Romans 182: Romans 6 - Do You Doubt God’s Unconditional Love and Compassion?

ROM-92-150329 - length: 63:30 - taught on Mar, 29 2015

Class Outline:


Welcome To

BARAH MINISTRIES

a Christian Church

Rory Clark

Pastor-Teacher

 

Good Morning!

 

Welcome to Barah Ministries…a worldwide Christian Church based in Mesa, AZ…my name is Pastor Rory Clark.

 

Whenever the subject of God’s grace comes up, in my experience it is discussed as a principle or as a policy.  It is certainly both of those.  We like discussing grace by talking about “WHAT” grace is…and a frequent definition of grace is that it is “something we don’t earn or deserve, but God gives it to us anyway.”  I’ve come to realize that such discussion misses the point completely.

 

A discussion of grace has to center on “WHO” gives it.  Grace is extended to creatures from all the members of the Godhead…from God the Father, from God the Son, from God the Holy Spirit, and from the manifest member of the Godhead, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  When a discussion of grace includes the PERSON whom grace comes from, then you start to realize the inadequacy of the principle or policy discussion.

 

Grace is something that God extends from His person…from His unconditional love for His creatures…from His compassion for His creatures.  In Luke, Chapter 15, Verses 11 to 24, there’s a story you have probably heard a hundred times.  But I wonder if it ever dawned on you that it is a story about God’s unconditional love and compassion.  Looking for the love and compassion of God the Father in the story, let’s hear it one more time, as Christ Himself tells the story...

 

LUK 15:11

And the Lord Jesus Christ said, “A man had two sons.”

 

LUK 15:12

“The younger of the sons said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of your estate that falls to me.’ So the Father divided his wealth between the two sons.”

 

LUK 15:13

“And not many days later, the younger son gathered everything together and went on a journey into a distant country, and there he squandered his estate with loose living.”

 

LUK 15:14

“Now when he had spent everything, a severe famine occurred in that country, and he began to be impoverished.”

 

LUK 15:15

“So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, and the citizen sent him into his fields to feed swine.”

 

LUK 15:16

“And the younger son would have gladly filled his stomach with the pods that the swine were eating, and no one was giving anything to him.”

 

LUK 15:17

“But when the younger son came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have more than enough bread, but I am dying here with hunger!’”

 

LUK 15:18

“I will get up and go to my father, and will say to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight…’”

 

LUK 15:19

“I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me as one of your hired men.”’

 

LUK 15:20

“So he got up and came to his father. But while the younger son was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.”

 

LUK 15:21

“And the younger son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’”

 

LUK 15:22

“But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quickly bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet…’”

 

LUK 15:23

“…and bring the fattened calf, kill it, and let us eat and celebrate…”

 

LUK 15:24

“…for this son of mine was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.’” And they began to celebrate.

 

God is always waiting for His creatures to come to their senses.  And He always waits with open arms to greet us, no matter how many times we “go off to distant countries to squander our gifts.”  No discussion of sin can ever be devoid of a discussion of our God’s unconditional love and compassion.  Frankly, any spiritual discussion that ignores “WHO” God is completely misses the point.

 

Welcome to a place where we are only too happy to remember how wonderful our God is, and only too happy to take advantage of His unconditional love, His compassion and His grace toward all of His creatures. 

 

MUSIC AND REFLECTION

Be Occupied with the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ

Enjoy the Singing of His Praises

 

There’s Just One Hope

 

The opening song is…THERE’S JUST ONE HOPE.

 

OPENING PRAYER

 

Let us pray...

 

We’re grateful Heavenly Father for the privilege of studying the absolute

truth...the Word of God…

 

Thank you for Your attitude toward Your creatures…thank you for loving us unconditionally…thank you for feeling compassion toward us…thank you for thinking so much of us and loving us so much, that You sent your only Son to die on our behalf…thank you for raising Him from the dead to prove that He is indeed THE God who is the creator of all things…help us get to know Him through His Word as we come before You today in prayer and in study…

 

We ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit...in Christ’s name... Amen.

 

TODAY’S STUDY

Do You Doubt God’s Unconditional Love and Compassion?

 

Yes.  Yes you do.  Any time you think you have to clean up your act…any time you think you can disappoint God…anytime you think that Christianity is a set of rules, then you really don’t understand who God is in His very PERSON.  After a discussion with a few Christians this week, that’s what dawned on me after fifty years as a Christian.  As we move to Romans Chapter 6, Verse 14 in today’s study, it seems like a great time to surface one of the most fundamental things that Church Age believers have to understand…GRACE.  And that’s what we’ll begin in this lesson.  First, few announcements…

 

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OFFERING VERSE

 

HEB 5:8

Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.

 

OFFERING

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TODAY’S STUDY

Do You Doubt God’s Unconditional Love and Compassion?

 

Turn in your bibles to Romans, Chapter 6, Verse 12…we are studying the second passage in Romans, Chapter 6…the first set of commands in the entire book of Romans…and here’s what it has to say…

 

ROM 6:12

Therefore do not keep on letting sin reign as if it were king in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts…

 

ROM 6:13

…and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as

instruments of unrighteousness; but keep on presenting yourselves to God as those who are alive from the dead would present themselves, and keep on presenting your members as instruments of righteousness to God.

 

ROM 6:14

For sin shall not (any longer) be a master (a lord) over you, for you are not under law but you are under grace.

