Chapter 1:7-16

Fred R. Coulter—July 27, 1996

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I want us to think about what a tremendous thing it is that we have the New Testament. What I would like you to do is turn right there on pg. 1, chapter 1 of the In-Depth Bible Study. I think this will help you understand why the New Testament is really a personal message, inspired of God, beginning first of all with the Gospels—the ministry, words and teachings of Jesus Christ—and then the book of Acts shows us the acts of the apostles. Every other book of the New Testament—with the exception of Revelation—is called an epistle, meaning a letter.

What I want you do is look at the word epistle at the top of pg. 1, it says The Epistle to the Romans. I want you to draw a line between the 'E' and the 'p'; I want you to do the same thing between the 't' and the 'l'; I want you to isolate out the word 'pist.' The reason I'm doing this is because—write that right below it and put at the end of it 'os': 'pistos'—which is to believe.

I want you to do that again: write 'pist' and add two more letters at the end of that—you're getting a little Greek lesson here—'is'—'pistis'; so we have two words out of that stem:

  • 'pistos'—faithful or faithful one
  • 'pistis'—faith

It's interesting that root word 'pist' in epistle is actually a part of faith. So in a sense you could say the epistle are personal letters of faith. When we view it that way then we're going to understand how important the Word of God is.

What would God tell you if He were here today? Think on that for just a minute. What would He tell you? A lot of people say, 'Well, if God would tell me, I'd believe Him.' He already has! He would say the same thing, would He not? Yes! So that's why when you look at this personal letter of faith, inspired by God and Jesus Christ because They do it together, why is this important? If you know that it comes directly from God in the form of personal letter, are you not going to want to understand it even more? Yes, you are! You realize then that this is a personal message from God. The reason that it is is because God personally inspired that there would be enough Bibles around the world so that:

  • it would be a witness to all people
  • He would have His Word so that everyone would be able to look at it if they were willing to do so
  • with it God could call those people whom He chooses to call
  • He open their minds for conversion

That's really a tremendous thing! We realize that the Apostle Paul wrote some things difficult to understand; we haven't gotten to those parts, yet. I just wanted to be sure and cover that by way of review.

Romans 1:7: "To all those who are in Rome…" That's an interesting way to put it because as it has been mentioned by several in different commentaries, that there were probably many 'house churches' in Rome. Therefore, he didn't write it to the 'Church at Rome' like he did when he wrote to the Church at Corinth—it says 'Paul and apostle to the Church of God which is at Corinth.' It's for those who are in Rome!

"…beloved of God, the called saints…." (v 7). We showed last time how it is that God the Father is the One Who intervenes and calls. God the Father is directly and personally involved in everyone's life that He calls, and it's really important to really understand that and realize that.

Let's look at what it means to be 'beloved' of God. I think that's very important for us to realize—to be beloved of God.Let's begin in Matthew, the third chapter. One thing that is important for us realize, they also know this, too, just from the point of view of mental soundness, emotional soundness and physical well being is that if you know that someone loves you that gives you a great deal of confidence and hope—doesn't it? When it's the other way around. When you don't know that someone loves you or not—you become very insecure; you always do! or frustrated—that can generally end up in anger. That's why, brethren, it's so very important that the love of God be preached, because we are the beloved of the Father.' That's why He called us. God did not call us to be in fear and trepidation and to have guilt feelings falling all over us all the time.

Matthew 3:17—after Jesus was baptized and came up out of the water: "And lo, a voice from heaven said, 'This is My Son, the Beloved, in Whom I have great delight.'" Same word: Beloved!

What does that mean to us? Let's see what it really means. To be beloved means to be a recipient of love, and that means that you in turn love back. That's what God wants it to be. This gives us the definition of what it means to be beloved, John 15:9: "As the Father has loved Me…"

Think on that statement for just a bit. Did the Father love Jesus Christ perfectly? with absolute perfect, profound, Godly love? Yes! He's drawing a comparison here.

"…I also have loved you…" (v 9). In the same way. That's why it's important when we're going through the Scriptures that we keep that foremost, and that's what Paul is leading up to as we will see in the book of Romans; he builds it. But what I want to do is bring in these factors so we understand what he's doing as we're going along.

"…As the Father has loved Me, I also have loved you; live in My love" (v 9). There are many other Scriptures we can bring to it, but I just want to bring this particular one.

