AREWELL REETINGS IN THE OSPELshe is a sister,
a spiritual kindred spirit (I Cor.7:15; 9:5; Jas.2:15; Philem.2).
Second she is a servant/deacon, diakonos,of the church.In
I Timothy 3: 11, cf.v.8, there is the likelihood that the office of deaconess is intended, and so probably here.Moule explains that Phoebe was,
very probably a person of substance and influence.There is good evidence of the existence in the Apostles time of an organized class of female helpers in sacred work.
..Just after the apostolic age the famous Letter of Pliny to Trajan indicates that such female ) were known in the Bithynian Churches; and for two centuries from the time of Tertullian (cir.A.D.210) allusions to them are frequent, and show that they were largely employed both in the relief of temporal distress, chiefly among women, and also in the elementary teaching of female catechumens.
They were regularly set apart by imposition of hands.
As a rule, they were required to be of mature age, (rarely of less than 40 years,) and in most cases they appear to have been widows and mothers.By the 12century the Order had been everywhere abolished...
.We must not
that Phoebe was a deaconess in the full later sense of the word; but that her position was analogous to seems at least most probable.Of course it is obvious that such appointments would be according to the elders as the spiritual overseers of a local church.All in all, it is abundantly clear that Paul, as here, was tenderly appreciative of those women who supplemented his ministry (Phil.4:3), even as the following verse confirms.She is to be served by the church, v.2.So the saints or holy/sanctified ones are to receive /welcome Phoebe in the Lord, (cf.
vs.8, 11, 12, 13, 22, and in Christ, vs.3, 7, 9, 10), offering whatever practical help is necessary since she herself (emphatic) is a helper.
Here prosttijprostatis, describes a protectress.It is a word of dignity, evidently chosen instead of others which might have been used, .
..and indicates the high esteem with which she was regarded, as one who had been a protectress of many.
was the title of a citizen in Athens, who had the responsibility of seeing to the welfare of resident aliens who were without civic rights.Among the Jews it signified a wealthy patron of the community.Thus the biblical order of a hierarchical relationship between Christian men and women (I Cor.11:3, 7-12; Eph.5:22-28) in no way diminishes the esteem and respect that is to be lavished upon those in subordinate positions.
To the household of Prisca and Aquila, vs.
3-5a.In c.49-50 A.D, the Roman emperor Claudius issued an edict that evicted all Jews from Rome on account of supposed rioting.Two of the refugees who fled were Aquila,
Pro are: Alford, Chrysostom, Haldane, Lenski, Luther, Moo, Morris, Moule, Stott; contra are: Hendriksen, Murray.
G.Moule, The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans, pp.245-6.
E.Vine, Merrill F.
Unger, and William White, Jr., Vines Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words607.Also Moo, Romans, p.530, who rightly infers that Phoebe traveled with a retinue of servants.originally from Pontus in Asia Minor (Acts 2:9; I Pet.
1:1), and his wife Prisca who had, as was common, taken Roman names.
Settling in Corinth as profitable tent-makers, there they met another tent-maker, the Apostle Paul, in the midst of his second missionary journey (Acts 18:1-3).It is likely that on account of this trade association, Paul witnessed to the devoted couple with the result being their conversion.Thus they accompany the Apostle to Ephesus and there evidence spiritual capability in giving necessary instruction to Apollos (Acts 18:26).By the time of Pauls return to Corinth during his third missionary journey, Prisca and Aquila have apparently returned to Rome on account of the former edict being rescinded, though now they are significant members of the church that meets in their home, to which Paul presently writes.Pauls fellow-workers, v.
3.Greet or convey respectful regards, spzomai, aspazomai, signifies a salutation, a friendly personal acknowledgment, which term is used 16 times in vs.3-16.That the order of Aquila and Priscilla ( Acts 18:2; I Cor.16:19)) is changed to Priscilla and Aquila (Acts 18:18, 26; II Tim.4:19), whether with reference to a dominant personality or social status, is speculative.The primacy here given to this choice couple is intentional and supported by the length of the greeting.As fellow workers [sunergous]in Christ Jesus,they hadmediated the truth of the gospel that had been so well imparted to them in Corinth and Ephesus.Perhaps through previous correspondence, they had conveyed much detail about the church in Rome, even with regard to many trophies of grace that Paul now mentions, such as Mary, v.
