Resources

  • Romans overview (video): Part 1, Part 2
  • Romans is structured as follows:
    • Books 1-4: Revealing God’s Righteousness
    • Books 5-8: Creating a New Humanity
    • Books 9-11: Fulfilling God’s Promise to Israel
    • Books 12-16: Unifying the Church

Romans 7: Creating a New Humanity

Context

  • Romans 7 delves into the struggle between the desires of the flesh (human nature) and the desires of the Spirit (God’s influence) within a believer. Here are the key points:
    • The Law’s Powerlessness:
      • Paul starts by explaining that the Law (God’s commandments) has no power over a dead person (vv. 1-4). This analogy applies to our old sinful nature, which has been crucified with Christ (Romans 6).
      • The Law exposes sin but cannot provide the power to overcome it (vv. 7-13).
    • The Internal Conflict:
      • Paul describes his own internal struggle between wanting to do good (following the Law) and being drawn towards sin by his flesh (vv. 14-23).
      • He uses the metaphor of being a slave to sin (v. 14).
    • A Longing for Deliverance:
      • The chapter ends with a cry of desperation, yearning for deliverance from this internal conflict (v. 24).
  • Important Points to Consider:
    • This passage doesn’t describe the life of a victorious Christian, but rather the ongoing battle between the desires of the flesh and the Spirit.
    • Romans 8 provides the answer to this struggle, highlighting the power of the Holy Spirit to enable believers to live according to God’s will.
  • Interpretations:
    • There are different interpretations on whether Romans 7 describes a believer before or after conversion.
    • Some see it as Paul reflecting on his pre-Christian life.
    • Others believe it represents the ongoing struggle even for Christians.
  • Overall Message:
    • Romans 7 offers a realistic portrayal of the Christian’s struggle with sin. It emphasizes our desperate need for God’s grace and the power of the Holy Spirit to live a life pleasing to Him.
  • In Christ, we have also died to our obligation to follow the law of Moses. Paul makes clear, though, that the law is holy and good because it reveals to us just how sinful we are.
  • Paul describes how his failed attempts to follow the law convinced him more fully of his need to be delivered from his sinfulness by God through faith in Christ.

Notes

  • We are supposed to be dead to sin – we should try to be free from sin. When you give your life to Jesus you should try very hard not to sin (although it’s impossible for man to avoid all sin).
  • We are DEAD to sin… So why do we live in sin?
    • We don’t have an excuse.
    • We CAN avoid sinning…. but we typically do not
  • v1-2: as long as man lives, the LAW has dominion
    • In a marriage, you are bound by law to the covenant
    • If one or the other dies, the other is free from that covenant
  • v3: Once the husband dies, the wife can remarry
  • v4: We died to the law. We now have a covenant with God in Christ.
  • v5: We have become dead to the Old Covenant (Moses’ laws).
    • When we were controlled by our old nature, sinful desires were at work within us, and the law aroused these evil desires that produced a harvest of sinful deeds, resulting in death.
  • v6: We have been released from the law, for we died to it and are no longer captive to its power. Now we can serve God, not in the old way of obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way of living in the Spirit.
    • We are now a slave to God and can serve in the newness of the Spirit and not of the old law.
    • Galations 2:18: Rather, I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of law I already tore down.
  • v7: Well then, am I suggesting that the law of God is sinful? Of course not! In fact, it was the law that showed me my sin. I would never have known that coveting is wrong if the law had not said, ‘You must not covet.’
  • v8: But sin used this command to arouse all kinds of covetous desires within me! If there were no law, sin would not have that power.
      • Before the 10 Commandments there was no law against coveting.
  • v12: But still, the law itself is holy, and its commands are holy and right and good.
    • The law is not sinful. We should not continue to sin. We are supposed to be dead to sin.
    • If we’re not careful we can fall back into sin. 
  • v13: But how can that be? Did the law, which is good, cause my death? Of course not! Sin used what was good to bring about my condemnation to death. So we can see how terrible sin really is. It uses God’s good commands for its own evil purposes.
  • v14: So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin.
  • v15: I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.
  • v16: But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good.
  • v17: So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.
    • We must be disciplined and try hard not to sin.
  • v18: And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t.
  • v19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway.
  • v20: But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.
  • v21: I have discovered this principle of life — that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong.
  • v22: I love God’s law with all my heart.
  • v23: But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me.
  • v24: Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?
    • God calls us to live without sin but since we are human we will inevitably fall back into it – this is why we need Jesus.
    • The less time we spend in the word and prayer the more likely we are to fall back into sin.
  • v25: Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.
    • Galatians 5:16:  So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.
      • If we walk in the spirit we are less likely to fall back into sin.
    • Galatians 5:22: But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.
    • Galatians 5:24: Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there.
      • If we live in the spirit we will not fall back into sin. When we don’t walk in the spirit we will fall back into sin.

