In the book of Romans, the apostle Paul told the believers in Rome that he was eager to reveal God’s gospel to them as it had been given to him. We can receive God’s revealed Gospel as it has been offered to us. The gospel that reveals God’s righteousness calls us to God, obligates us to share it with others, and is the power of God for salvation.
Below is an automated transcript of this sermon:
Thanks for listening to the podcast from gary combs and the preaching team at wilson community church in wilson, north carolina. Check us out on the web at wcc nc dot a work for more and now here’s the sermon
good morning, church! We’re in a new series starting today you will have to forgive my voice. I’ve picked up some sort of cold or something over the weekend, i guess in ninety degree weather you can get a cold, right? So anyway, starting a new series day through the book of romans and we’ve been told that righteousness revealed and the theme from this comes from romans one, verse seventeen where we read for in it the righteousness of god is revealed from faith for faith. And so this is our theme for the series. And over the next seven weeks, we hope to cover the first four chapters for sixteen chapters in romans and over the next few years, we hope to cover following chapters in future installments. But today, let’s begin with romans chapter one verses one through seventeen
as we study this book together , i got up this morning, i was like, i don’t think i can preach this with my shirttail out, you know? I mean, like, i’ve studied so hard this week, and i’m just thinking about how how important this particular book and the new testament has been to the christian faith for the last two thousand years. I was like, knowing that i’ve got a jacket on, i was like, i gotta wear a jacket to preach this. next week, i might be wearing a tie, i don’t know, you know, just weird how i’m feeling about this, that i just don’t feel worthy, even to bring this to you, it’s, so wonderful, and i pray that over this journey it would be a life transforming adventure for all of us. It certainly has been for many throughout history.
In the year 386 AD, a professor of rhetoric at Milan sat in the summertime, weeping in the garden of a friend, he was almost persuaded to begin a new life in christ, but he couldn’t seem to let go of the old life, and he overheard some children in the yard next door singing and the refrain went like this. Take up and read, take up and read, and he thought to himself is that for me and so he looked, and sitting next to his friend was the scroll of romans. So he took it up and read it. And you read romans thirteen fourteen which says, put on the lord jesus christ, and make no provision for the flesh to gratify its desires. And he wrote in his journal, no further would i read, nor had i any need. Instantly at the end of this sentence a clear light flooded my heart, and all the darkness of doubt vanished away. You see, at that very moment from one sentence in the book of romans, the holy spirit applied to his heart, and this man was saved in the church received the great augustine, who is the framer of much of its theology.
In the year 1515 AD a german monk and professor of sacred theology at the catholic university of wittenberg began to take his students through a study on the book of romans. And over the next year they studied together and this monk had been raised to believe that the righteousness required of him was obedience, but yet he could never live up to it and he felt defeated. But then one day he finally grasped romans one seventeen for in it, which is the gospel, the rights of the righteousness of god is revealed. And he wrote in his journal, thereupon i felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise. The whole of scripture took on a new meaning for me, and whereas before the righteousness of god had filled me with a kind of self hate, it now began to fill me with inexpressible joy and love, he said, this passage of paul became like a gateway to heaven for me. So wrote Martin Luther
It was the year 1738 on May 24 , as he recorded, he was in a meeting, and he heard someone reading from luther’s preface to the book of romans and on that particular day, he wrote in his journal, i felt myself i felt my heart strangely warmed, he says, i did trust in christ and christ alone for my salvation that day and an assurance was given me that he had taken all my sins away, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death. And so john wesley was redeemed.
Many influential christians have talked about the book of romans, luther said. Romans is the chief part of the new testament and the perfect gospel
Philip Melancthon said it’s, the compendium of christian doctrine. John calvin, said it’s, a sure road to the understanding of the whole of scripture samuel taylor coleridge english poet, philosopher, theologian, he said, romans is the most profound work in existence frederick godet a nineteenth century swiss theologian called it the cathedral of the christian faith john piper said it’s , the greatest letter ever written.
