February 2024 Article

Dr. C. S. Lovett’s


February 2024




“Are you sure you want to sign up for that class on Romans? It is the toughest course they teach at this school!”


That’s how some upperclassmen cautioned me when I was getting started in seminary. They tried to discourage me from signing up for the class on Romans by describing the difficult themes of the book and how the professor required written reports on those themes each week. Well, that almost did it. I hated writing and the thought of weekly reports tempted me to throw in the towel.


“It’s really tough,” they insisted. “You know this is one of the most difficult books of the New Testament. A lot of the students don’t make it. The teacher expects you to know what was in the apostle Paul’s mind and that’s hard to come by without a lot of digging!”




The book of Romans is tough. It is packed with mysteries. All of the gems of the gospel are compressed into it. It is the most comprehensive book in the New Testament. Scholars have labeled it “The greatest piece of literature in the world.” This book is so crammed with insights, that readers skim over its truths without realizing the treasures they are overlooking.


You have probably sailed through this book yourself, reading it because you felt that as a Christian you were obliged to do so. But this is a book that requires serious LABOR to extract its treasure. It is loaded with diamonds of truth.




Did you know the world’s magnificent diamond mine was once owned by a farmer who did not have the faintest idea of what was on his land? Because Ali Hafed didn’t know diamonds, he walked over the stones in his year without recognizing their fabulous worth. In time he sold his farm to a neighbor and went off to seek his fortune elsewhere. When his money was finally gone, he was overtaken by despair and committed suicide.


The man who bought his farm did not know diamonds either. But one day, he happened to pick up a black stone from the shallow brook running through his garden. It had an “eye of light.” So he took it into the house and placed it on the mantle. A few days later, a priest came to visit, and when he saw this stone with its flash of light in it, he asked if he might examine it. “Go ahead,” said the farmer, “it’s nothing but a rock I picked up in the garden.”


But the priest new gems. He recognized the stone as a large diamond. This was the discovery of the GOLCONDA DIAMOND MINE, the greatest in the world. Imagine a person owning such a thing without realizing the treasures they hold!


Did you know it is just like that with those who own New Testament Bibles and occasionally glance at ROMANS? Christians read this book and breeze past its diamonds without knowing they are there. They tread on acres of diamonds (of truth) oblivious to all they are missing.




It is around A.D. 58. The apostle Paul is seated on the floor in Gaius’ home in Corinth. He must think clearly right now for he is dictating a letter to Rome. Seated beside him, Tertius, his secretary writes as Paul dictates. When you know what Paul was trying to accomplish with this letter, you will understand why the book of Romans is so deep. This letter was to be his insurance policy.


Paul knew God wanted him to go to Rome. His work in Asia (Turkey) and Greece was now complete. The next logical step was Rome and then on to Spain. As far as Paul was concerned, His ministry to the Gentile world would not be finished until he had taken the capital of the Gentile world for Christ. Many in Rome were waiting for him, eager to help him. But he wasn’t ready to go there, at least not yet. There was something else he wanted to do first.




A serious famine in Palestine made the plight of Jewish Christians in the city of Jerusalem extremely desperate. Paul thought he could use the situation to heal the breach between Jewish and Gentile factions in the church there. So he collected a huge sum of money from the Gentile churches in Asia and Greece and proposed to take it to Jerusalem. To succeed at this, he felt he had to deliver the money IN PERSON.


So great was his determination to go to Jerusalem, that no one could dissuade him, not even his beloved Dr. Luke (Acts 21:12). Driven by an inner desire, which we recognize as his love for the Jews, Paul made the trip under the impulse of his own spirit (Acts. 20:22,23). But Jesus did not want Paul DEAD IN JERUSALEM, he wanted him alive in ROME. But the great apostle couldn’t help himself (Rom.15:23,24).




Knowing God wanted him in Rome, how could the apostle GUARANTEE the great truths entrusted to him by the Holy Spirit would reach the Romans? There was but one way—write down all the critical truths in a letter and see that it gets to Rome—even if he didn’t. It so happened that Phoebe of Cenchrea was going to Rome on business and she agreed to take this precious document and deliver it in person.


You can understand how the apostle didn’t dare risk death in Jerusalem without making sure these great truths were on deposit in the Roman capital. Then should anything happen to him in Jerusalem, the believers in Rome would have IN-DEPTH INSIGHTS into the mysteries God had revealed to him through the Holy Spirit. It was something of an insurance policy just in case.


Now you can see why Romans is such a deep book. It is packed with all those mysteries God revealed to the apostle. This is why it is so easy to be an Ali Hafed and gloss over its fabulous truths without knowing they are there. Believe me, they are exciting and deep. Unless someone digs up those diamonds, the average reader isn’t going to know what he has in his hands, even though he might be reading a modern version.


The Lord gave me the task of extracting the "diamonds" from Romans and setting them forth as "LIGHTS." That is what I call them. Actually, they are paragraphs set aong the verses. These put the mysteries at your fingertips. That way you can enjoy the insights as you read through the text and, at the same time, see how it all fits together.

It took me two years to mine the truths of Romans, working five days a week. The diamonds have all been cut and displayed so that you can't miss them. After you read a few verses, you come upon a paragraph set in a different typeface. That's the LIGHT. Using as few words as possible, the LIGHTS bring out the hidden meanings of the text. You will be astounded at what was in the verses you just read--but did not realize it.


There is a truth in Romans that once you lay hold of it, you will never be the same again. It is found in Chp. 7:14- 8:1. You might decide to look it up, and then you will say, "That's easy, it has to do with the two natures of the believer." You are right, of course. But that is not the diamond. The diamond has to do with how a man can be born again and yet do those things that God hates. He may not want to do them but finds himself helpless and unable to stop doing them. What a problem this poses for the new Christian.


It is difficult for a new believer to find himself thinking and doing theings He knows he should not, but he can't stop. How then is he to know this is a mysterious process God has installed in all believers, one absolutely necessary for Christian growth and one which brings no condemnation whatsoever? That is the diamond of the passage. Wait until you see how that diamond look on you!

There is so much about all of us that remains a mystery, and we can become very puzzled at times. You may have already asked yourself, “Why am I so far from being all that I could be for Christ?” Until we have the keys that unlock those mysteries, we will never be able to answer that question. With these truths roaring inside you, a lot of the deep things of the New Testament will scarcely be . . .




C. S. Lovett


Copyright © 2024 Personal Christianity





SHARES WITH PASTOR: “Our church is studying the book of Romans on Bible study night. I always take my Bible and LOVETT’S LIGHTS ON ROMANS, which helps out a great deal as we study. I let my pastor use it one night and he didn’t want to give it back.” (C.G.---IL)


AFFECTED MY LIFE: “I have read many books in my life. None that has so affected my life such as your book, LOVETT’S LIGHTS ON ROMANS. I was spellbound by your truths. I was looking for something to feed my thirsty soul. What a meal!” (J. T.—TX)

CLASS COMES ALIVE: "I have just completed LOVETT'S LIGHTS ON ROMANS and my Bible knowledge has been enriched beyond measure. Besides, the Bible class I teach has now come alive each Sunday. Your work is not only alive but meets today's needs. May God help you to give us more of these fabulous insights." (J. T.--T X)

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