While I was attending this year’s Ligonier National Conference, I received a complementary copy of R.C. Sproul’s commentary on Romans. I wasn’t expecting this gift, but there it was. Strangely, I have been thinking a lot about Romans lately and so the arrival of this study help is very timely.
On a regular basis, in conversation or listening to conversations, I hear Romans referenced as an anchor. Many of our most fundamental beliefs and doctrines have been clearly articulated in this book so I guess it makes sense that it is mentioned so often. Sadly though, even given the fact that I have been involved in ministry for many years, I have never studied through this important book. I guess it is time.
I look forward to diving into this book of all books, this great manifesto of out faith. I’m certain that it will be difficult and also that it will be glorious. What better way to focus on Truth then to see it in the pages of Scripture? (Actually, is there any other way but this?) As Jesus said, “Your Word is Truth” (John 17).
“…for the sake of His Name among the nations…” Romans 1:5
To begin, I am struck by the simple line found in Paul’s opening statement. I perceive that this captures a common theme that will wind its way through this book. We have received grace, this is sure. But we have received it for the sake of His name.
Chasing down every word of this line will produce vast landscapes of the most beautiful reality…the only reality of redemption. To ponder the extent and the expense of Grace…To recognize and comprehend the way that we have received this…To be arrested by the authority and power of the Name that distributes this grace and establishes our faith…To see the mission of this Name reaching and changing the nations…We need this. We need this constantly.
Romans is not for the “Gospel” tract or for the dorm room argument. Romans is for all of us in every moment because all of us in every moment are for the sake of His name among the nations.