Romans 1: If the World is So Bad, Why Aren't Christians Evangelizing?

ROM-457-240117 - length: 74:59 - taught on Jan, 17 2024

Class Outline:


This world could use a "faith-lift".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you're in the resident congregation, turn off your electronic devices and put them away. Let this be a place where you aren't distracted by the world.

 

Welcome To

BARAH MINISTRIES

 

Rory Clark

Pastor-Teacher

 

Good Morning!

 

Welcome to Barah Ministries…an intimate, local Christian Church with a worldwide impact.  My name is Pastor Rory Clark.  Thanks for listening to this Bible lesson!

 

OPENING AGENDA

 

You may be wondering some things about Barah Ministries…

 

Who is the God we worship?

What is our source of truth?

Who is our enemy?

 

Charles Ryrie, one of the great Bible teachers of all time, reminds us…

 

CHARLES RYRIE ON THE BIBLE

 

The Bible is the greatest of all books…to study it is the noblest of all pursuits…to understand it is the highest of all goals.

 

Amen?  Why?  Because in it, we learn about our God, and we learn about our enemy and these truths must be unceasingly before us as a reminder of why we are Christians.

 

Who is the God We Worship?

 

We worship a Triune Godhead.  There is One God who expresses Himself to mankind as three separate, distinct, co-equal, co-infinite, co-eternal Persons…God the Father…God the Son…and God the Holy Spirit.

 

GOD THE FATHER is the author of the Triune Godhead's plan for all creatures.  God The Father loves believers in Christ so much that we are the target of his blessings, not his wrath.  Ephesians, Chapter 1, Verse 3…

 

EPHESIANS 1:3

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ…who has blessed us believers in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places…for those of us in union with Christ…

 

Even when we were His enemy, God the Father loved us unconditionally. That's why He bothered to send His Son to save us.

 

GOD THE SON (the Lord) volunteered to execute God the Father's plan.  The Lord loves those who need Him most…Luke, Chapter 19, Verse 10…

 

LUKE 19:10

"For the Son of Man has come from heaven to earth to seek and to save that which was lost."

 

There is ONE AND ONLY ONE WAY to heaven.  Invest your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, asking Him to save you, and you WILL be saved.  Jesus is the Christ…declared in advance to be the Jewish Messiah…and by believing in Him, you instantly have the resurrection life…eternal lifein His Name because Jesus Christ is God.

 

We worship GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT.  He is our Mentor and Teacher, a guide who is the rudder of a Christian's life.  God the Holy Spirit gives voice to believers in Christ…He speaks through us…Romans, Chapter 8, Verse 16…

 

ROMANS 8:16

God the Holy Spirit Himself testifies with our human spirit that we are children of God (we are the "born again ones"… the spiritually alive ones…through the baptism of God the Holy Spirit)...

 

What is Our Source of Truth?

 

As Christians, we can develop a deep, intimate, and personal relationship with the

entire Godhead through the study of THE WORD OF GOD…THE BIBLE.  Psalm 119, Verse 105 says…

 

PSALM 119:105

Your word (Lord) is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path.

 

The Lord will direct your path straight.  The best thing you can do for yourself every day is to spend some time reading, studying, and reflecting on God's Word.

DAILY!  It changes your mind!

 

Who is Our Enemy?

 

GOD HAS AN ENEMY…Satan…whom God made 'the ruler of this world' for a finite period.  He is the enemy of believers in Christ as well.  Yet, if you know your enemy, you need not fear the result of one hundred battles, according to Sun Tzu in The Art of War.  There is warfare going on inside of us, instigated by our flesh.  The apostle Paul puts it well in Romans, Chapter 7, Verse 18…

 

ROMANS 7:18

For I (Paul) know that nothing good dwells in me…that is, in my FLESH…for the willingness to do good…the wish to do good…IS present in me…but the actual doing of the good is not present in me.

 

Satan uses the flesh as his inside agent…tempting us with intriguing but damaging and meaningless offers that hurt us and waste our time.  Ignore him…not in your own power…but in the power of God the Holy Spirit…Galatians, Chapter 5, Verse 17…

 

GALATIANS 5:17

For the flesh sets its desire against God the Holy Spirit…and God the Holy Spirit sets His desire against the flesh…for these two are in opposition to one another… so that you believers in Christ may not do whatever you please.

