In Paul's letter to the believers in Rome he, in encouraging the Roman believers to great feats in the faith, appeals to something, very, well, Roman, here in chapter 2 and verses 6-10:
"[God] Who 'will render to each one according to his deeds': eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness - indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also the Greek; but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek."
Historians are in agreement that the key to the legendary power of the Roman military were flexibility and organization. What ultimately made the Romans unbeatable were not weapons, or well-trained leaders, but the Roman genius for fighting as a unit. And nothing motivated these warlike Romans more than their martial values of glory and honor. Julius Caesar's work, The Gallic War is full of appeals to these values. On one occasion after a military setback in Gaul, all of Caesar's legions except for one - the famous Tenth Legion, were faltering in resolve and courage to carry on and Caesar, in his truest form as a leader, chastized these legions by challenging their sense of glory and honor:
"Even if no one else follows, I shall march with the Tenth Legion alone; I have no doubt of its allegiance." It was his appeal to honor and glory that prompted the rest of his army to close ranks and their spirit "changed in a remarkable fashion; the greatest keenness and eagerness for active service was engendered (renewed)." (The Gallic War Book I, Sections 40 & 41)
So in reflecting on the apostle's own address to the Romans, I find it interesting that he appeals to these same virtues. May his words spur us on in our doing great deeds to seek His honor and His glory! And may a type of immortality come as our names and great deeds, performed in humble and selfless service to our King, echo down through the corridors of history...