Summary: As an overview of the book of Romans we see how Paul summarizes and condenses the concept of the gospel within these few verses.
1. The Lawyer
An independent woman started her own business. She was shrewd and diligent, so business kept coming in. Pretty soon she realized she needed an in-house counsel, and so she began interviewing young lawyers.
"As I’m sure you can understand," she started off with one of the first applicants, "in a business like this, our personal integrity must be beyond question." She leaned forward. "Mr. Peterson, are you an ’honest’ lawyer?"
"Honest?" replied the job prospect. "Let me tell you something about honesty. Why, I’m so honest that my dad lent me $15,000 for my education and I paid back every penny the minute I tried my very first case."
"Impressive. And what sort of case was that?"
He squirmed in his seat and admitted, "The case where my father sued me for the money."
The book of Romans was written by a great religious lawyer. He is writing as if he were presenting his case as a legal argument.
2. Romans 16.25-27
25 Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages 26 but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith— 27 to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.
3. [Reader’s Digest summarized lengthy books in a concise format – Good for all of us busy Americans – even came out with a Reader’s Digest Version of the Bible so we don’t have to worry about that pesky minutia.
4. Our text gives a summary of the gospel
I. The Gospel Message
A. Yeshua’s (Jesus’) Story – Romans 3.21-24
21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
F.B. Meyer wrote about two Germans who wanted to climb the Matterhorn. They hired three guides and began their ascent at the steepest and most slippery part. The men roped themselves together in this order: guide, traveler, guide, traveler, guide.
They had gone only a little way up the side when the last man lost his footing. He was held up temporarily by the other four, because each had a toehold in the niches they had cut in the ice. But then the next man slipped, and he pulled down the two above him. The only one to stand firm was the first guide, who had driven a spike deep into the ice. Because he held his ground, all the men beneath him regained their footing.
F.B. Meyer concluded his story by drawing a spiritual application. He said, "I am like one of those men who slipped, but thank God, I am bound in a living partnership to Christ. And because He stands, I will never perish."