Gilbert House Fellowship #125: Romans 8-13

night-far-goneIT IS appropriate (and unplanned — by us, anyway), but appropriate — that our last New Testament study before the U.S. presidential election includes Romans 13:1-7. It is a command to Christians to “be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.”

That’s not exactly a message we want to hear, especially after eight years of an administration that has repeatedly promoted initiatives that are opposed to biblical morality. But Paul wrote to the church at Rome during the reign of Nero, and if there ever was a time to call for Christian resistance to government, it was then.

Our reading today focuses on what should be our proper focus.  Our minds should be set on things of the spirit, not things of the flesh, and we should be prepared not only to tolerate and forgive an enemy, but to feed and clothe them in their need, “for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Paul again here emphasizes that loving our neighbors as we love ourselves fulfills the Law.

We also discuss the predestination, the relationship between Gentile believers and Jews, and how our role in God’s divine plan includes making the Jews jealous so that they come to accept Jesus as Messiah.

He concludes this section with a wonderful reminder of why we need to be about the Lord’s business now more than ever:

Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.
Romans 13:11-12 (ESV)

Click here for the complete archive of our New Testament Bible studies to date, and click here for the Old Testament studies to date.


  1. Hello,
    I completed teaching #123 and would like to continue with #125, but am having trouble finding it. Is there no audio for Romans 8-16?

    Thank you,
    PS, loving these Bible Studies.

    1. Author

      Hi, Linda: Thank you! The links to the audio are at the bottom of the notes, just above your comment. I just checked the files and the mp3s are still there.

  2. Please let me run the following by you. First, I’ve been listening to your materials, including this podcast, and reading your books (loved them all), and went to the 2018 GenSix Conference and listened to Heiser, Marzulli, Missler, Quayle, Alberino, Wilhelmsen etc. I also have been a believer from a young age, love the Lord Jesus and studied and thought about many of these things and graduated from Bible College. There have been two major things in scripture that have troubled me for over 30 years, to which the churches and my Bible school never gave a satisfactory answer.
    The first was God’s order to Israel to totally wipe out the Canaanites and leave no survivors. The answer that they were wicked did not seem enough for me and I was still troubled. After reading “The Unseen Realm” by Michael Heiser, listening to you and the others and doing my own study, I am convinced that the Canaanites were the descendants of the Annunaki, descendants of the Rephaim and they were not 100% human, and were 100% committed rebels against God and his plan for humanity and that’s why God ordered the “no mercy” rule. Jesus died on the cross for humanity, not fallen angels, their descendants or creations.
    But, the second issue that has troubled me for over 30 years to the point of serious prayer and weeping, is the issue of Calvinism/Reformed theology. Jesus said he would draw all men to him and that “whosoever” will may come. Peter said it is not God’s will than any should perish. How could God just randomly pick some people to go to heaven and leave the rest to go to hell? I had the issue pressed upon me in Bible School and in some churches. I knew Calvin was wrong but I still struggled with Romans 9.
    This morning I heard another sermon where the pastor said that if God called you, it meant you were specially chosen for salvation and it was not because of your choice. His congregation joined in great rejoicing, but I felt sorrowful, because the unspoken part of his sermon was that many people can never come to Christ because He did not specially choose them…. Then a light came on regarding Romans 9. Please let me run this by you.
    The examples given in the section where God says “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy” are 1) Pharaoh and 2) Esau. Satan is the accuser and he accuses us before God, but God made a way by the death and resurrection of Christ for us to be forgiven for our sins and restored to the relationship He had planned for us. He has had mercy on us, which is something Lucifer did not count on. However, Jesus did not die on the cross for fallen angels or their progeny or creations. The Pharaohs traced their lineage to the “gods” and evidence is that they had the elongated skulls associated with the Rephaim. Esau was not only born red-haired and hairy, but he despised his human birthright through Isaac and married 2 Canaanite women. His descendants (who were the ones to serve Jacob’s descendants as Esau himself never served Jacob) worshipped the pagan gods. Therefore I believe I can confidently assert that this passage is not stating that God loves and has mercy on some people and hates others, but that God loves and has mercy on humans, whether Jew or Gentile, and does not have mercy and “hates” the progeny of the fallen angels. I think this insight came from the Lord after 30 years of prayer, and I thank you for your input. Please let me know if you think I have been given insight or if you have another explanation.

    1. Author

      Hi, Pam: Our apologies for taking so long to answer! As you probably guessed, as you wrote us we were in the middle of getting ready for the tour (and it was wonderful getting to know you).

      We think you’re right on. God created us all, even the angels, with free will. Romans 9:32 makes it clear that the key issue is faith, not works. Calvinists at least understand that it’s not by works we are saved, but they go too far. God does not arbitrarily decide that some are created with faith and are thus destined for salvation while others are created only to go to destruction.

      And you’re spot on–salvation was for the children of Eve, not the seed of the nachos. Maybe that’s why Paul wrote to Corinth, “Do you not know that we are to judge angels?” (1 Cor. 6:3)

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