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Thread: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

  1. #1
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    Default Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Romans 1:1 (KJV): Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

    Paul introduces himself as, "a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ called [to be] an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God".

    “… a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ”

    The word rendered "servant" there means "slave". Some commentators and Bible translations have expressed it as "bondservant" or "bond-slave", both of which essentially mean the same thing- slave.

    A slave has been defined as "a person who is the property of another person and whose labor and also whose life often is subject to the owner's volition." (Wiktionary).

    This means that as believers, we are slaves of the Lord for we all belong to Him by virtue of His purchase/redemption (for His redemption is His purchase) of us- 1Cor. 6:19,20; 1Cor. 7:23; 1Pt. 1:18,19; 2Pt.2:1; Acts 20:28- and we are to live unto Him: 1Cor.6:20; 2Cor.5:15; Rom.6:10-22; 8:12; 14:7-9; Col.3:17,23,24; Eph. 6:6,7; 1Pt.2:24. In fact, in some of these Scriptures, the Bible refers to us as slaves of the Lord (the Authorized King James Version [KJV] actually uses servant, perhaps because of the negative meanings associated with the word slave).

    Now, lest we are uncomfortable with being described as slaves, it is important to note that Paul's use of the word (and indeed its application to believers) simply expressed the fact that he totally belonged to and was completely owned by the Lord as his absolute Master and lover and is devoid of any negative connotations of the word in today's world.

    In other words, while we are each owned by the Lord by virtue of His purchase/redemption and are to live unto Him, our being slaves of Jesus Christ is quite different from the modern day ideas of slaves.

    It is in fact an expression of love for it was of love and for good that He purchased us to Himself: Lk. 1:77,78; Eph. 1:7; 2:4,5; 5:2, 23-27; John 3:16; Rom. 5:8; Gal. 2:20; Tit. 3:4; 1John 4:9,10; Rev 1:5; Mt. 20:28; Gal. 1:4; 1Pt.2:9,10; Tit. 2:14; Eph. 5:25-27. Additionally, it coheres with our freedom and sonship in the Lord and the fact that we are joint heirs with Christ. See for example, John.15:15; Gal.4:7; Rom. 6:16-23; 8:17; Eph. 5:21-32; 6:6-8; Col.3:22-24, etc.

    In sum then...
    Share: Note 1 on Romans 1:1
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  2. #2
    Senior Member trofimus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    BTW, Paul is speaking about himself being doulos, slave/servant of Jesus Christ.

    Paul was an apostle, this is really a hard labour. I think this is just another way how to say "Paul, apostle of Christ Jesus..." as he is doing elsewhere.

    But I dont see any problem with us, ordinary Christians, being called "slaves" of Christ, too. It just is not in the Bible.
    God's truth prevails (John Huss) * Pravda Boží vítězí (Jan Hus)

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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    I would add we are servants to whom we obey, just as we are also "marked" or sealed by our Master whom we serve.

    Romans 6:16-17

    16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

    17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you."
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    Senior Member dcontroversal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Jesus told his disciples <--saved, immersed and living stones in the 1st church called out by Jesus when He walked the earth....

    After we have done all we can for Christ to consider ourselves lowly bond servants only doing those things we have been commanded to do!

  5. #5
    Senior Member Dino246's Avatar
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Paul also wrote, "You are not your own; you were bought with a price". That sounds like 'slave' to me; however, Christ does not treat us as slaves. Rather, He calls us "friends".
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Quote Originally Posted by trofimus View Post
    BTW, Paul is speaking about himself being doulos, slave/servant of Jesus Christ.

    Paul was an apostle, this is really a hard labour. I think this is just another way how to say "Paul, apostle of Christ Jesus..." as he is doing elsewhere.

    But I dont see any problem with us, ordinary Christians, being called "slaves" of Christ, too. It just is not in the Bible.
    @trofimus thanks for reading and for the valuable contribution. You make an interesting point. Nowhere in the KJV (or any other translation I know for that matter) are Christians referred to as slaves of Christ.

    However, it is also interesting to note that (as I observed in the thread) the word used to fes

  7. #7
    Senior Member NarrowRoadDisciple's Avatar
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Quote Originally Posted by Chukwuemekajoseph View Post
    @trofimus thanks for reading and for the valuable contribution. You make an interesting point. Nowhere in the KJV (or any other translation I know for that matter) are Christians referred to as slaves of Christ.

    However, it is also interesting to note that (as I observed in the thread) the word used to fes
    I think people refer to this verse:

    Romans 6:16-19 NKJV
    16 Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? 17 But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19 I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.
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    NarrowRoadDisciple

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    Quote Originally Posted by trofimus View Post
    BTW, Paul is speaking about himself being doulos, slave/servant of Jesus Christ.

    Paul was an apostle, this is really a hard labour. I think this is just another way how to say "Paul, apostle of Christ Jesus..." as he is doing elsewhere.

    But I dont see any problem with us, ordinary Christians, being called "slaves" of Christ, too. It just is not in the Bible.
    @trofimus thanks for reading and for the valuable contribution. You make an interesting point. Nowhere in the KJV (or any other translation save for the NKJV for that matter) are Christians referred to as slaves of Christ.

    However, it is also interesting to note that (as I observed in the thread) the word used to describe us servants of Christ in the KJV: servants really has as its primary meaning, or at least one of its meanings, a word in the Greek which means slave or bondservant (essentially meaning slave).

    Considering this and the facts that:

    The Bible does say we were bought with a price/redeemed and that we are not our own and that our bodies and spirits belong to the Lord: 1Cor.6: 19,20; 7:23 (ownership is a key factor in slavery);

    That the portion referred to by @InSpiritInTruth and NarrowRoadDisciple: Romans 6:16-19 clearly speak of being slaves either to the Lord or to sin,

    that we are to serve Him and live in obedience to Him,

    it is pretty clear that we are slaves of the Lord!

    However, as I pointed out and as Dino246 graciously stated, Christ calls us friends and even brothers.

    Ours is not the idea of slavery that is conjured up in contemporary minds, rather it simply states that whereas we were bound to sin and the devil now we belong to a new Master who has bound us to His love, inheritance, health, and goodness.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Marcelo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Note 1 on Romans 1:1

    I don't care being called a "slave"; actually I would take that as a huge compliment. I'm still struggling to become a genuine slave of the Lord. People who don't want to be slaves of God end up being slaves of the enemy.
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