We've covered John 16 many times, but I want to cover it again so that we understand that Paul also knew about the love of God and what it means to be beloved of God. When you understand that you're beloved of God, this is not to puff you up, because it won't puff you up. It'll actually cause you to be much more humble; not from the point of view that you make yourself humble, but to understand what an awesome thing it is that God the Father loves you. That's why a false humility, just to make yourself meek or humble in the eyes of men, is not the kind of humility that comes from God. The kind of humility that comes from God is when you understand that the greatest being in the whole universe Himself personally loves you. That's what it means to be beloved.

Let's also understand something else: God the Father is perfectly capable of loving every human being that He calls with the same kind of love, with the same intensity, with the same purpose and meaning as He can for each one of us.

John 16:27: "For the Father Himself loves you… [is loving you] …because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God." Remember what we talked about in the word epistle—'pistos' and 'pistis'—believe; same thing, to faithize. It all comes together: love, belief and faith all work together.

Matthew 12:14: "Then the Pharisees went out of the synagogue and held a council against Him to discuss how they might destroy Him." Isn't that the way that it always is when there's a spirit of Satan the devil around, when there's a spirit of carnality around, they cannot stand the true love of God. They've always got to do something to destroy it.
Verse 15: "But when Jesus knew of it, He withdrew from there; and great multitudes followed Him, and He healed all of them. And He strictly commanded them not to make Him known publicly; so that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying, 'Behold My Servant, Whom I have chosen; My Beloved, in Whom My soul has found delight…." (vs 15-18). How can we do the things that are pleasing in God's sight? We can do those things that are pleasing in God's sight:

  • by loving God
  • by loving Christ
  • by loving each other
  • by loving His Word
  • by believing Him
  • by doing the things that He says

All of those are well pleasing! Based on that then we're going to do it from the heart. God doesn't want us to be coerced into doing anything. True love is really a choice. Beloved means you are the recipient of the love of God, you are the object of His affection. Now then, what does that do to guilt? What does that do to condemnation? Gets rid of it entirely! And that's God's whole purpose that He does that.

Verse 18: "Behold My Servant, Whom I have chosen; My Beloved, in Whom My soul has found delight. I will put My Spirit upon Him, and He shall declare judgment to the Gentiles." Part of that is what the Apostle Paul is doing in writing this epistle.

Again, it tells how Jesus was the Beloved Son. This is when they were on the Mt. of Transfiguration:

Matthew 17:5: "While he was speaking, a bright cloud suddenly overshadowed them; and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, 'This is My Son, the Beloved, in Whom I delight. Listen to Him!'"

Isn't it much easier to listen to God and the words of God if you love Him? Yes! You're going to be very anxious! You're going to be very willing!

Here it's translated just a little differently, but it is the same word as beloved—'agapetos'; Ephesians 5:1: "Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children…."

If you know the Father loves you—which He does; and if you know that Christ loves you—which He does; are you not going to be wanting to follow God as beloved children? Sure you will! And that's what God wants.

Notice then what He says that follows up with it and sort of ties all of this together; v 2: "And walk in love, even as Christ also loved us, and gave Himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor." We can do those things which are pleasing to God without a doubt.

Let's look at a couple of more places Let's go to the Epistle of First John. John uses the term beloved more than anybody else. Some of these are basic Scriptures that we have covered before, but what we need to do with them is we need to take those and use those as building blocks as we're going along to help give us a greater and greater understanding.

1-John 3:1: "Behold! What glorious love the Father has given to us, that we should be called the children of God! For this very reason, the world does not know us because it did not know Him. Beloved… [the object of God's love] … now we are the children of God, and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be; but we know that when He is manifested, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him exactly as He is" (vs 1-2).

That's a tremendous amount of love, that God is going to make you like He is! All of this is all contained in the one word beloved. So, when Paul tells those in Rome—beloved in Rome…

1-John 4:7: "Beloved, we should love one another because love is from God…" This means love comes out from God and is a spiritual gift.

That's why people just getting together and being nice to one another and having the spirit of rah rah-ism they cannot develop the love of God from within themselves, because it doesn't come from with themselves. It comes from God the Father Who puts it within you! And it comes entirely differently than most people suspect.

"…and everyone who loves has been begotten by God, and knows God" (v 7).

Everyone that is loving has been begotten of God and is knowing God. Again, we're going to focus in on the present tense. God is always concerned with the present tense, the minute right now. You cannot do anything about the future today. You may make plans; you can even make plans to go on a trip, but you can't go until that day arrives—can you? And, likewise in our lives—as a I have explained before, but is something we need to constantly understand—we have enough of the law of sin and death in us that we are going to do those things which are sin. And we need God's forgiveness to overcome.