Group Chat

  • We are free in Christ – what does this mean?
    • We are free to choose life in Christ instead of death in sin.
    • Before being born again we know what is right and wrong but we didn’t have the “helper” of the Holy Spirit guiding us.
    • Once the Holy Spirit is in your heart it can help you turn from sin.
    • God cannot sin – He cannot choose to sin. In some ways this means we are more free than God. This is, however, not possible – we can never have more privilege than God.
    • If we do good before we’re saved we’re still under the penalty of the original sin. This penalty has been taken away from us because of our faith in Christ.
    • Before we’re saved we’re NOT free to live in Christ. After we’re saved we ARE free to live in Chirst and to do His bidding.
      • This is what Paul is addressing in Romans 7.
  • As we pursue Christ more and more, our tendancy to sin will be reduced.

Summary

  • Two options to capture the essence of Romans 7 in one or two words:
    • Internal Conflict: This highlights the internal struggle between wanting to do good and the pull towards sin described in the chapter.
    • Law’s Powerlessness: This emphasizes the chapter’s theme of the Law’s inability to bring about true righteousness.

Recycling and some older guidance…. I hope this helps someone.

TLDR;

  • When Should You Use REST?
    • Most used for building microservices-based infrastructures. 
      • Any time you plan to build an app or a larger computer system that requires connecting microservices, REST is the most common choice.
    • Best for externally-facing APIs. 
      • If you need standardized HTTP protocol, high-speed iteration, and multi-language microservices connected, then REST should be your main choice. 
    • Universal support with third-party tools, so are ideal for everything from apps to web services.
  • When Should You Use gRPC?
    • Best for building internal systems where tighter coupling is not an issue. 
    • Useful for connecting architectures that consist of lightweight microservices where the efficiency of message transmission in a multilingual environment is most important.
    • When real-time communication is required.  
    • When used over low-power, low-bandwidth networks
      • An IoT network would benefit more from gRPC than REST.

REST vs gRPC 

    • gRPC is a high-performance, binary, strongly-typed protocol using HTTP/2.
      • gRPC is a high-performance, open-source framework developed by Google for efficient communication between services using a binary protocol (Protocol Buffers) and HTTP/2
        • Protocol Buffers are the Interface Definition Language (IDL) used to describe service interfaces and payload message structures.
      • gRPC is based upon the RPC (Remote Procedure Call) paradigm
        • An RPC API request to delete a resource with the id of “2” might use the HTTP verb POST with a /deleteResource URL with query string of { “id”: 2 }   
      • gRPC supports bidirectional streaming since it uses HTTP/2.
      • gRPC APIs use their own Protoc Compiler which enables you to create your own code. 
        • Protoc Compilers work in multiple languages and can be used in polyglot environments (groups of microservices can run on separate platforms and be coded in different languages).
        • Protoc Compilers compile .proto files, which contain service and message definitions.
        • Protoc Compilers support the following languages:
    • REST is a simpler, stateless protocol using HTTP 1.1 with text-based JSON/XML messages
      • REST is a more established, text-based approach leveraging standard HTTP methods for building web APIs.
      • REST follows the architectural constraints of the Representational State Transfer model. 
        • Standard HTTP methods are used with Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs) to communicate requests and responses between a client and a server.
        • Each URI describes a self-contained operation and contains all the information needed to satisfy the request.
        • A REST API request to delete a resource with the id of “2” could use an URL with the HTTP DELETE verb: DELETE /resource/2.
      • REST is limited to request-response communication patterns since it uses HTTP 1.1
Characteristic gRPC REST API
HTTP Protocol HTTP 2 HTTP 1.1
Messaging Format Protobuf (Protocol Buffers) – binary JSON (usually) or XML and others – text
Code Generation Native Protocol Compiler Third-Party Solutions Like Swagger
Communication Unary Client-Request or Bidirectional/Streaming Client-Request Only
Receiving Data 7 times faster than REST 7 times slower than gRPC
Sending Data 10 times faster than REST 10 times slower than gRPC
Implementation Time 45 Minutes 10 Minutes

