Friday, December 13, 2013

Romans: The Longest Greeting

Every month, I send my sponsored daughter Lavin a Bible study over a chapter from the book of Romans.  I am also sharing this here so that you can print it out and send it to your sponsored child if they are old enough to go through a Bible study with you.  This is a great way for you to connect with your child and help disciple them as they grow up in the Lord.

Romans 1:1-7

In this first section of Romans 1, Paul shares his greetings to the Christian churches in Rome.  This is a very long greeting!  Imagine if saying "hello" in our letters always took seven verses to write out!  Letter-writing would take a very long time.  The reason why Paul wrote such a long greeting is because he had not been to Rome and he wanted to fully explain the gospel to anyone who might not understand it.

Can you summarize the gospel?  It is a good thing to practice sharing the gospel in a way that other people can understand, even children.  I like to explain the gospel using colors.
  • Gold: God is holy and righteous. He is without sin.
  • Black: We have all sinned, and the punishment for our sins is death.
  • Red: God sent his only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for us and take the punishment for our sins.
  • White: If we repent and put our faith in Jesus, we are seen as clean and righteous by God!
  • Green: We can grow in our relationship with the Lord by being baptized, attending church, praying, and reading our Bible.
The word "gospel" means "good news."  When Paul is sharing the gospel, he is not just telling us what we should or should not do; he is talking about how faith in Jesus changes everything about our whole lives!

Paul calls himself a servant and an apostle.  When he does this, he is being humble by showing that his life is completely God's, but he is also showing his authority as an apostle.  An apostle is someone who has been chosen by Christ to disciple the church.  Paul had authority to write books of the Bible.

Paul talks about his life mission in Romans 1:5, which is to bring the gospel to all nations, and this is our calling too!  We are commanded by God to share the gospel in Kenya, in the USA, and all over the world.

At the end of this passage, Paul says, "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ."  When he says peace, he does not mean "no war" or "no trouble."  Sometimes bad things will happen even though we trust in God.  The word Paul used was "shalom," which means that your life is transformed by God and the peace that comes from putting your faith in him.

Memory Verse:
"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." -Romans 1:7

1.) Explain the gospel in a way that is easy to understand.
2.) How can you help share the gospel?
3.) What are ways that God has given you peace in your life?

Words to learn:
1.) Summarize: to share something in a few words
2.) Holy: godly, sacred, perfect, without sin
3.) Authority: a power that is given
4.) Transform: to change in nature

Three years ago: Wistful
Four years ago: The Broken Beam

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