Bethany Lutheran Church, Bigfork, MT


January 2018

By Pastor Christopher Miller

Dear Friends in Christ,

This is the New Testament year in our Confirmation class, and part of that year is taking four sessions to go through the book of Romans. In going through this important letter once more, I remembered how the thriving of the church can be directly connected to the use of Romans. So, I thought, what better way to bring thriving to our congregation and to our lives by going through the book of Romans here? It will take much longer than 4 sessions to do it, but my prayer is that these words will speak to us again, and lead us in the ways of Christ.

Please read Romans 1:1-17.

I love that Paul can't even get through the first verse of this letter, which is supposed to be an introduction of himself, without turning the subject to Jesus. The love and life that God hasgiven to Paul is so bursting at his seams that he can't help but talk about it at every single point, even when things are supposed to be about himself. That's pretty consistent for Paul: any time he talks about himself in his letters, even when saying "imitate me," he uses primarily to point to Christ and his work. And he doesn't care what you think about it.

 In fact, in verse 16, he tells us so. And he gives us the reasons why. It is the power of salvation: why wouldn't you want to tell everyone about it? It is for both Jews and Gentiles: it covers all people. The righteousness of God is given there: it is given as a gift to you. The righteous will live by faith: faith in Christ is life itself. All of these reasons are why Paul continues to proclaim Christ, continues to point to him, and will not stop. How are you doing on that?


In Christ's Hope,                  Pastor Christopher Miller


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