Romans Assignment

 Slaves, the Labor Force, and the Economy

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In this lesson, students will examine the various social classes and learn about the critical role that slaves, freemen, and plebeians played in the day-to-day operations of the Roman Empire. Students will learn about the various social classes and the life experiences of people from these classes. As a final activity, students will complete a creative writing assignment that addresses how the Roman class system and the use of slavery may have ultimately contributed to the downfall of the Roman Empire.

Subject Areas:

World History, Social Studies, Economics, and Communication Arts

Grade Level: 6-12

Lesson Objectives:

Students will:
  1. Participate in class discussion and group reading activities related to the social classes of the Roman Empire.
  2. View video clips and Web site content that illustrates the differences between the Roman social classes and provides clues about the way lower class citizens and slaves were treated by the upper class.
  3. View a map of products and trade routes used by the Roman Empire and use the information from the map to draw conclusions about the importance of slave labor.
  4. Complete a study guide by using primary sources such as the companion Web site to answer a number of questions about the Roman labor force.
  5. Participate in a class discussion about the long-term effects of a slavery driven economy on the Roman Empire.
  6. Complete a creative writing assignment about life in the lower social classes and the significance of the job s/he performs.
Relevant National Standards:

McREL Compendium of K-12 Standards Addressed:

World History
Standard 9: Understands how major religious and large-scale empires arose in the Mediterranean Basin, China, and Indian from 500 BCE to 300 CE.
Standard 11: Understands major global trends from 1000 BCE to 300 CE.

Historical Understanding
Standard 2: Understands the historical perspective.

Language Arts

Standard 2: Uses the stylistic and rhetorical aspects of writing.
Standard 3: Uses grammatical and mechanical conventions in written compositions.
Standard 4: Gathers and uses information for research purposes.

Standard 5: Uses the general skills and strategies of the reading process.
Standard 7: Uses reading skills and strategies to understand and interpret a variety of informational texts.

Listening and Speaking
Standard 8: Uses listening and speaking strategies for different purposes.

Thinking and Reasoning
Standard 1: Understands the basic principles of presenting an argument.
Standard 3: Effectively uses mental processes that are based on identifying similarities and differences.

Working with Others
Standard 4: Displays effective interpersonal communication skills.

Estimated Time:
This should take two 90-minute class periods or two to three 50-minute class periods, plus additional time for extension activities.

Materials Needed:Procedures:

1. To create student interest, ask the following question:
  • How does the amount of money a person has affect the way s/he might be treated by others in a given society? Give examples to support your ideas.
  • You have heard the saying, "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer." What does this mean?
  • When looking at social classes in almost every society, what requirements must be met in order to be at the top of the social order?
2. Access The Roman Empire in the First Century Web site's feature on Social Order. As a class, read the content of this page to learn the names of some of the social classes that made up the empire. Next, take time as a group to read about the: After you have learned some basic characteristics of each social class, discuss the following:
  • Which group(s) had the largest population and was most representative of the Roman citizenry?
  • Which group do you think was most important to the daily operations and work required to keep the Roman Empire functioning? Why?
3. To further illustrate the differences between the social classes in Rome, view the video clips Episode 1: Urban Life [watch clip, duration 2:37], Episode 3: Seneca's Lessons [watch clip, duration 1:59]. In addition, access the Virtual Library feature and read Seneca on Slaves.

Discuss the clips and the excerpt using questions such as:
  • How would you describe the lifestyle of an average Roman?
  • How do you think most people treated their slaves based on the words of Seneca?
  • Why do you think Seneca encouraged the Romans to "treat your inferior as you would like to be treated"?
  • Based on what you have seen and heard, what threat did people in the lower social classes present to Roman leaders?
4. Using the Trade in the Roman Empire map [] or something similar, discuss the various goods that were produced and traded in each area of the empire. Facilitate a discussion about how the various social classes were a part of this economy by asking questions such as:
  • In what way were the plebeians, slaves, and freemen critically important to trade in the Roman Empire?
  • How might the use of slave labor have enabled the Romans to be more competitive in the world market? Less competitive?
5. To help students better understand the importance of the lower classes in the Roman economy, distribute the Economics of Ancient Rome Study Guide [Download PDF here (202k)] to all students. Explain that they will use the questions on the guide to help them learn more about the contributions of the lower classes to the success of the Roman economy. Review the directions with the class, and then provide students with time to find the answers to the questions listed.