 

Who always wins?  The indwelling God, the Holy Spirit.  Let Him do all the things you can't do when the enemy tempts you.

 

TODAY'S BIBLE LESSON

If the World is So Bad, Why Aren't Christians Evangelizing?

 

LESSON INTRODUCTION

 

Recently, a Christian friend was talking about the world… Satan's kingdom.  He pointed out all the machinations he sees in the world that are leading us toward one world government, one world religion, and one world currency. It's unfolding right before our eyes, as predicted in the Bible.  No surprise.  Regularly, Christians are talking about how "the world is going to hell in a handbasket."

 

The world has ALWAYS been horrible under Satan's rulership.  A handbasket has no handles and is fragile, and anything in it deteriorates rapidly.  Yes. That's the world.

 

My friend asks, "What are Christians doing about it?  Why are Christians sitting passively by, just watching and complaining?" The apostle Peter has the answer… First Peter, Chapter 4, Verse 10…

 

FIRST PETER 4:10

As each believer in Christ has received a special (spiritual) gift (from God the Holy Spirit)…keep on ministering it by serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

 

What are Christians to do?  We are to evangelize, sharing the grace of God for salvation with others.  In the next passage of Romans, Chapter 1,we'll see why the apostle Paul is delivering the gospel message to believers in Christ in Rome rather than sharing it with unbelievers.  In today's lesson,we'll learn about our obligation to the God who extended His grace to us free of charge so we could be saved.

 

OPENING SONG INTRODUCTION

 

Let's hear some music!  In First Peter, Chapter 2, Verse 9, the apostle Peter reminds us believers in Christ that we are God's property…we are the Bride of Christ…He is our Groom…we are the Body of Christ…He is the head…Peter says…

 

FIRST PETER 2:9

…you believers in Christ are a chosen race…a royal priesthood…a holy

nation…a people for God the Father's own possession…so that you may proclaim theexcellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light…

 

June Murphy reminds us who we are as well in her song YOU OWN ME.

 

MUSIC

OPENING SONG

Let'sSing the Lord's Praises

 

YOU OWN ME

June Murphy

 

OPENING PRAYER

Let us pray...

 

We're grateful,Heavenly Father,for the privilege of studying Your absolute truth...the Word of God…

 

Father, thank you for the Word of God, which is relevant yesterday, today, and forever…thank you that the Word of God going forth never comes back void…thankyou that the Bible is life-changing… it's a two-edged sword when God the Holy Spirit leads us believers in Christ on the offensive…and it's a shield when we are on defense against our enemy, the devil…

 

…as we listen to the lesson today, help us to understand the Word through the enabling power of God the Holy Spirt, and help us apply it to the unforeseen circumstances that will beset us in the coming week…help us use it for the opportunities God will give us this week as well…

 

…we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ's name...Amen.

 

TODAY'S BIBLE LESSON

If the World is So Bad, Why Aren't Christians Evangelizing?

 

LESSON PART ONE

 

We continue our study of the first chapter of Romans.  Here is the structure of Romans Chapter One…

 

ROMANS CHAPTER ONE

 

The Salutation (Verses 1 to 7)

 

An Affirmation (Verses 8 to 13)

 

The Main Message (Verses 14 to 17)

 

The Indictment Against the Whole Human Race (Verses 18 to 32)

 

Let's move into the second and third passages of chapter one for today's lesson.  First, let's hear the passages, and then we'll study them verse by verse…Romans, Chapter 1, Verses 8 to 17…

 

ROMANS 1:8

First, I thank my God the Father in prayer…through Jesus Christ's name…for all of you believers in Christ in Rome…because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world (all over the Roman Empire).

 

ROMANS 1:9

For God the Father…whom I (Paul) serve in my human spirit in the preaching of the gospel of His Son (the Lord Jesus Christ) is my witness as to how unceasingly I make mention of you believers in Rome in intercessory prayer…

 

ROMANS 1:10

…always in my prayers making a request (with a petition for self as well) … if

perhaps now at last by the will of God, I may succeed in coming to visit you.

 

ROMANS 1:11

For I (Paul) long to see you believers in Rome so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you…that you may be established…

 

ROMANS 1:12

…that is, that I (Paul) may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us encouraged by the other's faith, both yours and mine.

