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  • David

    September 27, 2021 at 9:25 am

    Romans 13:8-10 – The Royal Way

    As always, I like to put the Daily Text in context before commenting on the Text and/or the Seedbed author’s reflections. From my previous reading and study of the book of Romans, I find it to be a doctrinal book. The first eight chapters explain the Gospel and the principles of righteousness and the last eight chapters are focused on the application of these principles. The 13th Chapter specifically addresses being in subjection to rulers and governing authorities, paying taxes, and “rendering to all what is due them” (13:7).

    Our Text (13:8-10) addresses fulfillment of the Law by loving your neighbor as yourself, the Royal Way. The remaining verses in the Chapter(11-14) admonish us to do these things now because time is short, and to “lay aside deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.” Paul then gives specific examples of unrighteous behavior: carousing and drunkenness, sexual promiscuity and sensuality, strife and jealousy.

    Why is this important to know? Because if you just address today’s Text you might come away thinking that loving your neighbor is all that is really needed. This is first part of the Gospel thinking and shallow application. Matt may address this issue on another day. The Royal Way is definitely love of God and love of neighbor, but the expectation is that this will lead us to purity and to not practice sinning (1 John 3). This is second part of the Gospel thinking and deep application.

    This elevated vision of Holy Love is in keeping with my view of God’s character, but so is sanctification and consecration. It also fits my own experience. The more I love God; the more I find I can love others; and the less I want to make provisions for my flesh in regard to its lusts (Romans 13:14). I would argue that they go together like two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without the other being present. If you have one without the other, you may have neither. Lord let me follow the Royal Way and be both saved and consecrated for service in the Kingdom!