6. When students have completed the study guide, have them gather into a large group and discuss the answers for each question.

7. Based on what they have learned about the Roman economic system, have students discuss the following questions:
  • How would the absence of slave labor have impacted the spread of the Roman Empire and its wealth?
  • In what ways did slave labor cause the Romans to become lazy?
  • Was slave labor profitable? If so, how?
  • In what ways did the roles of Plebeians, slaves, and freeman in ancient Rome illustrate the saying "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer"?
8. As a closing activity, have students write a diary or journal entry, a letter, or a story describing life as a Plebeian, slave, or freeman in ancient Rome and why his/her job is important.

Assessment Suggestions:
  1. Students could receive participation grades for class discussion activities.
  2. An accuracy or completion grade could be assigned for work done on the Economics of Ancient Rome Study Guide.
  3. Students could earn a completion or accuracy grade for work done on the closing creative writing assignment.
Extension Activities:

1. Have students compare the economic impact of slave labor in ancient Rome with the economic impact of slave labor in the American south prior to the Civil War. Create a Venn Diagram to chart your comparisons.

2. Compare the Roman social classes with the social classes that exist in America today. Create a pyramid or chart that compares the two sets of social classes and discusses the similarities and differences between them.

Related Resources:

The Camelot Village Web site [] has a page on Trade Within the Empire []. This provides a discussion of the empire's monetary system and the values of various coins. There is also general information about trade and the economy.

The Geocities page on Trade [] offers a summary of trade practices and schedules in the Roman Empire.

The Trade in the Roman Empire map [] shows the trade routes and different trade items generated around the empire.

The Ancient Roman Economy Web pages [] summarize the way Rome operated using agriculture and trade routes within the empire.

The History for Kids Web site [] has pages on the Roman Economy []. These provide two different descriptions of how historians believe the Romans financed their empire with specific focus on farming and taxation.

(Require free Adobe Acrobat.)

 Download a printable version of Rome Lesson 8: Slaves, the Labor Force, and the Economy (PDF 331K)

 Download a printable version of Economics of Ancient Rome Study Guide (PDF 202K)


by Peggi Klubnik

     The significance of Romans and the doctrine of justification by faith is confirmed by Augustine, who considered the book to be “the most basic, most comprehensive statement of true Christianity.” Martin Luther described Romans as the “chief part of the New Testament and the very purest gospel.” The acceptance of this great book as Pauline is rarely disputed, due externally to its testimony by the Apostolic Fathers and its inclusion in early listings of New Testament books. So convinced is Cranfield that he merely lists the internal evidence as linguistic, stylistic, literary, historical and theological without need of further explanation. When Paul’s epistles are compared with the letter genre of papyri found in Egypt, the format and scholarly appeal of Romans, as well as the reference to specific problems of his recipients, were consistent with Paul’s communications intended for the Christian community.

     Although a free-born Roman citizen, being born in Tarsus of Cilicia (Acts 22:26-28; 23:3), Paul had not been to Rome. God had called him to be a pioneer evangelist, preaching the gospel where Christ was not yet named, rather than building upon the foundation of another. So Paul sought to preach the gospel where people had not yet heard, which excluded the city of Rome. As Paul spent the winter in the home of Gais in Corinth during his third missionary journey in 57 A.D., he eagerly anticipated his upcoming visit to Rome on his way to Spain. For many years, Paul had longed to visit the believers in this city and now it appeared that his desire would be fulfilled. While in Corinth, Paul dictated to the secretary Tertius a letter to be sent to the Christians in Rome. In addition to informing them of his proposed visit, Paul writes a lengthy dissertation on the righteousness of God. However, he must first go to Jerusalem to deliver money, which he had collected from Gentile converts in Macedonia and Achaia, which would be given to those among the saints who were poor (15:22-29). Paul intended to stop in Rome on his way to Spain for time of refreshing as he came to them in the “fullness of the blessing of Christ” (15:29). He expected that it would be a time of mutual encouragement.

