Rom 15:30-33 “ Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me; That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints; That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed. Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.”
Paul has given admonishment to the saints at Rome and confessed his deep desire to come and see them. He has also related to them that he must first go to Jerusalem and minister to the needs of the saints there before he can come to Rome. He now makes a request of the saints at Rome. This should also be our desire today for one another.
The word translated as beseech means to call near (see Strong’s). Paul needed to feel the spiritual closeness of his brethren, even when they were as yet physically separated. This is essentially the same thing we still do today when we ask people to pray for us. By God’s grace, we have experienced the feeling of closeness that comes to our hearts when others are praying for us and with us.
Paul’s desire for them to remember him in prayer was not based on some vain or selfish notion. It was sincere and for the right reasons. He did not ask them to pray for him to avoid his trials and tribulations. Instead, he asked that they pray for the sake (cause) of the Lord Jesus Christ.
His desire was that they would pray by means of the love of the Holy Spirit. He desired that they might strive together with him. This was a weighty matter for Paul. Prayer should also be a weighty matter for all of us; it should be a labor of love and not a wish list for personal gain that we lay before God.
Paul did not ask them to pray that he might avoid the Jews that were disobedient to the gospel of Christ. He did desire that he might be rescued from them (see Strong’s definition of the word translated as delivered). We do not need to be rescued from situation we expect to avoid. Paul was sure he was going to face persecution from certain of the Jews, and he did not want to be hindered by that persecution.
We know that we are going to face trials and persecutions for our faith in Christ in this day just like Paul did in his day. Like Paul, we should not expect to be able to avoid these things. However, we can beseech one another to pray to God for rescue. Persecution will come to us; Jesus told us so (John 15:20). Praise God, we can expect to be rescued when we are persecuted so that we might continue to minister!
Paul wanted his service (ministry) for Jerusalem to be well received. Today, we should still desire that our ministry to the church of Jesus Christ be well received. This is not about gaining notoriety among the brethren. Rather, it is to see the saints of God comforted and encouraged.
The grace of God is such that when we are able to minister acceptably to the saints, we are encouraged on our journey. Seeing the church rejoice in their Lord and Redeemer causes great rejoicing in those that minister to the saints. As we bear record of God’s grace and mercy, we are refreshed. When we share this testimony of God’s deliverance, those that hear are refreshed with us.
There is no greater desire we can have for God’s people here than for them to enjoy the presence of God. How glorious it is to find ourselves in the presence of the God of quietness and rest. It is in His presence that all the noise of the world fades away. Our hearts lie down in quietness and joy.
Surely (amen), as we pray for each other in the love of the Spirit and minister to God’s people, we will find the deliverance and peace of God that refreshes our souls!