This study features notes from Enduring Word.
Recap Romans 14:1-15:13. Don’t judge each other, don’t cause others to stumble. Be filled with love for others.
1. What are Paul’s reasons for writing (v14-16)?
To remind and encourage them to do what they knew was right. He didn’t just preach the gospel, but instructed believers how to live.
2. How does Paul define his ministry (v16)?
Ministering the gospel of God. Paul uses a word that occurs nowhere else in the NT which can be read as ‘acting as a priest’. The ministry of the gospel is conceived of after the pattern of priestly offering.
3. How is Paul able to glory in Christ (v17-21)?
He can glory in God that he received such a call, speaking only of the things God did through him to bring salvation to the Gentiles.
4. What help did Paul receive in preaching the gospel?
God used mighty signs and wonders and the broader power of the Spirit. Illyricum is modern Yugoslavia and Albania. Paul’s ministry spread from the West to Jerusalem in the East.
5. How do we see Paul’s understanding of the Trinity in v16-19?
He effortlessly weaves references to each member of the Trinity. He can’t talk about God without recognising his three persons.
6. Why did Paul not want to build on someone else’s foundation?
He wanted to do pioneer work for the Lord – not because it was wrong or bad to continue the work begun through another man, but because there was so much to do on the frontiers.
7. What’s Paul’s desire (v22-24)?
He plans to visit the Romans on a future trip to Spain, where he’ll preach the gospel on the frontiers.
8. What happened? Did these plans work out?
Paul did go to Rome, but not as a missionary on his way to Spain. He went to Rome as a prisoner awaiting trial before Caesar, where he would preach the gospel on a different kind of frontier. God gave him unexpected access to preach to the emperor of Rome himself. We have reason to believe that after his release from imprisonment he did make it to Spain and preached the gospel there.
9. What are Paul’s present plans (v25-29)?
He thought he’d stop in Corinth on his way to Jerusalem to deliver a collection from Christians in Macedonia and Achaia.
10. Why is Paul’s observation in v27 appropriate?
The Gentiles had received so much spiritually from the community of Jewish Christians in Jerusalem, it was only right that they help the Jerusalem Christians in need.
11. Why does Paul plea for prayer (v30-33)?
He needed the prayers of God’s people to see him through the difficulty promised him.
12. Paul says ‘join me in my struggle by praying to God for me’ or ‘strive together with me’. How can we apply this to praying for our pastors?
Pastors are sustained by the power of the Spirit through the support of their congregations.