I apologize for this post being a little late in coming today! With all the distractions of Thanksgiving and everything, I forgot to finish and publish it for today. Here it is, hopefully it didn’t mess anyone up. :-)
Our pastor is preaching through the first eight chapters of Romans in preparation for the Christmas season. This might seem a little odd, but Romans is actually a very rich book that really delves into the heart of what we believe. And the coming of Christ – what we celebrate at Christmas – is a very pivotal point for us as Christians. We can see God’s demonstration of His love for us and for the Church through the life of Christ. When we give gifts at Christmas we are symbolizing the Ultimate Gift – God loving us SO much that He sent His son to us.
So, why Romans? The first eight chapters talk about these Truths. Take these verses from Romans 3:
This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
– Romans 3:22-24
Our pastor encouraged us to study Romans on our own time, and commit to memorizing a few key verses each week. This is the schedule he proposed, which Paul and I are planning on following: (it will be a week off by the time you read this)
Week of Nov. 18 – read chapters 1-2 and memorize Romans 1:16
Week of Nov. 25 – read chapters 3-4 and memorize Romans 3:23
Week of Dec. 2 – read chapters 5-6 and memorize Romans 5:8
Week of Dec. 9 – read chapters 7 and memorize Romans 7:21
Week of Dec. 16 – read chapters 8 and memorize Romans 8:1-2
Then we will catch up with the familiar Christmas story, reading Matthew 1 and Luke 2. Feel free to follow along yourself! As our church wrote in the bulletin:
The idea here is to help you be able to know the letter like you would know the plot of a good movie. Simple details will do. Then, as your time allows, you can plunge into the depths of the riches of Christ found in this great letter by reading commentaries, listening to CDs, pouring through the Greek, and whatever else excites your soul. You will never reach the full bottom of it because our God is infinite, but you can swim in deep blue oceans, taste of the finest food, and drink the best wine as you marinate your soul in Romans.
What did you learn at church today? Leave a link to your own “Sunday Ponderings” blog post, or you can just mention your thoughts in the comments. Read more about this weekly carnival and get the code for the “Sunday Ponderings” graphic here.