     Romans is a powerful theological discourse, which is a succinct, efficient presentation of Pauline doctrine. Paul’s purposes in writing the book include: 1) addressing a heretical view of the gospel, 2) asserting his apostolic authority, and 3) resolving doctrinal differences between Jewish and Gentile Christians.


MESSAGE STATEMENT: The Apostle Paul, called to be an apostle to the Gentiles, defines the gospel as the power of God for salvation and the revealer of the righteousness of God whereby men are declared sinful, both Jew and Greek are justified by faith and declared righteous, the believer is sanctified through identification with Christ, Israel is sovereignly set aside for a time to allow Gentiles to be saved, and believers are enabled to live a righteous life of service in the church, the community, and the state in order to glorify God.

THEME: Righteousness


I. The Revealer of Righteousness—the Gospel. Paul confirms his calling as an apostle, identifies and prays for the recipients of the letter, and states his obligation to preach the gospel (the power of God unto salvation) and identifies the theme of the book 1:1-17

A. The Greeting: Paul identifies himself as an Apostle, states the purpose of his calling is the salvation of the Gentiles, and addresses his letter to the Romans 1:1-7

1. The Calling: Paul, by choice a bond-servant and by calling an apostle, declares that he has been separated unto the gospel of God, foretold in the OT by the prophets concerning Jesus Christ our Lord of the lineage of David 1:1-4

2. The Purpose: Through Jesus Christ and for His name’s sake, Paul received grace and apostleship in order that the salvation of the Gentiles might be accomplished 1:5

3. The Recipients: Paul is writing to the beloved saints in Rome who are the called of Jesus Christ among the Gentiles, for whom Paul desires grace and peace from both God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ 1:6-7

B. The Prayer: Paul prays for the Roman believers, seeking God’s will in visiting them 1:8-12

1. Paul expresses His thankfulness to God for the reputation of the Romans’ faith, for whom he faithfully prays for God’s will to visit them 1:8-10

2. Paul longed to see the Romans, even though his previous efforts has been thwarted, in order to impart a spiritual gift, receive fruit, and be mutually encouraged 1:11-12

C. The Obligation: Paul states his obligation to preach the gospel to all people and his eagerness to preach the gospel in Rome 1:14-15

D. The Theme: Righteousness by faith is revealed in the gospel 1:16-17

1. Because it is God’s power for the salvation of Jews and Greeks, Paul is unashamed of the gospel 1:16

2. The gospel reveals the righteousness of God from the beginning of faith to its conclusion because those who are righteous live by faith 1:17

II. The Rejection of Righteousness—Unbelief: Paul contrasts the suppression of truth of the unrighteous, the stubbornness of the self-righteous, the unbelief of the Jew, and the sinfulness of all 1:18-3:20

A. The unrighteous: God abandons the unrighteous to their own lusts because they reject revealed truth 1:18-32

1. God’s wrath is made known against those who are ungodly and unrighteous because they conceal the truth of God which is manifest within them 1:18-19

2. Since creation, God’s essence has been visible so all are without excuse for not honoring or thanking God, becoming futile in their imaginations, with darkened hearts 1:20

3. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, trading God’s glory for idols 1:21-23

4. God allowed the lust of their hearts to become impure and their bodies to be dishonored because they rejected God’s truth and chose a lie 1:24-25

5. God permitted them to have the degrading passions of unnatural and indecent lust, harming themselves 1:26-27

6. God let their minds become depraved, doing improper and evil things. Knowing that such people desire death, they continue to practice and condone such things 1:28-32.