Once we have sinned it's immediately in the past. So we need to repent. We are always, in the present tense are:

  • knowing God
  • loving God
  • believing in God
  • trusting in God
  • looking to God

—on a constant ongoing basis. That way it ensures that we will have that kind of attitude now and if we continue with it we will tomorrow, and if we continue with it, we will the next day and the next month and the next year and so forth. That's why that's important. That's why the New Testament is written that way.

Verse 8: "The one who does not love does not know God because God is love." We need to reflect on that in relationship to the number of times we have heard the Gospel of Christ preached without the love of God. There's a time to warn the wicked of their sins. They don't like it when they're warned, but that doesn't mean that that is not love, because if there is not love there would be no warning. The warning is always given so that you might repent. That's why God does all of those things the way that He does. That's why He doesn't unleash His wrath until the very end, as we find in the book of Revelation. God is hoping that as many would, as many as possible, would choose to repent.

Verse 9: "In this way the love of God was manifested toward us: that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, so that we might live through Him." That's why it's also very important for us to understand that we are not living on the brink of disaster all the time. What do I mean by that? That you load yourself down with guilt, figuring 'I'm never going to make it, I am not worthy.'

Listen, no one is worthy, and God has called you because you're not worthy! No one is going to make you worthy except Christ. Can you make yourself Christ? No! That's a ridiculous statement. I ask it that way because: Can you make yourself worthy? No! Only Christ! That's the whole thing when we get into the righteousness of faith—"…so that we might live through Him."

Verse 10: "In this act is the love—not that we loved God; rather, that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also are duty-bound to love one another" (vs 10-11). All of that is tied up in the one word: belovedof God.

Romans 1:7: "…beloved by God, the called saints: Grace and peace be to you from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ." I'm not going to spend a lot of time on grace at this particular junction. I'm just going to go to a couple of verses with this, but grace is the definition of our relationship with Christ and God the Father.

So, when Paul puts it here at the beginning of each one of the epistles that he is writing, he is conveying something from God to us. There can be nothing greater than the grace of God! "…Grace to you and peace…"

Romans 5:1-2: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God…" We're going to look at peace because grace and peace go together constantly.

 "…through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Whom we also have access… [particular access to God] … by faith into this grace in which we stand…" (vs 1-2). Grace is a definition or quality of the relationship that we have with God the Father and Jesus Christ; meaning that we are:

  • recipients of His love
  • recipients of His blessing
  • recipients of everything that comes from God

Verse 8: "But God commends His own love to us because, when we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more, therefore, having been justified now by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies…" (vs 8-10). To be an enemy is the opposite of peace; enmity the same root for enemies. In fact, in the Greek it's the same word.

"…we were reconciled to God through the death of His own Son, much more then, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life" (v10).

Let's look at a definition of that; here's what it means to be an enemy of God in your mind by wicked works:

Romans 8:7: "Because the carnal mind is enmity…"—same Greek word for enemies: at odds, fighting against, resisting, not at peace with—a vast difference; he's comparing the two.

"…against God, for it is not subject to the Law of God; neither indeed can it be" (v 7).

  • that's what it means to be an enemy of God
  • that's what it means to not have peace with God

Romans 1:7: "…Grace and peace be to you from God our Father…" It comes from the Father. Again, I want us to understand how much the Father is involved in our lives.

"…and our Lord Jesus Christ. First, I truly thank my God through Jesus Christ…" (vs 7-8). Notice his thanks are not to the Father[transcriber's correction] directly, but to God the Father through Christ. Quite important that we understand that relationship.

"…for all of you, for your faith is spoken of in the whole world; for God is my witness, Whom I serve in my spirit in the Gospel of His Son, how unceasingly I make mention of you in my prayers, always beseeching, if by any means I shall now be prospered by the will of God to come to you at last. For I am longing to see you, so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift in order that you may be established; and that I may be comforted together with you through the faith in each one of us, both yours and mine. On the other hand" (vs 8-13)—much of that is missed in the Greek.

Maybe the translators do not translate on the one hand/on the other hand. There are two Greek words: 'men' and 'de' at the other end—'men de'—meaning on the one hand/on the other hand. Sometimes it's a little awkward to do so, but I think it gives a good comparison as we're going through.

Verse 13: "On the other hand, I do not wish you to be ignorant, brethren, that many times I proposed to come to you (but I was hindered until the present), in order that I might also have some fruit among you, even as I have among the other Gentiles. I am a debtor to both Greeks and barbarians, to both the wise and the unlearned; so, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the Gospel to you who are in Rome also. For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ because it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes—both to the Jew first, and to the Greek" (vs 13-16).

Let's go through these verses. Let's understand that in almost every epistle that Paul wrote, he has something to do with letting the brethren know that he is thinking of them, he is praying for them, he is hoping for them and so forth.