 

ROMANS 1:13

I do not want you to be unaware…brethren…you believers in Christ in Rome…that often I have planned to come to you (and have been prevented so far even though I wantto come) so that I may obtain some fruit among you also, even as I obtain fruit among the rest of the Gentiles.

 

ROMANS 1:14

I AM UNDER OBLIGATION both to Greeks (people who speak Greek…the "civilized") and to barbarians (people who don't speak Greek…the "uncivilized")…both to the wise (believers in Christ) and to the foolish (unbelievers).

 

ROMANS 1:15

So, for my part, I am EAGER to preach the gospel as a minister to you also who are in Rome.

 

ROMANS 1:16

For I (Paul) am not ashamed of the gospel of God the Father…for the gospel is the power of God the Father for salvation to everyone who believes…to the Jew first (chronologically)…and also to the Greek (the Gentiles).

 

ROMANS 1:17

For in the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ the righteousness of God the Father is revealed, from faith (in the Lord for salvation) to faith (in the Lord for all things)… as it is written, "BUT THE RIGHTEOUS MAN (any believer in Christ) SHALL LIVE BY FAITH (by placing his confidence in Jesus Christ for salvation)."

 

In the second passage of Romans, Chapter 1,Paul expresses spiritual affection for a group of people, most of whom he has never met.  He certainly had friends in the Rome churches…Priscilla and Aquila, who risked their lives for him…and the beloved Persis…all three of these believers Paul mentions later in the letter to the Romans…and even others in Rome had labored and suffered with Paul.But for the most part, Paul did not know the people in the Roman churches, and they did not know him.

 

Let'stake a look at the second passage of this letter verse by verse, as Paul expresses his pleasure in what's going on in the churches in Rome, beginning at Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 8…

 

ROMANS 1:8

First, I (Paul) keep on thanking my God the Father in prayer…through Jesus Christ's name…for all of you believers in Christ in Rome…because your faith keeps on being proclaimed throughout the whole world (all over the Roman Empire).

 

These Christians were doing the most powerful thing they can do to affect the

world… they're evangelizing!  They were sharing a gospel message that affected them so profoundly…they were saved!  Today, perhaps, we wouldn't be so impressed if we heard the gospel message had been broadcast all around the world.  The internet makes such a feat easy.

 

In the first century,there was no internet, no phones, no telegraph, no texts, no cars…just word of mouth.  Through the determination of a group of people powered by God, the Holy Spirit and their feet in a place that was hostile to their message, theevangelism of the believers in the Rome churches spread effectually to the whole world.  As was said in the day…all roads lead to Rome…well, the same roads lead out of Rome to the rest of the world.

 

Evangelism would have been called a miracle, especially because the spreading of the gospel was being done in a pagan world that was hostile to this upstart called Christianity….and it would be a miracle if not for the omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit.  His power is limitless.

 

See the ignorance of people who say, "Yeah, but what if someonedidn't ever hear of Jesus Christ?" An omnipotent God has the power to make Himself known regardless of the media of transmission.  He can even get rocks to speak!  The Lord evangelizes the whole world in a language and in a way they understand, regardless of gender, personality, or intelligence level.  The Spirit uses believers in Christ as His mouthpiece.  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 9…

 

ROMANS 1:9

For God the Father…whom I (Paul) serve in my human spirit in the preaching of the gospel of His Son (the Lord Jesus Christ) is my witness as to how UNCEASINGLY I make mention of you believers in Rome in intercessory prayer…

 

Paul empowers the saints in Rome through prayer.  They were in such a hostile environment that they needed the protection of prayer every day.  Today, we aren't in such a dangerous environment.  So why are we reluctant to share the gospel message?

 

Paul mentions serving the Godhead in his spirit.  The Bible is the one place that makes it clear that believers in Christ have a body, a soul, and a spirit.  First Thessalonians, Chapter 5, Verse 23…

 

FIRST THESSALONIANS 5:23

May God the Father himself…the God of peace…sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Believers in Christ don't have to worry about what to say when we evangelize.  The power of the indwelling God, the Holy Spirit, will give us the words!  Romans, Chapter 8, Verse 16…

 

ROMANS 8:16

God the Holy Spirit Himself testifies with our human spirit that we are children of God (the "born again ones")...

 

God the Holy Spirit specializes in making "born again ones."