B. The Impartial Judge: Although the unrighteous judge one another, God is impartial, the only One with the right to judge 2:1-16

1. Those accusing others condemn themselves. Only God has a right to judge. No one will escape 2:1-3

2. God’s riches and kindness lead to repentance 2:4

3. Lack of repentance incurs God’s wrath and tribulation. Those persisting in righteous deeds seek immortality and are promised glory, honor and peace because God is not partial to either Jews or Greeks 2:5-11

4. The Jews will judged by the Law, but the conscience becomes a law and source of judgment for the Gentiles 2:12:16

C. The Pride of the Jew: The self-confidence of the circumcised Jew blasphemes the name of God among the Gentiles 2:17-29

1. The Jew who relies on the Law and boasts in God uses the instructions of the Law to judge others 2:17-20

2. Paul exhorts them to examine themselves because when they break the Law they dishonor God and cause His name to be blasphemed among the Gentiles 2:21-24

3. Circumcision is worthless unless the Law is practiced. Keeping the law is of higher worth than circumcision 2:25-28

4. A Jew is defined as one whose heart is circumcised by the Spirit and receives God’s praise rather than one who keeps the letter of the Law 2:29

D. The oracles of God: The OT prophecies remain in effect despite the unbelief of the Jews confirming the righteousness of God 3:1-8

1. The Jews were entrusted with the prophecies of God. Their lack of faith does not change God’s faithfulness 3:1-3

2. God is justified in His words and prevails when examined 3:4

3. Unbelief validates the righteousness of God. Inflicting wrath is not inconsistent with His righteousness 3:5-6

4. If God is glorified even in unrighteousness, why is the sinner judged? Those who condemn the pursuit of evil to achieve good are correct 3:7-8

E. The guilt of mankind: No one, neither Jew nor Greek, is righteous before God 3:9-20

1. No one understands or seeks God. None is righteous. All are useless 3:9-12

2. All are deceitful and evil, choosing destruction and misery rather than peace and the fear of God 3:13-18

3. By the law all become accountable to God. The law reveals sin but justifies no one 3:19-20

III. The Imputation of Righteousness—Justification: God’s righteousness is satisfied by the death of Christ which permits Him to justify all by faith, thereby declaring them righteous 3:21-5:21

A. The Demonstration of Righteousness: The death of Christ authenticated God’s righteousness 3:12-31

1. The righteousness of God is through faith in Jesus Christ, apart from the Law, making no distinction 3:21-22

2. The redemption in Christ Jesus justifies sinners as a gift by His grace 3:23-25a

3. God publicly displayed Jesus Christ as a propitiation in His blood through faith to manifest God’s righteousness by justifying the one with faith in Jesus 3:25b-26

4. Justification is by faith alone for both Jew and Gentile, which establishes the Law 3:27-31

B. The Example of Righteousness: Because of Abraham’s faith, not his works, God considered him to be righteous because faith is not limited by the law that grace might prevail 4:1-25

1. God’s declared Abraham righteous not because he earned it but because he believed God 4:1-4

2. David tells of the man who was blessed because God forgave his sins because of his faith, in the absence of any work 4:5-8

3. Abraham was circumcised as a sign of his righteousness and not the means of attaining it, and therefore becomes the father of all who follow his example of faith 4:9-12

4. Faith and promise must come apart from the Law and so righteousness by faith extends beyond the Law to all nations 4:16-18

5. All are condemned by one transgression and justification of life for all results from one righteous act that grace might prevail through righteousness 4:19-21

6. As righteousness was reckoned to Abraham, so it will be to those who believe in God who raised Jesus our Lord, who was crucified for our sins and raised for our justification 4:22-25

C. Result of Righteousness – reconciliation: Because we have been declared righteous we have been reconciled to God and are at peace with Him so we can rejoice both in hope and in tribulations 5:1-11

1. Because we have been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have begun a relationship of grace, rejoicing in hope of the glory of God 5:1-2

2. We also rejoice in our trials because we realize testing results in persistence, proven character, and hope, which is not disappointing because God’s love is in our hears through the Holy Spirit who indwells us 5:3-5

3. Although as unbelievers we were helpless, at God’s appointed time Christ died for sinners as a demonstration of God’s love because it is rare for someone to die even for a righteous or good person 5:6-8

4. And even more than that we shall be saved from God’s wrath because we have been justified by the blood of Jesus Christ 5:9

5. Since we as God’s enemies were reconciled to Him through Christ’s death even more we shall be saved by His life and so we rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ because our reconciliation came through Him 5:10-11

D. The Action of Righteousness – justification: Because of Adam’s sin all were condemned, but because of Christ’s act of righteousness justification resulted.