Let's read how he did it there. Each one is personal; each one is directly for that church or that group.

Colossians 1:3: "We give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying for you continually." Every time Paul writes an epistle he always says, 'We're praying for you.' I think that's very encouraging. We all need to pray for each other. Brethren, that's something we need to do every day is pray for all the brethren that they:

  • would be inspired
  • would be helped
  • would be uplifted if they have difficulties and trials
  • would be healed of whatever diseases they may have
  • may be given wisdom to understand some things that they may need to do for the care of their own body, in case that's something they need to do

I might mention that I send out an awful lot of anointed cloths and in almost every case God intervenes and answers—not because I send them out, but because we're looking to God. It's not what any minister can do, it's not what the cloth can do, nor the olive oil on the cloth, but it's faith in Christ that does it! That's what's important. He also let's us know that we have our own responsibility to take care of our bodies in the way that we should. Also, part of our prayers is that the brethren will understand:

  • that they will be spared and protected from the false prophets
  • that they will have their minds opened so they will be able to identify these false things coming along

This is why it's so important we get into the Word of God in detail. There are so many out there now that sound so good, that sound so smooth, that sound's so convincing, but they are just flat false prophets. Likewise, we need to follow Paul's example and do that.

"…praying for you continually since hearing of your faith in Christ Jesus, and the love that you have toward all the saints; because of the hope that is laid up for you in heaven, which you heard before in the Word of the Truth of the Gospel… [the Message] …which has come to you, even as it also has in all the world, and is bringing forth fruit… [constantly, present tense] …just as it is among you, from the day that you heard and knew the grace of God in Truth" (vs 3-6). Then it talks about Epaphras and the kind of opening that he brings.

Let's see how Paul wrote these. It is an individual way to each one that he was addressing in the epistles that he wrote.

1-Corinthians 1:1: "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, called by the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, to the Church of God that is in Corinth… [a smaller church rather than groupings of 'house churches' such as in Rome] …the called saints who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, together with all those in every place who are calling on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: Grace and peace be to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ" (vs 1-3). Notice how similar this is, and he's bringing this as a tremendous thing to open his letters.

Verse 4: "I thank my God always concerning you, for the grace of God that has been given to you in Christ Jesus; And that you have been spiritually enriched in Him in everything, in all discourse and knowledge, according as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you; so that you do not lack even one spiritual gift while you are awaiting the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who will also strengthen you to the end that you may be unimpeachable in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ" (vs 4-8).

Again, in every one of these personal letters there is a personal introduction, there is a personal reference to God the Father and Jesus Christ and our continuing relationship with Them. It's quite a wonderful thing the way the Apostle Paul does in bringing how he is personalizing everything. That's the way that God does. God does it individually for each one of us. Paul was inspired to write the same way.

Romans 1:8: "First, I truly thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, for your faith is spoken of in the whole world; for God is my witness, Whom I serve in my spirit…" (vs 8-9). We'll talk about the Spirit of God and the spirit of man when we get further into the book of Romans.

"…in the Gospel of His Son…" (v 9). Make special note of the Gospel because there are quite a few verses right here in the beginning part of Romans that covers the Gospel.

"…how unceasingly I make mention of you in my prayers, always beseeching, if by any means I shall now be prospered by the will of God to come to you at last. For I am longing to see you, so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift in order that you may be established" (vs 9-11).

What he is really saying, and this is something that is true, and I think, maybe Sabbath services have been misused by so many for so long: When we get together with the Spirit of God and study His Word and learn together, it is a spiritual gift that is being imparted. WHY? Because it's an operation of grace! If you understand the Word of God, that's part of a spiritual gift. In other words, it is to be a benefit for all of us. The reason it is a benefit is because on the Sabbath Day we fellowship with God the Father and Jesus Christ. They are the Ones Whom we are really coming together to know, and to understand Their will! So therefore, a spiritual gift! Isn't that something!

"…so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift… [by teaching.] …in order that you may be established" (v 11). Establishing is so important. We need to be established, which means built upon Christ and on God the Father.

(go to the next track)

Romans 16:25: "Now to Him Who has the power to establish you…" That's very important so that we're not tossed 'to and fro with every wind of doctrine.'

  • We are established!
  • We have the faith!
  • We have the grace!
  • We have the love!
  • We have the hope!

We have all of those things; those are the things which establish us. "…according to my Gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that in past ages has been kept secret" (v 25).

If you study Ephesians, Philippians and Colossians like we have, you will see that later, when he wrote Ephesians, that God had given him a greater insight into the 'mystery' of God—that is the secret of God's plan! And we're to be established in that.