Are you ready for us to dig into romans? I’m just trying to wet your appetite a little bit. I pray that this would take us on an adventure that would transform our lives. Why has it affected so many? Well, perhaps it’s because it addresses so many topics. Fine. I share a few questions that roman’s answers questions like this. What is the gospel? Is jesus really god? What is a saint? What is god like? How can god send people to hell what will happen to people who have never heard the gospel? Why’re there false religions? What is the biggest sin is homosexuality sinful. How do we know that we’re sinners? How can we be forgiven? What is the importance of christ death and his very own resurrection. How can i find peace? How can i find hope? How are we related to adam? And how can we be related spiritually to christ? What is grace? What is the christian’s relation to sin? How important ? Is obedience why’s it so hard to live the christian life. What does the holy spirit do for us and on and on.
those are just a few of the topics that romans will address. Did i cover anything of interest to you? Anything that you would like to hear or even need to hear? I suppose the most important topic that it covers is this the gospel
tim keller says roman is at its heart a letter about the gospel. And so today i would talk to you. As paul wrote this letter to the roman believers he wrote to them, saying i am eager to reveal god’s gospel to you as it was offered to me. And i believe today that we can receive that same gospel that is offered to us as we look at the text today, i think we’ll see three attributes of gods revealed gospel. Are you ready? I’m going to read romans now
chapter one verses one to seventeen. Paul, a servant of christ jesus called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of god which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy scriptures concerning his son, who was descended from david, according to the flesh, and was declared to be the son of god in power according to the spirit of holiness, by his resurrection from the dead jesus christ, our lord, through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations, including you, who were called to belong to jesus christ to all those in rome who are loved by god, and called to be saints grace to you, and peace from god our father and the lord jesus christ. First i think, my god through jesus christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world for god is my witness, whom i served with my spirit in the gospel of his son, that without ceasing, i mentioned you always in my prayers, asking that somehow by god’s will i may now at last succeed in coming to you . For I long to see you, that i may impart to use some spiritual gift to strengthen you. That is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine. I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that i have often intended to come to you, but thus far have been prevented in order that i may reap some harvest among you, as well as among the rest of the gentiles, i am under obligation both to greeks and to barbarians, both the wise and to the foolish. So i am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in rome. For i’m not ashamed of the gospel for it is the power of god for salvation to everyone who believes to the jew first, and also to the greek. For in it the righteousness of god is revealed from faith for faith. As it is written, the righteous shall live by faith. This is god’s word.
Three attributes of god’s revealed gospel here’s the first the calling of the gospel, the calling of the gospel notice that as we look at the first few verses, that this is a letter an epistle epistle means letter the and the pattern in the first century was that you would start by identifying yourself, who’s it from and then you would address whose it to. So in verse one we discover that it’s from paul his given name at birth was saul. He was from the tribe of benjamin to be given the name saul was a strong name that was the king of israel that had come from the tribe of benjamin. And so he was given the name saul.
Unfortunately, his zeal as a jew led him to be a persecutor of the church. He is the one who guarded the cloaks as the first christian martyr Stephen was killed. Saul was there, agreeing with his death. But then he encountered jesus on the road to damascus. And he was blinded by the sight and three days later, and Ananais laid hands on him and gave him back his sight. And from that day forward saul was called paul He could no longer go by saul. He began to go by the name paulus in the greek, which means little one. He felt he was the least of all the apostles because he had persecuted the church. This is paul writing this letter. He gives three features of his calling. He hasn’t met the people in rome yet he’s never been there. He’s writing this letter, we believe from the city of corinth along about 56 AD.
If you look at a map, he would be in what as known as modern day greece in the city of corinth. He has traveled and made a missionary journey his second missionary journey. And he went through Phillipi Thessonalica and athens, and then on down into the prosperous city, of course, where he remained for three months. And during this time he wrote the epistle of romans he wanted to go there, but he had not yet been there. And so he told them some things about himself. He was making an introduction of himself he’s saying, i want you to know three things about me.
