I wrote this book for you. When I wrote it, I tried to put myself in your shoes. I thought of you as one who has
either just got to know the Lord Jesus
or already known Him longer
but in either case, someone who wants to become better acquainted with the Savior who died for you and gave you life.
Until recently, you may not have been interested in getting to know Him better. I once had this attitude, but a tremendous change occurred. I know the change pleased the Lord Jesus because He loves to become more important to us. He also will reward such an attitude change. Having the desire to know Him better will help you discover the enormous riches you have in your hands – the Bible. The more you read it, the more you will find your love for the Lord Jesus increasing.
It doesn’t matter how old or young you are. What matters is the change in your feelings towards the Lord Jesus and what He has become to you. This is why you now want to start reading the Bible. With this book, I want to help you read and study the Bible. Here are a few practical tips that might help you:
1. Provide yourself with a good translation of the Bible. Some good translations are the New American Standard Bible (NASB), the New King James Version (NKJV), the New Translation by J.N. Darby (JND) and the King James Version (KJV), preferably with the New Scofield word updates. I will be using the NASB, with permission granted by The Lockman Foundation on February 10, 2016 when referencing and quoting Scripture unless I note otherwise.
2. I tried to write this book in a way that encourages you to use the Bible. At the beginning of each section, I have quoted the Bible verses pertaining to that section. I encourage you to read those verses before and after reading the section. It would be a good idea to keep your Bible open to those verses so you can easily refer to them.
Self-discipline is very important. You have to be willing to discipline yourself to take time to understand the Bible better. I suggest that you read the Bible and this commentary at a set time that’s best for you.
To help you with this, I have divided this book into sixty sections. I also noted with a ‘V’ which verse is explained. You can read one section, with its verses, every day in about fifteen minutes. You take some time eating each day and certainly spiritual food is even more important than physical food. If you can be self-disciplined in this, then after only two months, you will have gained a little more insight into a splendid letter of the Bible.
The whole Bible is a splendid book and it’s my prayer that you’ll get this impression in an increasing way.
I wish you God’s blessing!
Middelburg, Netherlands, English edition 2016
Outline of the Letter to the Romans
I Romans 1-8
God's righteousness by faith (doctrinal part)
1. Romans 1:1-17 Introduction
2. Romans 1:18-3:20 The need for justification
1:18-32 The godless heathen }
2:1-16 The self-righteous people } all are sinners
2:17-3:8 The Jews }
3:9-20 There is none who does good
3. Romans 3:21-5:11 The justification by faith
3:21-26 The righteousness of God
3:27- 4:25 Only by faith
5:1-11 Peace with God
4. Romans 5:12-8:39 In Adam – in Christ
5:12-21 Two families
6:1-7:14 Grace and law
8:1-39 In Christ no condemnation
II Romans 9-11
The problem of Israel (historical part)
Romans 9:1-33 The sovereignty of God
10:1-21 The failure of Israel
11:1-36 Israel accepted again
III Romans 12-16
The efficacy in the Christian life (practical part)
1. Romans 12:1-15:13 Christian responsibility
12:1-21 Service and life
13:1-14 Relationship to the government
14:1-15:13 Strong ones and weak ones
2. Romans 15:14-16:27 Closing words
15:14-33 The personal service of Paul
16:1-27 Greetings and praise