Verse 26: "But now is made manifest… [to be revealed] … and by the prophetic Scriptures, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations unto the obedience of faith." Notice that we come back to the obedience of the faith again. That is something!

What does it mean"…to be made known to all the nations…" ? I think there are two meanings to that:

  • it was made known in a greater way in the first century than we've ever understood
  • it is also a prophetic statement that is going to be done at the end

Sometimes we have more than one meaning in the same thing. They don't know now, and part of what we're doing here is being re-established in all of this so that we know! Brethren, we don't know what God has in mind down the road. But whatever God has in mind, we need to be fully equipped and prepared to do it. Notice he begins and he ends by saying to establish you.

Verse 25: "Now to Him Who has the power to establish you…" Again, going to Christ and God the Father! They will establish us in ALL circumstances.

1-Peter talks about to be established. It also gives us a little insight as to why we go through the things that we go through.

1-Peter 5:6: "Be humbled, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your cares upon Him…" (vs 6-7). That's where it all needs to go!

  • whatever the problem
  • whatever the difficulty
  • whatever the anxiety
  • whatever the depression
  • whatever the trial

cast it all upon God "…because He cares for you. Be sober! Be vigilant! For… [in these circumstances] …your adversary the devil is prowling about as a roaring lion, seeking anyone he may devour…. [and he surely is] …Whom resist, steadfast in the faith…" (vs 7-9).

You can't resist him yourself; it has to be in the faith. How did Jesus resist Satan the devil? He quoted the Word of God—didn't He? Yes, He did! How are we to resist him? By the Word of God, by Christ in us!

"…knowing that the same afflictions are being fulfilled among your brethren who are in the world. Now, may the God of all grace… [again showing that relationship that we have with God] …Who has called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little while…" (vs 9-10).

Suffering is the only way that we can really learn; and we've all had our share of suffering one way or the other: mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, trauma, stress; we've all had that. We've all personally experienced and we've all prayed for one another in those circumstances. We've all helped each other in those circumstances—haven't we? Yes! But, here is the thing that I think is really wonderful:

"…after you have suffered a little while…" (v 10). Remember: suffering will not last forever! Remember that! A trial will not last forever!

"…Himself perfect you, establish… [that's the whole purpose of it] …strengthen, and settle you" (v 10)—on Christ Who is the Rock. That's a wonderful promise.

If you currently have a trial which is hard to bear right now. What you do is you take these verses and you get on your knees and you go to God and you lay it out to Him just like this and claim the promise: that God will make you "…perfect you, establish, strengthen, and settle you." He'll do that through:

  • His grace
  • His Spirit
  • His comfort

He will do that! That's something we need to realize because v 11 says, "To Him be the glory and the power into the ages of eternity. Amen."

And v 7: "Casting all your cares upon Him…" Does that mean that you quit worrying? Some people are just natural 'worry-warts.' Some people love to worry; that's their occupation; that is their mental and emotional occupation. If nothing is wrong, they're worried because nothing is wrong! Sometimes they will even create something that is wrong when there's nothing wrong, because they must worry! Unfortunately, that's the way some people are. So, especially for those people, don't create a worry when there's nothing to worry about! But if there is something, what you do is bring it to God and you cast it to Him. Can He not help you? Yes, He can!

Do not exaggerate a problem, too. What you might do is take a look at your problems, as they come along, and sort of do a scale of ten. Ten is an utter disaster. Zero is placid calmness. Do not take a problem that is 1.2 and make it a 6.8, if you understand what I mean. Keep it all in perspective. On the other hand, if you have a problem that is 9.5 don't view it as a zero, because you're headed for utter destruction. You have to have a proper balance. That's why you "…cast your cares upon the Lord."

I have a question for all of the 'worry-warts': Has your worried ever solved a problem by just worrying? or Did you have to take some action in addition to worrying? Yes! If you take some action then you get your mind on doing something rather than fretting. Worrying is running the problem over and over in your mind. It's kind of like a car not in gear, you're just running the engine and you're getting nowhere and you're accomplishing nothing! What you have to do is look at the problem squarely and tackle it.

I know what bugs 'worry-warts.' Most 'worry-warts' take a problem, let's say a 2.5 (on a scale of 10), and they come rushing in as if it's an 8.5 and a disaster is at the door. Then you wonder why no one pays attention to you. I've done that; not very well received. But nevertheless, you have to ask the question: Are you perceiving it the way it actually is? or Are you magnifying it because you are a 'worry-wart'? Then the opposite is true for those who just let disasters fly all around them as if nothing is going wrong. You have to look at things the way they really are so you understand the reality of it.