Protocol Buffers vs XML/JSON

  • XML/JSON
    • Platform and language agnostic 
    • Messages are human-readable and communicate structured data 
  • Protocol Buffers 
    • Platform and language agnostic 
    • Not human readable but highly efficient
      • Serializes and deserializes structured data to communicate via binary
      • Uses a highly compressed format
      • Much faster – focuses strictly on serializing and deserializing data 
      • Reduced message sizes

HTTP 1.1 vs HTTP/2

  • HTTP 1.1
    • The standard for communication on the web. 
    • Relays information between a computer (client) and a web server (server), which may be local or remote. 
    • Client sends text-based request and a resource (web page, PDF, message, etc) is returned from the server. 
    • Does not support streaming – request/response only.
  • HTTP/2
    • Supported by most modern browsers in addition to HTTP 1.1.
    • HTTP/2 uses binary messages instead of plain text smaller packages, faster throughput).
    • HTTP/2 reduces network delay through the use of multiplexing (enables multiple requests to fire simultaneously on the same connection, receiving requests back in any order).
    • Supports 3 types of streaming:
      • Server-side (long running process on server over a single connection – server updates client with progress and final result):
        1. A client sends a request message to a server. 
        2. The server returns a stream of responses back to the client. 
        3. After completing the responses, the server sends a status message (and, in some cases, trailing metadata), which completes the process. 
        4. After receiving all of the responses, the client completes the process. 
      • Client-side (client sends multiple requests to server over a single connection, server sends back response when all requests are done): 
        1. A client sends a stream of request messages to a server. 
        2. The server returns one response back to the client. It (usually) sends the response after receiving all of the requests from the client and a status message (and sometimes trailing metadata). 
      • Bi-directional (chatty – controlled by the client): 
        1. A client and server transmit data to one another in no particular order. 
        2. The client is the one that initiates this kind of bidirectional streaming.
        3. The client ends the connection.

 

Resources

  • Romans overview (video): Part 1, Part 2
  • Romans is structured as follows:
    • Books 1-4: Revealing God’s Righteousness
    • Books 5-8: Creating a New Humanity
    • Books 9-11: Fulfilling God’s Promise to Israel
    • Books 12-16: Unifying the Church

Romans 6: Creating a New Humanity

Context

  • Romans 6:11 is the theme of this chapter (emphasis mine):
    • So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.
  • Sin has no power over us – it only has the power we give it.
  • Paul asks if Christians should continue in sin once they have been saved.
    • He gives several reasons why we must not:
      • we died to sin’s power over us
      • we are now servants to righteousness
      • what good did sin ever bring to you, anyway?
  • Paul will transition to Romans 7 and discuss what it means to be released from the law of Moses.

Notes

  • Romans 1: What shall we say then?
    • Refers back to 5:20 – if sin increases grace abounds even more.
    •  If grace abounds when we sin we shouldn’t actively sin to get more grace. This is like saying “”I’m gonna shovel my sidewalk so it snows again”.  We don’t need an abundance of sin.
  • v2: We’re not trying to live in in to get more grace – we should die to sin so that we sin no more.
  • v3: have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death?
    • There are people who know the gospel but choose to ignore it because they don’t fully understand that God’s grace is enough to cover every sin and transgression.
    • You ignore the fact that our sins are an expressway to death
    • All you have to do to change this ignoreance is to ask the Lord to believe in His plan for you – this will lead to eternal life.
    •  Stop ignoring this  gift – deal with it now before it’s too late.
  • v4:  For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.
      • The glory of God gives us the glory to die to sin and walk in a new life.
      • In John 11:40 Jesus said “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?”
      • When we witness someone dying to sin and embracing a new life
  • v5: Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was.
    •  We are united with Jesus in a new life when we die to our sins.
    • Jesus came to us so we couold have an abundant life
  • V6: We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin.
    • We are no longer slaves to sin. The addiction to sin no longer applies to us.
    • Ephesians 4:20-22 tells us we’re not alone when we die to our sins.
      • 20 But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. 21 Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception.
  • v7: For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin.
    • Jesus paid the price so we can be free from our sin
  • v13: Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God.
    • Do not let the things in this world distract you from bring aware of what God has in store for you.
  • v16: Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.
    • Who do you serve? Death or righteousness?
  • v19:  Because of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy.
    • If you are a slave to sin you are free from righteousness.
  • v22-23: 22 But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
    • Sin leads to death.
    • Do not ignore that you should be dead to sin.
    • Yield to Christ – how are you persuing Him to ensure you are dead to sin?