 

For those who think the Bible was written by a bunch of men who were interested in giving their opinions, the idea of a human spirit refutes it.  God, the Holy Spirit, speaks to the human spirit of believers in Christ and tells them verbatim what to say or what to write.  If you are worried about what you are going to say when you evangelize, don't.  God the Holy Spirit will speak through you and for youfor the benefit of those to whom you speak.  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 10…

 

ROMANS 1:10

…always in my prayers making a request (petition for self) … if perhaps now at last by the will of God, I may succeed in coming to visit you.

 

The greatest way to affect the life of another is through prayer.  Who is praying for you?

 

Paul wanted to see the Roman believers face-to-face, but God had him on a different, very busy agenda.  It didn't keep Paul from desperately wanting to meet this group of believers.  The second-best way to interact with them was through the writing of this letter, which the Lord did sanction.  Unfortunately, Paul's first visit to Rome was as a prisoner.  Fortunately, from a prison cell, he wrote letters to the Ephesians, the Philippians, the Colossians, and Philemon.

 

Why did Paul want to see the believers in Rome?  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 11…

 

 

ROMANS 1:11

For I (Paul) long to see you believers in Rome so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you…that you may be stabilized (in your faith)…

 

The gift Paul is talking about is not a spiritual gift…these believers got that from God the Holy Spirit at the moment of their salvation.  He was talking about the gift that comes from being with him.

 

Paul could lend spiritual insights which might remove any doubts they have about their fate in light of the persecution they had to endure in Rome.  This was a time when a great sporting event was going to the Coliseum to see Christians eaten by lions. The Roman emperor Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus had a "field day" with Christians…some were crucified, some were thrown to hungry wild animals in the Coliseum, and others were burned alive as living torches (Nero says, "They said they were the light of the world!")  There is a special place in hell for Nero…undoubtedly, he is being used to light his section of The Lake of Fire.  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 12…

 

ROMANS 1:12

…that is, that I (Paul) may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us encouraged by the other's faith, both yours and mine.

 

How many times have you heard people say, "I don't need to go to church to worship God." Perhaps not.  There is a case for going to church…Hebrews, Chapter 10, Verses 24 and 25…

 

HEBREWS 10:24

…let us believers in Christ consider how to stimulate one another to unconditional love and good deeds…

 

HEBREWS 10:25

…not forsaking our own assembling together…as is the habit of some…but encouraging one another…and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

 

There is something really special about being around other believers in Christ. That's what Paul is highlighting when he talks about his desire to be with the members of the churches at Rome.  He is edified by them as much as they are edified by him…Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 13…

 

ROMANS 1:13

I do not want you to be unaware…brethren…you believers in Rome…that often I have planned to come to you (and have been prevented so far even though I wantto come) so that I may obtain some fruit among you also (a harvest)…even as I obtain fruit among the rest of the Gentiles.

 

The role of a Pastor like Paul is to equip saints…believers in Christ…for the work of service…so that God the Holy Spirit can display His fruit in these believers.  The volume of Paul's work hindered him from going to Rome, but as he revealed in another letter, Satan hindered him too…First Thessalonians, Chapter 2, Verses 17 and 18…

 

FIRST THESSALONIANS 2:17

But we, brethren, having been taken away from you for a short while—in person, not in spirit—were all the more eager with great desire to see your face.

 

FIRST THESSALONIANS 2:18

For we wanted to come to you—I, Paul, more than once—and yet Satan hindered us.

 

The kingdom of death and darkness is always throwing a monkey wrench into our plans…yet God the Holy Spirit who contends for us…ALWAYS prevails.  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 14…

 

ROMANS 1:14

I (PAUL) AM UNDER OBLIGATION (a debt I owe to God for His graciousness) both to Greeks (people who speak Greek…the "civilized") and to barbarians (people who don't speak Greek…the "uncivilized")…both to the wise (believers in Christ) and to the foolish (unbelievers).

 

The Pastor's charge is to preach to everyone…WHOSOEVER.  Pastors use the gospel message to spread the good news wherever they can.

 

Are Pastors to evangelize alone?  No!  As believers in Christ, we have the same charge as Pastors.  We evangelize to those we think are believers to equip them to evangelize.  We evangelize to the unbelieving world so they can benefit from the grace we have been given by God through the expression of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation.  The gospel message is powerful!  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 15…

 

ROMANS 1:15

So, for my part, I (Paul) am EAGER to preach the gospel as a minister to you also who are in Rome.

