This week we are finishing the book of Acts and reading the first part of Paul's letter to the church at Rome.
The second major segment is chapters 8-12 and shows the spread of the Gospel out from Jerusalem into the regions of Judea and Samaria. Here the central figure is Philip and his main audience the Samaritans. The timeline here is 13 years from Stephen's stoning to Paul's missionary journeys. The last segment of the book of Acts in chapters 13-28 details the spread of the Gospel past the known areas of Jesus and the disciples out to the uttermost parts of the earth as Paul travels all around the Roman world preaching to the Gentiles. This covers about 14 years from his first missionary journey through to his release from the Romans.
With regard to Romans, most scholars believe that this book was written in Corinth at the end of Paul's second missionary journey there, somewhere around 55-56AD. The book of Romans is Paul's greatest theological legacy to the church. The longest by far of his letters, it's intent is to explain that salvation is offered through the Gospel (or good news) of Jesus Christ. Since Paul has not been to Rome at this point, he outlines the good news of Jesus thoroughly so that Paul's teaching will not be confused with other false teachers.
The Main sections of Paul’s argument that we will be reading this week are as follows:
- God’s wrath revealed against the unrighteous (1:18-3:20)
- God credits righteousness to all (3:21-5:21)
- The gift of God’s righteousness results in righteous living (6:1-8:39)
Here is the schedule:
25 - Acts 8-11
26 - Acts 12-15
27 - Acts 16-19
28 - Acts 20-23
29 - Acts 24-27
30 - Acts 28; Romans 1-3
31 - Romans 4-7
May God add his richest blessings to the reading, the hearing and most importantly the living out of His Holy Word. Amen.