 

This final verse will get some attention now.  You are not under law…you are under grace.  Something happened at the Cross…it changed everything!  The age of the rituals of the LAW was over.  The age of GRACE was upon us.  Paul describes his role in the change in Ephesians, Chapter 3, beginning at Verse 8…

 

EPH 3:8

To me (Paul), the very least of all saints (believers in Christ), this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ…

 

EPH 3:9

…and to bring to light what is the dispensation of the mystery (the Church Age) which for ages has been hidden in THE God who created all things (the Lord Jesus Christ)…

 

EPH 3:10

…so that the manifold wisdom of God the Father might now be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.

 

A great description of the dispensation of the mystery, the church age, is given in Romans, Chapter 6, Verse 14…

 

ROM 6:14

For sin shall not (any longer) be a master (a lord) over you, for you are not under law but you are under grace.

 

Take a five-minute break and we’ll see what God means by this.

 

BREAK

When I Think About Home

 

Welcome back!  Romans, Chapter 6, Verse 14…

 

ROM 6:14

For sin shall not (any longer) be a master (a lord) over you, for you are not under law but you are under grace.

 

Notice the highlights of the verse…first, FOR sin’s lordship has ended… second, FOR you are no longer under Law…what is law?

 

LAW
A set of legal principles that demand duty first…then blessing…if you do this, then you get blessing…a system that demands perfect righteousness.

 

For example, if you don’t speed, then I won’t give you a ticket…if you don’t kill anyone then you won’t go to jail...if you don’t embezzle funds then you won’t get arrested.

 

Only death releases us from the legal obligations of a society.

 

If you have been exposed to a religion, you have been exposed to the rituals of law…as one guy I talked to this week put it, you have been beaten over the head by Christians who insist that you have to be good to be a Christian and that you have a whole set of obligations to meet if you are going to please God.  When you do those things, then and only then will you please God…if you fail at those things, God is going to damn you to hell.  Does that sound anything like the God we know…the God of unconditional love and compassion?  May it never be!  Why are Christians so anti-grace?  It comes from stupid thoughts…planted in the heads of believers in Christ by the kingdom of death…thoughts like this, “If a man is not under law, you can’t control him.”

 

Unreal.

 

Well here’s my question…has that idea EVER worked?  We have laws against homicide.  Have they kept people from killing other people?  Nope!

Have the rules of religion ever brought us closer to God?  They have NOT!  They have made us first indifferent, and then progressively antagonistic to God.

 

The funny thing is, the bible tells us that the idea of law creating a relationship is ridiculous, yet we ignore its counsel.  Romans, Chapter 5, Verses 20 and 21…

 

ROM 5:20

The principle of Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, God’s grace abounded all the more…

 

ROM 5:21

…so that, as sin reigned as sovereign in death (while we were unbelievers), even so grace would allow believers to reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

We are not under the principle of law…we are under the principle of grace…we are under a principle of heavenly compassion and heavenly comfort and unconditional love.  One description of grace…

 

GRACE

A way God handles situations by which God gives the blessing first…then the fruits follow…with no requirement or obligation on the part of the receiver.

 

What does grace mean?  It means no more trying to be good…no more striving to please God…no more wondering if you disappoint God…He is already pleased with you.  God prepares your works…and you walk in them.

Ephesians, Chapter 2, Verse 10…

 

EPH 2:10

For we believers in Christ are God the Father’s workmanship, created in union with Christ Jesus for good works, which God the Father prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

 

God the Father prepares the deeds…we simply do what He asks…and our decisions to follow God’s lead are evaluated at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

Second Corinthians, Chapter 5, Verse 10…

 

2CO 5:10

For we believers in Christ must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed (compensated) for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

 

Good deeds are the deeds we do that say yes to God’s requests…bad deeds are the ones we do when we think we have a better idea than God.  I met a Pastor last night and that was the first thing he said to me…he said, “God lays it out for us and we follow…it’s pretty simple.”  It is simple indeed…IF you like simple.  I do…but most people don’t.   Most people just can’t accept that God is willing to do everything for us.

 

The LAW breeds compliance.  GRACE let’s you see where a man really stands. 

 

Do you doubt God’s unconditional love and compassion? If you don’t understand GRACE, then you don’t understand God.  If you think the LAW really reveals a person’s heart, you’re missing it.  When God gave us His peace, when God put us in a sphere of grace, He set up the possibility of true worship.  True worship happens when you want to do something of your own free will…voluntary obedience…like Christ going to the Cross…true worship is not a “have to” experience.   

Think about all the people who felt forced to go to church as children.  Did the force turn them into willing church-goers?  Hardly.  It did what the law does…it coerced compliance and produced an unwillingness to get to know God.  Enforced humility does not always become genuine humility.  In fact, it seldom does. 

 

Knowing we have a God who is welcoming us to Himself…inviting us to come just as we are…prodigal (wastefully or recklessly extravagant)… broken… hypocritical…sinful…mistake riddled…and knowing He welcomes us with open arms just the way we are…ought to breed a curiosity about God that makes Him the focus of our lives.  It certainly has done that for me.  How about you?  Or do you doubt the unconditional love and compassion of God because people have influenced you to?

 

The Promises of the Lord Jesus Christ

are Guarantees!

 

ACT 16:31

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

 

JOH 14:6

Jesus said to doubting Thomas, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through believing in Me.

 

JOH 3:36

He who believes in the Son has eternal life (the ZOE life); but he who does not obey the (command to believe in the) Son will not see (the Zoe) life, but instead the wrath of God the Father abides on him.”

 

CLOSING SONG

God is Faithful

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Let us pray...

 

THANKS

INTERCESSION

PETITION

 

And we pray that You continue to shape the messages from this pulpit that are an accurate reflection of Your unconditional love, Your person, Your thinking, Your work, and Your essence...we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit, in Christ’s name, Amen.

 

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