Who, on behalf of my life [soul], offered their own neck as it were in execution [for my deliverance].Identification of this heroic exploit is difficult to identify, even if it was widely acknowledged.Most likely it is the danger that Paul faced in Ephesus (I Cor.15:32; Acts 19:23-32; 20:1), which ministry spread through Asia Minor (Acts 19:10).So Paul declares that, to whom not only do I give thanks, but also the churches of the Gentiles.
As Frederick Faber has written:
Our fathers, chained in prisons dark,
Were still in heart and conscience free;
And blest would be their childrens fate,
Though they, like them, should die for thee.
Indeed, humanly speaking, if it were not for this courageous couple, then not only Romans, but also Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Philemon, I & II Timothy, and Titus would not have been written!
Prisca, Prska (I Cor.16:19; II Tim.4:19), according to Paul, is the basic or proper name while Priscilla, Prskilla (Acts 18:2, 18, 26), according to Luke, is a derivative form.
Connybeare and J.S.Howson, The Life and Epistles of Saint PaulAREWELL REETINGS IN THE OSPELPerhaps the return of Aquila and Prisca to Rome enabled them to reclaim their property that included a house suitable for church fellowship, as was their custom formerly in Ephesus (Acts 18:26; I Cor.16:8, 19).Here, implicit material prosperity while perhaps childless, may have enabled not only frequent travel, but also investment in evangelistic ministry that resulted in heavenly consequences (Luke 16:9).To the fellowship in particular, vs.5b-15.Here then are the members and adherents of the church at the home of Prisca and Aquila, which house church movement was the norm: There were no church buildings in the first century (not until the third century on our present information), though Paul readily employed the school of Tyrannus at Ephesus over a two year period for evangelistic meetings (Acts 19:9-10)., agapetos Epaenetus, Ampliatus, and Stachys v.
5b, 8, 9b.Epaenetus, originating from Asia (Ephesus?), had probably met Paul and as a consequence become my beloved, who then joined the winsome couple when they returned to the imperial city.His being the first fruit [, aparch, cf.8:23] to Christ from Asia, probably designates him as the first convert of Paul in Ephesus that was followed by a substantial harvest.As such he learned and matured over two years under Pauls tutelage to the point of being significantly used in missionary service.Ampliatus, has been associated with freedmen, also Caesars household, as with Stachys meaning wheat ear (Matt.12:1).Hardworking, , kopiao, Mary, Tryphaena, Tryphosa, and Persis, vs.
While Mary, probably Jewish from Miriam, has personally toiled much poll polla ekopiasen, for Prisca and Aquila, and likewise Persis has toiled much, so Tryphaena and Tryphosa, perhaps sisters meaning Delicate and
have toiled,, , kopiao, worked with weariness in the Lord.What exactly was this hard employment? The word used here elsewhere describes physical (Luke 5:5; Eph.4:28; I Cor.4:12) as well as spiritual (Phil.
2:16; Col.1:28-29; I Tim.
5:17) labor, and most likely both meanings are intended here, but Kinsmen, suggenj sungenes, Andronicus, Junia(s), and Herodion, vs.7, 11a.
Kinsmen suggests these were Jews, cf.9:3.
Most likely Andronicus and Junia (feminine) were husband and wife, though their being called apostles has led to
Morris, Romans One manuscript adds at the end of v.9, from 11 A.M.to 4 p.m.
Bruce, The Acts of the Apostles, p.
B.Lightfoot, St.Pauls Epistle to the Philippians Moo, RomansRomanscontroversy since earlier commentators could not accept this as appropriate for a woman.
Hence later commentators have preferred Junias (masculine).However more recent agreement that Junia (feminine) is correct has resulted in feminism claiming support here for egalitarian spiritual rule in local church life.However, , apostolos is often used in a more general sense of a sent person (II Cor.
8:23; Phil.2:25 re Epaphroditus; I Thess.2:6 re Paul, Silvanus, Timothy), rather than the distinctive office of Acts 1:21-26.
Thus Andronicus and Junia were outstanding/splendid mos, amongst the apostles, that is those such as Phoebe, Prisca and Aquila, who were highly esteemed gospel emissaries, missionaries (from the Latin , I send).But further, their kinship with Paul included being fellow prisoners, sunaicmlwtojsunaichmaltos, in the past for the cause of Christ, as were Aristarchus, Col.4:10, and Epaphras, Philem.23.Herodion was probably a freedman formerly employed within the household and , sunergos, Urbanus, v.9a.our fellow worker rather than
fellow workers as were Prisca and Aquila, v.3, may indicate a lack of personal acquaintance
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However a notable reputation has been conveyed through correspondence., dokimon, Apelles, v.10a.While the use of approved/tested in Christ in 14:18 suggests general acceptance, yet approval through persecution cannot be discounted, as the experience of Prisca and Aquila indicates, v.