 

Paul was preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ in a place where the emperors considered themselves to be deities worthy of worship.  As is true for all Satan's disciples…you worship, or you die. Satan's true character comes forth…he is both a tyrant and a dictator and a hater of everyone who is not with him.  Believers in Christ, as lights in the kingdom of darkness, must share the light of the gospel of Christ and be eager to do so…as is Paul…because of the impact our light has on

the darkness.  If the world is "going to hell in a handbasket,"  let's be the light that shines on the path to heaven.

 

When we return from the break,we'll take the offering, and then we'll hear Paul give the believers in Christ in Rome their real charge…a way to pay off the debt we owe to God and to others for the gift of His salvation.

 

FIVE-MINUTE BREAK

NOBODY

Casting Crowns

 

TODAY'S BIBLE LESSON

If the World is So Bad, Why Aren't Christians Evangelizing?

 

OFFERING INTRODUCTION

 

One of the great pleasures of life is givingtime, talent, and treasure to those who want to learn about the Lord Jesus Christfree of charge.  True ministry involves giving, not receiving.  Yet it's an equal pleasure being given to in return.  In Philippians, Chapter 4, Verse 17, the apostle Paul says…

 

PHILIPPIANS 4:17

Not that I seek the gift (for myself…even though I appreciate it) … but I seek the profit that increases to your account (from God when you give).

 

You're invited to join in giving…to make giving to Barah Ministries part of your weekly routine.God blesses your giving and makes it have an impact in places all over the worldwith people you know nothing about.  Simultaneously, God gives abundant credit back to your account.  If you listen to Barah Ministries, we appreciate it when you contribute to Barah Ministries.  No amount is too small.

 

Let's welcome up Deacon Denny Goodall with one of his always inspiring offering messages.

 

THE OFFERING

Deacon Denny Goodall

 

OFFERING VERSE

 

ROMANS 12:17

Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.

 

OFFERING SONG

THERE IS NONE LIKE YOU

Instrumental Version

 

TODAY'S BIBLE LESSON

If the World is So Bad, Why Aren't Christians Evangelizing?

 

LESSON PART TWO

 

Welcome back!  Romans, Chapter 1, Verses 14 and 15…

 

ROMANS 1:14

I (Paul…and all believers in Christ) AM UNDER OBLIGATION…both to Greeks (people who speak Greek…the "civilized") and to barbarians (people who don't speak Greek…the "uncivilized")…both to the wise (believers in Christ) and to the foolish (unbelievers).

 

ROMANS 1:15

So, for my part, I am EAGER to preach the gospel as a minister to you also who are in Rome.

 

Are you eager to share the gospel of Christ? Here's what our God wants…the Master wants First Timothy, Chapter 2, Verses 3 and 4…

 

FIRST TIMOTHY 2:3

This is what is good and acceptable in the sight of the God who is our Savior…the Lord Jesus Christ…

 

FIRST TIMOTHY 2:4

…who desires for all men to be saved and who wants all men to come to the knowledge of the truth.

 

In Second Peter, Chapter 3, Verse 9, the Master says…

 

SECOND PETER 3:9

The Lord is not slow about His promise of salvation, as some accuse Him of...instead, He is patient toward unbelievers…NOT WISHING FOR ANYONE TO PERISH IN THE LAKE OF FIRE…but wishing for all to come to repentance (a voluntary change of mind about having a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ).

 

An edict from Tiberius Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus…the Roman emperor from AD 41 to AD 54, decreed that Jews were not allowed in Rome for ten years because they were causing chaos.  After ten years, he lifted the ban.  Yet, it was still hard to be a Christian in Rome.  James, the Lord's half-brother, had just been beheaded by Herod.  And even though Paul had been abused, he still wanted to come to Rome.  Why?  He saw himself as a debtor.  He felt he owed God something for the grace given to him through the gospel message.  Galatians, Chapter 2, Verse 20…

 

GALATIANS 2:20a

"I (as a believer in Jesus…the Christ…the Jewish Messiah) have been crucified with the Christ…and it is no longer I who live…but Christ lives indwelling me…

 

GALATIANS 2:20b

…and the life which I now live in my physical body,I live by faith alone in the Son of God alone…faith in the Lord…Jesus…the Christ (the Jewish Messiah)…the One who loved me unconditionally and who gave Himself up as a sin substitute for me."

