24
Jun
2015

ROMANS 1:6-10 PAUL GIVES THANKS FOR THE ROMANS

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Romans 1:6 among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; 7 To all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world. 9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of His Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers, 10 making request if, by some means, now at last I may find a way in the will of God to come to you.

 1.    The people of Rome

Our practice always comes from our position or who we are

Note the repetition of the word called: Paul was called to be an apostle; the believers were the called of Jesus Christ;

They were also called beloved– This means they are much loved by God, the much loved are those who have trusted Christ and are also the saints

And they were also called saints. (Not “to be” saints; they already were saints! A saint is a set-apart one, and the person who trusts Jesus Christ is set apart and is a saint.) Salvation is not something that we do for God; it is God who calls us in His grace (2Thes. 2:13–14). When you trust Christ, you are saved by His grace and you experience His peace.

Saint is a common term for believer in the New Testament. It refers more to position than condition when used this way, though the implication of holiness is strong. We are saints even though we still sin

The salutation reveals the germ ideas that the writer proceeded to develop later. This feature is also characteristic of Paul's other epistles. So far Paul said he had a message that was in harmony with the Old Testament. It was from the risen Christ, and it was for all people. Furthermore it should lead people to obey God by exercising faith in Him.

It was common for Paul, having greeted the recipients of the letter, to move on to a somewhat lengthy note of thanksgiving and prayer for the church in question (except in Galatians where he is constrained to move immediately to the question of the gospel). Such is the case here in Romans 1:8-15.

He Expressed His Care For Them (Rom. 1:8–15)

1.             He was thankful for them or Paul praises the Romans

The personal pronoun my reminds one of similar expressions in the Psalms (3:7; 5:2; 13:3; 22:1; cf. Also Phil 1:3; Philemon 4) and reflects Paul’s deep personal relationship and dependence on God.

The first thing he wanted to do was to tell them how thankful he was for their faith and its influence.

Through Jesus Christ. Christ is the center of God’s plan for the world: He is the way in which God reached out to us and the way we in turn approach God

“Paul expressed his thanks for the Romans salvation and witness in the whole world

Rome was the center of the world and whatever happened there became known throughout the world

The whole world”— a hyperbole meaning throughout the Roman Empire, meaning the whole Roman Empire—knew of the faith of the Christians at Rome. Travel was relatively common in that day and “all roads led to Rome.” It is no wonder that the testimony of the church spread abroad, and this growing witness made Paul’s ministry easier as he went from place to place, and was able to point to this testimony going out from the heart of the Roman Empire.

It was like living in Washington DC, Las Vegas, and San Franscisco all rolled into one

2.             Paul prays for the Romans

V9 The statement God…is my witness is a very strong expression, used by the apostle on other occasions. It probably represents an oath he had taken to pray for the church with great constancy (2 Cor 11:23; Gal 1:20; Phil 1:8; 1 Thess 2:5, 10). But it is not the frivolous kind of oaths condemned by Jesus (Matt 5:33-37; cf. Jas 5:12), but is rather Paul’s attempt to communicate his true love (expressed through prayer on their behalf) for this largely Gentile church which he had never visited—a fact which may not have gone unnoticed by the people.

God knows that Paul serves and worships Christ out of love not legalism or the fear of God

Paul had seen the shallow hypocritical religion of the Pharisees and the superstitious and pleasure seeking morality of pagan idolatry

The verb serve is from a Greek verb (latreuo„) which is connected in the Greek Old Testament (LXX) to ideas of priestly service and worship. While it may not have the idea of priestly service here, it definitely suggests imagery pertaining to worship.3

·       He prays for them always – These saints were constantly in his thoughts and prayers

We are reminded that the real work of the ministry is prayer. Preaching is more a result of the ministry of prayer than it is a ministry itself. A sermon that does not rise from intense and heart-searching prayer has no chance of bearing real fruit."

3.             Paul wants to come see the Romans

V10 making request if, by some means, now at last I may find a way in the will of God to come to you.

 Paul wants God through his sovereign will to work it out so that he could go to Rome

God did later as a prisoner of Rome so that Paul could have a mighty witness for God

Lessons

1.    God places a high priority on Faith

2.    You will never know in this life the impact you have had on other people

17
Jun
2015

ROMANS 1:2-5 THE PROMISED GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD

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Romans 1:2 which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, 3 concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, 4 and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. 5 Through Him we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name,

 The promise of Christ through the prophets

V2 The coming of Christ is the prophesied culmination to a long history of expectation. Jesus Christ is not an afterthought, but the very realization of God’s plan for the world, Jew and Gentile. Indeed, Jesus himself is the gospel!

Prophets were all the writers of the OT

Paul next began to exalt the gospel that God had called him to proclaim. It was a message that God had promised, not just prophesied, in the Old Testament Scriptures.

The words "his" and "holy" stress the unique origin of the gospel.

Paul was accused of preaching a new message by the Jews

1Peter 1:10 Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, 11 searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow.

Joh 5:39 "You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.

Christ was prophesied of 333 times in the OT.

