Useful Bible Studies > Romans Commentary > chapter 16

The garden called Eden

Romans 16:19-20

In the garden called Eden, the first people chose not to obey God (Genesis chapter 3). That was how sin (wrong and evil thoughts, words and actions) entered our world (5:12). Its results are terrible, because sin brings death (6:23).

So, what God is doing in the lives of Christians by his gospel (the message about Christ) is truly wonderful (1:16-17). People from all nations are choosing to obey God (1:5) - the opposite of what Adam and Eve did in Eden (Genesis 3:1-6). God is giving them life that never ends (John 3:16).

Adam and Eve decided not to obey God because they wanted the knowledge of both good and evil things (Genesis 2:16-17). Still today, wrong and evil desires constantly tempt us (Romans 7:7-24: James 1:13-15; 1 John 1:10). For that reason, we must give our attention to what is good; in other words, we must learn what is right (Proverbs 2:1-11). However, we must have a simple attitude towards what is evil: we must refuse to do any evil thing (Job 28:28; Psalm 1). That is true wisdom.

God is the God of peace, in other words, the God who brings people into a right relationship with himself. By the death of Christ, he makes us, who were his enemies, into his friends (5:6-11). Paul refers to the first promise in the Bible, Genesis 3:15. Satan (a name for the devil that means ‘the accuser’) came in the form of a snake and he persuaded Adam and Eve not to obey God (Genesis 3:1-4). However, God promised that another man, Christ, would come from Eve’s family. Christ would destroy Satan’s power completely, like a person who destroys the head of a snake beneath his foot. So, Satan is losing his power because of the honour that God is giving to his people (8:15-19). Satan cannot defeat them because God has given them a right relationship with himself (8:31-39).

Next part: The Christians with Paul send their greetings (Romans 16:21-23)

 

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© 2018, Keith Simons.