 

As believers in Christ, we are debtors, too.  We owe it to God, but more to others, to share the good news of the Lord's salvation offer.  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 16…

 

ROMANS 1:16

For I (Paul) am not ashamed of the gospel of God the Father…for the gospel is the power of God the Father resulting in salvation to everyone who believes…to the Jew first (chronologically)…and also to the Greek (the Gentiles).

 

Sharing the gospel with others is the ultimate gift to them…the gift of Jesus…the Christ…the Jewish Messiah…the gift of His Word, which is absolute truth…the gift of the gospel message, which contains the secret of being saved for ALL ETERNITY.  Who do you love?  Have you sat them down to give them the gospel?  Who are the unbelievers in your periphery?  Do you care enough about them to give them the gospel?

 

Salvation, of course, does not come from man.  It comes from a God who is omnipotent…who has the power to save.  What is salvation?  Get this… here's what Alexa says…one of the few times she has ever been knowledgeable about anything concerning our God.  Alexa says salvation is…

 

SALVATION

The lost being saved from sin and its consequences such as spiritual death and separation from a relationship with God…achieved through faith in Jesus Christ alone…placing confidence in Him and His sacrifice at the Cross…it is the reconciliation of a broken relationship between God and man…it is the ultimate demonstration by God of His unconditional love and His power of redemption for all those who choose to believe.

 

Beautiful!

 

The apostle Paul, who was considered to be weak, homely, and not a very good orator, dared to send the gospel message right into the belly of the beast…Rome…a letter that is a flaming arrow from the Lord's own mouth.  The arrow went into the beast who allowed the crucifixion of an innocent man… Jesus…at the hands of Pontius Pilate…a man who had a complete disregard for the consequences of his actions toward Jesus.  His wife warned him, and he didn't listen.

 

The gospel message is the ultimate magnet.  It makes people gravitate toward it with curiosity, even those who despise it…like Herod and Nero.  They knew the gospel and the significance of it.  If they didn't, they wouldn't have attacked it with such vigor…killing every male child under two years old in the area…and using Christians for entertainment and sport by publicly murdering them in the town square and at the Coliseum.

 

What is the power of God for salvation?  That the Lord, God the Son, took on the form of true humanity…he lived a sinless life, fulfilling every jot and tittle of the Mosaic Law. Hewas crucified, He died, He was buried, and on the third day,He was resurrected from the dead.  Then He showed Himself as the living God He is…after being resurrected from the dead…for forty days, silencing all the doubters and edifying all the believers throughout the Roman empire.

 

Imagined how shocked the Roman officials were that a fervor began to arise among Christians when they saw with their own eyes that their Redeemer lives and that He accomplished a strategic victory at the Cross, which sealed Satan's doom.

 

The Cross is the ultimate act of love for people who did not deserve it and could not earn it.  Who else embraces people with a resume of sin and evil, not holding any of it against you?  Only God.  First Corinthians, Chapter 1, verse 18…

 

FIRST CORINTHIANS 1:18

For the Word…especially the Word of the Cross…is foolishness to those who are perishing (unbelievers)…but to us,believers in Christwho are being saved…the Word of the Cross is the power of God the Father (divine omnipotence in action).

 

What's the significance of the gospel message?  Romans, Chapter 1, Verse 17…

 

ROMANS 1:17

For in the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ the righteousness of God the Father is revealed…from faith (in the Lord for salvation rather than works) to faith (in the Lord for all things for all who choose to invest their faith in Him)…as it is written, "BUT THE RIGHTEOUS MAN (any believer in Christ) SHALL LIVE BY FAITH (by placing his confidence in Jesus Christ for salvation)."

 

You hear the gospel message…you exercise faith, a gift from God and not of yourselves…and your faith is credited to your account as righteousness…just as it happened for Abram in Genesis, Chapter 15, Verse 6…

 

GENESIS 15:6

Then Abram believed in the Lord (God the Son), and the Lord credited it to Abram's account as righteousness.

We hear.  We believe.  We are saved.The Lord's sacrifice at the Cross atoned for the sins of mankind.  What is atonement?

 

ATONEMENT

To repair something that is broken, as in the relationship between God and man. To make amends for wrongdoing (also known as expiation).

