WHY ROMANS 16 IS AS BEAUTIFUL AS ANY PSALM OF DAVID.
Yesterday, I posted on Martin’s Musings this:
“FILL IN THE BLANK: Paul is the only writer in the New Testament to mention::”
And so far, Mark, “the pirate” has posted (seems to me) the most beautiful reply. Go look it up. CLICK HERE:
Silly me… I posted that Paul is the only one of the New Testament writers to mention “Tryphena and Tryphosa” (two saints in Rome who were dear to Paul’s heart, and to whom he had to say “Hello” to at the end of Romans 16.)
Now, I’m sure it would go over most folk’s head… as to why I would mention these two girls (Tryphena and Tryphosa).
But it is true that Paul is the only writer in the New Testament to mention them.
I would have never noticed them except Zender devotes a lot of attention to all the saints mentioned in Romans 16 in his book THE FIRST IDIOT IN HEAVEN. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO.
The saints mentioned in Romans 16 — where Paul says “HELLO” to everyone in Rome (folks he likely sent to Rome to establish an ecclesia there) — were just common folk. Blue collar. Perhaps even trailer-trash. They were not “muckily mucks” in the church.
And that’s the beauty of it.
Paul saying a warm “HELLO” to bunch of nobodies.
You see, what you’ll find in the evangel of the uncircumcision is grace. And an amazing lack of pretension.
But if you look over the fence to see what those “circumcision” gospel folks are all about… they’re all about “muckity mucks”… important people. People with PhD’s after their name. People who wear white collars ‘round their necks. Folks who wear robes to work. Important folks. Folks who bless the ground they walk on. You know… “muckily mucks”.
That’s why I often quote from Galatians chapter two: “And certain men came from James” to the Freewill Chick.
The Freewill Chick has this same “circumcision” gospel attitude — to where you hop to attention when a big name appears. “Certain men came from James” indeed.
She hops to attention and blathers on and on about all the things YOU MUST DO to be saved and so forth. Pretentious stuff.
Never seeing how gracious God is now to sinners. Nobodies.
The best the Freewill Chick and her buddies from James can do is “spy out our freedom” and to “bring us back again into bondage.” (See Galatians 2:4)
Paul says of those brown-nosers, “What they once were is of no consequence to me”… and “God is no respecter of persons.” (See Galatians 2:6)
Now, when you compare Paul’s writings to the circumcision gospel… Paul mentions and honors all these nobodies. They were nothing more than enjoyers of an allotment in Christ.
But you had to be somebody special in Peter, James, and John’s writings to get mentioned.
That’s “works” for ya.
But count me in on the “grace movement”.
Nothing to boast ‘bout here.
We’re just on the receiving end of some’em tasty.
Tryphena and Tryphosa… two chicks we know nothing about, really. Probably cute as a pack of speckled puppies. But other than that, we know not much.
And now… take a moment to see for yourself, how sweet Romans 16 really is. It’s the last chapter of Romans. At first it might sound like a boring list of name. But if you read between the lines… there’s a lot of love going on here. A lot.
And grace to you.
ROMANS Chapter 16
1 Now I am commending to you Phoebe, our sister, being a servant also of the ecclesia in Cenchrea,
2 that you should be receiving her in the Lord worthily of the saints, and may stand by her in whatever matter she may be needing you, for she became a patroness of many, as well as of myself.
3 Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus
4 (who, for the sake of my soul, jeopardize their own necks, whom not only I am thanking, but all the ecclesias of the nations also)
5 and the ecclesia at their house. Greet Epanetus, my beloved, who is the firstfruit of the province of Asia for Christ.
6 Greet Mary, who toils much for you.
7 Greet Andronicus and Junias, my relatives and my fellow captives who are notable among the apostles, who also came to be in Christ before me.
8 Greet Ampliatos, my beloved in the Lord.
9 Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and Stachys, my beloved.
10 Greet Apelles, attested in Christ. Greet those who are of Aristobulus.
11 Greet Herodion, my relative. Greet those of Narcissus who are in the Lord.
12 Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, who are toiling in the Lord. Greet Persis, the beloved, who toils much in the Lord.
13 Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother and mine.
14 Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and the brethren with them.
15 Greet Philologos and Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas and all the saints with them.
16 Greet one another with a holy kiss. Greeting you are all the ecclesias of Christ.
17 Now I am entreating you, brethren, to be noting those who are making dissensions and snares beside the teaching which you learned, and avoid them,
18 for such for our Lord Christ are not slaving, but for their own bowels, and through compliments and adulation are deluding the hearts of the innocent.
19 For your obedience reached out to all. Over you, then, am I rejoicing. Now I am wanting you to be wise, indeed, for good, yet artless for evil.
20 Now the God of peace will be crushing Satan under your feet swiftly. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you!
21 Greeting you is Timothy, my fellow worker, and Lucius and Jason and Sosipater, my relatives.
22 I, Tertius, the writer of the epistle, am greeting you in the Lord.
23 Greeting you is Gaius, my host, and of the whole ecclesia. Greeting you is Erastus, the administrator of the city, and Quartus, the brother.
24 (NO SUCH VERSE IN THE OLDEST GREEK MANUSCRIPTS)
25 Now to Him Who is able to establish you in accord with my evangel, and the heralding of Christ Jesus in accord with the revelation of a secret hushed in times eonian,
26 yet manifested now and through prophetic scriptures, according to the injunction of the eonian God being made known to all nations for faith-obedience —
27 to the only, and wise God, through Christ Jesus, be glory for the eons of the eons. Amen!