First of all, i’m a servant of jesus and blood bought a bond servant, i’m little paul servant bound to christ. Secondly, i want you to know that i’m a called apostle. The word apostle means one sent by jesus. I’ve been sent as a messenger one sent forth carrying orders, that’s me here’s a third day, and what you know about me, i’m set apart unto the gospel of god have been set apart literally separated
he describes this more fully in the book of galatians, where he writes, but when god, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his son, in me so that i might preach him among the gentiles he reflects back on this life sees the marks of this, that even before he was born, that god had his hand on him, and had set him apart to be an apostle carrying the gospel.
The word separated here set apart has implications. Paul thought this gospel was so great that he willingly separated himself from wealth from health, from acclaim from his friends from having a wife. He was focused on the gospel. He was separated unto it, set apart into it set apart from other things.
And then we see this word called to which we see the first attributes of the gospel. The word called here we find it three times and in the first seven verses would you find that and circle it. My job is not to give you my opinion. My job is to set forth and remind you what the word says
during the week i spend hours with a fork and a knife. Cutting it up into bite size pieces so that the sheep might be fed on sundays. That’s my job primarily, i don’t have any original thinking, i just remind you of what you’re to know. So look at the word called it’s in there three times and we see here a revelation of the calling of the gospel
first take note, in verse one that paul was called to be a preacher, an apostle, a servant of the gospel do you see it so that’s the calling that he has, he first answered another calling though look at verse six he’s talking to the roman believers and he is including you, who are called to belong to jesus. You see, the first calling is to belong, the gospel calls us come onto me. He doesn’t say, come to a philosophy he says come to a person he doesn’t say come follow some rules and regulations he says come follow and be in a relationship with me that is the calling first of all, is that god in his gospel, says to you and to me i want you to belong to me through christ, so you’re called. You’re invited by the gospel to come into fellowship with the father through jesus it’s in verse six and then in verse seven,
he finally gets through his six verses now verse seven says to all those in rome who are loved by god and called to be saints. So you’re called to belong and then having come to belong, you’re called to live holy lives called to be saints know how many saints do i have in the house? I’d like to look around and see if i have any saints in the house. Here on this row, that’s anybody here in the seats and the “two’s” section over here we should have special seating for you, some people are really undecided about it in a little while, i’ll ask that question and maybe you’ll have more confidence about how to answer it. You see, we need to answer two questions. Don’t we that are pressing at this point and that are revealed in these first seven verses?
the first question is, what is the gospel? And then the second question is, what is the call of the gospel ? We see the word there three times and we were getting close. But let’s get more specific.
First of all, what is the gospel? The greek word is euaggelion which in the greek means good news. If you listen closely, you can hear me saying angel inside of that which is a messenger. But here it’s a good message. A glad tiding. Good word. Good news. What is the messenger carrying the news doing? when we get the word evangelism gospel is how we translated. Into english, which the word gospel, by the way, the old english is godspiel, the story of god, we get at it a little different in the english language because of the roots of the old english.
What is the gospel? Well, first of all, it’s, based on clearly identified facts, not mythology, not something that’s invented, but something that really happened. Historical facts. Paul gives us a very good description here because there’s a nugget in the centre of answering this question, what is the gospel? We’ve got to get the facts,
paul says in first corinthians chapter fifteen he tells us what they are, he says, first i delivered to you as of first importance what i also received. So the gospel was handed to me, and now i’m handing it to you. Here it comes that christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures. So that’s the gospel fact gospel fact that we are called to believe.
But there were eye witnesses he first appeared to Cephas is aramaic for peter. Then to the twelve then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. In other words, if you want names and references, i can take you to the guys who saw him. There were five hundred of them. Then he appeared to james. This is not one of the twelve. But this is james, the half brother of jesus. And then he appeared to all the apostles. And last of all, paul says to one untimely born he appeared also to me
so the gospel is based on historical fact that jesus he’s a real historical figure. He came, he lived a righteous life. He was crucified. And on the third day he defeated sin, death and the grave. And many witnesses saw the resurrected lord. This is the gospel nugget, if you will. At the center of it all, donald gray barnhouse, the great preacher who has written so much in the past about romans. I have his four volumes. I have them from my mother in law. Who’s with the lord now and was a student of the bible and so the family gave me her library and the four volumes you stuck them together like that now was studying barnhouse’s.
