Romans and the Christian Worldview

Posted February 15, 2016 (originally written October 9, 2011)

The book of Romans has so many things to say about the Christian life. In this paper we are going to take a brief look at some passages from Romans, and from such passages we are going to show that Romans is essential to the Christian worldview, and how exactly that is so. We have many thing to discuss and only a short space to do it, so we will briefly discuss creation and sin, followed by salvation and eschatology, and finally ethics and theology, followed then by our conclusion.
            First let us look at creation. Romans 1:18-20 makes it clear that everyone of us knows enough about God through our experience with creation that we are without excuse with regard to knowing that He exists. It is possible that these verses imply that we can be saved through knowledge attainable from natural theology, although this is debated heavily, and I am inclined to think otherwise for a variety of reasons that we cannot go into here. Romans 8:22 also seems to teach that creation was damaged in the fall, as was man, which leads us to our next topic. Romans has many things to say about sin. One such statement is found again in Romans 1:18, where it states that unrighteous men suppress the truth. Romans 6:23 says that death is the punishment (wages) for sin; Romans 3:23 says that everyone sins; and Romans 5:12 says that because of Adam's sin death has entered into the world. It is clear here that sin has infected our world and prevails among all people, until salvation is attained of course, which leads us to our next two topics, beginning with salvation.
            Now, with regard to salvation, Romans 6:23 also states that eternal life is given by God through Jesus Christ. Romans 1:16, as mentioned above, states that the gospel is the "power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (ESV)." Romans 5:8-11 tells us that Christ  is God's Son and that He died to save us from God's wrath. Romans chapter 4 also makes clear that one is saved through faith in Christ, not works or anything else. Romans 11:11 says that salvation has been made available to non-Jews due to the trespasses of Israel. Romans chapter 15 tells us that the Holy Spirit gives us hope, and much of the book of Romans teaches that Christ and the Holy Spirit sanctify us, especially when we renew our minds (Romans 12:2). Paul makes clear in Romans chapter 11 that God has preserved a remnant of Israel for salvation in the end, after all of the elect Gentiles have come to faith. As for eschatology, Romans chapter 2:6-10 makes clear that those who do right and are selfless will receive eternal life, but those who are unrighteous and self-centered will receive eternal wrath from God. Therefore, God's ultimate goal is to bring His children home to Heaven and to send His enemies into everlasting destruction.
            Finally, with regard to ethics, Romans chapter 13 makes it very clear that we are to submit to governmental authority, as God has given them the power that they possess. This chapter also tells us to pay our debts, including taxes, revenue, and even respect, to those whom we owe them to. Romans 13:9-10 tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves, and that this love does not harm our neighbor. Love is the dominant theme in the gospel message, which is the overarching theme of Romans, which leads us to the theology of Romans. Romans teaches us that God is a loving, righteous savior and judge who is wholly just who has eternal power and a divine nature.
            In conclusion, we have seen that Romans deals with many major concepts of the Christian life, such as creation, sin, salvation, eschatology, ethics, and the attributes of God. It certainly seems to me that it is easy to see how the book of Romans is absolutely vital to the Christian worldview. It makes very clear that the gospel is essential to the Christian walk, and that we may only be saved through faith in Christ. It also tells us that we must pay our debts and submit to our government (as long as it doesn't tell us to go against the teachings of God).  It must be said that every follower of Christ needs to both read and properly understand Romans.

It must be said that every follower of Christ needs to both read and properly understand Romans.