(#425) Romans 12 - Sometimes Doing Good Means Punching Someone in the Face

ROM-361-180729 - length: 88:08 - taught on Jul, 29 2018

Class Outline:

Welcome To 


a Christian Church

Rory Clark



Good Morning!


Welcome to Barah Ministries…a Christian Church that makes a difference worldwide courtesy of the internet…Barah Ministries…a Christian Church that makes a difference locally in the Gilbert, Mesa, and Chandler, AZ communities.  My name is Pastor Rory Clark.  At Barah Ministries, our God is the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and we teach the Word of God from God’s perspective…not from man’s perspective. 


Jesus Christ is God…John, Chapter 1, Verse 14…


JOHN 1:14

And the Word (the Lord…God the Son) became flesh (Jesus Christ as 100% true humanity), and tabernacled among us, and we beheld His glory…glory as of the uniquely born one from God the Father…full of grace and full of truth.


We are pleased to gather her today to worship the One and Only Sovereign God of the Universe…the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.



Sometimes Doing Good Means Punching Someone in the Face


Have you ever been punched in the face?


A good coach punches his players in the face all the time.  Not literally.  Figuratively. I was coaching a basketball team. One of our best players was always a slow starter.  He usually didn’t really get into a groove in the game until the second part of the first half.  We were playing a crucial game against an excellent and aggressive team, and if we waited for him to engage as normal, we’d be in for a long day.  We needed him to engage immediately.  


In the first three minutes of the game, he did what slow starters do.  He was shooting three pointers…he took four…he missed four. His teammates were upset.  I was furious.  I called time out.


When the team had taken seats, I looked at him, practically staring a hole into his forehead.  Then I looked at the rest of the players to gauge their attitude.  I said, “I just have one thing to say to you guys.”  Then I looked right at him.  In the calmest, yet most intense voice I could muster, I said to him, “If you take another three point shot in this game, I’m going to come on the court and punch you right in the face.  From this point on, shoot nothing but layups.”


There was a method to my madness.  This kid didn’t like to be hit.  When he would drive to the basket for a layup, he’d usually get fouled hard.  He hated it, but after he was hit, he would immediately take over the game.  The next time we got the ball, he drove to hoop and was fouled hard…really hard. Predictably, he took over the game. He became a beast, both on offense and defense, and it inspired the team.  We scored the next twenty points and never looked back.  We beat one of the toughest teams in the league.


We’re studying the fifth passage of Romans, Chapter 12, Verses 9 and 10.  In these first two verses of the passage, the Lord Jesus Christ puts His loving arm around us, and in His calmest, and most intense voice, issues five commands…


ROMANS 12:9a

Let unconditional love be without hypocrisy…


ROMANS 12:9b

Abhor what is evil…


ROMANS 12:9c

…cling to what is good.


ROMANS 12:10a 

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love…


ROMANS 12:10b

…give preference to one another in honor…

The Lord is ordering us to do the same thing I was asking my player to do.  He’s wants us to change our attitude.  As Christians, if we live these five commands, along with every other command that proceeds from the mouth of God…it won’t just change our attitudes…it will change our lives.  In today’s lesson, we’ll learn that CLINGING TO WHAT IS GOOD is really a call from God to prepare for spiritual warfare…and in waking people up to the spiritual battle, sometimes doing good means punching them in the face.


Well, if two Christians disagree on some aspect of Christianity, one or both of them are wrong. God and His Word are never wrong. Philippians, Chapter 2, Verse 5 says…



Have this attitude in yourselves that was also in Christ Jesus…


The attitude that Christ has is single-mindedness.  Let’s hear Tommy Walker exhort us to think the way our Savior does in the song…YES WE ALL AGREE.



Be Occupied with the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ

Enjoy the Singing of His Praises



Tommy Walker



Let us pray...


Almighty God and Father…


Thank you for working all things together for good for those of us who love You and Your Son…the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…thank you for never letting up on us…thank you for not letting us relax amidst the warfare that is constantly being waged against us here in Satan’s kingdom, on planet earth…thank you for God the Holy Spirit who mentors us, equips us, and guides us with enabling power through the gauntlet of tribulation that You provide to strengthen us…


Teach us to never let our spiritual guards down …command us in our daily walk…encourage us to actively seek out Your Word in every spare moment so that we can think and act with Your power when we are under the pressure of each battle…


…we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ’s




Sometimes Doing Good Means Punching Someone in the Face


What I like about sports is the competition…the chance to punch the one I’m competing with in the face. Our spiritual battle is a competition. But we’ve already won!  Ephesians, Chapter 6, Verses 10 to 12…



Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might (with the enabling power poured into us from divine omnipotence).


