Summary: This is the introduction of Paul to the Romans through letter. Paul reveals that he is a servant and apostle called by God. He wants to be encouraged and encourage others at the same time while sharing the Gospel of Christ.
The Gospel: Paul’s Message to the Romans (Romans 1:1-13)
Intro: This morning I want to begin our study in the book of Romans. As I was praying about what to begin preaching about, God placed this book on my heart. I found it purposeful for us to start from the beginning. This will be a fairly in depth study as Paul takes us on a journey through the righteousness of God and the unrighteousness of all people. Then he will show us the righteousness of God that is placed upon us through Jesus, which we now call, Justification. He will then teach us how to live a holy life, which we call, Sanctification. Just as Paul takes us through many processes, we will go through them as well as we begin to see how we are to live out this holiness. As I have said we will begin in chapter 1 and see what God has for us today. Lets’ get started.
Background: Paul is writing to the church in Rome (hence the name of the book) which was predominately consisted of Gentiles, although their were Jewish members as well, for he makes references to the them.
*When we look at the beginning of this book, it is unlike many of Paul’s other epistles for he makes a long introduction to expound upon his credentials.
*When we write letters, we typically assume that the recipient of that letter will know us, so we do not make the effort to go through a long introduction of ourselves. We usually get right to the point.
*Except…Have you ever read a letter from a man…short, not a whole lot going on in it and then read a woman’s letter? Men get straight to the point, while women, well they eventually get there:)
*This is quite the opposite for Paul. He is writing to this church in Rome that he did not found nor has he been there.
*Up to this point, Paul has not been able to visit the church, but desperately desired to.
*Because Paul had never been to this church, it was important for him to establish his credentials to them.
*It is easy for us to see Paul and who he was. We have already heard and learned quite a bit about him, but we must put ourselves in the biblical context and see that they were unaware of him and he knew this.
Scripture: Romans 1:1-13 Scripture has already been read so we will go ahead and jump right in. Are ya’ll ready?
I. Verse 1: Paul makes 3 very important statements: I am a servant, I am an apostle, and I am set apart
A. He is a servant of God
1. He starts by telling them that he is a servant. This word in Greek is the same as the word for slave.
*This idea of servant or slave depicted the idea of great humility. In essence, Paul was expressing his sense of personal insignificance and expressing him being purchased by God.
*It also carries over to us as we are called to be servants of Christ, just as Paul.
B. He is an Apostle
1. Along with being a servant, he also says that he is an apostle. This was a term that was used by Jesus to label his 12 disciples whom He called to follow Him.
*Ya’ll remember the 12 disciples?
*Gal.1:1 Paul claims to have been added to this number…Paul, an apostle, not from men nor through men, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead…”
*The idea of Paul being an apostle placed great authority upon him. It has the sense of official business or duty given by Christ.
C. He is set apart
1. Because he was called to be an apostle, he was set apart.
*Being set apart brings rise to the idea mentioned in Jeremiah 1:5
Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you (set apart); I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
*Friends, has God set us apart?
*We may not consider ourselves “apostles by name”, but we have been called and set apart. We have a mission.
Mathew 18:18-20 “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
*What we must see in the very beginning of this book is that Paul is setting the grounds for the Gospel of Christ, not his own message. The message he is about to preach is not his own, but God’s.