1. Sin entered the world through Adam and spread to everyone 5:12

2. Although sin had not yet been imputed, death reigned from Adam to Moses in the likeness of Adam’s offense because He is a type of Christ 5:13-14

3. Although many died because of Adam’s transgression, God’s grace and the gift of Jesus Christ more greatly abounded to the many 5:15

4. The judgment from Adam’s sin resulted in condemnation but the free gift of Christ from many sins resulted in justification 5:16

5. Death reigned because of the sin of Adam but those who receive grace and righteousness will reign in life through Jesus Christ 5:17

6. One sinful, disobedient act made people sinners and brought condemnation but one righteous act of obedience results in justification and righteousness 5:18-19

7. Through the law sin increased and reigned in death but grace more so in order to reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord 5:20-21

IV. The Reign of Righteousness—Sanctification: Identification with Christ frees us from the Law and slavery to sin so we can be led by the Spirit of God and thereby fulfill the Law because God has called us and we will never be separated from Christ 6:1-8:39

A. Freed from Sin: The mastery of sin over our lives has been broken by the death and resurrection of Christ 6:1-4

1. Grace is manifest by ceasing to live in sin. We walk in newness of life as we identify with Christ’s death and resurrection 6:1-5

2. Positionally, the crucifixion of our old self frees us from slavery to sin and enables us to live for God because by His resurrection Christ gained mastery over sin 6:5-11

3. We must stop permitting sin to reign and stop yielding ourselves to it as agents of unrighteousness. We must present ourselves to God as living vessels of righteousness. We are under grace, not the law, therefore sin is no longer master of our lives 6:12-14

4. But grace does not give us freedom to sin because that would make us slaves to sin, which results in death. But we thank God that by faith in His Word, we are now slaves of righteousness 6:15-18

5. The weakness of our flesh enslaves us to impurity and lawlessness, which results in death. So we need to be willing become slaves of righteousness, and then we will be sanctified and inherit eternal life. The reward of sin is death but eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord is a free gift of God 6:19-23

B. God’s Holy Law: Living in the Spirit frees us from the Law, which revealed that death was a result of sin 7:1-14

1. The law is in effect as long as a person lives, but death releases us 7:1-3

2. As we died to the law in Christ, so we are united to the resurrected Christ in order to bear fruit for God. As unbelievers we produced fruit for death, but now we are no longer subject to the law and so we live in the Spirit 7:4-6

3. The law, although not sinful, reveals sin and declares a person to be sinful and spiritually dead, proving the law to be holy and righteous 7:7-12

4. Death was caused not by the law, which is spiritual, but by the bondage of sin 7:13-14

C. The Two Laws: Paul experienced a conflict within himself between the sin and the good which indwelt him serving either the flesh or the law of God 7:15-25

1. Paul did not understand his own personal conflict between desire and practice, but concluded that the evil which he practiced was done by the sin dwelling with him since he wanted to do good 7:15-21

2. Although he acknowledged the law of God within him, he also recognized that the law of sin fought against the law of his mind, imprisoning him 7:22-23

3. Paul is thankful to God that through Jesus Christ our Lord he will be set free from the body of this death. With his mind he serves the law of God, but with his flesh the law of sin is served 7:24-25

D. Sanctification by the Spirit: The law is fulfilled in believers who walk according to the Spirit and makes them righteous. The indwelling Spirit is proof of salvation and a promise of resurrection 8:1-11

1. Because we are in Christ Jesus, the law cannot condemn us and the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus frees us from the law of sin and of death 8:1-2

2. The Law could not condemn sin but God did, sending Christ to die for sin so the Law would be fulfilled in those who walk in the Spirit 8:3-4

