Love In Action

Romans could arguably be the most examined book of the New Testament, second only to the gospel of John. At least for me it has been so.

As I read through the epistle to the Romans, more slowly this time, I picked up again on something I noticed before. This time I took a bit more opportunity to scrutinize it.

What always catches my eye is how the Apostle Paul structured the passage in Romans 12:9-21. Upon reflection, it reminds me of, in our time, what we would call “post-it” reminders. Those little notes we may attach to our refrigerator doors or a post-it board for easy memorization reminders.

Each verse is one “sound-bite” which can stand alone. However, when assembled, they all become a relatively comprehensive passage of love-in-action guide for us to practice in our daily lives. Doing so helps us work with God as He continues to develop our character toward holiness in Christ.

Is it possible he wrote them this way with we-of-the-texting-generation in mind? Of course, it is possible mankind’s general nature to be easily distracted hasn’t changed since the first-century church.

Isn’t the Lord amazing? He dictates not only to the most minute detail what He says, but how His message is structured in delivery. And much more, He does this from Genesis to Revelation!

So, below I have crafted and displayed the individual verses in single “post-it” forms as an example of my meaning above. I coined them “Paul’s post-its.” ~G.W.

9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.

11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.

12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.

18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

20 On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;

    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.

In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Romans 12:9-21

[a]Romans 12:16 – Or willing to do menial work

[b]Romans 12:19 – Deut. 32:35

[c]Romans 12:20 – Prov. 25:21,22

19 thoughts on “Love In Action”

    1. God’s ways truly are the best ways, aren’t they. Gary?
      I finally took the time to bring them out in living color, rather than simply reciting and discussing them. Blessings, Gary!

      Liked by 3 people

  1. Post it notes, what a creative way of making God’s word stand out.
    Your post GW has inspired me to write the “post it”notes on my, things to do today, stuck to my fridge door .
    What a blessing!!
    Proverbs 11:25

    Liked by 2 people

  2. OH! You don’t know (or then again, maybe you do!) how EASY that made reading Romans 12!

    To me, Paul is the master of the run-on thought. I cannot always follow what he means, because I’ve been trying to figure out why one statement led to the next statement. His sentences do not have to be related one to another. OH!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Well, to be fair to Paul, his sentences relate to each other, but not always directly. When he has these run-on sentences, I picture him dictating a stream of thinking to a scribe recording his words. He often dictated his letters.
      In these cases, it helps me to study the structure of writing.
      I’m glad this may have helped you understand Paul’s communication style a bit.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Wow GW! Thank you for sharing this post-it note thought. I confess I get overwhelmed by all Paul packs into one sentence and can easily read a chapter with little sinking in. Reading it broken down leaves more of an impression. I enjoyed reading down through Paul’s post it’s savoring each one as I went.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Beth. I very much agree Paul is almost never light reading in communication style or content. It soothes me that Peter confesses as much in his 2nd epistle, chap. 3:15-16. I’m glad you enjoyed my effort and intent here. Thank you so much!
      By the way, I love it that we’re discussing a 2,000-year-old author as he currently pertains directly to our present day and times! The Bible alone has this living quality throughout the history of mankind!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. During 2021, I read through the epistles, chewing through each one slowly. Time and again I found myself thinking, “This letter could have been post marked today.” The warnings, admonitions, and exhortations of the apostles gained an even greater real-time quality. Only the Lord could give us a living piece of literature. How grateful I am to live in an era and place where the Bible is so readily available in such an array of translations.

        Liked by 1 person


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