In the first volume, he has twenty seven chapters on roman’s, chapter one and so i’m not up to barnhouse’s way don’t i think it took him twenty years to preach the romans, so i don’t know if the lord will call me home before then or not? I don’t know, maybe, but he says, and this is what i want to say from barnhouse. He says that every word in the scripture is so power packed that when a pastor, when a preacher is to expose it, he has to recognize that the rest of the scripture is like an inverted pyramid resting on that one word, so that when we talk about that one word, we have to go out like that and show and see where it’s at in the rest of scripture, because it’s, like the whole of scripture, is this pyramid and it all sits down on this one word and may i say to you, one of the richest of all is the word gospel because the whole of scripture we would have to just, like read every chapter and look for the gospel it’s so present because paul now for versus two through four he’s going to say, i’m called i’m a servant. I’m an apostle, i’ve been set apart for the gospel of god. Let me tell you what the gospel of god is
Verses two through four he begins to identify he begins to answer the question, what is the gospel? First of all he says, it’s, the gospel of god i didn’t make this up. It was handed to me. God wrote this in fact, when did he write it? When did he come up with the gospel? He promised it beforehand through the prophets. In other words, all this back here in the old testament, the gospels all through here how far do you have to go to find the gospel many say that the protoevangelium the first gospel is in the book of genesis where he says to satan that the one born of the woman , the seed of woman, you’ll bruise his heel, but he will crush your head and that’s, a messianic promise way back there in the garden, and so all throughout here, god’s talking about the gospel, he’s getting us ready. And paul says it’s from god, and god promised it. And he told us about it through the prophets it’s attested by the scriptures, all the scriptures point to christ, who is the centerpiece of the gospel, because that’s, what he goes onto say concerning his son, verse three so the gospel concerns god’s son, and he became flesh. How through the line of david, this was all back here, that the messiah would come through the line of david he says, according to the flesh, he’s man he’s from the line of david. But according to the spirit he’s declared to be the son of god in power according to the spirit of holiness. And he proves it by the resurrection from the dead. And i love how it does this.
Two through four he’s telling us what the gospel is, and he’s saving the best for last that the final exclamation is jesus christ, our lord, that’s, what i’m talking about. So the gospel, what is the gospel? Its origin is in god it’s attestation it’s Providence is in the scripture. Its substance is christ, its scope.
Now we’re going to go to verse five is the nation’s through whom we have received grace through who, through jesus, we’ve received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name. Among all the nations it’s aimed at the nation’s, jesus wants some of all of us. He’d like to have all of us. The scope of the gospel is the nation’s, the purpose of the gospel there’s, a purpose clause, through whom we’ve received grace and apostleship
here’s the purpose clause to bring about the obedience of faith. More on that later, that’s the purpose, paul said. My purpose is to preach the gospel so that it brings about the obedience of faith more on that in just a second and then, he says, the goal of the gospel is to honor christ name. Look what he says in verse five, he says, through whom we’ve received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among the nations. So we preached the gospel. We share the gospel to bring glory to christ among all the nations, so that every ear has heard every tongue has had the opportunity to confess that jesus is lord. This is what the gospel is now, what is its call?
Look at verse five again the call is that it brings about the obedience of faith. You know paul has noted that the lord jesus gave him grace and apostleship grace is empowerment. Apostle ship is authority so he’s been empowered and authorized to call people through the gospel to the obedience of faith. What does this mean? Obedience of faith? Let me tell you what it does not mean that might be helpful, right? It does not mean having come to christ now you must come under the law and obey the law it does not mean the obedience to the law. That does not mean that this is the obedience that comes from faith. It springs wholeheartedly from trusting jesus. So it’s not okay, i’m going to follow you. Jesus, and i’m going to be saved by grace. But now i have to earn keeping my salvation. I have to follow the law. It’s not that what is it then? What is this call? It does mean that true faith in our heart brings about obedience in our lives. So if we’re going to follow jesus he’s going to take us on a path of righteousness and as we follow him, he’s. Going to take us in places where we’re doing the right things and so he doesn’t call us to rules. He calls us to himself, and so we’re following him, so the obedience comes out of our faith, we’re saved by faith
we walk by faith, which means we live by faith. We don’t live by the law or rule keeping we are saved by faith, and then we continue to walk by faith Martin Luther says it like this. We’re saved by faith alone, but that faith that saves is never alone. What follows it is obedience to the king. We love him, so we want to serve him. This is the call of the gospel.
