“May the God who gives hope fill you with all joy and peace by your trusting in him, so that you may abound in hope with power of holy spirit.”—Romans 15:13, New World Translation.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”—Romans 15:13, New International Version.
Meaning of Romans 15:13
With these words, the apostle Paul expressed his wish that God fill his fellow believers with “joy and peace.” These good qualities are linked to the hope that God gives and the power of holy spirit.
We learn about the hope God gives in his written Word, the Bible. According to Romans 15:4, “all the things that were written beforehand [in the Bible] were written for our instruction, so that through our endurance and through the comfort from the Scriptures we might have hope.” The Bible reveals God’s promise to solve the problems that can make life seem hopeless today, such as poverty, injustice, sickness, and death. (Revelation 21:4) God will use Jesus Christ to fulfill these promises, and on this we can rest our hope for a better future.—Romans 15:12.
We can “abound in,” or “overflow with,” this God-given hope only when we trust in God. The more we learn about him, the more confident we will become that he is completely trustworthy. (Isaiah 46:10; Titus 1:2) Thanks to the reliable hope God gives, a person can be filled with joy and peace, even while he experiences difficulties.—Romans 12:12.
Peace, joy, and hope are also linked to “holy spirit,” which is God’s power in action. a God uses holy spirit to fulfill his promises, and this gives hope. This spirit can also produce good qualities in people, such as joy and peace.—Galatians 5:22.
Context of Romans 15:13
The book of Romans is actually a letter to Christians who lived in the city of Rome. Some of those Christians were of Jewish descent, while others were not. Paul encouraged all of them to work at being united in thought and action despite their differences in background and culture.—Romans 15:6.
Paul reminded Christians in Rome that God had long ago foretold a time when people of all nations would unitedly praise Him. To support that fact, Paul quoted from the Hebrew Scriptures b four times. (Romans 15:9-12) His point was this: Along with the Jews, people of all nations can benefit from Christ’s ministry. Both groups share the same God-given hope. So all in the congregation in Rome, no matter their background, were to “welcome one another,” that is, receive each other kindly or hospitably.—Romans 15:7.