God’s strength is always adequate in every situation we face.  Are you using God’s strength or human strength to solve your toughest problems? Our God encourages us…exhorts us…



Pick up and put on (with great urgency) the full armor from God (do not operate in your own strength)…so that you will be able to stand firm (on your victorious ground) against the schemes of the devil.


Christians have no need to be on the offensive with God’s enemy…Satan.  We don’t need to score any points in the spiritual battle.  The spiritual game is over…we already have the victory.  



For our struggle (as believers in Christ) is not against flesh and blood (it is not against human beings)…our struggle is against the rulers…against the powers…against the dark forces of Satan’s world system…against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.


God’s enemy, Satan, wants to rob us of our mental serenity.  Where, in your 

life, are you experiencing Satan’s insidious attacks?  Sometimes doing good

means punching our enemy in the face, and the best way to do it is with the Word of God.  We’re studying five commands in the final passage of Romans, Chapter 12…beginning with Verses 9 and 10…



Let unconditional love be without hypocrisy.  Abhor what is evil…cling to what is good.


ROMANS 12:10 

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love…give preference to one another in honor…


Let’s see how God’s commands set us up to punch Satan in the face…figuratively!  Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 9a…


ROMANS 12:9a

Let unconditional love be without hypocrisy…


There is no greater punch in the face against evil than reflecting God’s unconditional love.  People wrong you and you love them anyway.  First John, Chapter 3, Verse 18 says…



Little children (believers in Christ), let us not love with word or with tongue…but let us love in deed and in truth.


How hard is it for us to look at our brothers with compassion when they are wronging us? Yet this approach to life is so freeing. We get knocked down…but we get up again…and we get right back in the battle…we turn the other cheek.  Matthew, Chapter 5, Verse 40…



If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt…and of course some do…let him have your coat also.


The Lord is describing selfless love.  It is genuine.  It is sincere.  It is not two faced.  It is without hypocrisy.  It is a choice.  As believers in Christ we have rights when we are wronged…yet God encourages us not to take them.  What greater good…what greater punch in the face can there be to our enemy than unconditional love toward those he uses to perpetrate his evil schemes?  Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 9b…


ROMANS 12:9b

Abhor what is evil…


Yesterday I was sharing some of the challenges of being a Pastor with the Deacons, and smoke was coming from Deacon Larry Collins’ ears.  I said, “What’s up Larry?”  He said, “I just HATE evil.”  Well so do I. Christianity and evil have no mixture. What greater punch in the face can we give to evil than refusing to participate in it…in fact, detesting it?! Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 9c…


ROMANS 12:9c

…cling to what is good.


This is what we mean by “good” in the title of today’s lesson…sometimes clinging to what is good means punching evil in the face.  How did the Lord Jesus Christ punch evil in the face?  He used good.  Matthew Chapter 4, Verses 1 to 4…



Then Jesus was led up by God the Holy Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.



And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry.



And the tempter (Satan) came and said to Jesus, “If You are the Son of God, and of course You are, command that these stones become bread.”



But the Lord Jesus Christ answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone…but man shall live on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’”


Jesus Christ punches evil in the face with “good” … three words …“It is written.”  He uses the Word of God as a punch in the ace to evil.  Clinging to what is good means clinging to the Word of God.  Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 10a…


ROMANS 12:10a 

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love…


As Christians, how we treat each other matters.  Charity begins at home.  The hardest part of being charitable at home is overlooking the faults of others as they proceed on their life journey.  We ask ourselves as we contemplate compassion…where is this person on the life journey?  All people make mistakes, especially other believers.  We are commanded to have a continuous affection for each other, even for those that wrong us.  Great marriages are made of this.  The world teaches us to discard each other after every mistake.  Yet there is no greater good than hanging in there with people who make mistakes, no matter what.


ROMANS 12:10b

…give preference to one another in honor…


It is honorable to “save the best seats” for other Christians.  Unconditional love is far superior to conditional love.  Everything Christians are commanded to do is far superior and far different than what the world actually does.  


The thing I admire most about the Lord is that He commands us to do things that work…things He has shown us by example.  He gave preference to us by leaving the comforts of a place exceeding and abundantly beyond anything we could ever ask or think…heaven…to pay for the sins of the world.  What an honorable thing the Lord did for us.  A friend of mine had a visitor is his home recently…and he was complaining a bit because he gave up his bed so the visitor could be comfortable.  He slept on the couch.  We all know how uncomfortable the couch can be.  And even though he wasn’t pleased with the stiff neck he woke up with, he had done the honorable thing.  He treated his guest with preference.  Do you give preference to those in your life, especially to your enemies who happen to be Christians?


Let’s take a five-minute break.