Second thessalonians says this. He called you to salvation when we told you the good news. Now you can share in the glory of our lord jesus christ. Have you answered the call because you thirst to belong? Do you belong to jesus? Have you answered the call? The gospel has this effect. It calls you to belong. It calls you to be a saint. In other words, it calls you to the obedience of faith. It calls you as you follow him. Obey him. Not rule him. Obey him. Obey jesus. And he empowers you.have you answered the call of the gospel now that’s. The first that’s, the first feature, you know, as he in verse seven is saying he’s talking to the believers in rome. There are these believers in rome, he’s never been there. He’s writing this letter of introduction and he’s really concerned. That gives him the gospel who told them the gospel? I suspect that the believers in rome were largely jewish background believers who may have heard the gospel when they were visiting jerusalem during pentecost and at pentecost they would have heard peter preach. And three thousand people got saved. And then they they were dispersed in all over the roman empire. I believe some of these must have gone back to rome and paul caught word of it. And he’s like i got to get there. I got to get there . And that’s who he’s writing to i believe these jewish background believers, i want to get there, make sure that they understand what they’ve received, which leads us to the second attribute,
the obligation of the gospel, the obligation of the gospel we’re looking at verses eight to fourteen now. And i want you to take note of the pronoun it’s very uncommon. Paul is talking a lot about himself in eight through fourteen a lot of verses where he’s revealing to them his heart, he goes through here first, i think, oh my god for you, because i’m hearing about your faith everywhere i go and then forgot for god is my witness, whom i serve with my spirit in the gospel.
And by the way, if you look at one through seventeen, you’ll take note that the word gospel is in there four times these first seventeen verses are really about the gospel and how paul wants to make sure they got it. He’s a servant of christ which means he’s, a servant of the gospel and then he says, whenever i pray, i mentioned you always and in verse eleven i long to see you. I’m like i’m longing to see you it’s like he’s visualizing baby christians who got what peter preached and they got saved. But they haven’t had a preacher come to him yet to build them up in the faith and he wants to be there. He longs to be there that i just wanted to impart some spiritual gift to strengthen you, to encourage you, and i’m not big headed about it because i need to be mutually encouraged by you too. I want to hear your story.
Can we tell each other what christ is done? For you see the humility paul wants in verse thirteen. I do not want you to be unaware, but i’ve i’ve often tried to get to you in order that it might reap some harvest. In other words, i want to see some more people get saved. I want to get in on this what god’s doing in rome?
And then we see in verse fourteen, this i am statement that maybe explains eight through thirteen best. I am under obligation. What he’s never met these people. How does he owe them something? How does he owe them the gospel? Now, if tim over here loans me one hundred dollars, i’m under obligation to pay him back, which you all agree. This is not the obligation. Paul’s talking about he’s never met these people up in rome, then alone him. Anything but what if i see? But if i see jennifer tim’s wife at wal mart and that would be a rare case you get my picture. I don’t go in there often, but if she sees me and she says, hey, you’re supposed to see tim at this meeting later tonight and i forgot to give him some money and you are having dinner together would you give him this money so he can have dinner tonight? Because i was supposed to get this cash for it and she gave me that and i agree and say, yeah, i’m having dinner with him tonight and i’ll be glad to give him the money. Now i’m obligated to give the money to tim because she gave it to me for tim that’s, the that’s, the sense of this obligation, the reason paul’s obligated is because christ did everything for him and then gave it to him and then send him out to give it to others. So now he’s. Obligated, he owes it to them, because christ had paul give this to you, but not just for use for the nation’s it’s for them, too it’s for you, but it’s for them too so paul’s obligated, because he said yes to that.
