Learning from repetition

For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
Romans 5:17,19 (NIV)

Read: Romans 5:12-21

Consider: Have you ever had to train a puppy? My wife and I share a dog with our elder daughter and the dog is one year old today. When we first got the puppy, at just over 8 weeks old, she was untrained and had a lot to learn. Having had dogs in the past we knew that there would be a lot of training ahead. One of the major techniques used is repetition. Teaching a puppy to sit, lie down, fetch or even to walk on a lead takes patience and repetition. After a while you realise that the dog has got it and responds positively to commands.

Paul uses repetition when writing to the believers in Rome to reinforce the truths he is outlining. He knew that some of what he was teaching was hard to grasp and so he used repetition to reinforce it. Read through Romans 5:12-21 and write down any words or phrases you notice are repeated. Did you note these? Paul repeats the following words/phrases several times throughout the passage:
sin;   death;   one man;
law;   gift;   trespass;
reign/reigned;   righteous/righteousness;
grace;   Jesus Christ.

A good example of the use of repetition is Paul’s use of the phrase ‘one man’. While the words ‘one man’ are the same, they refer to two different people. In one case they refer to Adam, who was disobedient to God and through whom sin entered the world. In the other case they refer to Jesus, who was obedient to God and through whom forgiveness of sin is offered to the world as God’s free gift.

one man (Adam)➡️disobedience➡️sin➡️death

one man (Jesus)➡️obedience➡️forgiveness➡️life

When reading the Bible look out for any words or phrases that are repeated. Ask yourself what God wants you to learn from these and how it helps you understand the Bible. Also ask yourself how you might apply what you learn to your life.

Pray: Father, help us to approach your Word with open minds. May you use the richness of language to convey eternal truths to us. Amen

Every blessing