If you worry too much, is that a lack of faith? No! It's a thought process; you've trained yourself to worry. That's why it says, 'You cast your care upon Him, for He cares for you.' Christ took every burden—didn't He? Yes, He did! Always remember this, this is one thing that I've done for myself and others, if worrying is a great problem what you need to do is always remember that you cannot breathe for the other person.

You cannot choose for the other person, so therefore, you must not take that to yourself as something you can solve because it's not your solution. You must let the other person solve the problem. What you can do is cast your care upon the Lord concerning it, and ask God to inspire that person or persons to be able to come to the right resolution of the problem. Sometimes it doesn't take place immediately.

When you're dealing with other people and you're dealing with other people's choices, God has to deal in their lives according to their level. God has to create things in their lives so when they come to the choice of solving that problem they choose to do so. In other words it comes from God to them that they will do it. That's how your prayer needs to be. You don't ask God to 'make them do this, make them to that, make them do the other thing.' God isn't going to make anyone do anything! What you do is say:

  • God, please help this person to come to see what the problem and difficulty is.
  • God, please put it in their mind that they can make the choices they need to make.
  • God, please help me to see and understand what I need to do in my own circumstances and don't let me become another problem on top of that one.

That's what it all means. That's how this faith and belief all works together. That's how you're established! Instead of becoming a problem, a foment and a turmoil, it becomes a stepping-stone to being established in Christ. When another difficulty comes along somewhere down the road, you will have the experience to be able to handle it in a right and a proper way.

Romans 5:1—we'll talk about experience here: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." That also means peace of mind! Not only are you no longer at war with God, but you have peace of mind. We're also talking about this peace of mind in the circumstances and trials through which you may be going, as we just covered in 1-Peter 5.

Verse 2: "Through Whom we also have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we ourselves boast in the hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also boast in tribulations, realizing that tribulation brings forth endurance… [that's being established; that you have staying power] …and the endurance brings forth character… [because you're making the right choice] …and character brings forth hope…. [because you know God is going to intervene] …And the hope of God never makes us ashamed because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, which has been given to us" (vs 2-5).

That's why we go through this and experience becomes a very important thing. What we need to do is when we have these things in our lives, we need to let the full exercise of the faith of God be given as we're casting our care upon Him. That'll help you in every trial, every single one. God will intervene!

There have been times when I have been under such trial and distress when I had things coming upon me in Worldwide that I didn't know what was happening. I just had to fast and pray and just ask God, 'O God, help me know why is this happening?' The one who was in charge of the administration of the churches and his 'henchmen' were trying to get me booted out of the ministry because I reinstated a man who had been previously disfellowshiped by a 'henchman' minister of theirs who never should have been disfellowshiped. I could not understand what was going on. I did not know that's what they were doing, until I just 'cast it all before God' and Delores and I were fasting. We were on our third day of fasting and saying, 'O God, please help me understand what's going on.' God answered that prayer and God put it in my mind by the name of the very man that I reinstated from being disfellowshiped. It was so impressed upon my mind that it was almost like a voice. I'm not saying I heard a voice from God, but that's how strong the answer was.

So, when you get to those wits ends—you're going to come to a time when the wits-end is going to be there—you need to understand what you need to do on that.

Let's come back to Romans 1:11: "For I am longing to see you, so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift…"

  • spiritual understanding
  • spiritual learning
  • spiritual experience

"…in order that you may be established…" (v 11). Everything that we are doing, our whole life experience is to be established in Christ!

Verse 12: "And that I may be comforted together with you through the faith in each one of us, both yours and mine." That's a tremendous thing, brethren.

  • when we're all loving God
  • when we're all hoping in God
  • when we're all believing God
  • when we all come together

God gives us a special blessing of His Spirit and love to each other that you do not have on any other day of the week, except on the Sabbath when we come together. I have experienced that over and over again and so have you. It's a tremendous blessing! If you don't believe that, sometime when you just feel kind of lazy—you have and I know I have—you just stay home and what do you have on that Sabbath? You've got a miserable Sabbath! Ever had that happen? By the end of that Sabbath Day, you say, 'O God, I'm not going to do this again.'

Verse 13: "On the other hand, I do not wish you to be ignorant, brethren, that many times I proposed to come to you (but I was hindered until the present), in order that I might also have some fruit among you, even as I have among the other Gentiles."

We're talking about spiritual fruit! Also, as we will see when we get to the end of it, that fruit also has to do with reaping the physical things so that they could finance his trip to go on to Spain, just like he did with the Church at Corinth. So, we have both physical and spiritual fruit there.

