Remember grade school and picking teams at recess for activities like dodgeball? If you were assigned as captain and had first pick, you wanted to pick “the one,’ the sure winner, the thoroughbred on which to ride all the way to the finish line.
The first reading is from the Letter to the Romans.There is always a lot going on in St. Paul’s epistles and the Letter to the Romans is as complex as it gets. He is offering that you are captain for something way more important than dodgeball teams. It’s your pick. Which one will you choose?
I think we need a scorecard to keep track of two different “the one’s.”
This one disobeyed God
This one became a sinner and so did we all
Through this one, sin entered the world
Condemnation came to this one and then all
Death followed for this one and then for all, plus eternal damnation
Through this one sin and death reigned
That One is God
That One was sinless
Through that One grace entered the world
Salvation for all came from that One
Justification for Eternal life for all came from that One
Through this one love, love and the Kingdom reigned
“Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.” …and who picked the right One. “Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them.” (Luke 12:37) Such is the Kingdom of God.
If you would like to watch a great introduction to the Letter to the Romans, our friends at The Bible Project have a two-part video series you should watch: Romans Chapter 1-4 (7 minutes) and Chapters 5-18 (9 minutes). It is an amazing introduction to one of the most theologically dense epistles.