Summary

  • The freedom Paul talks about in Christ refers to liberation from sin and its consequences, allowing us to live according to God’s design.
    • Freedom From Sin’s Dominion:
      • Romans 6:6-7 emphasizes that Christians are “dead to sin” because we are united with Christ in His death (v. 6).
      • This doesn’t mean sin no longer exists, but that its control over us is broken (v. 7). We are no longer slaves to sin (v. 18).
    • Freedom to Live According to God’s Will:
      • This freedom isn’t about unrestrained behavior, but about the ability to choose what pleases God (Romans 6:16).
      • We are free from the Law’s condemnation (Romans 8:1) and empowered by the Holy Spirit to live righteously (Romans 8:4).
    • Living as God’s Creation:
      • God created us with a purpose and desires us to live according to His good design (Ephesians 2:10).
      • Freedom in Christ allows us to fulfill this purpose and experience the joy of living in alignment with God’s will.


I like to think I’m a good Christian, then I read Matthew 7:21-23 and it terrifies me.

  • 21 “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter.
  • 22On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’
  • 23But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’

It’s worth remembering Ephesians 2:8-10 here (emphasis mine):

  • 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,
  • 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
  • 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Context is critical when interpreting the Bible. John 6:40 reveals God’s will through Jesus’ own words (emphasis mine):

  • 40 “For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.

We need to do the works that God has prepared for us, but always remember it is our faith alone that saves us.

Related:

 

 

Resources

  • Romans overview (video): Part 1, Part 2
  • Romans is structured as follows:
    • Books 1-4: Revealing God’s Righteousness
    • Books 5-8: Creating a New Humanity
    • Books 9-11: Fulfilling God’s Promise to Israel
    • Books 12-16: Unifying the Church

Romans 5: Creating a New Humanity

Paul structures his main points in Romans with a clear progression, often broken down into four sections:
  • Need for Rescue (Romans 1-4): Here, Paul establishes the universality of sin and its consequences. He argues that both Jews and Gentiles fall short of God’s righteousness.
  • New Covenant Family in Christ (Romans 5-8): This section introduces the concept of justification by faith in Jesus Christ. Paul explains how faith brings forgiveness and adoption into God’s family.The concept of justification by faith is a fundamental tenet of Christianity.

Here’s why it’s so important:

  • Salvation by Grace: Justification by faith emphasizes that salvation comes through God’s grace, not by human merit or good works.
  • Universality of Sin: It acknowledges that all people are inherently sinful and fall short of God’s perfection.
  • Focus on Faith: This doctrine emphasizes faith in Jesus Christ as the key to being declared righteous before God.
However, it’s important to note some nuances:
  • Debate on Emphasis: While justification by faith is widely accepted, some Christian traditions may place more emphasis on good works as evidence of genuine faith.
  • Different Interpretations: There can be debate about the precise meaning of “faith” and “works” within the concept.

Justification by faith remains a foundational principle for many Christians, especially in Protestant theology.By verse:

  • V1:
    • “Therefore” – check why its there for people though they were righteous because they obeyed the law.
      But Abraham believed and was counted justified – before he was circumcised, before he obeyed.
      See Ephesians 2:8: Hebrews – without faith, we cannot please God
      We cannot merit salvation – only by Jesus.
      Jesus paid our price. We are justified on account of the atonement of Christ
  • V2
    • We have access to justice by faith through Christ.
      Through Grace, we get mercy.
  • V3
    • We are preserved through hard times. The three men (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego) were met in the fiery furnace. They were not delivered from it, they were delivered in it. (Daniel 3)
  • V9
    • We in were justified by His blood, we cannot earn this. This is why Jesus came to earth.
  • V10

 

UPDATE: The issue with the dropping connection appears to have been fixed.

