Romans

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Why Suffering?

May 12, 2019 | Romans 8:18-39 | suffering

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For most who pose the question of why God allows suffering, it is neither a philosophical, nor a theological one. For most, it is a personal question. What’s your story today? How are you dealing with the problem of suffering and evil in our world?

God inspired the apostle Paul to consider the problem of suffering and to write to encourage the believers in Rome. He revealed that there’s definitely more to the story! In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he explained why there is suffering in God’s creation, encouraging them to compare it against the weight of God’s glory that awaits those who believe. We can understand why there is suffering in God’s creation, knowing that a greater glory awaits those of us who believe.

God’s Justification By Faith

November 18, 2018 | Romans 4:1-25 | exposition

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The claim of Christ is not only for “Christians.” It is for everyone. This may go against today’s culture, but we believe that faith in Christ is the only way to be made right with God. Christ is the only path to God. In other words, the only way to receive God’s justification is by faith in Christ Jesus.

In Romans 4, the apostle Paul put forth the Old Testament examples of Abraham and David as evidence that God’s justification has always been by faith alone.

God’s Righteousness Through Faith

November 11, 2018 | Romans 3:21-31 | exposition

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Are you right with God? Every religion asks this question. And all of them but one, give the same answer–– it depends on your spiritual report card. If you have good moral and religious grades, then God will accept you. But this is not the answer given in Christianity. Authentic Christianity actually informs us that we are not right with God and that there’s no way that we can get right with Him on our own. So, God sent His Son Jesus to take the test of life and got a perfect score. His spiritual report card has straight “A”s! And God offers to exchange Christ’s perfect report in place of our failing one. In Romans 3:21-31, the apostle Paul told the Romans that the only way to receive the righteousness of God is through faith in Jesus Christ. We can understand why the righteousness of God can only be received by placing our faith in Jesus Christ.

God and Human Accountability

November 4, 2018 | Romans 3:1-20 | exposition

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We are all born with a kind of moral compass, an intuition for right and wrong, called a conscience. We even have a desire for justice and accountability in this world. From our earliest memories, we have a desire for fairness. Yet, the world is not fair. And justice doesn’t reign. Unfortunately, our idea of justice tends to be more for everybody else, while we make excuses for our own sin, calling them mistakes, shortcomings, bad habits, etc. But rarely, sin.

Paul has something to say about God and human accountability. In Romans 3:1-20, the apostle Paul concluded that all humanity–– whether the pagan Gentile, the self- righteous moralist, or the outwardly religious–– all humanity is accountable unto God for their sin and therefore in desperate need of the gospel. We can be convinced that we are all accountable unto God for our sin and in desperate need of the gospel.

God and the Religious

October 28, 2018 | Romans 2:17-29 | exposition

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Why do we need this gospel which grants us the “righteousness of God?” Well, that’s the question that Paul spends the next portion of his letter answering. From Romans 1:18 all the way up to Romans 3:20, Paul explains why everyone needs the gospel. In Romans 1:18-32, we looked at why the irreligious and Gentile pagan need the gospel. Last Sunday in Romans 2:1-16, we discussed why the moral, self-righteous need the gospel. Today, we’ll be looking at Romans 2:17-29 in a message we’ve entitled, “God and the Religious,” discussing why the outwardly religious, whether it’s Judaism or Christianity or any other religion, will not make us right with God. The religious need the gospel!

We live in the middle of the Bible Belt. I thought about titling this sermon, “God and the Bible Belt.” Because people who live in the Bible Belt need the gospel. Just because you’re an flag-flying, BBQ-eating, church-going, American, that doesn’t mean you’re right with God. True Christianity is not about religion, but a relationship. Outward religion does not please God. In Romans 2:17-29, the apostle Paul told the Jews that their outward religion would not make them righteous before God. We can recognize that outward religion will not make us righteous before God.

God’s Judgment Revealed

October 21, 2018 | Romans 2:1-16 | exposition, judgment

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The truth is, we usually think of God’s judgment as something that someone else needs a good dose of! Many think that they don’t need the gospel because they are a good person and therefore God won’t judge them. But Paul’s letter to the Romans has something to say about that. In the book of Romans chapter 2:1-16, Paul warned the self-righteous that they would have no defense before God’s judgment. We can understand that our own attempts at self-righteousness will provide no defense before God’s judgment.

God’s Wrath Revealed

October 14, 2018 | Romans 1:18-32 | exposition, righteousness, wrath

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Why do we need the gospel? Is it so we can be better parents, have better marriages, experience greater happiness? Sure, these are benefits of receiving the gospel by faith. But no, they do not get at the real reason that we need the gospel. We need the gospel because we have offended God’s righteousness. We have rebelled against God and we have gone our own sinful way. That’s what sin is. lt’s an attitude of disobedience that says, “I will do things my way, not God’s way.” As a result, Paul says that God’s wrath is already upon us. The apostle Paul spent the first 17 verses of his letter to the Romans introducing himself and reminding them of the power and righteousness of God found only in the gospel. Having introduced this great theme, Paul spent the rest of chapter one explaining that the wrath of God is already being revealed against the ungodly and the unrighteous who have not received the gospel. We can faithfully respond to the revelation of God’s wrath against those who have not received the gospel.

God’s Gospel Revealed

October 7, 2018 | Romans 1:1-17 | exposition, gospel, righteousness

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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.

Physical Touch

September 30, 2018 | Romans 12:1-5 | worship

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We all have a basic human need for physical touch. It’s definitely an important love language. But how can we apply it to expressing our love and worship of God? We can offer our physical bodies to God as worship. We can say, “Jesus, you offered your body to save us, so we’re offering our bodies back to You as worship. Use us to touch someone in Your name!” In the book of Romans, the apostle Paul appealed to believers that they offer their bodies to God as worship. We can offer our bodies to God as our expression of worship.

Connect to God’s People

September 3, 2017 | Romans 12:4-5 | community groups, three commitments

God’s provision for our connection and growth is the Spirit within and the body of Christ without. In the book of Romans the apostle Paul told the Roman Christians that even though they had followed Christ by an individual decision they must recognize that in following Him they had become one body, connected to other believers. When we follow Christ we must make an individual decision to follow, but that leads to a corporate identity. We become the body of Christ connected to every other believer.