Did you say yes to that? When you received christ did you understand the obligation that’s now upon you, there’s an obligation, there’s a calling, and then there’s an obligation of the gospel he says . i’m obligated he said. I’m a servant of the gospel. Now i’m obligated. I’m obligated, who’s he obligated? He says. I’m under obligation, both to greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and the foolish. who are these barbarians?
So earlier, i i tried to find saints in the house, and we only have a couple. let’s. See how many barbarians we have in the house. What is a barbarian? A barbarian i s someone who does not speak greek that’s what the greeks called non greek speaking people. If you spoke something other than greek, the greeks called you a barbarian, because obviously, greek culture and greek language and greek food was at the top. And if you were not able to do that, you are barbarians. So how many of you speak greek? Lift your hand. If you are able to read and speak greek (crickets) , i can. And all of you are barbarians. I’m preaching to a bunch of barbarians, and i’m obligated to do it. We should change the name of our church, I had some people after first service going, i got a new name for the church, so what is it, the barbarian church? We’re barbarians, he says.
I’m obligated to the greeks and wise, to the foolish, to the barbarian. In first corinthians, he writes this, for if i preach the gospel that gives me no ground for boasting, why, for necessity is laid upon me. Whoa, oh, to me, if i do not preach the gospel, why, i’m obligated, yeah. Receiving the gospel you belong to christ. You are made saints, and you are called apostles now, not in the sense that you saw the risen christ as paul was, but in the sense that you’ve been sent to the nation’s, go, therefore, make disciples of all nations. You’re under an obligation, and necessity has been laid upon us.
Have you answered the call of the gospel? And if you have, have you understood the obligation that goes with having received it? Will you tell others what jesus has done for you while you do that? And then finally, this third attributes that paul covers
the power of the gospel we are looking at versus fifteen through seventeen now. Yes, three i am statements. The first is in verse fourteen i am under obligation. And then in verse fifteen he says, i am eager, i’m eager to preach the gospel to you. I’m eager the greek court they were eager, could be translated, willing, ready. But it has underneath that this root word ( ) which has to do with fire or heat so i have a passion burning inside of me to preach the gospel to you. i’m willing, i’m ready, he’s like a race car driver. Who might be sitting on a drag strip waiting for it to turn green and he doesn’t have it in gear yet, he’s holding his clutch in and then green like boom that’s. How paul is right here, he’s on the starting line, man, he looked for the green light to get to rome, he boy, he’s eager he set apart he is longing , he’s all in man to get that gospel message to rome.
And then verse sixteen is the third I am statement here he makes, and it seems to go with fifteen, because it’s, the alternate condition but stated in the negative, i am obligated. I am eager for i am not ashamed. Did somebody accuse him of being ashamed of the gospel? No, i think he was addressing the inner demon that we all fight against flesh and satan, who says, don’t say jesus, don’t say cross, don’t talk about death, burial and resurrection that stuff , you’re ashamed of it’s, good at church, but monday morning, at work with your mom and dad, who don’t know the lord with your uncle or that grandparent and like, yeah, but that’s, my grandfather, just kind of ashamed to bring it up. Do you know what paul’s talking about? I do. But i’m not ashamed.