3. The result of a fleshly mindset is death, but those who are spiritual have life and peace, because the one yielding to the flesh is against God and is unwilling and unable to subject himself to God’s law, which is unpleasing to God 8:5-8

4. Those in whom the Spirit of God dwells are in the Spirit which is proof that they belong to Christ. Because of sin, the body of those in Christ is dead but their spirit is alive because they are righteous 8:9-10

5. The same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead will give resurrection life to whose in whom he lives 8:11

E. Children of God: The Spirit which we have received puts to death fleshly deeds, leads us, and testifies of our adoption as joint heirs with Christ, prays for us, and will bring about our glorification 8:12-27

1. Living in the flesh results in death, but we will live if, through the Spirit, we put to death the deeds of the flesh, proving that we are God’s sons 8:12-14

2. The spirit of adoption which we have received does not lead us again into bondage but enables us to call God our Father, and testifies that we are God’s children, heirs, and joint heirs with Christ in suffering and glorification 8:15-17

3. Our future glory, which creation awaits, is of incomparable value when compared to our sufferings. The enslavement of creation to corruption will end with the glorification of the children of God 8:18-21

4. All of creation and the first fruits of the Spirit painfully groans and anxiously anticipate the redemption of our body, which is our unseen hope. Likewise the Spirit intercedes for us in prayer with incomprehensible groanings according to God’s knowledge 8:22-27

F. Elect of God: God’s purpose works out in the lives of those whom he calls. Those whom God justifies, though persecuted, will never be separated from His love 8:28-39

1. To the ones called according to His purpose, who love God, the outcome of everything is good because he predestined those he foreknew to be conformed to the image of His son (the firstborn). God also called, justified, and glorified them 8:28-30

2. No one can oppose us because God gave Christ for us and will continue to give all things 8:31-32

3. No one can condemn the one God justifies—Christ is our intercessor 8:33-34

4. No trials can separate us from Christ’s love. Persecution is a daily event 8:35-36

5. He enables us to conquer all things, assured that nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord 8:37-39

V. The Source of Righteousness—Sovereignty: Because God is sovereign, He has the right to call a people from among the Gentiles because of Israel’s unbelief and then restore Israel again because of the believing remnant 9:1-11:36

A. Israel’s unbelief: Paul grieves over Israel’s lack of faith but declares God to be just and His Word to be true 9:1-18

1. Paul’s sorrows over Israel to the point of being willing to be separated from Christ for them because to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the Law, the service, and the promises, the patriarchs and from whom the Messiah has come in the flesh 9:1-5

2. But God’s Word has not failed. The true descendants of Abraham are the children of promise—that Sarah would have a son 9:6-9

3. Before the birth of Rebekah and Isaac’s twins, God called younger Jacob, stating that he would be served by his brother for the purpose of God 9:10-13

4. God’s justice is manifest by his sovereignty bestowing mercy and compassion apart from the will of man 9:4-17

5. God chose to harden Pharaoh’s heart in order to demonstrate His power so His name would be proclaimed throughout the world 9:17-18

B. The Calling of the Gentiles: God sovereignly called a people from among the Gentiles because of Israel’s self-righteousness 9:19-33

1. We are like clay in the hands of a potter, creations of God. In some, His wrath is demonstrated; in others He prepared in advance as vessels of mercy to make know the riches of His glory 9:19-23

2. God also called some Gentiles that those who were not His people would be called sons of the living God 9:24-26

3. God’s Word will be executed through the remnant of Israel, not the nation 9:27-29

4. Righteousness is attained by faith, not by the works of the law, which is a stumbling block to Israel 9:30-33

C. Salvation of Israel: Self-righteous Israel must believe in Christ through the word which they had and is now being preached because all who call on the Lord will be saved 10:21

1. Israel’s zeal for God is without knowledge, seeking their own righteousness rather than being subject to the righteousness of God 10:1-3