Make sure you:

  • update to the latest version of Phone Link on your PC (run Windows Update)
  • update to the latest version of Link to Windows (app & service) on Android (update from Play Store)
  • grant necessary permissions to Link to Windows (app & service) on Android
  • ensure Link to Windows (app & service) on Android are not battery optimized

You might need to remove and add back your PC to Link to Windows (app & service) on Android.

———

I love accessing my Android phone apps from my PC but the screen mirroring option kept dropping, making it unusable. After trying many things I finally uninstalled the latest update fom Android and it is now working again. No more disconnections. The version I’m using on Android is shown above.

Update: 

Link to Windows seems to have been automatically updated on my Android and the connection started dropping again.

Follow these steps  to re-install the (as of now) working version of Link to Windows (as referenced in the post above):

  • First, a bit of clarification:
    • “Phone Link” is the Windows app that runs on your PC.
    • “Link to Windows” is the Android app that runs on your phone.
  • Uninstall Link to Windows updates on your Android phone by going into Link to Windows and selecting the Uninstall Updates option from the menu in the upper right corner.
  • Unlink your Android device (see here for directions).
    • You might also need to stop and wipe the storage on the Link to Windows app and service on your phone. To do this go into each one’s properties, stop the app or service, click Storage, and wipe the cache and storage for the Link to Windows app the Link to Windows service.
  • I was unable to find the Android version mentioned in the post above from Microsoft so I re-installed it on my phone from this link.
    • Note: the source for this link is obviously not Microsoft so please take appropriate precautions by running virus scans before installing (I do this for things I install from Microsoft also – trust but verify).
    • After installing from the link above, go to Link to Windows app properties on your Android device and ensure all necessary permissions are added back. Link to Windows will not work until you do this (you’ll have to log back into the Link to Windows Android app again).
    • If your PC is still showing up in the Link to Windows Android app you might need to stop and wipe the storage on the Link to Windows app and service on your phone.
      • To do this go into each one’s properties, stop the app or service, click Storage, and wipe the cache and storage for the Link to Windows app the Link to Windows service.
  • Re-link your phone back to your PC using the Link to Windows app (you’ll need to scan a code that Phone Link will generate on your PC).
  • At this point the connection should remain stable when you view your Android screen from your PC.

If you need to remove and re-install the Phone Link app on your PC follow these directions:

  1. Open PowerShell as Administrator
  2. Run this command: Get-AppxPackage Microsoft.YourPhone -AllUsers | Remove-AppxPackage
  3. Phone Link will be removed from your PC.
  4. Re-install Phone Link from the Microsoft Web Store – this link will pull up Phone Link in the web Store experience.
    • NOTE: Clicking install from the web Store experience will invoke the Store client in Windows, enabling you to re-install Phone Link on your PC.  I’ve tried searching for Phone Link directly in the the Windows Store client but I’ve never been successful in finding it. So annoying.
  5. At this point the Phone Link app should be fully re-installed on your PC. Now follow the instructions above to re-install the working version of Link to Windows on your Android phone and get things reconnected.

Oy, what a pain in the tuchas.

 

 

Resources

  • Romans overview (video): Part 1, Part 2
  • What is Romans?
    • Romans contains letters from Paul to the churches of Rome.
    • The church of Rome had existed for a long time and was made up of Jews and Gentiles.  Emperor Claudius had banished the Jews from the church for 5 years.  When the Jews returned there was a split between Gentiles and Jews in how they should follow Jesus and practice their faiths. Paul’s letters were an attempt to explain his faith and unite the Jews and the Gentiles into one faith worshiping Jesus. Paul hoped the Roman churches could become a staging ground to enable Paul to expand the church into Spain and beyond.
    • Romans is structured as follows:
      • Books 1-4: Revealing God’s Righteousness
      • Books 5-8: Creating a New Humanity
      • Books 9-11: Fulfilling God’s Promise to Israel
      • Books 12-16: Unifying the Church

Romans 4

Your righteousness is not because of anything you can earn through good deeds. You are saved only because you’ve accepted Jesus Christ as you’re savior and God forgives your sin because of it.

This blessing is for both the Jews and gentiles. The old Jewish laws such as circumcision are no longer required to be saved.