Summary of passage: Paul says he believes the Jews are full of goodness and competent to instruct each other. He is writing to remind them of God’s word and as a minister to the Gentiles to bring them the Good News so that they too may be sanctified by God.
3) Part personal Question. My answer: “Full of goodness, complete in knowledge, and competent to instruct one another.” I will encourage them with my presence, be a listening ear, offer up advice when needed, and support them in their dreams and God’s desire for their lives.
4) Personal Question. My answer: We all need reminders of God’s Word, how to live, and what God desires for our lives especially in today’s society because it’s so easy to get caught up in the lies of Satan and the evils of this world. Paul is reminding the Jews that he is preaching to them as a reminder and he has confidence in them to follow God’s Word. He is also preaching for the sake of the Gentiles as well.
5) Paul says his priestly duty is “to proclaim the gospel of God so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.”
In the Old Testament, the priest was our intermediary to God. He was the only one who could approach God and cleanse the Jews of their sins. Then Jesus came and became our high priest, our intermediary, eliminating the need for a formal priest to intercede for us.
According to Zondervan’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary, “the term is applied primarily to those authorized to perform the rites of the Israelite religion, but it can also be used with reference to pagan priests.
The formal priesthood in Israel began with the time of Exodus. In the patriarchal times the heads of families offered sacrifices and intercessory prayers and performed general religious functions, but there seems to have been no specialization and no separate priestly office. God appoints Aaron the tribe of the Levites to be the priests for the people in Exodus 28-29 and Leviticus 8.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the one and only New Covenant priest, described in detail in Hebrews. Traditionally, Christ has three offices: prophet, priest, and king. With Christ’s death, the atonement was finishes, essentially eliminating the traditional role of priest. Now, priests are teachers, not atoners. When Christ gave up his life on the cross, the atonement was finished once and for all with absolutely nothing more for God or man to add to it. We are saved!
Conclusions: Loved reading about the history of the priesthood in my Bible Dictionary! Love knowing Christ once again is the end all. Praise God for His almighty goodness to us sinners!
End Notes: Paul’s whole point of writing the book of Romans is encouragement as he says in this passage. He is also writing proclaiming the Gentiles as an offering to God as well.
Romans 15:16 is filled with the language of priesthood. Paul says he serves as a “ministering priest” of Jesus Christ presenting the gospel as a “priestly service” so Gentile converts would be an acceptable sacrifice to God.
Scholar Murry explains: “When Paul defines his ministry as ministering the gospel of God the apostle uses a word occurring nowhere else in the New Testament which may properly be rendered ‘acting as a priest.’ So the ministry of the gospel is conceived of after the pattern of priestly offering.”