Moffat who translates this in the positive, he says paul is saying for i am proud of the gospel, which is the opposite of shame i’m eager and i’m proud i am not ashamed now why do we? Why do we get ashamed Sometimes there’s several reasons we could be offended because the gospel offends us offense causes us shame first of all, the offense that the gospel comes to us and it says salvation is free and undeserved, and that offends our flesh because our flesh is about earning we want to earn
imagine three people standing on the coast of of california. All of them have decided to swim to hawaii. Yeah, one of them is like me. He’ll barely made it off the coast before the sharks get him. Man, you’ve been out there, he’ll be working it hard, but he is not a great swimmer. There’s a second one who used to be a swimmer in high school and college. He hasn’t done it in a while, but he gets so far out. You know, the third one is on olympic swimmer he’s the best he’s a gold medalist, and he swims so far past the other two. But he drowns because nobody can swim to hawaii. It’s too far it didn’t matter, that one swam farther than the other. They all three drowned. And so will you if you depend on your own effort to reach god. Because god’s righteousness revealed is his rightness with you that you are made right so that you can be in a relationship with him. And his holiness is so high it’s so far away that you cannot reach it through your own effort and that’s what the gospel shows you and it offends your flesh.
Yeah, swim farther than him. So what? You’re going to die? Maybe you can swim farther. Maybe you are a better person than him, but it doesn’t matter. You’re going to die because you’re a sinner. You can’t make it on your own. It offends us for those reasons it offends the righteous person because they think i’m a gold medalist, it offends the one who wants to work it out. I can do this myself. It offends the agnostic who says i don’t need god, i am more moral than most. Of the people in your church. I’ve met some of those hypocrites over there. And the thing is, he’s, right? He probably is, but he’s going to drown because he cannot earn his way to make it seem so.
So there’s. A reason that this gospel causes shame, because we listen to the flesh, which paul says i’m not ashamed and here’s why it’s the power of god the gospel? Listen what? What he said, man , don’t miss this. I’m not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of god for salvation to everyone who believes he does not say that the gospel contains the power of god. He doesn’t say the power of god is inside the gospel. He says, the gospel is the power of god. What is he saying here? What’s paul’s claim here that the very words of the gospel are the very words of god that will transform your life if you will put your faith in them not that they contain the gospel or not, that they contain the power of god in the salvation, but that the gospel is so in other words, has this happened before
i started thinking about well, yeah, genesis chapter one god says, let there be light and there was light we know that his word has the power and so what do we offer people? We don’t offer people our own morality in our own little stories and philosophies. And no, we give him the gospel because it alone has the power to save. Why? Because it is the power of god, the word gospel, those that he lived, he died, he was buried, he rose again. Will you believe in this person? Jesus, the facts of the gospel we need.
We need to be reminded constantly that the very good news itself is this. What paul, said , for it is the power of god to the jew first, and also to the greek to the jew first, because jesus gave it to the jews first and all the first century apostles were jewish background, who believed in the messiah. But then paul was among those peter first and then paul, who began to carry it to the non jews, to the greeks and even to the barbarians. And then in verse seventeen, he says, there’s something in the gospel, he says. The gospel is the power of god for in it, what in the gospel is what? Oh, here it comes, people .
For in it, the righteousness of god is revealed. What it’s, the power of god, and in it, the righteousness of god. No, when you accept jesus as your savior, and he will forgive all your sins. Yeah, so let’s say, your sins are like money and, like there’s, a heavenly bank, and every sin is a deduction. So now you’re spiritually bankrupt, you’re overdrawn, and you owe, like, like the distance from california to hawaii. Kind of money you owe you owe billions of dollars. Some of you barbarians owe trillions of dollars. You’ll never be able to repay it, but when you receive jesus, he forgives it all.
Do you agree with that? Is that the gospel? They forgive all your sins? So now you’re a zero? Is that the gospel now that’s only half of it you need to get the whole gospel because it the righteousness of god revealed he forgives your sins so he takes your death, you receive his life, but jesus offers his righteousness to your account. With his holiness he kept the law in your place. He is the righteousness of god in the flesh. And so he puts on your account so that you’re not just brought up two zero your sins are forgiven. The bank wrote it off. that’s, not the whole gospel that’s. Only half of it he is now put on your account, his righteousness it’s, not zero it’s christ righteousness, which is infinite and you are called saints holy righteous. Yeah, yes, that’s, the gospel that’s. The gospel of god revealed you can’t earn it. But you can receive it so that you’re forgiven and you’re made holy. If you’ve done that, you’re a saint, you don’t have to wait for somebody to vote you in.
