Summary: How to Be a Great Patriot - Romans 9:1-5
How to Be a Great Patriot - Rom. 9:1-5
Today it is popular to be a good American, but what are the Biblical criteria for being a great patriot? Paul, the apostle, gives us an example of what is involved in being one who is a Biblical patriot who loved His people out of a love from Jesus Christ. The following are several guidelines we should subscribe to if we want to encourage great patriotism.
1. Paul emphasized the good qualities of his countrymen. When a person allows the love of Jesus Christ to flow they will tend to emphasize the positive aspects of their fellow citizens. Paul rejoiced that the Jews were given the covenants, the commands and the Law of God, but he wanted more for them. He gloried in the fact that the Jewish nation had enjoyed special standing and revelation from God in the past. Yet, he knew that it was not enough to rely on one’s laurels in the past to gain eternal life. Even though the Jews had persecuted Paul he served them by preaching Christ as the only way for their salvation. He said, "I have a heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart" for their salvation. Paul knew the kinds of topics to emphasize with his fellows since he clearly saw their eternal destiny as his chief concern.
2. Paul did not excuse himself from serving his country under a pretense of some special mission. Some people are so busy with certain ministries that they have little or no time to serve their country or its people. Paul’s willingness to serve his people enables him to more than his fair share for his brethren. He easily could have left the Jews to the concern of Peter because he had been commissioned to reach the Gentiles. However, Paul always kept the needs of the Jews on his heart. It pained Paul that the Jews were not taking advantages of all of their benefits. He wanted the Jews to experience all the rich blessings he had enjoyed through Christ. Do not make excuses for reaching people of your own community. Take advantage of your insider status for the sake of the gospel and the eternal destiny of your own people.
3. Paul speaks in as many Jewish synagogues as possible on his way to various Gentile outposts. Paul’s ministry always went above and beyond the call of duty since he had such a heart for his own people. Paul’s untiring concern for the Jews showed that he did not neglect any opportunity to reach his own people since there were few others with his privileged background. REmember all the privileges God has given you and trust Him to help you utilize all the identities, gifts and background abilities you have been given.
4. Paul knew how to keep the salvation message as a priority. There were many other services that Paul could have rendered to the Jews, but it was the gospel and evangelism that burdened his heart. Do not let other urgent needs make you lose sight of the fact that God’s chief concern for your own people is that they be saved. Trust the Lord to help you find ways to get the gospel to your own people either by radio, by, TV by tracts, by newsletters, by phone calls or by personal visits. If any of you lacks wisdom, ask of God and He will give you more than you need to help find ways of reaching your own community and people.
5. Paul was ready for any sacrifice to help his kinsmen find salvation through Jesus Christ. Paul was willing to expose himself to much pain, heartache and ridicule because of his love for his people. He prepared himself for great risks. Be willing to render self-sacrificial service for the people in your community in order to see that they find Christ as their Savior. Do not worry about what people might say about you. The Lord will protect you and deliver you from any and all problems. He fights the battles for those who are eager to do His will. Paul’s fixation on the glory that would be revealed to him helped him overshadow any immediate hardship that he might have to face. Paul tried to make his country better by bringing new birth to those around him. God will always provide compensation for those who are willing to be a good soldier of Christ. The temporary troubles of advancing the kingdom of God are insignificant in comparison with the glories that will be revealed to those who exemplified Godly patriotism.
6. Paul’s sorrow for the lost helped him overlook all the abuse that he had to endure from his countrymen who misunderstood his motives. When you have a love of Christ that compels you to give the gospel it helps you overpower any force that might tend to make you hesistate to do 100% of God’s will. God has not given you a spirit of fear, but of power, love and self-discpline. 2 tim 1:7. Ask the Lord and He will show you ways that you can be an effective witness to those around you. Maybe you need to find ways that you can put a local Christian radio station bumper sticker on your car. Perhaps, you can put something on your desk that points people to a web site where they can find salvation through saving faith in Christ. Ask and it will be given you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you. Matt. 7:7. Someday God is going to ask you why you were only willing to go so far in your patriotism. Follow the example of the apostle Paul whose sad realization that many of his fellow community members were on their way to a Christ less eternity in hell unless they heard and responded to the gospel. Should we not do the same as Paul or are we merely willing to just be C- patriots?