1 I, Paul, am writing this letter. I serve Christ Jesus. I have been appointed to be an apostle. God set me apart to tell others his good news. 2 He promised the good news long ago. He announced it through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures. 3 The good news is about God’s Son. He was born into the family line of King David. 4 By the Holy Spirit, he was appointed to be the mighty Son of God. God did this by raising him from the dead. He is Jesus Christ our Lord. 5 We received grace because of what Jesus did. He made us apostles to the Gentiles. We must invite all of them to obey God by trusting in Jesus. We do this to bring glory to him. 6 You also are among those Gentiles who are appointed to belong to Jesus Christ. 7 I am sending this letter to all of you in Rome. You are loved by God and appointed to be his holy people. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.
Verses 2-7 in the Message version are great: “Through Him we received both the generous gift of His life and the urgent task of passing it on to others who receive it by entering into obedient trust in Jesus. You are who you are through this gift and call of Jesus Christ!”
What a powerful introduction to Paul’s letter. It speaks to us today just as much as it spoke to the Romans. Through the love of God, we not only receive amazing new life but the “urgent task” of passing it on to others. This is where we find our true identity and purpose – “You are who you are through this gift and call of Jesus Christ!”
This passage says two things to me. One: I need to die to my old self and receive His new life, again and again. Two: I need to not just receive this new life, but share it with everyone around me! In doing so, I find my true identity and purpose in this life.
Heavenly Father, thank You that Your plan has always been the redemption and salvation of Your children. Thank You for constantly reaching out to us in love, and that you enable us to share that love with others. Help me this day to receive and share Your love, and in doing so, to be confident of who I am in You.
Written by Matt Samperi