Verse 14: "am a debtor to both Greeks and barbarians, to both the wise and the unlearned." You can actually translate that the unknowing, the unknowledgeable, the foolish.

Verse 15: "So, as much as is in me…" Was Paul wholehearted or not? Yes, he was! That's a good example for us.

"…I am ready to preach the Gospel to you who are in Rome also. For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ…" (vs 15-16).

We have Gospel in (vs 16, 15, 9 & 1. What did Paul preach? The Gospel, which is the good news of God's salvation now and in the coming kingdom.

"…because it is the power of God…" (v 16). It is to bring power in your life by the Holy Spirit. The word power here in the Greek is 'dunamis,' from which we get the English word dynamite or energy or power.

"…unto salvation… [to bring you eternal, spiritual salvation] …to everyone who believes…" (v 16). Wherever you see, all the way through the translation everyone who is believing or who is believing (sometimes it's in the plural) that is a present tense participle. Greek has a lot of participles.

Let's go to the Interlinear section—the last section of the Special Word Studies from the Greek booklet—and I want to show you how you can recognize a participle. Most of the time they are quite easy. You might not be able to recognize all of them, but it's very important. A participle is present tense, and this is what I think is so important and what is missing in most of the translations: the present tenseness of what you are doing.

Let's look at the Greek here (Rom. 1:16); as you can see with the Greek Interlinear that I have in the study booklet, I magnified it 28%. "For I am not ashamed of the glad tidings of the Christ… [not a Christ, but the Christ.] …for power… [notice word above for power—'dunamis'] …of God it is unto salvation to every one that believes…" or who is believing. Wherever you see 'he that'/'the one that' you will know that it is a participle present tense in almost every case.

Special Word Studies from the Greek:

The Apostle Paul's epistle to the Romans is one of the most important books of the New Testament. It contains the fundamental basis for true Christian Scriptural salvation through faith in Jesus Christ by grace.

That is a loaded statement, trying to define clearly everything that we have there.

Most professing Christian religions misunderstand and misinterpret what Paul wrote concerning faith and grace vs law and commandment-keeping. The epistle to the Romans is one of the books of the New Testament, which they use to justify their belief that professing Christians are not required to keep the commandments and laws of God. Once these basic teachings are misinterpreted and misunderstood, then many other basic doctrines, which the Apostle Paul wrote about in Romans, are also stripped of their true meaning.

Since some of the things that Paul wrote in the epistle to the Romans are very difficult to understand, it is essential to undertake special word studies of the Greek. As we study each important doctrine through these special word studies, we will learn that while some of the teachings he was inspired to write are "difficult to understand," they are not impossible to understand. In fact, we will learn as we study these doctrines, with the aid of these special word studies that they are not as difficult or as hard to understand if each doctrine is carefully studied in a systematic method.

So, we're going to look at the one To Believe. What I've done in this case is put a definition so we know exactly what it is:

To Believe: True belief in (into)…

Our faith and believe comes from us out of our being to Christ, into His very being and back to us. We'll see that's what the whole operation from faith unto faith is all about. So, I put 'into' in parenthesis there.

…Jesus Christ is the basic fundamental building block of true Christianity….
Notice what he said back there to everyone who is believing. That's where you start.

…Such a belief means that cone believes that Jesus Christ is the Savior of mankind, the Son of God, born of the virgin Mary, that He died for the sins of the world and each human being, that through His blood we have the forgiveness of sin, that He was raised from the dead by the power of God the Father and that He is at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest.

That is a full definition of what you are to believe.

  • The verb from in the Greek is 'pisteuoo'…

I gave you the Greek spelling in Greek letters and then I give you English spelling of it. Whenever you see the double 'oo' at the end that is to be pronounced with a long 'o' sound—that comes from the Greek letter 'omega.' If you want to know what the Greek letter 'omega' looks like, look at the last letter in Greek word 'pisteuoo'—it looks like a funny 'w' with sort rounded on each side. That is an 'omega' and is pronounced 'oh'—while in the English a double 'oo' is actually pronounced 'oo' as in the word 'look' or 'too'—but this should be pronounced 'oh'

…'pisteuoo' literally means to faithize, to believe, be persuaded, to rely upon, to trust and to put your trust in.

That's all of the meaning to believe in Christ. It's not to acknowledge, mentally, that He existed as a man. It is not to acknowledge and say, 'Well, I believe He was a good person.' This is a complete, trusting, spiritual relationship with Him.

He spiritual meaning in the New Testament is: 1) a fully convinced acknowledgement.

