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The Sixteenth Sunday After Pentecost

"The Paid Up Debt That Comes Due Every Day"

Romans 13:8-10

Rev. Wayne Dobratz


I. Paid up–John 19:30 "It is finished"

Title: Thayer’s Greek Definitions teleoo

Thayer Definition:

1) to bring to a close, to finish, to end

1a) passed, finished

2) to perform, execute, complete, fulfil, (so that the thing done corresponds to what has been said, the order, command etc.)

2a) with special reference to the subject matter, to carry out the contents of a command

2b) with reference also to the form, to do just as commanded, and generally involving the notion of time, to perform the last act which completes a process, to accomplish, fulfil

3) to pay

3a) of tribute

Re: John 19:30 Title: Adam Clarke’s Commentary on the New Testament

This is life eternal—The salvation PURCHASED by Christ, and given to them who believe, is called life: 1.Because the life of man was forfeited to Divine justice; and the sacrifice of Christ redeemed him from that death to which he was exposed.

2.Because the souls of men were dead in trespasses and sins; and Christ quickens them by his word and Spirit.

3.Because men who are not saved by the grace of Christ do not live, they only exist, no good purpose of life being answered by them. But when they receive this salvation they live—answer all the Divine purposes, are happy in themselves, useful to each other, and bring glory to God.

4.It is called eternal life to show that it reaches beyond the limits of time, and that it necessarily implies—

1.The immortality of the soul;

2.the resurrection of the body; and

3.that it is never to end, And indeed no words can more forcibly convey the idea of eternity than these. It is called THAT eternal life, by way of eminence. There may be an eternal existence without blessedness; but this is that eternal life with which infinite happiness is inseparably connected.

Rom. 13:8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. ...

10 is the fulfillment of the law.

II. Due each day; vv.8-10. Cf. Rom. 13:7; Prov. 3:27-28; Matt. 22:37-40; Gal. 5:14; 1 Tim. 1:5; Lk. 10:27; Gal. 5:13

John MacArthur writes on Romans 13:8

Discipleship, Neighbor Love—Loving others is a debt we never can pay in full. Christ has given us so much love we are eternally in debt. This is the only debt we have the right to maintain continuously. All other debts should be paid on schedule.

The apostle then makes what appears at first glance to be a radical transition, declaring that all Christians have a type of perpetual indebtedness. Completely apart from financial considerations or situations, all believers have the constant obligation to love one another. It is a debt we are constantly to pay against but can never pay off. The early church Father, Origen said, "The debt of love remains with us permanently and never leaves us. This is a debt which we pay every day and forever owe." And by our Lord’s gracious provision, it is a debt we will always have the resources to pay and which, the more we pay toward it, the more willing and joyous the payment will be.

Our love toward one another applies first of all to fellow believers, our brothers and sisters in Christ. "A new commandment I give to you," Jesus said, "that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another" (John 13:34-35). To serve other Christians is to serve Christ. "I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat," He said; "I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me … Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me" (Matt. 25:35-36, 40).

Rev. Wayne Dobratz

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