 

When you exercise faith in Christ, God the Father's righteousness is revealed.  How?  He keeps His promises.  Satan, the enemy of God, wants you believers in Christ to doubt that the Lord keeps His promises so you will be unsure of the reality of your salvation once and for all time.  But John, Chapter 10, Verse 28 says…

 

JOHN 10:28

"…I (the Lord Jesus Christ) give eternal life to believers in Christ…and they will never perish…and no one will snatch them out of My hand."

 

When you believe in Christ, your guilt is to be put away forever!!!!First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verses 3 and 4…

 

FIRST CORINTHIANS 15:3

For I (the apostle Paul) delivered to you as of primary importance the gospel message I also received from God…that it was Jesus Christ who died for our sins according to the Old Testament Scriptures…

 

FIRST CORINTHIANS 15:4

…and that He was buried…and that He was raised from the dead on the third day…according to the Old Testament Scriptures…

 

Jesus died for our sins…He was buried…He was resurrected from the dead on the third day…He made Himself manifest to many believers…He ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of the Majesty…God the Father…on high.  We, believers in Christ…who are in union with Christ…sit there with Him…Hebrews, Chapter 1, Verse 3…

 

HEBREWS 1:3

And the Lord Jesus Christ is the radiance of God the Father's glory, and He is the exact representation of God the Father's essence (co-equal…co-infinite…co-eternal), and the Lord Jesus Christ upholds all things by the word of His power. When the Lord Jesus Christ had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty (God the Father) on high…

 

Because we are in union with the Lord Jesus Christ, we believers in Christ sit there with Him until we are resurrected in glory, when we will know the meaning of all the Lord did for us.

 

Is the world "going to hell in a handbasket?" Absolutely.  You, as a believer in Christ, can do something about it.  As a debtor to God for your "so great" salvation, you can pay the gospel message forward.  You can help believers share the good news.  You can give the good news to unbelievers and pray for God to save them.

This is why Paul wanted to go to Rome.  He wanted to edify those who were preaching the gospel in the belly of the beast…Rome. Let's stop complaining about the world and join the apostle Paul in incessantly sharing the good news of the gospel message with everyone we meet.

 

THE GOSPEL MESSAGE

The Good News of Jesus Christ's Salvation Offer to the Human Race

 

The closing moments of this lesson could be the ten most important minutes of your life. You'll be introduced to the good news concerning how you can spend all eternity in heaven when you close your eyes in this life.  We want you to know that…

 

GOD WANTS YOU!

He Wants You Make the Most Important Decision of Your Life

 

There is a Person at the core of Christianity…the Creator of Christianity… who cares about YOU.  His name is Jesus Christ.  He is the Sovereign God of the Universe…He is the truth…He is the light…He is God…and He wants a relationship with YOU!  This is your chance to choose to have a personal relationship with Him.

 

Your problem is that you were born a sinner in God's eyes.  Sinners need a Savior.  The Savior of the whole world is Jesus Christ, and He wants you to be saved…First Timothy, Chapter 2, Verses 3 and 4 say…

 

FIRST TIMOTHY 2:3

This is what is good and acceptable in the sight of the God who is our Savior…the Lord Jesus Christ…

 

FIRST TIMOTHY 2:4

…who desires for all men to be saved and who wants all men to come to the knowledge of the truth.

 

You will spend eternity in the Lake of Fire at physical death if you choose not to believe in Him.

 

There is only ONE WAY to get to heaven…by placing your faith in Jesus Christ to save you…by trusting what He has done at the Cross on your behalf.  If you're going to place your confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ for your eternal salvation, you probably should get to know Him.  While there are many things to know about Him, here are the critical few things.  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 (eternal life) …and no one comes to God the Father (in heaven) but through believing in Me."

 

The Lord Jesus Christ is YOUR CREATOR…John, Chapter 1, Verse 3…

 

JOHN 1:3

All things came into being through the Lord (God the Son)…and apart fromHim, nothing came into being that has come into being.

 

The Lord Jesus Christ loves you UNconditionally…First John, Chapter 4, Verse 8…

 

FIRST JOHN 4:8

The one who does not love unconditionally does not know the Lord…for the LordISunconditional love (it's His Person and His identity).

 

You don't have to impress Him.  You don't have to clean up your life to be part of his kingdom.

 

The Lord Jesus Christ has forgiven ALL of your sins…past… present…and future…Isaiah, Chapter 43, Verse 25…

 

ISAIAH 43:25

"I, even I (the Lord), am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake…and I will NOT remember your sins."

