Romans 1.16-17 – Ashamed?

When we get something new and seemingly life changing, something like a car that doesn’t break down every month, a phone or computer that doesn’t crash every day, or a place to live with a bath in the bathroom, we would never ever think of declaring, ‘I am not ashamed of my new car.’, or ‘I am not ashamed of my new phone’, or ‘I am not ashamed of my bath!’. Those thoughts would never cross our minds, therefore, we would never feel the need to clarify, no, I am not ashamed.

Paul here starts by saying I am not ashamed of the Gospel. He finished his last paragraph by saying how keen he was to preach the Gospel to you also who are in Rome. The thought, however brief, must therefore have crossed his mind that what he was preaching, the good news that Jesus paid the penalty for the sins of the world and through faith in Him you can be saved unto eternal life, the thought must have crossed his mind that this sounded foolish and he was going to be mocked, maybe worse, for it (1 Corinthians 1.18).

Do we ever feel like that?

Do we ever have momentary doubts about the fact that a human being was murdered 2000 years ago and by believing in who He was and what He did that this will somehow supernaturally change your life, both now and forever?

Most of us will admit to having thought that on occasion. 

So how do we deal with it?

Paul goes on to reinforce just what he is preaching, it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes. Rome was the centre of power, those there would have responded to the way Paul writes this, and since time was even a thing to be counted man has known that he needed something more, that there was something missing, that he needed a Saviour.

When we doubt, when we are tempted to feel ashamed, that is when our faith needs to kick in, from faith for faith. Don’t forget all God has done for you or for the entire world (John 3.16). As Paul quotes from Habakkuk, the righteous shall live by faith. 

So, no matter what you may doubt today, or any day, take this path;

Doubt leads to enquiry, enquiry leads to knowledge, knowledge leads to deeper faith. 

Ours is a faith that is robust and strong, it can handle a little doubt and enquiry and it possess all treasures of wisdom and knowledge in the One who brought us into the fold (Colossians 2.3). 

Points to ponder today – 

Am I ashamed of the Gospel? Why?

Am I living my life by faith as a person who is viewed by God as righteous?

Published by James Travis

Pastor of Saar Fellowship in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Married to Robyn and Dad to our two boys.

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