No doubts! The way (that we've discussed in the past) that you get rid of doubts is that you face the doubt and understand how to get rid of the doubt. You can't erase it! Too many people, when they have a doubt, say, 'Oh I shouldn't doubt.' When you have faith you can disprove the doubt—can you not? That's what you are to do, you are to disprove the doubt. Now, the most important:

2) a self-surrendering fellowship with God the Father and Jesus Christ.
That's what it really means; that kind of belief.
3) a fully assured and unswerving confidence

Now, let's look at #2 and we'll amplify that just a little bit: a self-surrendering fellowship with God the Father and Jesus Christ. Let's go to the Epistle of First John, the first chapter; and this was the first lesson that we learned—wasn't it? The very purpose and reason why John wrote the Epistles of 1st, 2nd & 3rd John.

1-John 1:3: "That which we have seen and have heard we are reporting to you in order that you also may have fellowship with us; for the fellowship—indeed, our fellowship—is with the Father and with His own Son Jesus Christ. These things we are also writing to you, so that your joy may be completely full" (vs 3-4).

What I want you to understand in all of this is that this kind of belief is to bring the joy which comes from God. When you fully understand that your fellowship is with God the Father and with Jesus Christ—and no man in-between—that is a wonderful thing to understand. Brethren, that's the very purpose of why God created you so that you can have that.

Now then, because it is a full self-surrendering fellowship with God the Father and Jesus Christ, this is something that you are never to let any man interfere with under any circumstances. No one is to interfere with that!That's why a hierarchy type thing is wrong. They generally superimpose between you and God a structure of men. God does not want that. That's why overseers are to be on the sidelines overseeing that everything is done and run smoothly and is functioning correctly. But they are never to place themselves between God the Father, Jesus Christ and the individual, because your fellowship is direct and it is self-surrendering.

Let's go back to the definitions and let's understand that it was 'self-surrendering.' This means it's a choice. It is a choice that you do. Surrendering the self by choice is the greatest decision that you can make! Then comes the

  • love of God
  • Spirit of God
  • salvation of God
  • knowledge of God

All of that flows from that. Then you will be:

3) A fully assured and unswerving confidence.
There are a couple of other uses that you can look at.
When used with the following prepositions, the meaning becomes more specific:

A) with 'eis'—pronounced ice. You can even recognize the Greek letters—can't you?—it's the same in English. [When you have] 'eis pisteuoo' means unto or into, implying direction toward and into, towards the object of faith, to give up one's self to.

So, if you're believing in Jesus Christ, you are giving yourself up to Jesus Christ—full surrender.

B) with 'en'—'n' in the Greek looks a 'v'—'en pisteuoo' means in, within, in referring to the foundation of the faith; 'to put confidence in.'
C) with 'epi pisteuoo'—means upon, implying 'repose, rest' and 'reliance upon' or 'with a view to that reliance.'
2) A middle voice…

Middle voice is something we do not have in English. Middle voice is not quite as anything we know in English. Middle voice in Greek means you are the subject and you're also the object. You receive. You do it for yourself. I suppose the closest thing we would have to it would be I feed myself. You're doing that for yourself.

…form of the verb 'pethoo'—means to allow oneself to be persuaded or convinced by any fair means. But especially by words, to be won over or prevailed upon.

And you might add: 'by words to be won over or prevailed upon' by the Word of God.

3) The adverbial form from 'pistos'…

Notice that we're almost back where we began.

…means to obey hence to be obedient, faithful; to trust hence, trusting. Also means of persons, one whom we may trust and trustworthy of things.

Notice we have pgs. 2-4 just in the book of Romans explaining the various facets about believing!

Scriptures from The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, a Faithful Version (except where noted)

Scriptural References:

  • Romans 1:7
  • Matthew 3:17
  • John 15:9
  • John 16:27
  • Matthew 12:14-18
  • Matthew 17:5
  • Ephesians 5:1-2
  • 1 John 3:1-2
  • 1 John 4:7-11
  • Romans 1:7
  • Romans 5:1-2, 8-10
  • Romans 8:7
  • Romans 1:7-16
  • Colossians 1:3-6
  • 1 Corinthians 1:1-8
  • Romans 1:8-11
  • Romans 16:25-26, 25
  • 1 Peter 5:6-11, 7
  • Romans 5:1-5
  • Romans 1:11-16
  • 1 John 1-3-4

Also referenced: Booklet:
Epistles to the Apostle Paul, Special Word Studies from the Greek by Fred R. Coulter

FRC:bo    
Transcribed: 10-15-10 
Reformatted/Corrected: November/2016

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