4, cf.James 1:12.Those of [the households of] Aristobulus and Narcissus, vs.
The idiomatic expression here is an encompassing description of those who have worked for the household of Aristobulus, a grandson of Herod the Great.So Narcissus is probably a famous person who has employed a number of Christians, perhaps as Lightfoot suggests, a certain renowned wealthy freedman., eklektos, Rufus and his mother, v.
13.This distinguished, exceptional saint, is traditionally identified as that son of he who was, pressed into service [as] a passer-by coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), to bear His [Christs] cross (Mark 15:21).This association could be supported by Pauls respectful comment that Rufus mother is also his own, perhaps due to an earlier relationship in Jerusalem.
Lightfoot, Philippians Cautious support here comes from Cranfield, Godet, Lightfoot, Moo, Morris.AREWELL REETINGS IN THE OSPELWhile the church that is in their house [of Prisca and Aquila], v.5a, was probably the main assembly point for the Christians in Rome, yet there may have been sub-fellowships within large households, as mentioned in vs.10-11.
The house fellowship of Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and other brethren, v.
14.The house fellowship of Philologus, JuGreet one another with a holy kiss, filmati gw (cf.I Cor.16:20; II Cor.13:12; I Thess.
5:26, a kiss of love, I Pet.5:14; ).Equivalent to a hug, a warm handshake, the holy kiss was a customary form of greeting (Luke 7:45; 15:20; 22:47-48), usually on
Moo adds that, many commentators think that Paul may here be envisaging a worship gathering in which his letter is being read aloud and which is concluded with such a kiss.The modern debasing of the social kiss certainly justifies a more appropriate form of a physical greeting.John Bunyan was aware of this problem when in Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners he comments: [S]ome [good men] indeed have urged the holy kiss; but then I have asked why they made baulks [distinctions by omitting], why they did salute the most handsome, and let the ill-favored go; thus, how laudable soever such things have been in the eyes of others, they have been unseemly in my sight.All the churches of Christ greet you.While Paul ministered in various regions, yet he maintained constant communication with the major Gentile fellowships including Antioch, as well as with the Jewish mother church at Jerusalem.The emissaries/apostles of vs.1-2, 3-4, 7 would update the Apostle, convey greetings to him, and thus enable him to channel greetings to the saints at Rome.Thus as Paul writes in Corinth he has associates with him from a variety of church locations (Acts 20:1-4).Hence this inclusive greeting provides the saints at Rome with a sense of unity with the larger body of Christ.THE WARNINGS TO THE SAINTS, VS.17-20.In the midst of greetings from Paul, vs.1-16, and his associates, vs.21-23, there is injected a vigorous, brief warning, vs.
17-20, that might seem unexpected.Perhaps at this point the Apostle takes the reed pen from Tertius, v.22, to add a signature paragraph that concludes with v.
20.However, while circumstances in the more troubled region of Corinth might prompt this jealous, affectionate concern, there are other instances of similar concluding epistolary admonition (I Cor.16:13-14, 22; Colo.
4:17; I Tim.6:20-21; II Tim.4:14-18; I
Joseph Shulam, A Commentary on the Jewish Roots of Romans Moo, Romans John Bunyan, The Works of John BunyanJohn 5:21).Further, Morris suggests that, Romans is a long letter and it must have taken quite a while to compose it.It is possible that news was brought to Paul just before he finished it that made him think a warning was in order.The preventative rather than curative emphasis here is probably indicated by the commendation of v.
19.As a parent often farewells a departing child with a string of practical maxims, so Paul, as a spiritual parent (Phil.2:19-22; I Thess.
1:7, 11), offers similar spiritual counsel.
