Originally posted at http://gephartr.blogspot.com
In a different blog site I recently asked a question to get people’s opinions on the very first thing that Romans talks about. That question is “What is the Good News?” In my asking that question, I also over-simplified the Good News to that which was taught to me as a child – that being the Good News is that Jesus, the Son of God, lived a life on this earth, died on the cross, and rose again the third day to save us from our sins. My understanding that came from this teaching is that the Good News was synonomous with the New Testament – adding to my basic understanding that the Old Testament was expired and of no use. (Which, by the way, is a heresy almost as old as Christianity.)
Anyway, at the very start of Romans Paul has a few statements regarding the Good News.
“God promised this Good News long ago through his prophets in the holy Scriptures” (1:2)
“The Good News is about his Son.” (1:3)
Born of David’s family (1:3)
Shown to be God’s Son by his resurrection (1:3)
“It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile.” (1:16)
We are made “right in God’s sight … from start to finish by faith” (1:17)
So, from this we are told that the Good News was given by the prophets (ex, Is 42-44). And in this Good News it is told how the God’s own son would come and show the new path out of the darkness that would not be based on telling us what is wrong but by showing and performing righteousness. That salvation and righteousness is given to us because God said we could have it if we believed that he would keep his promise that our salvation comes from him.
We can try to add rules back into the equation, but we have to be clear that the rules have nothing to do with salvation. There is nothing that we can do to earn salvation except trust that God was truthful when he said we can be saved.
That’s the first post on Romans. Talk more later.