2 Sam 7:12-16, Isaiah 1:18, 53:7–8 with the Ethiopian eunuch is a good example, Is 55, and Gen 3:15- first mention of the Jesus in the OT

Lu 24:25 Then He said to them, "O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!  26 "Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?" 27 And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.

1.    Paul proclaimed this Gospel was about Jesus Christ

V3 The reference to Jesus as a descendent of David according to the flesh functions on two levels. First, it makes plain that the eternal son of God took on full and complete humanity (John 1:1, 14; Phil 2:6-11). Second, the explicit link with David is not just to suggest his humanity, but also to make clear his special relationship to the line of promise. Jesus met the qualifications of one to whom the promise of 2 Samuel 7:12-16 could be made

The promise in 2 Samuel 7:12-16 is extremely important in the New Testament and the connection to it is apparent here (e.g., Matt 1:1; Acts 13:34; 2 Cor 6:18). Nathan tells David, among other things, that he will never lack a “son” to sit on his throne.

God’s good news concerns His Son, identified as Jesus Christ our Lord. This asserts Christ’s deity as basic to His person and prior to His Incarnation

Jesus was born of a virgin and delivered normally

Jesus was a historical figure written of by many ancient writers

Roman historian Tacitus in Annals

Jewish Historian Josephus in Antiquities

Pliny the Younger in Letters

Jesus was born of the seed of David, Mary was his natural parent

Matthew 1:6-16 is Mary's family tree

Luke 3:23-31 is Joseph's family tree

John makes believing Jesus came in the flesh a crucial test of orthodoxy( or having sound Biblical teachings about Christ)

1John 4:2-3

Jesus Christ is the center of the Gospel message. Paul identified Him as a man, a Jew, and the Son of God. He was born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:18–25) into the family of David, which gave Him the right to David’s throne. He died for the sins of the world, and then was raised from the dead. It is this miraculous event of substitutionary death and victorious resurrection that constitutes the Gospel; and it was this Gospel that Paul preached

V4 and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. The Gr word from which declared comes from is the word horizon which means to make distinguish. Just as the horizon serves as a clear divider between the sky and the earth, the resurrection of Jesus clearly divides Him from the rest of humanity proving without a doubt that He is the Son of God

The idea of Jesus’ universal Lordship is often connected in the New Testament to his resurrection and exaltation to a place of power and authority (cf. Matt 28:18; Acts 2:36; Phil 2:11

The term Son of God with power is used about 30 times in the Gospels

"A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse." C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity,

Jesus was always the Son of God, but the Father declared Him to be the Son by resurrecting Him. Jesus did not change in essence—He always was the Son—but in status and function. God appointed the Son to a new and more powerful position in relation to the world at the Resurrection (cf.

Matt. 28:18). He is now not only the Messiah but the Lord of all.

Jesus took on a submissive role to the father while he was here on earth

we have received grace and apostleship – a gifting as an apostle which Paul did not deserve, but we are all gifted and called to be little a apostles, ie messengers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ

V 5 is the firstreference to the most crucial part of the Gospel- salvation is a gift from God totally separate from any human effort or achievement - Eph 2:8-9

Paul probably meant that he had received the special grace (gift) of being an apostle.

Matthew 10:1-4 Jesus selected all twelve apostles-

Matthias picked by disciples in Acts 1:15-26

 Acts 9:3-9, 15-18 Paul was personally chosen by Christ when he appeared to Paul on the road to Damascus

For obedience to faith- True saving faith always produces obedience and submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ- Romans 10:9-10, James 2:17-24

"The law lays down what a man must do; the gospel lays down what God has done.

"Someone has truly said that the Gospel is 'good news' not 'good advice,'

Faith is obedience to God because God commands everyone to believe in Christ (cf. John 6:29; Acts 17:30-31).

Lessons

1.     God’s promises never fail

2.     All we have is a gift from God

The Gospel is 'good news' not 'good advice

10
Jun
2015

INTRODUCTION TO THE BOOK OF ROMANS AND PAUL’S CREDENTIALS IN VERSE 1

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Romans 1:1 Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God

 Paul spent the winter of A.D. 56-57 in Corinth. There he wrote the Epistle to the Romans and sent it by Phoebe (16:1-2) to the Roman church

PURPOSES FOR WRITING THE BOOK

Paul wrote this epistle under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit for several reasons. He wanted to prepare the way for his intended visit to the church (15:22-24). He evidently hoped that Rome would become a base of operations and support for his pioneer missionary work in Spain and the western portions of the empire that he had not yet evangelized. His full exposition of the gospel in this letter would have provided a solid foundation for their participation in this mission.

As Paul looked forward to returning to Jerusalem between his departure from Corinth and his arrival in Rome, he was aware of the danger he faced (15:31). He may have written the exhaustive exposition of the gospel that we have in Romans to set forth his teaching in case he did not reach Rome. From Rome his doctrine could then go out to the rest of the empire as others preached it. Paul may have viewed Romans as his legacy to the church, his last will and testament.