Be alert for contentious teachers, vs.17-18.Identification of the offending schismatics may include two categories.There are the carnal libertarian antinomians of 6:1-23, those claiming a licentious freedom in the light of the sovereignty and freeness of grace, though more likely Paul has in mind the weak in faith who hold on to the crutch of the law, including dietary regulations and appointed days, 14:1-15:5.In the later case, an intolerant Judaizing spirit that ignores the overriding injunction of 13:8-10; 14:10-13, 17-20; 15:2 presents a situation that is ripe for the eruption of partisan conflict.The crux of the peril here lies in the subtlety of these agitators emerging within thThey oppose apostolic doctrine, v.17.The preceding recommendation of the holy kiss may have suggested to Paul the deceitful treachery that such an outward greeting may conceal in local church life, as was illustrated by Judas (Prov.27:6; Matt.26:49; Luke 22:47-48).
Therefore alertness is called for by all the saints, not just the Elders.So I exhort/urge you, brethren, to watch out for those causing divisions [carnal dissentions, Gal.
5:20] and stumbling blocks that conflict with the teaching/-doctrine which you learned, and turn away  from them.Could it be that in this instance the lack of specificity concerning the heresies in mind is intentional since the fruit of disruptiveness is what is to be identified.In other words some people will reveal their spiritual fraudulence by leaving behind fractured relationships wherever they go, while true doctrine will tend to unify according to 13:8-10; 14:1720; 15:2.
However it is to be noticed that a body of apostolic doctrine has already been established in Rome which is recognized as a standard against which all such novel teaching is to be measured; it is that form of teaching to which you were committed, 6:17, or the word of the faith which we are preaching, 10:8; cf.Jude 3.The beguiling, seductive character of a Pliable, a Mr.Worldly-Wiseman, a Talkative, or a Demas, is now described.For such men are not serving our Lord Christ but their own belly/appetite [, koilia, Phil.3:18-19], and through smooth and flattering conversation they deceive the hearts of the unwary/nave/unsuspecting [saints].Consider Pauls three pilgrims here.
Morris, Romans All four of these famous characters in The Pilgrims Progress, although counterfeit pilgrims, were able to deceive, for a time, such authentic pilgrimshful, and Hopeful.
AREWELL REETINGS IN THE OSPELMr.Smooth-man, crhstologastologia, that is plausibility, or persuasiveness.David describes how, his speech was smoother than butter, but his heart was war; his words were softer than oil, yet they were drawn swords Ps.55:21).Bunyan designates him as a citizen of the town of Fair-speech that was inhabited by a whole coterie of sophisticated rogues.
of brilliant and suave discourse.Mr.
Flatterer, , eulogia, that is sycophant, or sweet talker, whose words are, at a surface level, appealing and pleasantly manipulative.
According to Peter such false prophets exploit with false/fabricated words, plastoj lgoij, plastois logois (II Pet.2:3) that lack concrete, objective truth.
His belly sought self-advancement through the feel-good, ego-boosting, back-scratching stimulation of others.Mr.Innocent, , akakos, that is not bad, or guileless, being somewhat gullible and not acquainted with all of the machinations of human depravity.Consequently he is hoodwinked by the false charm of a Mr.Smooth-man and Mr.Flatterer.
While his belly was under the control of a redeemed soul, yet he lacked doctrinal instruction and testing concerning sins exceeding sinfulness and the wiles of the devil.Be good before the God of peace and grace, vs.19-20.Pauls sense of pastoral balance is indicated by the following encouragements that follow sober warnings.
Whereas v.17 negatively enjoins the Roman saints to turn away from factious influences, here they are positively entreated, to be wise in what is good, v.19.
Let an obedient reputation encourage you, v.19a.For [the renown of] your obedience has reached to all [the whole world, 1:8, Asia Minor? the Roman Empire?].
Perhaps the magisterial character of this epistle is reflective of the admiration that Paul has for the relative maturity of this church, especially since he has not needed to deal with the variety of problems, related to immaturity, that are manifest in Galatia, Corinth, or Colosse.Thus he is, convinced of better things concerning you, and things that accompany salvation (Heb.6:9).The obedience here is probably commitment to the gospel, 1:5; 16:26, which was the very reason that Paul writes to expound in greater depth upon that same sacred message, 1:15.For the Apostle, gospel faithfulness is of paramount importance.Let innocence in evil identify you, v.
Therefore I rejoice in you and desire that you be wise in what is good, and innocent/unpolluted in what is bad.In other words, love does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth (I Cor.13:6).The child of God will major on right teaching, not heresy; he will concentrate upon the moral excellency of God that is incumbent upon him rather than the wiles of the devil and infinite variations on the theme of sin.Thus, be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves (Matt.
10:16), or, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be infants, but in your thinking be mature (I Cor.14:20).This attitude is to sharply co
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