Full of Goodness, Complete in Knowledge and Competent to Instruct One Another—Romans 15:14-16
"I myself am convinced, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, complete in knowledge and competent to instruct one another. I have written you quite boldly on some points, as if to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles with the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit" (Romans 15:14-16)
The book of Romans is a masterfully written exposition on grace. This letter to the believers in Rome has changed the hearts of many as they read and understand the wonderful truths nestled inside. Paul wrote this letter to these Christians to explain his revelation of grace. This revelation was not made of man but Paul received it directly from the Lord Jesus himself. "I want you to know, brothers, that the gospel I preached is not something that man made up. I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ" ( Galatians 1:11-12 ). What Paul taught was beyond previous comprehension and understanding. Becoming a student of this letter, written to the church in Rome, will change your heart and bring you into a deeper relationship with the Lord.
Because Paul was an apostle to the Gentiles he wrote to this church to settle a dispute between the Messianic Jews and the Gentiles. The church was a diverse group of people who had settled in Rome from other areas. There is no record of a visit to this church by an apostle offering doctrinal teaching and guidance. In fact many assume that these Christians had been in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was given ( Acts 2 ). They spread and settled in Rome. The church was comprised of Gentiles who had converted from idol worship and devout Jews who believed that Jesus was the promised Messiah. Problems arose when the Jews urged the Gentiles to live as Jews and undergo the rite of circumcision. Because of Paul's mission to preach the gospel to the Gentiles he felt an obligation to write to this church and settle this dispute among them explaining completely the grace of God.
As Paul starts to wind down his letter he gives this church his vote of confidence that they are full of goodness, complete in knowledge and competent to instruct one another. By understanding what Paul had written to them they had an excellent working knowledge of grace. What he wrote could settle every dispute that might arise because of their different backgrounds. Now they would be able to move into the freedom of Christ leaving behind traditions and customs they previously held. Paul wrote without inhibition and without apology to remind these believers of the truth of Christ. He made much of his ministry to preach the gospel of Jesus in its fullness. He wanted to present the Gentile church to the Lord as an acceptable offering, full of knowledge, understanding grace and living holy and purely in this world.
Like the church in Rome as we wind down this in-depth study of the book of Romans, the Holy Spirit is able to sanctify us in the truth of this letter so that we become living examples of the work of Christ Jesus. So many things have been covered and understanding these amazing truths will change our lives. Like Paul, I am confident that understanding this book will bring you to the point of being a teacher of grace and able to instruct others in the truth of Christ. I pray that you remind yourself of these things always and continue to read this book of the Bible regularly. I pray that the truths inside will change your perspective and you will live out of the grace of God that was given to you in the person of Jesus Christ.