2. Christ is the end of the law of righteousness for those who believe 10:4-7

3. The word of faith is being preached. Righteousness is a result of faith in the resurrected Jesus as Lord 10:8-10

4. There is no distinction between Jew and Gentile. All who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved 10:11-13

5. A preacher is the messenger of the glad tidings 10:14-15

6. But faith is a response to God’s Word. Paul demonstrates Israel has always had the word, as illustrated by Moses and Isaiah, but Israel has been disobedient and obstinate 10:16-21

D. Salvation of the Gentiles: God has accepted the believing remnant of Israel, caused a heardening of those who believed not, and provided salvation to the Gentiles 11:1-14

1. God has not rejected Israel as evidenced by God’s declaration to Elijah of his remnant 11:1-4

2. By grace, not works, God has a chosen remnant, others were hardened by a stumbling block 11:5-10

3. Because of Israel’s sin, salvation has come to Gentiles to make Israel jealous. How much better if they were saved. 11:11-12

4. Paul desires that his ministry to the Gentiles will cause Israel to be jealous that they might then be saved 11:13-14

5. The believing remnant of Israel is holy as are believing Gentiles who are joined with them as to an olive tree 11:15-17

6. Israel is broken off through unbelief to permit Gentiles to be grafted in by faith. The graft remains only by God’s kindness. Likewise Israel by belief will be grafted in against to their own tree. 11:18-24

7. Gentiles should not be proud but understand the mystery of Israel’s partial, yet temporary, hardening until all Israel is saved when Christ comes 11:25-27

8. God’s call of Israel is irrevocable and God’s mercy is shown to those who were formerly disobedient, both Jews and Gentiles 11:28-32

9. The wisdom and knowledge of God are beyond comprehension 11:33-36

VI. The Evidence Of Righteousness—Service: Righteous believers commit themselves to God, serve one another, obey authority, love their neighbor, and depend upon Christ 12:1-15:13

A. God and One Another: Service to one another begins with a commitment to God 12:1-21

1. In light of God’s mercies, believers prove that His will is perfect by presenting their bodies to Him as a holy sacrifice of worship. Paul admonishes them to stop conforming to the world, but be transformed by renewing their minds 12:1-2

2. Paul advises against pride but encourages an honest evaluation of oneself as one of many who have various functions yet are one body 12:3-4

3. Each gift has its own function and its fulfillment lies within that function 13:6-8

4. Paul exhorts believers to reject evil and do what is good in their relations to both those within and outside the church 12:9-21

B. Governmental Authorities: God’s establishment of authority is the basis of our subjection 13:1-7

1. Since authorities are of God, those who resist oppose the ordinance of God and condemn themselves 12:1-2

2. Those who do good have no reason to fear authority because it is God’s minister to avenge evil 12:3-4

3. Subjection to the servants of God is also for conscience’s sake 12:5-7

C. Neighborly Love: The fulfillment of the law is in loving our neighbor 12:8-10

1. If we love our neighbor, we will not commit adultery, murder, steal or covet 12:8-9

2. The law is fulfilled when we love our neighbor because we will do them no wrong 12:10

D. Paul stresses an urgency righteous living 13:11-14

1. Paul admonishes believers to be aware that the return of the Lord is approaching 13:11

2. Paul speaks metaphorically of night as the present age and uses day to mean the coming of the Lord. Likewise, he speaks of darkness as evil, light in reference to good 13:12-13

3. Paul compares putting on the Lord Jesus Christ to the armor of light which results in a dependence upon Him rather than upon the flesh 13:14

E. The Work of God: God’s acceptance of all believers should preclude judging or offending one another 14:1-23

1. Accept those who are weak in their understanding of righteousness by faith 14:1

2. Believers have no right to judge the actions of conscience of other believers because they are accepted by God 14:2-4

3. Believers must be fully persuaded by their consciences. No one lives or dies for himself, all are the Lord’s 14:5-8

4. Christ is Lord of the dead and the living because He died and lived for this purpose and each will give account of himself at the judgment seat of God 14:9-12

5. Paul admonishes believers not to judge one another which becomes an obstacle in their way because the issue is one of faith not uncleanness 14:13-14