God has said, i recognize that you’ve received my son jesus you’ve believed upon the one who died and was buried, and rose again and accounted unto you now is forgiveness of sin, and the righteousness of christ are added to your account, so that now you are wholly before me, you belong to me. You are a saint made holy, this is the gospel, this is the righteousness of god, revealed you’re not just made , right, you’re made holy, so that you can live with god for eternity,
paul says, i’m so eager to tell you about this because i’m not ashamed because it’s the power of god, the greek word is donamis it’s, where we get the word dynamo dynamite dynamic, its explosive power is in the gospel.
Theodoret, the syrian bishop of the fifth century, likened it to a pepper. My next door neighbor has put up a greenhouse in his front yard. I find that odd. I was worried, but i thought no, they wouldn’t do that in their front yard with I went over. I got to know what’s the green house. He’s just raising peppers. I said, okay, what you got in there? And so i went and he said, it’s like the guy’s a nut. You’ve got, like ghost peppers. Have you heard of these? A little bitty thing. I was looking at it,
Theodoret said the gospel is like a pepper. Theodoret, fifth century bishop said this. A pepper outwardly seems to be cold, but the person who crunches it between the teeth experiences the sensation of burning fire. See, the gospel just looks like this little thing. If you’ll take it between your teeth and bite into it. It’s the power of god it’ll set you on fire
D.L. Moody said that the gospel is like a lion. He says that all the preacher has to do is open the door of the cage and get out of the way and let the gospel do its word that’s. My job. I’m just the guy who opens the gate to the lion and let the lion come .
The gossip will come your way, it’s, the power of god, for those who believe it will save you. It has saving power and know that in it is the righteousness of god, which is christ’s. Righteousness accounted unto those who believe.
Have you believed the gospel’s call. Haveyou answered it? Have you accepted the obligation? Have you acknowledged the power of the gospel? In First corinthians paul says for the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing. But to us who are being saved. It’s the power of god
In first thessalonians he says, because our gospel came to you not only worked, but also in power and in the holy spirit and with full conviction. The gospel is powerful and it attains the righteousness of god. And then he quotes Habakkak four and it’s the first of fifty seven quotations in the book of romans from the old testament more than any other epistle romans constantly quotes the old testament. He quotes Habakkak four. As it is written, the righteous shall live by faith. This is not new. There aren’t two gods. The god of the old testament, the god of the new testament, he’s the same god. All back here he was getting us ready for christ. And now we have the whole gospel right here it is.
There’s a calling upon us there’s an obligation and there’s. A power. So we scratch the surface barely of the book of romans. We’re on an adventure together. i pray that it would transform your life. Can it start today? Let’s? Pray
lord. First of all, i pray for the person that came in far from you. Today came in struggling, and they’ve heard it. I hope a message that will change their life. I hope that they will say, i hear the call, you see it’s not enough just to hear it, though you must believe and so friends if that is you right where you are. Do you believe that jesus christ died on the cross? Would you say it right now you can pray silently or you can say it aloud. It will encourage the people around you to hear. You just just pray with me. Dear lord jesus, i believe that you died on the cross for my sins, that you were buried on the third day you were raised again, and that you live today. And i invite you now to come into my life. I pray that the power of the gospel would cause me to be born again, and that it would ascribe under me account unto me your righteousness, so that i’m right with god. I want to be a child of god, and i want you to be my lord, and savior. If you’re praying that right now, this is the gospel, and you’re believing and he says, i’m calling you to belong to me. I’m calling you to be holy by my righteousness, so place your faith, others are here today, and you’ve prayed to receive jesus. You’re a follower , but maybe the spirit has convicted you in other places. Have you been ashamed of the gospel? Do you recognize that you were set apart the day you received it? God knew, and you were set apart. And now you’re obligated. e would you just right now, just renew to the lord your acceptance of that obligation that you want to be one who is not ashamed of the gospel. Oh, lord, we love you, and we thank you for the gospel, and we thank you for the substance of the gospel, which is jesus christ, our lord. In his name, we pray. Amen.