Some important parts of the letter that Paul wrote to the Christians at Rome
This page tells a bit more about this book
Paul wrote this letter about 30 years after Jesus went back to heaven. He wrote it to the Christians who were living in the city called Rome, in the country that we now call Italy.
Some of the Christians at Rome were Jews. That means that they belonged to the same tribe as Jesus and most of the other people in the Bible. Paul was also a Jew. But other Christians in Rome were not Jews.
Many years before Paul wrote this letter God gave Moses a special law to give to the Jewish people. God didn’t give that law to other people that were not Jews. But some Christian Jews thought that everyone had to follow that law. So Paul wrote this letter to tell them that the law can not really save people. He also tells how God does save people. These are the important parts of his letter for people today that are not Jews, like Aboriginal people and most white fellas.
We want to make it easy for people today that aren’t Jews to find out from this letter what they really need to know, so we left out those parts that are just talking to Jewish people. This is why we call it Excerpts. This means, not the whole letter, but just the important parts of it.
In the first 8 chapters Paul explains that we need God to save us, and God that will say that we are all right if we trust him and believe that Jesus died for us. Then God’s powerful spirit will join us up with Jesus and we will become new people, and we will be God’s friends.
In the last part of the letter Paul explains the way Christians have to live in this world. We have to love each other and love other people too.
1
I am Paul, and this letter is from me. I work for Jesus Christ, and God picked me out to go and tell people the good news, that he will save them. A long time ago God promised to do this. He got some of his men to tell about it and they wrote about it in his book. 3-4 That good news is about his son, Jesus Christ, our leader. He was born as a human baby into King David’s family, but really, he is God’s own son. God showed us in a powerful way that Jesus is his son. He did it like this. People killed Jesus, but God used his Holy Spirit to make him alive again.
God is very good to me. He picked me out to go to all the people that are not Jews to tell them about Jesus, and get them to believe in him and do whatever he says. You people are not Jews, so God sent me to you too. You heard God call out to you to come to Jesus Christ, so now you belong to him.
I’m sending this letter to all you people that belong to God, and that live in the city called Rome. God called out to you to come and follow him, and to be his people.
I pray to God, and to our leader, Jesus Christ. I ask them to show you that they love you, and to make you feel happy and quiet inside yourselves.
The first thing I want to do is to say thank you to my God. Jesus Christ has opened the way for me to talk to God like this. I thank him for all of you Christian mob there. You really believe in Jesus now and people everywhere in the world tell about you to other people. I pray to God all the time and I ask him to help you. (This is true – God knows it is true.) I work hard for God, I tell everyone the Good News about his son. 10 Whenever I pray to him I ask him to let me come and see you soon, if he agrees to that. 11 I have been waiting for a long time. I really want to see you. I want to help you get more power from God to make you strong. 12 Then I will see how much you trust God and you will see how much I trust God, and this will make all of us happy. 13 You know, I tried to come and see you many times, but God stopped me every time up till now. I want to come and work there with you and get more people to follow Jesus, just like I did at other places. 14 I’ve got to tell God’s word to all kinds of people. I have to tell it to people that have my culture, and to people that have other cultures. I have to tell it to people that can think good and to people that can’t. 15 So I want to come to Rome and tell God’s good news to all you mob there, too.
16 I’m not ashamed of this good news. It is a really strong story because it has God’s power in it. Whenever people believe this good news God saves them. It is the same for everybody, for Jewish people and for people that are not Jews. 17 This good news is this. God saves people that trust him, and he makes them really good. We read this in his book,
“If you trust God he will make you really good, and you will really live.”
If we do wrong it makes God angry
18 God in heaven gets very angry with people that do bad things, whenever they do wrong against God and they do bad things to other people. They themselves do wrong, but that’s not all, they try to block other people so they will not know the true story about God. And this makes God very angry.
19 God clearly shows everybody enough for us to understand the true story about him. Everybody knows about him. 20 Even though we can’t see God we can know about him. If we look at the things he has made we can know about him, that he is really great and really strong. Ever since he made the world we can look at everything that he made, and we can know about him from those things. So nobody can say that he doesn’t know about God. 21 The trouble was this. Even though people could work this out about God, they really didn’t want to know him. They didn’t want to tell him, “Thank you, you really are the true God.” They couldn’t think properly about him. They could only think in stupid ways. They didn’t understand anything. 22 They told everybody that they could think really good, but they were fools. 23 They didn’t want the wonderful God that never dies, but instead they made models of things that do die. They made things that look like people, or birds, or animals, or snakes or those kinds of things, and they respected those things. They didn’t respect God.
24 So God let them go their own way and they did whatever they felt like doing. They did whatever their dirty minds thought about, and they hurt each other’s bodies whenever they did it. 25 They didn’t want the true story about God but they wanted to believe a lie, and they respected the things that God made instead of respecting God himself. (God is really great and everyone has to tell him, “You are really good,” and they have to keep doing it for ever. Yes, that’s right.)
26 So, after people turned away from God he let them do whatever dirty thing they thought about. Even women no longer wanted to sleep with men any more, like wives do with their husbands, but instead they did things with each other that were not normal. 27 And men too did the same kind of thing. They forgot about women and really wanted to sleep with other men, as if they were women. They did bad things with each other, and this gave them real problems. They hurt each other. And these problems were the right thing for them.
28 You see, they didn’t like to even think about God, so he let them think about lots of bad things, and they did all sorts of wrong things. 29 They are very bad, and they are greedy, they want lots of money and things. And they are really horrible. They want to take things that belong to other people. They murder people, they argue, they cheat other people, and they do mean things to people. They gossip, 30 they say bad things about others, they are cheeky, and they hate God. They think that they themselves are never wrong. They think they are great, and that is what they tell everybody. They always think up new ways to do bad, and they never respect their parents. 31 They are stupid, they don’t do what they say they will do, they don’t love anybody, and they are never sorry for anybody. 32 Long ago God said, “Anyone that does these kinds of things has to die.” These people know what God said, but they don’t take any notice of God. They keep on doing these bad things, and worse still, they push other people to do those same bad things as themselves.