6. Walking in love results in a willingness to give up something that causes another believer, for whom Christ died, to stumble. Serving Christ in this way is acceptable to both God and men 14:15-18

7. Peace and exhortation are more important than food, which becomes evil for the one who offends others 14:19-20

8. Believers must be willing to stop doing that which is a cause for stumbling and let their conviction of freedom unto God 14:21-22

9. However, believers sin when they act in a manner which their belief condemns 14:23

F. One Accord: Pleasing others 15:1-13

1. Strong believers should seek to build up and act in a manner beneficial to their neighbor rather than behaving selfishly 15:1-3

2. Paul refers to Christ as the example of selflessness and the OT Scriptures as a source of instruction that believers might have hope 15:3-4

3. God is the One who grants believers to be of one mind and one accord and together to glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ 15:5-6

4. Because Christ has accepted all believers, they ought to accept one another 15:7

5. Christ has become a servant to Israel to confirm God’s promises and for the Gentiles to glorify God for His mercy 15:8-9

6. Paul quotes OT verses which prophesy of the Gentiles praising God and the root of Jesse as their hope 15:8-13

VII. Paul’s Ministry, Greetings, Admonition, And Benediction: Stating that God’s calling him to ministry among the Gentiles gives him boldness, he then gives his itinerary, greets fellow believers, warns against false teachers, and closes with a benediction 15:14-16:27

A. Ministry to the Gentiles: Paul encourages in ministry stating that he is bold because of the ministry to which God has called him in preaching to Gentiles who have not heard 15:14-22

1. Paul exhorts the Romans, because of their goodness and knowledge, to admonish one another 15:14

2. Paul has been very bold in his writing because of God’s grace which enabled him to be a minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles that his offering might be accepted, set apart by the Holy spirit 15:15-16

3. Paul glories in what Christ has done through him by both word and deed (from Jerusalem to Illyricum), where he preached the gospel in the power of miracles and the power of the Spirit, resulting in the obedience of the Gentiles 15:17-19

4. Paul sought to minister where Christ was not known in order to preach the gospel to those who had not heard, which prevented him from going to Rome 20-22

B. Regional Ministry: With Paul’s ministry of pioneer evangelism completed, he plans to take a gift to Jerusalem, stop in Rome and then go to Spain. He asks them to pray for his safety and for God’s will, then pronounces a blessing 15:23-33

1. Paul has long desired to go to Rome and now, since there are no more unreached regions, he plans to stop in Rome on his way to Spain for their mutual encouragement 15:23-24

2. But first he must go to Jerusalem to deliver a contribution to the poor believers from the saints of Macedonia and Achaia 15:25-26

3. Because the Jerusalem believers shared in spiritual things with the other Gentiles, they are indebted to minister with material things 15:27

4. When the contribution is delivered by Paul, he will then leave for Spain, coming to Rome in the fullness of the blessing of Christ 15:28-29

5. Paul asks them to pray for him to be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea in regard to his service in Jerusalem and his visit to Rome might be in God’s will for a time of refreshing 15:30-32

6. Paul prays that the God of peace will be with all of the Roman believers 15:33

C. Friendly Greetings: Paul personally greets many believers by name, often mentioning something personal about them. He exhorts them to greet one another with a holy kiss and then extends greetings from all the churches of Christ 16:1-16

D. False Teachers: Paul warns against false teachers, encourages the believers in wisdom, and states that God will be victorious over them 16:17-20

1. Paul admonishes the believers to avoid those who are deceptive and greedy, causing divisions and obstacles because of inaccurate teaching 16:17-18

2. Paul rejoices because their obedience is well known, but he exhorts them to wisdom because God will soon defeat Satan. He then prays that the grace of our Lord Jesus would be with them 16:19-20

E. Closing Comments: Paul then relates greetings to them from Timothy and other believers and Tertius adds his own greeting 16:21-23

F. Benediction: Paul closes with a benediction referring to the gospel and the mystery now made known to all nations leading to salvation. He then gives glory to God through Jesus Christ 16:25-27

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