Daily Hope

November 12, 2021 - Romans 16:1-27

It has been written that true friends are rare to find and difficult to keep in our lives. We may have many acquaintances but few true friends. Friends are the ones that will encourage us as well as speak the hard truths when times are difficult, or a crisis is imminent.

Paul writes the last chapter of this doctrine filled book to the Romans with a twist and a very personal ending. This chapter contains the names of people he had association with and those that aided him in his ministry through the years. Paul spoke of friends and workers that were important in his life and the furtherance of the gospel message which had become his life.

In all, there are thirty-three names of individuals that Paul wanted to acknowledge here in conclusion. James Boice states, “Twenty-four of these people were in Rome. Nine were in Corinth. But there are also two unnamed women and an unspecified number of unnamed men.” Paul’s desire to recognize and praise those who had labored so strenuously with him shows his genuine concern and love for his friends.

Some had “risked their own necks” (v.4), while others were housing congregations in their homes (v.5). Others were converts and disciples that Paul had labored with in the ministry at one stage or another. Still others had been prisoners together with Paul and had endured the hardship of persecution and misunderstanding of government and local officials. Paul also warns against an unnamed group that was causing division and offenses (vv. 17-18), before concluding the list with those closest to him (vv. 21-24).

We have many people who have labored and been influential in our lives as well. People whom we call friends who are there whenever we call or speak to them concerning issues of the church, family, or life in general. Like Paul, perhaps it would be fitting to end the week with a short note or email to those you call a friend to acknowledge or reaffirm the place they hold in your lives. There may be some who would be surprised they have had such an impact in your life and would be encouraged by a note or phone call. Be a friend and reach out to someone special today!

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Historical Listing of Daily Hope Devotionals.