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Galatians 2:20

 

 


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Pauline Reflections 24 - 16th May 2009

Now to him who can strengthen you, according to my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret for long ages but now manifested through the prophetic writings and according to the command of the eternal God, made known to all the nations to bring about the obedience of faith, to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ be glory forever and ever. Amen.
Romans 16:25-27

This Pauline doxology concludes his long letter to the Romans. He personalizes the gospel as his own in so far as it reflects his faith, experience and theology. This same gospel has revealed the mystery kept secret for long ages - justification and salvation through faith for both Jews and gentiles, thus for the whole world.

Paul’s letter to the Romans stands out as one written to a church that Paul never visited. In Acts 27 and 28, we read that after Paul’s arrest he was brought to Rome only in chains. Rome at this time was very important for the early Christians. It was the capital of the Roman Empire and the centre of the known world at that time. The arrival of the gospel in Rome meant the arrival of the gospel to the whole world.

Thus Paul could say in Romans 10:18 “But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have; for their voice has gone out to all the earth and their words to the ends of the world”. And at the very beginning of his letter to the Romans, he expresses gratitude to God “because your faith is proclaimed throughout the world” Romans 1:8. The church exists for evangelization and following the example of Paul she continually brings the unchanging good news of Jesus Christ to the ‘whole world’ by word and example.

Prayer

Lord, make an instrument of your gospel in word and deed to the whole world. Amen.


 


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