Summary of Romans
It is hardly questioned that Romans is written by Paul*, the apostle, especially considering he begins his book with “Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ…” It is most probable that Romans was written about A.D. 57*.
The theme of Romans can be summed up pretty well with this short little phrase, “Justification through faith by grace for His glory” We are justified, that is, set free or declared free from sin, by believing in what Christ has done for us on the cross. It is by God’s grace that we are saved and not any works of righteousness that we have done. God has saved us that His name might be glorified and lifted high. Because we now no longer live in the flesh, but have put on the new man, we must live righteously and for God’s glory.
A. What is the author telling me in Romans 1:1-17?
Paul begins his epistle to the Romans with a greeting! He makes it clear that he is an apostle through Jesus Christ and by His grace. He thanks God for them and their faith and also tells them that he mentions them in his prayers. He longs to come and visit them and impart a spiritual gift to them. He is not ashamed of the gospel and reminds the Romans that the just live by faith.
B. How should I respond to Romans 1:1-17?
I should be giving thanks to God for the sanctification that I see at work in the lives of others. Paul reminds us that we are who we are in Christ because of His grace in our life and not because of anything that we do. I want my faith to be so audacious that it would be known throughout the world like the faith of the Romans. I do not want to be ashamed of the gospel.
A. Romans 1:18-4:25
Paul then begins to tell of God’s righteous wrath against sin and all unrighteousness. Because we have sinned against a just and perfect God, we are under His wrath. Not one of us is righteous because all of us have sinned. Yet, God in His great mercy toward us, has given His righteousness through His son Jesus Christ, to all who will believe. We have been justified by His grace and redeemed by the propitiation of His blood. Therefore, we can only boast in Christ because it was nothing that we did, but only by His grace have we been saved. Paul uses David and Abraham as an example of those in the Old Testament who also had to be justified by their faith in the promise of the one to come.
B. Romans 1:18-4:25
I have been set free from the chains of sin which have bound me because of God’s mercy and grace towards me. He has given me His righteousness. I can only be justified if I believe in Jesus Christ. I have nothing to boast in because I had no righteousness of my own to save me.
A. Romans 5:1-8:39
Because we have been justified by faith we have peace with God. We have hope in our Lord Jesus Christ so that when we go through trials and tribulations we can rejoice. Because we have been justified in Christ, we now live in Christ. Therefore we should put to death the old man that is in Adam. God’s grace is so much bigger then sin. Just because God has extended His grace to the sinner does not mean that we should continue to live in sin. We have died with Christ when we put our trust in Him, therefore, our sin has died with us and we should no longer live in sin, but in Christ. We are now no longer slaves of sin, but slaves to God. We are free from the law of sin. By God’s grace we can live for Christ instead of sin. Paul also reminds us of God’s powerful love for his children that can never separate us from Christ.
B. Romans 5:1-8:39
I am to no longer live in my sin because I am a new creation. I am Christ’s; therefore, I should live for Him. When I do sin I do not need to live in condemnation because He is gracious to forgive me of that sin. Yet, just because God extends His grace toward me does not mean that I should continue in sin. My sinful life has died with Christ when I believed in Him; therefore, I should no longer live in sin.
A. Romans 9:1-11:36
Paul goes on to tell of the Israelites rejection of Christ. He says that not all are children of God only those which God elects to be His. God gives His mercy to some and on some He doesn’t. Just as the potter has the right to do what He wants with his clay, so Christ has the right to do what He wishes with His creation. He gives His mercy to some and His wrath to others, so that His power and the “riches of His glory” is known. If we believe in our heart and confess with our mouth that Jesus Christ is Lord, then we will be saved. People cannot be saved unless someone goes to them and tells them the gospel. They must listen to the gospel in order to believe the gospel. We are saved by God’s grace and not by our works, for if it were works then it wouldn’t be grace.
B. Romans 9:1-11:36
I did not choose God, but rather He chose me. God makes His Glory and power known to others by giving His mercy to some and His wrath to others. I have nothing to be proud about, because it was God’s grace that saved me and not any works of righteousness. I must go and tell the lost about Jesus, so that they can believe in Him
A. Romans 12:1-15:13
Paul then goes on to tell how we as Christians should live. We are members of one body in Christ, but each of the members do not have the same function. So whatever our gift maybe, whether prophesying, ministering, exhorting, giving etc., we should do it all for God’s glory and with a cheerful heart and a good attitude. We should love what is good, but hate what is evil. We are told to be kind, to bless those who persecute us, be in unity with one another, and “overcome evil with good”. We are to submit to our government because God is over our government. Therefore if we don’t submit to it, then we are really not submitting to God. We are to love all, and live for Christ. We should not cause a weaker brother or sister in Christ to stumble by tempting them.
B. Romans 12:1-15:36
In everything I do, I should do for God’s glory. If I am not serving or giving etc. with a cheerful heart and a good attitude then I am sinning and not doing it for God’s glory. I need to submit to the authority that God has placed me under because God is the one in authority over who I should be under authority.
A. Romans 15:14-16:27
Paul preaches the gospel to the lost and to those who have never heard the truth. Paul desires to come and visit
and be refreshed with them. Paul mentions several friends, which he wishes them to greet for him. He exhorts them one last time to avoid those who cause division among the brethren. He then sends his own greeting and that of some of the people he is with, to the people of Rome . He closes his letter with a benediction. Rome
B. Romans 15:14-16:27
It is important to have fellowship with other believers, so we can be refreshed with each other. It is important for the church to watch out for those who would want to cause division among the believers. We need to go out and preach to the lost and not just stay within our own Christian group.
Romans 3:23-24, which says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,” I think sums up the book of Romans pretty well. We are all sinners in need of a Savoir. We have been justified by God’s grace towards us through His son Jesus Christ. Therefore, it is nothing we have done that has saved us because we are wholly dependent on God’s grace.
Note*:I got my author, date, and outline's scriptural section breakups from Introducing the New Testament (a short guide to its history and message) by D. A. Carson and Douglas J. Moo, edited by Andrew David Naselli.