(News, January 2, 2022)
Paul’s Letter To the Romans
This spring we’re going start a verse-by-verse study of the book of Romans, which contains some of the Bible’s greatest doctrine, most practical application and most wonderful truth. Between January and April we’ll look at Paul’s defense of the Gospel, chapters 1 to 4. After Easter we’ll look at chapters 5 to 8, where Paul applies the Gospel to our spiritual lives. We’ll finish the book in the spring of 2023.
Part 1: January 2, 2020 to April 3, 2022
Romans 1-8: Righteousness from God – Yay!
January 2, 2022
Title: The Center of the Gospel (Romans 1:1-6)
Text: Romans 1:1-6
Worship: Son of God and Son of Man
Key Sentence: Jesus, the center of the gospel, is also the center of our lives
II. Paul’s Role (Romans 1:1)
III. Paul’s Gospel (Romans 1:2-4)
IV. Paul’s Purpose (Romans 1:5-6)
Romans 1:1–6 Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God,
2which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh 4and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord,
5through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations, 6including you who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.
January 9, 2022
Title: Gospel People (Romans 1:7-15)
Text: Romans 1:7-15
Worship: Loved by God
Key Sentence: As those loved and called by God, we live out our calling
I. Knowing who we are in Christ (Romans 1:7)
II. Praying and encouraging each other (Romans 1:8-12)
III. Eager to share the Gospel (Romans 1:13-15)
Romans 1:7–15 To all those in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
8First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world. 9For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you 10always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God’s will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. 11For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— 12that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.
13I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as well as among the rest of the Gentiles. 14I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. 15So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.
January 16, 2022
Title: The Power of God (Romans 1:16-17)
Text: Romans 1:16-17
Key Sentence: We receive what no other religion even offers.
I. The Gospel is God’s powerful salvation plan
II. The Gospel reveals a righteousness from God.
III. The righteousness from God is through faith.
Romans 1:16–17 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
January 30, 2022
Title: The Wrath of God Revealed (Romans 1:18-31)
Text: Romans 1:18-31
Worship: Saved from Sin
Key Sentence: Before the good truth of salvation we need to see the bad truth of deserved wrath.
I. Wrath revealed against unrighteousness (Romans 1:18)
II. Wrath deserved because of rebellion and sin (Romans 1:19-23)
III. Wrath compounded by the downward spiral of sin (Romans 1:24-31)
Romans 1:18–31 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.
19For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
24Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. 26For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. 28And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.
February 6, 2022
Title: No Excuse! (Romans 2:1-11)
Text: Romans 2:1-11
Worship: God’s Kindness
Key Sentence: Not hypocrisy, not presumption, but patience in well doing
I. The Hypocritical Double Standard (Romans 2:1-3)
II. The Presumption of God’s Kindness (Romans 2:4-5)
III. God Shows No Partiality (Romans 2:6-11)
Romans 2:1–11 Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. 2We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. 3Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God?
4Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? 5But because of your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.
6He will render to each one according to his works: 7to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. 9There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, 10but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. 11For God shows no partiality.
February 13, 2022
Title: God’s Judgment and the Law (Romans 2:12-29)
Text: Romans 2:12-29
Worship: Here’s My Heart, Lord
Key Sentence: It doesn’t matter what you know or what you’ve done, what matters is the heart.
I. It doesn’t matter if you’ve heard the law (Romans 2:12-16)
II. It doesn’t matter if you can teach the law (Romans 2:17-24)
III. It doesn’t matter what law-rituals you’ve followed (Romans 2:25-29)
Romans 2:12–29 For all who have sinned without the law will also perish without the law, and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. 13For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified. 14For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them 16on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus. 17But if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast in God 18and know his will and approve what is excellent, because you are instructed from the law; 19and if you are sure that you yourself are a guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, 20an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of children, having in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth— 21you then who teach others, do you not teach yourself? While you preach against stealing, do you steal? 22You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? 23You who boast in the law dishonor God by breaking the law. 24For, as it is written, “The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.” 25For circumcision indeed is of value if you obey the law, but if you break the law, your circumcision becomes uncircumcision. 26So, if a man who is uncircumcised keeps the precepts of the law, will not his uncircumcision be regarded as circumcision? 27Then he who is physically uncircumcised but keeps the law will condemn you who have the written code and circumcision but break the law. 28For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. 29But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God.
February 20, 2022
Title: God in the Dock (Romans 3:1-8)
Text: Romans 3:1-8
Worship: The Truthfulness and Faithfulness of God
Key Sentence: When confronted with our sin, our tendency is to to put God on trial
I. Why did God bother with the whole Jewish project? (Romans 3:1-2)
II. Doesn’t Jewish unfaithfulness show God’s unfaithfulness? (Romans 3:3-4)
III. Isn’t God’s use of our unrighteousness unfair? (Romans 3:5-6)
IV. Why not do evil if it leads to God’s glory in salvation? (Romans 3:7-8)
Romans 3:1–8 Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? 2Much in every way. To begin with, the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God.
3What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? 4By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, “That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged.”
5But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) 6By no means! For then how could God judge the world?
7But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? 8And why not do evil that good may come?—as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.
February 27, 2022
Title: The Verdict of the Old Testament (Romans 3:9-20)
Text: Romans 3:9-20
Worship: God’s Love for the Unlovely
Key Sentence: As our sin becomes clearer our need for God’s grace becomes greater.
I. All are under sin. (Romans 3:9-12)
II. We are sinful in every part (Romans 3:13-18)
III. All are accountable to God (Romans 3:19-20)
Romans 3:9–19 What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, 10as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; 11no one understands; no one seeks for God. 12All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”
13“Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” 14“Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.” 15“Their feet are swift to shed blood; 16in their paths are ruin and misery, 17and the way of peace they have not known.” 18“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
19Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God.
March 20, 2022
Title: Yay! (Romans 3:21-31)
Text: Romans 3:21-31
Worship: Jesus, thy Blood and Righteousness
Key Sentence: After all this, righteousness from God is an unspeakable gift.
I. Righteousness revealed – Yay! (Romans 3:21)
II. Righteousness by grace through faith – Yay! (Romans 3:22-24)
III. Righteousness in Christ Jesus – Yay! (Romans 3:24-26)
IV. The first implications of yay! (Romans 3:27-31)
Romans 3:21–31 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—
22the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
25whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
27Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law. 29Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, 30since God is one—who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith. 31Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.
March 27, 2022
Title: Righteousness by Faith (Romans 4:1-12)
Text: Romans 4:1-12
Key Sentence: God’s Salvation plan is righteousness by faith for all people
I. Righteousness by faith for Abraham (Romans 4:1-5)
II. Righteousness by faith for David (Romans 4:6-8)
III. Righteousness by faith for the Gentiles (Romans 4:9-12)
Romans 4:1–12 What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? 2For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. 3For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” 4Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. 5And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,
6just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: 7“Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; 8blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”
9Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? For we say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness. 10How then was it counted to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised. 11He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. The purpose was to make him the father of all who believe without being circumcised, so that righteousness would be counted to them as well, 12and to make him the father of the circumcised who are not merely circumcised but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.
April 3, 2022
Title: Abraham’s Offspring (Romans 4:13-25)
Text: Romans 4:13-25
Worship: The God Who Keeps His Promises
Key Sentence: Like Abraham’s, our faith is also counted as righteousness
I. Not through law, (Romans 4:13-15)
II. But to those who share the faith of Abraham, (Romans 4:16-17)
III. Who believed against hope (Romans 4:18-25)
Romans 4:13–25 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. 15For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.
16That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.
18In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” 19He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. 20No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” 23But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.