 

The Lord doesn't want you to work to please Him…Romans, Chapter 11, Verse 6 says…

 

ROMANS 11:6

But if salvation is by grace, and of course it is, it is no longer on the basis of your works…otherwise grace is no longer grace.

 

The Lord Jesus Christ doesn't want you to go to the Lake of Fire…Second Peter, Chapter 3, Verse 9…

 

SECOND PETER 3:9

The Lord is not slow about His promise of salvation, as some accuse Him of…instead, He is patient toward unbelievers…not wishing for any of you to perish (in the Lake of Fire) but for all of you to come to repentance (a change of mind about having a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ).

 

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Perfect Person to lead you to salvation.

 

God's graciousness offers you a plan to be saved as a free gift.  Ephesians, Chapter 2, Verses 8 and 9…

 

EPHESIANS 2:8

For by God'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…

 

EPHESIANS 2:9

…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 savinghimself).

 

So, how can you get to heaven?  This loving, forgiving, patient God who wants you to be saved is willing to save you right this minute.  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 foryou.  Acts, Chapter 16, Verse 31…

 

ACTS 16:31

"Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved by God, you and everyone in your household who also believes."

 

So, heed the warning and accept the invitation in 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."

 

Who is this God who saves you?  The apostle Paul describes the Lord Jesus

Christ in First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verses 3 and 4…

 

FIRST CORINTHIANS 15:3

For I (Paul) delivered to you as of primary importance the gospel message I alsoreceived from God…that it was Jesus Christ who died for our sins according tothe Old Testament Scriptures…

 

FIRST CORINTHIANS 15:4

…and that He was buried…and He was raised from the dead on the third day…according to the Old Testament Scriptures…

 

When you get to know Jesus Christ, you'll have no problem placing your confidence in Him, both for your salvation and for everything else.  Why?  Because the Sovereign God of the Universe wants a relationship with you, He loves you unconditionally, and He died for you.  So, take advantage of His grace, and you'll be saved RIGHT NOW!

 

What happens if you reject a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ?  Matthew, Chapter 25, Verse 41…

 

MATTHEW 25:41

"Then Jesus will say to those on His left (unbelievers)… 'Depart from Me accursed ones into the eternal fire (The Lake of Fire) which has been prepared for the devil and his angels…"

 

Those are neither words you want to hear nor words you have to hear.  John, Chapter 3, Verse 18…

 

JOHN 3:18

He who believes in Jesus Christ…placing his trust in Him for salvation…is not judged…he who does not believe in Jesus Christ has been judged already because he is in a state of unbelief about the Person of the uniquely born Son of God.

 

Take the easy road to salvation…believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be

saved.

 

CLOSING SONG INTRODUCTION

 

Let's close with music!  The Lord Jesus Christ loves His believers, even when we live in the most perilous environments, like Rome, here on planet Earth.  His love can never be taken from us.  Romans, Chapter 8, Verse 35 says this…

 

ROMANS 8:35

WHO will separate us from the unconditional love of Christ? (Or WHAT will separate us?  Nothing!) Will tribulation…or distress…or persecution…or famine… or nakedness…or peril…or sword separate us from Christ's unconditional love?

 

Definitely not.  Why?  Because God is love in His very Person.  Here is Jesus' Culture to remind us…LOVE HAS A NAME.

 

MUSIC

CLOSING SONG

Let'sSing the Lord's Praises

 

LOVE HAS A NAME

Jesus Culture

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Let us pray...

 

Almighty God and Father…

 

…thank you for the mirror that is the Word of God…thank you for reminding us that to love You, we also have to love the Word of God because the Word helps us get to know You intimately and to know Your thoughts…help us not to forget who we REALLY are when we walk away from the mirror of the Word of God…

 

…keep on reminding us that the Word of God is spiritual food… it'snourishment for our bodies, our souls, our spirits, our minds, and our hearts…help us not to live on physical food alone but on every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God…as wego forth into the week, let the Word be foremost in our minds so we can share it with those we love and those who don't love us…

 

..we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ's name...Amen.

 

 

GOT BIBLICAL QUESTIONS?

 

Ask the Pastor

pastor@barahministries.com

 

KEEP ON STUDYING THE WORD OF GOD DAILY!

 

Thanks for coming!

Thanks for watching!

Thanks for listening!

 

www.barahministries.com

 

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