Romans 16. Forum Discussion

The importance of relationships

Chapter 16 is the final chapter of Paul’s letter to the Romans. It’s interesting to see how Paul concludes his letter.

Paul names more than 25 people in this chapter. Some are his relatives; some are people that he was in prison with; all are workers for the Lord.

It’s easy to read through these lists without getting any real takeaways. But there is always something that God is teaching us in His inspired word.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”

So what is God trying to teach us or equip us with in this chapter?

Here is a summary of the list of people that Paul referred to in his letter and what he had to say about each of them:

  • Phoebe - a servant of the church in Cenchrea. A helper of many.
  • Prisca and Aquila – they “Risked their own necks” for Paul’s life.
  • Epaenetus - Was “Beloved” by Paul and was also the first convert to Christ from Asia.
  • Mary – “Who has worked hard for you.”
  • Andronicus and Junias. Paul knew both from prison and had great respect for them. He refers to them as his kinsmen who were, “Outstanding among the apostles,” and who were in Christ before Paul was. Google defines Kinsman as, “A blood relative, especially a male, or a relative by marriage.” So Andronicus and Junias were relatives of Paul’s.
  • Ampliatus. Beloved in the Lord.
  • Urbanus – Our fellow worker in Christ.
  • Stachys – My beloved.
  • Apelles – The approved in Christ.
  • Those of the household of Aristobulus.
  • Herodion – My kinsman (Another relative of Paul’s).
  • Those of the household of Narcissus who are in the Lord.
  • Tryphaena and Tryphosa – Workers in the Lord.
  • Persis – The beloved who has worked hard in the Lord.
  • Rufus – A choice man in the Lord.
  • Rufus’ mother.
  • Paul’s mother.
  • Asyncritus.
  • Phlegun.
  • Hermes.
  • Patrobas.
  • Hermas and the brethren with them.
  • Philologus and Julia.
  • Nereus and his sister.
  • Olympas and all the saints who are with them.

One observation that we can make is that Paul knew a lot of people. He not only knew their names; he knew about their lives. He knew what they had been through, and where they were from.

That’s important to recognize. Why? Because of the influence that Paul had on these people, and the influence that they had on him.

There is a saying, “People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

Paul is showing us the importance of being involved in each other’s lives.

If we are too busy to spend time getting to know people, then something needs to change.

There is another saying, “When life is not adding up, it’s time to start subtracting.”

God wants us not only to know each other, He wants us to love one another.

When asked what the two greatest commandments were, Jesus replied:

“You shall love the Lord your god with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’

This is the great and foremost commandment.  The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” – Mathew 22:36-40.

How can we love our neighbor if we don’t know them and they don’t know us?

Remember the quote from earlier, “People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

The relationships that we have can have an impact on how successful we are in sharing the Gospel. If we want to be more successful, we need to let others know that we care about them by taking the time to get to know them.

Thank you so much for participating in our study on the book of Romans. Tomorrow, Lord willing, we will begin our study on 1 Corinthians. May God’s blessings be upon you until then.  

Comments

Michael

I don't think there is any substitute for breaking bread with somebody. Whether in our home or out at a restaurant, taking the time to eat with somebody and find out a little bit more about them shows that we care and helps strengthen relationships.

Reply
Pat Dermody


People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care .” I really like this quotation of yours. During this pandemic we find ourselves with a lot of free time on our hands. It is a time we can sit by Idly watching TV or reading or we can use it to show people that we care. There are people out there living alone Or who are alone in nursing homes and might appreciate a phone call Or a note. There are neighbors who may need assistance with getting groceries or help in their yard. Pause and think about how you can show somebody you know
that you care

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Bruce Bruinsma

Events impact people and leave lasting memories that live on. The events of today play a rooe in our tomorrow’s

Reply
John
Bruce Bruinsma

Amen

Reply
John

We can use technology to get to know people better as well. With the worldwide pandemic, more people are using technology to connect and reconnect with loved ones in their lives. Where there is a will, there is a way.

Reply