Romans And The Christian Worldview Essay

1386 words - 6 pages

Paul’s letter to the Romans is of his greatest theological works, passed down for thousands of years and still as relevant today as it was in Paul’s time. How exactly is it relevant the modern Christian may ask? What with its harsh language that includes statements such as “the wages of sin is death” (6:23) and “the wrath of God” (1:18), one may say that current times have changed. Some may say that the issues Paul addresses are acceptable in today’s society. What exactly is the Christian to think? The purpose of this short essay is to examine how the Book of Romans relates to the Christian in the twenty-first century and how it helps to shape his worldview.
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For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now” (Romans 8:19-22). Paul explains to the reader that nature “was subjected to futility” (8:22). James Dunn references Genesis and the Hebrew language regarding this passage; “the LORD God formed the adam, dust from the adamah. The tie in was no doubt deliberate: the adam was formed to till the adamah; and subsequently the adamah is caught up in adam’s penalty for his disobedience (the ground cursed and its produce necessitating hard labor)…” Therefore, Paul teaches in Romans that the earth (creation) has fallen under condemnation along with man yet with the promise of man’s redemption God will also redeem His creation.
Due to the "Fall" of humanity and man’s blatant expression of disobedience sin thus entered the scene. Where once man had peace with God and walked with God and knew God in a way that no man has known since; when Adam openly disobeyed God this shared communion was shattered and along with it, any hope of redemption outside of God’s ultimate plan. What then does Romans teach about sin? Paul teaches that the wages of sin is death (6:23). James Dunn includes these additional consequences; “Misdirected Religion,” “Self-Indulgence” and “Sins.” Of the four that Dunn lists, the easiest to understand would include the consequences of having a sin-nature and death. These are easy to recognize because we are able to spot sin in our lives (though some are able to spot it in others lives easier!) and we are surrounded by death. According to WorldOMeters.info and at the time of this writing there have been an estimated 14,522,468 deaths this year! That averages 6,454 deaths per hour worldwide. What of misguided religion? Estimates in the United States alone record upwards of seven million people involved in cults spread out amongst 3000 to 5000 different groups. What of self-indulgence? The world around us speaks volumes. As Americans seek riches to acquire houses and cars and jet planes one can stand outside any homeless shelter in America and watch as men in business suits cringe at the thought of giving a dollar to a man who hasn’t eaten all day or hasn’t had a shower in a week! Romans teaches us that sin is prevalent in man and not only is it part of our nature it has corrupted man to the point that God has “turned them over to debased minds” (1:28). Yet, there remains hope!
A most cherished statement Paul makes in his epistle is that we can be “justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (3:24). James Smith writes; “To be justified is to be forgiven, saved from wrath, reckoned righteous, to obtain peace with God, rejoice in hope, possess the love of God and to be reconciled to God.” Through Christ, what is broken, can now be restored to God.
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