Five Minutes



Sometimes Doing Good Means Punching Someone in the Face


The best way to get is to give.  Giving in a kingdom that is always encouraging us to take and to hoard is a giant punch in the face to evil.  If you listen to this ministry…and Barah Ministries has a lot of “closet” listeners…give to the ministry.  You’ll be helping us distribute the gospel message and the Word of God all over the world, courtesy of the internet.  We really can use the help, especially in the dreaded summer months where our financial fortunes take a pounding…when your attention turns to summer fun and away from contribution.


Let’s welcome up Deacon Denny Goodall with this week’s offering message.



Deacon Denny Goodall




ROMANS 13:11

Do this…knowing the time…that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep…for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed.




Dave McClure, Instrumental



Sometimes Doing Good Means Punching Someone in the Face


One of the people who is good is our Heavenly Father…more than anyone, He is the One whose good punches evil right in the face…let’s hear Rich Mullins sing about our AWESOME GOD.



Be Occupied with the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ

Enjoy the Singing of His Praises



Rich Mullins


Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 9…one more command to look at…



Let unconditional love be without hypocrisy.  Abhor what is evil…CLING TO WHAT IS GOOD.


What’s good in your life? What makes the good in your life so good?  In my life what is good is the study of the Word of God.  What makes it good is that it is a compass…a spiritual ruder…that gives direction to my life…that steers my life like a rudder steers a boat…always pointing me in the right direction.  It throws me a lifeline when I feel like I am drowning.  Romans, Chapter 12, Verse 2…


ROMANS 12:2a

And do not be conformed to this world (by Satan, by his cosmic system of thought, and by the flesh resident in you)…instead, keep on being transformed by God the Holy Spirit…through the renewing of your mind (by studying the Word of God)…


ROMANS 12:2b

…so that you may see clearly…through the testing of experience…what the will of God is…and the will of God is that which is GOOD and that which is acceptable and that which is perfect.


Cling to what is good.


Have you ever been punched in the face?  I have…literally…both from intent, and unintentionally.  A punch in the face, especially if it is in the jaw area, is staggering.  It robs you of balance, it takes away your sense of direction, and it hurts.


Cling to what is good.

Most of the trials we deal with in life are from the source of emotion as it seeks to overrule the mentality.  Emotion punches us in the face.  We expect to be treated well, yet it never happens.  We suffer staggering blows, especially at the hands of those closest to us.   In First Timothy, Chapter 1, Verse 18, the apostle Paul puts his arm around his protégé Timothy and encourages him this way…



This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight…



…keeping faith and a good conscience, which some believers in Christ have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.


The first chapter of First Timothy is a love letter from a mentor to a protégé.  Please take time to read it.  It is magical.  The focus of the two verses above is good…and it is interesting to see what Paul thinks is good for Timothy.  Good is FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT.  Ah! Sometimes doing good means punching someone in the face!  Literally Paul is telling the timid Timothy to “war the good warfare.”


The apostle Paul is at the end of his life.  God has made it clear to Paul that he will not be getting out of prison this time. He is about to die.  The wisdom Paul passes along in the two Timothy letters…letters to a future Pastor of the church at Ephesus…contain the most sound wisdom of any of Paul’s letters.


Cling to what is good.


The enemy of God, Satan, wants us to focus on what is bad…what is bad in the world and what is bad in us.  When we do that we focus on him, because he is bad.  Instead we are commanded to do the opposite…to abhor thoughts of what is bad and to cling to thoughts about what is good…and what is good is every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God…the Word of God. 


Good is God’s highest and best.  I can’t tell you how many times people have said to me, “Rory…I just don’t think I can live up to your standards.”  I always laugh inside.  I don’t have any standards.  But God does. And he always expects us to live to the highest and best standard.  His standard.


Early in my life I was obsessive with introspection.  I have learned through going inside of me, that I find nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh.  All my attempts to correct the flesh have failed.  But God has high standards for me…standards for good…and I find when I do exactly what He asks, it always works and it is never hard.


When we want to do the good that punches evil in the face, we have a fire in our bellies.  A good Christians is one who is “on fire” in this world…a good Christian is not the one who settles…the Christian who has given up…the Christian who is whining and complaining about how the world is.  We know how the world is.  It is evil.  And we are not of this world even though we are in this world.  God wants us to elevate our eyes.  Colossians, Chapter 3, Verses 1 and 2…



Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ (and all believers in Christ have been), keep on seeking the things above (cling to what is good)…seek the things where Christ is…the One who is seated at the right hand of God the Father.



Set your mind on the things above…not on the things that are on earth.


