The Apostle’s Ministry

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Romans 15:14-21
[14] I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. [15] But on some points I have written to you very boldly by way of reminder, because of the grace given me by God [16] to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. [17] In Christ Jesus, then, I have reason to be proud of my work for God. [18] For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to bring the Gentiles to obedience—by word and deed, [19] by the power of signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God—so that from Jerusalem and all the way around to Illyricum I have fulfilled the ministry of the gospel of Christ; [20] and thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation, [21] but as it is written, “Those who have never been told of him will see, and those who have never heard will understand.”

DEEP SHEET: Sermon Study Questions
1.   Where in the letter does Paul seem to write “very boldly”? How might that give the wrong impression that he viewed the Roman Christians negatively?
2.   Why does Paul go to such great lengths to provide his readers with a “reminder”? What does this say about our tendency to forget?
3.   How does Paul redirect the focus off of himself and onto the Trinity when discussing his vocation and ministry efforts? How does this encourage us away from pride in our own work and successes?
4.   Why does this passage speak of bringing the Gentiles “to obedience”? What does this communicate about the nature of faith and the person of Christ?
5.   Why did Paul want to preach the gospel in virgin territory? To what extent should this inform our approach to missions?
6.   How does this passage encourage us to do ministry for God’s ends, by God’s means, and in God’s way?

References: Romans 1:8; 1 Corinthians 15:1; 2 Peter 1:12; 1 John 2:21; Genesis 49:10; 2 Corinthians 12:12; Isaiah 52:15.

 

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