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Bible Commentaries

Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible

Romans 15

 

 

Other Authors
Verses 1-16

Romans 15:1. We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.

When we are free from scruples upon any point, and feel that there are things that we may do because we are strong, yet let us not do them if thereby we should grieve others who are weak. Let us think of their infirmities; and whatever liberty we may feel entitled to claim for ourselves, let us look at the matter from the standpoint of other people as well as from our Own, that we may bear the infirmities of the weak, and not seek to please ourselves.

Romans 15:2-3. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification. For even Christ—

Our Master, and Lord, and great Exemplar: “For even Christ”—

Romans 15:3. Pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on, me.

He took the most trying place in the whole field of battle; he stood where the fray’ was hottest. He did not seek to be among his disciples as a king is in the midst of his troops, guarded and protected in the time of strife; but he exposed himself to the fiercest part of all the conflict. What Jesus did, that should we who are his followers do, no one of us considering himself, and his own interests, but all of us considering our brethren and the cause of Christ in general.

Romans 15:4. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning,—

This is as if somebody had said, “Why, Paul, it was David who said what you just quoted” “Yes,” he replies, “I know that I quoted David, but he spoke in his own person concerning his Lord, ‘for whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning.’”

Romans 15:4-5. That we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. Now the God of patience and consolation—

“Comfort” is really the word he used, turning into prayer the thought which had been suggested by his use of the words “patience and comfort.” “Now the God of patience and comfort”—

Romans 15:5. Grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:

“Make you to be unanimous, not concerning that which is evil, but that you may be of one mind in your likeness to Christ Jesus.” What a blessed harmony it would be if, not only all in any one church, but all in the whole of the churches were likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus! It will be so when he gathers those who are now scattered; but may we never hope to have it so here on earth? I cannot tell; but, at any rate, let us all strive after it. Let us all endeavor to pitch our tune according to Christ’s keynote; and the nearer we get to that, the less discord there will be in the psalmody of the church. We shall be likeminded with one another when we become likeminded with Christ; but not till then.

Romans 15:6-7. That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.

Christ did not receive us because we were perfect, because he could see no fault in us, or because he hoped to gain somewhat at our hands. Ah, no! but, in loving condescension covering our faults, and seeking our good, he welcomed us to his heart; so, in the same way, and with the same purpose, let us receive one another.

Romans 15:8. Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers:

It was to Abraham and his descendants that the promise was made that, in him, and in his seed, all the nations of the earth should be blessed. So our Lord came, as a Jew, to be “a minister of the circumcision.” Let us never forget that he came to those whom we are apt to forget; and, peradventure, even to despise, “to confirm the promises made unto the fathers.’”

Romans 15:9-12. And that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy; as it is written, For this cause I will confess to thee among the Gentiles, and sing unto thy name. And again he saith, Rejoice, ye Gentiles, with his people. And again, Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles; and laud him, all ye people. And again, Esaias saith, There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that shall rise to reign over the Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles trust.

There were plain indications, in the Old Testament, that the blessing was meant for the Gentiles as well as for the Jews; but, still, it was made known to the Jews first, and we must never forget that.

Romans 15:13. Now the God of hope—

Turn back to the fourth verse, and note the expression, “that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope;” then read in the fifth verse,” The God of patience and comfort;” and see how Paul here goes back to that last word in the fourth verse, “Now the God of hope”—

Romans 15:13-16. Fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost. And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another. Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God. That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

Now would have been the time for Paul to say that he had been made a minister “to offer the unbloody sacrifice of the mass,” if such a thing had been right;—to offer up the daily sacrifice, as the so-called “priests” aver that, they now do; but he says nothing of the sort; and even when he represents the Gentiles as being offered up, he does not speak of any sacrifice going therewith, but says that it “might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.”


Verses 13-33

Romans 15:13-27. Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost. And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another. Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God. That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost. I have therefore whereof I may glory through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God. For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed. Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ. Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation: but as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand. For which cause also I have been much hindered from coming to you. But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come unto you; whensoever I take my journey into Spain, I will come to you: for I trust to see you in my journey, and to be brought on my way thitherward by you, if first I be somewhat filled with your company. But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints. For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are.

For these Achaians and Macedonians had received the gospel from the saints in Jerusalem. The Gentiles had been made partakers of their spiritual things, so it was their duty to minister to the poor Christian Jews in carnal things.

Romans 15:27-28. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things. When therefore I have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit,-

That is, “when I have delivered the money, and obtained a receipt in full for it; when I have discharged my duty in this matter,”-

Romans 15:28-29. I will come by you into Spain. And I am sure that, when I come unto you, I shall come in the fullness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.

He was sure of that, but he did not know how he would go in other respects. He did not know that he would go to Rome as a prisoner; he could not foresee that he would be sent there as an ambassador in bonds; and little, I wean, did he care in what manner he would go, so long as he had the absolute certainty that he should go “in the fullness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.”

Romans 15:30-31. Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me; that I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints;-

For there were some saints in Jerusalem who were very narrow-minded, and who hardly thought it right to accept anything from Gentiles. They had not got clear of their Jewish bonds, and Paul was a little afraid lest what he was taking to them might not be acceptable, so he asked the Romans to pray about that matter. Is there anything about which believers may not pray? If there be, then we have no right to have anything to do with it. Bring everything before God in prayer, for all right thing way lawfully be prayed about. So Paul asked the Christians in Rome to pray about that matter of his journey to Jerusalem, and also to pray for his return,-

Romans 15:32-33. That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed. Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

 


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Bibliography Information
Spurgeon, Charle Haddon. "Commentary on Romans 15:4". "Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/spe/romans-15.html. 2011.

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