Hebrews, Chapter 12, Verse 2a…



…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith…


It’s not what happens to you in this world…it’s how you respond to it.  What are we to do when we encounter evil?  We are to cling to what is good.


God’s good, reflected in me, is a fire to “press on to the mark for the upward call of God in Christ Jesus”…to keep on fighting the good fight of faith in the face of all adversity…to do good by punching adversity in the face…to cling to what is good. 


As our lives go on they get harder not easier.  We weary of the battle.  Paul never did.  He didn’t retire.  He kept on fighting the good fight.  The good fight is fought, not on our arses…but standing…we sit…we walk…we take

a stand…and what do we stand for?  


We cling to what is good.


We come to these lessons to learn what is good.  We get battered every day in the world, and these lessons offer us the spiritual rudder…the standard of elevation…a reminder of what is good.


Cling to good with all your might.  Sometimes doing good means punching someone in the face.  My best to you as you continue to fight the good fight.



Make the Most Important Decision of Your Life


The closing moments of our study are for the benefit of anyone who does not have a personal relationship with the Sovereign God of the Universe, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We want you to know that GOD WANTS YOU. 


On the day before Thanksgiving in 1987, the news on the radio in my hometown, Chicago, was quite shocking.  Our beloved Mayor, Harold Washington, was dead.  He was in a meeting in his fifth floor office at Chicago’s City Hall.  He slumped forward, his face rested gently on the desk, and in a moment,  he was dead from a massive heart attack.


I can remember the day as vividly as if it were yesterday.  What I remember most was wondering what it must be like to get up in the morning, and as you’re getting dressed, not knowing that in a few short hours you would be dead.


All of us will die physically one day.  That is hardly at issue.  What we don’t know is when we will close our eyes in this life.  My concern is that you may be one of the people who is walking around today unprepared for this reality.


I was talking to a young man in Spain recently who is quite unprepared.  I asked him if he is a Christian.  He said, “No.”  I asked him why not.  He said, “To tell you the truth, I don’t even think about God.”  I appreciated his candor.  I told him, it would be wise for you to think about God all the time.  He asked why, and I’ll share the things with you that I shared with him.  This is especially for those of you who don’t have a relationship with God.  First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verse 22a says…



For all in union with Adam at physical birth (and that is every human who comes to earth) are set to die the second death in the Lake of Fire…


You were born physically alive, yet spiritually dead.  That’s bad news.  Worse news is that you may not have even known this.  The good news is that the Lord Jesus Christ paved the way to get you out of the predicament.  First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verse 22b says…



…so also all those in union with Christ (all believers in Christ) will be made spiritually alive.


Do you want to be saved? Do you want to spend all eternity in a relationship with the Sovereign God of the Universe?  Acts, Chapter 16, Verse 31 says…


ACTS 16:31 

“Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and everyone in your household who also believes.”


Right now, right where you sit, you can spend the gift of faith given to you by God…and you can us this faith to be saved…Ephesians, Chapter 2, Verses 8 and 9…



For by God the Father’s grace you have been saved through faith (in Christ for salvation)…and that grace and that faith and that salvation are not from the source of yourselves…it is the gift of God the Father…



…so being saved is not as a result of your works (deeds you have done in self-righteousness)…so that no one may boast (about saving himself).


Right now, the Lord Jesus Christ wants to save you.  Funny thing about the young man I was talking to…he knew what faith is…he said to me, “It sounds like you’re saying if I put my confidence in Jesus Christ I will be saved forever.”  It’s exactly what I am saying.  Faith is placing your confidence in the object of your faith.  John, Chapter 3, Verse 36…


JOHN 3:36

“He who believes in the Son has the resurrection life right at that moment… but he who does not obey the command to believe in the Son will not see the resurrection life…instead the wrath of God (the Lake of Fire) abides on him.”


How can you get to heaven? Right where you sit, RIGHT NOW, you can tell God the Father that you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that is the moment of eternal life for you.  John, Chapter 14, Verse 6…


JOHN 14:6

Jesus said to the doubting apostle, Thomas, “I am the way (to salvation), and I am the truth (through the Word of God), and I am the resurrection life…and no one comes to God the Father (in heaven) but through believing in Me.”


Won’t you join me in heaven? If you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ right now you will.


Mayor Harold Washington had no idea that he would not celebrate Thanksgiving in 1987…at least not on earth.  Yet he was somewhere.  If you choose to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, you’ll have no concern about the moment you close your eyes in this life.  You’ll be in heaven.  You’ll have no chance to go to the Lake of Fire.


Here’s June Murphy to invite you to this “so great salvation” with her song...WALK IN THE LIGHT.




June Murphy



Let us pray...


Thanks for coming!

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Thanks for listening!






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