing a child say or sing “‘…pick it up; read it; pick it up, read it.’ (Translated from the Latin ‘Tolle Lege, Tolle Lege’)” Augustine at once got up, taking this as a command from the Lord, and found a Bible. He then opened the Bible at random, landing on Romans 13. The rest of Augustine’s life is history, having a great impact in Christian thinking and theology. As seen by the radical conversion of Augustine, it is clear that Romans is a powerful book, full of powerful and a great message to not only unbelievers but to Christians. Many believers who grew up Christian know the “Roman Road” and how it can be used to guide unbelievers to see why they need a savior, what Christ did for us, and how we should live now as Christians. One verse that has always stuck out to me and been a favorite is Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (ESV Study Bible). I have always had a great interest in missions and the spreading of the gospel, but I also can be quite shy and hate confrontation. I often used this verse to remind myself I should not be ashamed or timid in sharing the gospel with others and in living out my Christian faith and beliefs.

    ESV Study Bible

  28. Martin Luther is right, if we read more and more about the letter of Romans, the better we have an understanding of what Paul is teaching to the people during those days. I have been taught the Roman’s Road and taught others about it as well at Camp Michawana where I was a camp counselor. some of the kids that I get at camp either live a Christian life and go to a Christian school and church, while I also have had others where they have never heard or read a Bible. to use the Roman’s Road with these kids, they either get refreshed about the Gospels or they accept Christ as their Savior for the first time. using the book of Romans, there are a lot of teachings that help both “old” Christians and “new” Christians how to live godly lives. it is a great read and the more I read it, the more I enjoy it

  29. The fact that Martin Luther realized so much by reading Romans means a lot to me. I am a Lutheran and knew that he opened his Bible and found lots with the church at the time, but I did not know that it was Romans specifically. It does make a lot of sense that Romans was one of the main books. Luther, being a monk in the Roman Catholic church, would be bound to spend a large amount of time reading the book written by Paul to the Christian church in Rome.

    When thinking about what verse in Romans has a significant impact on me I kept thinking about the Roman Road. Surprisingly, I had never heard of the Roman Road until our last class period when it was brought up. The verse that I have always known that continues to stick out to me is Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” This is a verse that has been taught to me my entire life and I have been told to memorize it on multiple occasions. The reason that this verse sticks out to me so much is because it helps keep me in check. What I mean by that is that sometimes things go really well in my life and I feel on top of the world. When this happens, it becomes very easy for me to look at myself in higher regards than I should. This verse helps me keep myself in check because I know that no matter what I do and how great it is, that God is our King and we will never be able to reach His glory. I believe that this verse is one for all of us to keep in our hearts.

    A verse that has impacted my understanding of God and His action of providing salvation for sinners is Romans 5:8. It says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” This impacted my understanding because it shows how much God truly loves us. He just did not have Christ die for those who He liked more or who was less of a sinner, but Jesus died for every single person here on earth.

    A verse that has shaped my life as a Christian is Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” The reason that this has shaped my life as a Christian is because it just reinforces how important it is for us to go out into the world and evangelize.

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