rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer,Romans 12:12(NASB)
Paul composed a lengthy and weighty letter to the Roman church that addressed every issue that is so vital to living the normal Christian life in this post-Cross era. His extensive epistle is written in such a way as to provide a wonderful understanding of all Church-age doctrines and how to apply them in our lives today so that we are enabled to live a victorious Christian life – the life that God intended for all His children.
Just as the main body of Romans is lengthy and weighty, so his final remarks, by contrast, are succinct yet compelling. In a few, short, crisp verses, Paul sums up all that is necessary to live a life that is pleasing to the Lord and in verse 12, we are encouraged to "rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer."
To rejoice in hope is to have that unfaltering assurance in God's Word as fact, knowing that our hope of glory is secured for us in heavenly places for the eternal ages to come, simply because God's Word is true and cannot be broken. Our hope is built on nothing less than trusting in the Cross of Christ and taking God at His Word.
To be patient in tribulation is to know and accept that in this world we will have tribulation, but to wait patiently in our suffering without murmurings. We are to be of good cheer, knowing that His strength is sufficient to see us through every difficulty of life because He has already overcome sin and death – and we are united with Him and His victory.
To be constant in prayer is to recognise that prayer is one of the chief weapons of the spiritual warfare in which all Christians are engaged. As saints of God we should all be instant in prayer, constantly lifting our hearts and voice to the Lord in prayers of thanks and praise and intercession and requests, and laying them before the throne of God's grace in the name of JESUS - knowing that greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world.
Let us exercise all Paul's short, crisp instructions for godly living that are found in this final section of His epistle to the Romans, as well as taking time to study this lengthy and weighty letter that has been written for our learning so that we too may live a life that is pleasing to the Lord. And may Christ be seen in me, and also in you.
Loving Father, thank You for the Word of God and the godly instructions that are laid out for the Church in the epistles of Paul. Please help me to rejoice in hope, endure in tribulation, and persevere in prayer, as I press on to the goal of my calling. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.