Today we continue our discussion through the Book of Romans. We are currently in verse seven, but if you have missed any of our previous discussions you can catch them on THE ROAD THROUGH ROMANS PAGE.
Today we are continuing to discuss Paul’s audience. Paul says his audience is, “all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be his holy people:” Ro. 1:7
Because this book is included in the canon of Scripture it also means we are the audience of this book. It was written for the Roman church going through a particular set of circumstances, but the teaching which was directed to their specific circumstances can also be applied to our general Christian lives. Therefore “all in Rome” also applies to you and me. As the old saying goes, “When in Rome…”
Paul begins by reminding his audience that they are loved by God. He also states that as Christians we are called to live holy lives. The word “holy” means “separated”, “different”, “dedicated”. Our lives are to be separate or different from the world. Our lives are to be dedicated to obeying God.
I recently had an individual come to me feeling like they were “falling away from God.”
I asked the person if there was anything they were doing that was sin in God’s eyes. The person admitted there was. But when I asked this person if they were ready to repent or turn away from the sin the answer was a resounding “No!”
Well, holiness means never saying “no” to God even when your heart defies Him and wants to do what is contrary to God’s desires. Holiness means following God’s plan for your life even when the whole world is calling you in another direction.
Of course holiness is a work in progress. No one lives completely holy. Sometimes our hearts deceive us and lead us down paths that are anything but holy. It is the pursuit of holiness, the practice of holiness and not sinless perfection that we are called to here.
Separation and dedication are mindsets that begin to create a condition of ever increasing righteousness. As with most things in Christianity the battle of the mind has to be won before the battle for behavior can ever be addressed but once the mind is brought into submission behavior begins to change.
Before you go today, tell me some things you do to practice your holiness or dedication to God.