8 Greet Ampliatus, my dear friend in the Lord.
9 Greet Urbanus, our co-worker in Christ, and my dear friend Stachys.
10 Greet Apelles, whose fidelity to Christ has stood the test.
Greet those who belong to the household of Aristobulus.
11 Greet Herodion, my fellow Jew.
Greet those in the household of Narcissus who are in the Lord.
12 Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, those women who work hard in the Lord.
Greet my dear friend Persis, another woman who has worked very hard in the Lord.
13 Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother, who has been a mother to me, too.
14 Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas and the other brothers and sisters with them.
15 Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas and all the Lord’s people who are with them.
16 Greet one another with a holy kiss.
All the churches of Christ send greetings.
17 I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18 For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19 Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.
20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. 
What struck me in today’s passage was Paul’s concern for unity. He follows his list of greetings with a warning to watch out for those who would disrupt the unity that they have in Christ. No doubt he is speaking about those who turn the Gospel into legalism by insisting that certain Old Testament practices, such as circumcision, are still necessary. By doing so they make a division between the Jewish Christians and the Gentile Christians.
But Paul’s concern for unity is just as applicable today. In this he is following Jesus, whose prayer at the Last Supper, just before heading to the Garden of Gethsemane, was largely a prayer for unity among his followers. When we live and act as one, when we forgive and reconcile each other, when we demonstrate genuine love for each other we become a living picture of what the Gospel does. On the contrary, when we are divided, we undermine the work of the Gospel and actually end up working against the mission of God.
Granted there are things concerning which we must insist on a division. In this passage Paul is calling on the Roman congregation to break unity with those who break unity. This is not a contradiction, but rather an indication of how essential unity is. When the Gospel is at stake, through a denial of Christ or His work, then it is necessary to divide, lest the preaching of the gospel be confused or compromised.
But the sad fact is that most of the divisions that plague Christians, especially in homes and congregations, have nothing to do with the Gospel, but instead are manifestations of our fallen sinfulness. Paul calls us to watch out for this, to watch out for those who propagate such disunity, lest the Gospel be hindered.
So my prayer today is for unity. I pray for unity in Christ in our homes. I pray for unity in Christ in our St. John’s community, and I pray for unity in Christ throughout Christendom.
What is the Word leading you to pray about today?