Paul’s desire for the Romans and spiritual Israel in approximately A.D. 58 would be the same as what the Lord desires for us today.Romans 10:1-3 states, “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer …
Paul’s desire for the Romans and spiritual Israel in approximately A.D. 58 would be the same as what the Lord desires for us today.
Romans 10:1-3 states, “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”
It is inexcusable for one to be ignorant of God’s righteousness for Roman 1:16-18 reads like this: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, the just shall live by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness.”
Therefore, the wrath of God should motivate one to live righteously.
Paul told the Romans the following about the Old Testament in Romans 15:4 — “Whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”
From the OT we gather a few things about one being righteous: Psa 37:30 “The mouth of the righteous speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment, Prov 10:28 “…the righteous have hope but the wicked shall perish”, and Prov 13:5 “ A righteous man hateth lying…”.
This is also a good time to make this observation about the old law; it is for our learning, not for our law since it was replaced “by a new covenant” Heb 8:13, made possible by the “blood of Christ, who without spot offered himself, thus purging the conscience from dead works to serve the living God” Heb 9:14-15.
When one goes back to the OT to try and justify some practice not found in the New Testament but they think it should be, they have “established their own righteousness and have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God.”
Rom 1:16-18 establishes the fact that the gospel contains the information ones needs in order to be saved. Paul calls this “the word of faith which we (apostles) preach” in Rom 10:8 and goes on to say that this “faith comes by hearing the word of God” in Rom 10:17. He then tells the Romans that “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” Rom 10:13.
This is comprehensive in nature meaning complying with the conditions on which salvation rests. In Rom 10:9 he mentions two more conditions in addition to the hearing of vs 8 as “believing and confessing that Jesus is the Christ who was raised from the dead.”
In Acts 2:21, Paul’s fellow laborer in the Lord, Peter, makes the same statement as Paul concerning “calling on the name of the Lord.” Peter then tells us in Acts 2:38 that “repentance and baptism are also essential for remission of sins.”
Each of these five essential elements for salvation is mentioned in other scriptures as well. Then in Rev 2:10 we are told to “be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life.” Notice that this verse says “unto death” not until death which means that we are to be faithful even if we have to give our life, not merely just until we die.
Ted Craven is a member of the McArthur Heights Church of Christ and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.