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A Study in Romans

CPC is commencing a study in the book of Romans.  Romans has played a pivotal role in the life of the church through the centuries.  It also comprehensively declares the Gospel and thereby informs our study of the rest of scripture.

The pivotal moment of Augustine's conversion was caused by reading Romans 15:13.  It was Martin Luther’s comprehension of Romans 1:17 that sparked the Protestant Reformation.  Luther wrote:

I had greatly longed to understand Paul’s letter to the Romans and nothing stood in the way but that one expression ‘the righteousness of God’, because I took it to mean that righteousness whereby God is righteous and acts righteously in punishing the unrighteous . . . Night and day I pondered until . . . I grasped the truth that the righteousness of God is that righteousness whereby, through grace and sheer mercy, he justifies us by faith.  Thereupon I felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise.  The whole of Scripture took on a new meaning, and whereas before ‘the righteousness of God’ had filled me with hate, now it became to me inexpressibly sweet in greater love.  This passage of Paul became to me a gateway into heaven.  (Martin Luther, Luther’s Works, vol. 34 (Muhlenberg Press, 1960), pp. 336f.)

Both John Calvin and William Tyndale stated that Romans elucidated the other books of the Bible.  Calvin wrote:

If we gained a true understanding of this Epistle, we have an open door to all the most profound treasures of Scripture.

William Tyndale stated:

[Romans is] the principal and most excellent part of the New Testament, the most pure Euangelion, that is to say, glad tidings. . . . . and also a light and a pure way in unto the whole Scripture.

 

As a church we spent a year in Ephesians which has only 6 chapters.  Romans has 16 chapters and is quite dense.  I suspect we'll be in our study of Romans for at least two years.  

Posted by Matthew Roberts with

Officer Nominations and Training

CPC is in a season of officer nominations and training.  The Biblical precedent for this process is Acts 6:1-6.  In that passage we see five truths. 

First, the essence of church polity is plurality not singularity.  Decisions were made by teams not leaders working together; they weren’t decreed by one individual. 

Second, leaders were called forward by their peers; they didn’t put themselves forward.

Third, the offices of the church are deed and word.  They comprise the office of Deacon and Elder.  Deacons are oriented towards physical needs; Elders are oriented towards spiritual needs.

Fourth, the foremost criterion for church leadership is character.  Skills and talents are secondary to holiness.

Lastly, we’ll see that all these principles are rooted in the ministry of Jesus Christ.  We see Jesus working in concert with God the Father and God the Spirit.  Jesus didn’t put himself forward; he was called forward by God the Father.  Jesus’ ministry was deed and word.  Jesus’ ministry stemmed from His character; at the pivotal moment he said, “Not my will, but your will be done.”

Please converse with the pastoral staff if you have questions about this process.

 

Posted by Matthew Roberts with

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