Another reason for writing Romans was undoubtedly Paul's desire to minister to the spiritual needs of the Christians in Rome even though they were in good spiritual condition (15:14-16). The common problems of all the early churches were dangers to the Roman church as well. These difficulties included internal conflicts, mainly between Jewish and Gentile believers, and external threats from false teachers. Paul gave both of these potential problems attention in this epistle (15:1-8; 16:17-20).

Paul also wrote Romans as he did because he was at a transition point in his ministry, as he mentioned at the end of chapter 15. His ministry in the Aegean region was solid enough that he planned to leave it and move farther west into new virgin missionary territory. Before he did that, he planned to visit Jerusalem, where he realized he would be in danger. Probably, therefore, Paul wrote Romans as he did to leave a full exposition of the gospel in good hands if his ministry ended prematurely in Jerusalem.

The great contribution of this letter to the body of New Testament inspired revelation is its reasoned explanation of how God's righteousness can become man's possession

VALUE

The Epistle to the Romans is, by popular consent, the greatest of Paul's writings. William Tyndale, the great English reformer and translator, referred to Romans as "the principle and most excellent part of the New Testament." He went on to say the following in his prologue to Romans that he wrote in the 1534 edition of his English New Testament.

"No man verily can read it too oft or study it too well; for the more it is studied the easier it is, the more it is chewed the pleasanter it is, and the more deeply it is searched the preciouser things are found in it, so great treasures of spiritual things lieth hid therein."

Martin Luther wrote the following commendation of this epistle. "[Romans] is worthy not only that every Christian should know it word for word, by heart, but occupy himself with it every day, as the daily bread of the soul. It can never be read or pondered too much, and the more it is dealt with the more precious it becomes, and the better it tastes."

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1)             To be impressed with the all-sufficiency of the gospel

This first sentence (vv. 1-7) implicitly sets forth the most fundamental facts of Christianity. In particular, it shows that the main facts of the gospel fulfill Old Testament predictions.

2)    To see how God's wrath may be directed toward our society today

Outline of the Book of Romans

Righteousness of God Revealed or Doctrinal Section Chapters 1-8

Chapters 1-2 Condemnation

Chapters 3-5 Justification

Chapters 6-8 Sanctification

Righteousness of God Vindicated Chapters 9-11 or National Section – Israel

Chapters 9- Election

Chapters 10- Reason for Rejection

Chapters 11- Future Restoration

Gods Righteousness Applied or the Practical Section Chapters 12-16

Chapters 12 - Spiritual gifts

Chapters 13- Relationship to Government

Chapters 14-15 - Gray Areas or Doubtful Areas

Chapters 16 - Closing

3
Jun
2015

REVIEW OF THE BOOK OF RUTH

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In this lesson we will go through the whole book of Ruth at one time to get the big picture. 

1.          This is a story of pure love by a woman named Ruth for her mother in-law Naomi. Yet the word love is not in it

§  A romance that triumphs over racial and religious prejudices

2.          It also exalts women for the unique, miraculous role they play in God’s plan

§  Probably the book that best shows the strength of a woman’s character and purity of motive.  She exemplifies the Proverbs 31 woman

§  We see God’s care for women in the most desperate circumstances

§  A woman of great faith

3.          Most importantly it is a book about God’s purpose to redeem all those who will put their trust in Him

4.          It is a book that shows the Sovereignty of God

§  God will take a Moabite woman who is not even supposed to go into the temple of God until the 10th generation and will take her from that low position to the highest privilege of being in the line of the Messiah Jesus

5.       It starts out in Bethlehem and ends in Bethlehem, the birthplace of King David and ultimately the Lord Jesus

In spite of the fact that Elimelech, his wife Naomi, and his two sons (Mahlon and Kilion) are living according to the spirit of their day (“doing what is right in their own eyes”), two people (Ruth and Boaz) stand out as examples of those who live by faith in the God of Israel, and whose lives exemplify living in accordance with God’s Word. And one of these two – Ruth – is a Moabite, not an Israelite. In the dark shadows of the days of the judges, we find two individuals whose lives are truly lights in the darkness. Here is a story that not only warms our hearts, it encourages our faith by unveiling the providential hand of God in bringing salvation and blessing during one of the darkest periods in history.

Whereas the book illustrates the theological concept of redemption beautifully, its primary purpose appears to have been to reveal how God often providentially works behind the scenes to bring His will to pass. Twenty-three of its 89 verses mention God. Of these, only 1:6 and 4:13, which bracket the book, are the narrator's comments. All the rest appear in the characters' speeches. Contrast the Book of Esther, which also teaches the providence of God but does not mention God once.

"The scriptural message of the Book of Ruth may be summarized as follows: God cares for needy people like Naomi and Ruth; he is their ally in this chaotic world. He richly rewards people like Ruth and Boaz who demonstrate sacrificial love and in so doing become his instruments in helping the needy. God's rewards for those who sacrificially love others sometimes exceed their wildest imagination and transcend their lifetime." "The Ruth narrative provided a gratifying reminder that even in the darkest times God was at work in the hearts of His faithful remnant."