Summary: Our relationship with God is a relationship that finds its beginning and its end totally in HIM. Our verses today, Romans 1:16 & 17, explain in very simple terms how we need to let God maintain our relationship with Him, and with others as well.
Title: Righteousness, the Revelation of God in Me
Scripture: Romans 1:16-17
16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.
17 For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith."
Many people grow up remembering how their parents raised them. Many can remember that their parents never spanked them or punished them in any way. It was enough to know that their father or mother was disappointed in something that they did. Those same people will tell you that they would have gladly suffered through any form of punishment for their wrongdoing, instead of disappointing their parents. They will tell you that it was a works relationship. A relationship that always depended on good and right things being done. A cause and effect relationship that waited to see if you had done the right thing.
Our relationship with God is nothing like that. Our relationship with God is a relationship that finds its beginning and its end totally in HIM. Our verses today, Romans 1:16 & 17, explain in very simple terms how we need to let God maintain our relationship with Him, and with others as well.
We have three points:
I. Ashamed or Feeling Guilty
II. The Gospel, the Power of God
III. Righteousness, Revealed with Power
I. Ashamed or Feeling Guilty
When most people are growing up, they reach an age at which they would rather be punished physically, than being an embarrassment to their friends or family. The punishment is over and done with, while the feelings of embarrassment, the feelings of shame, are difficult to overcome and usually last a long time.
Forgiveness is hard to get hold of, forgiveness is hard to ask for, because forgiveness admits a measure of guilt. And, sometimes we are not willing to go the full length, sometimes we’re not willing to travel the distance which would require an admission of guilt.
Yet, in Christ, the eyes of our hearts have been opened to the fact that we are guilty of sin. We know that we are sinners because we know sin. That fact was revealed in Genesis chapter three. But, praise God, that sin has been washed away by the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
In John 9:41 “Jesus said, "If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.”
If we were not aware of Genesis 3, if we were not aware of evil, there would be no guilt. But, Paul tells us in Romans, chapter one, that everyone is aware.
(Romans 1:20) For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.
Now, since we know sin, since the eyes of our hearts are open to the fact of sin in our hearts and minds, we know we are guilty and we are miserable. We chase rainbows, we chase dreams, we chase a world that is selfish and concentrates on the selfishness being revealed in it. But, when we came to the Bible, when we came face to face with Jesus, a new realization took place. We are humbled and brought low in His sight. We are guilty! But, it doesn’t end there. Now that we know we are guilty, we also know that we have a propitiation for those sins. We have a substitute:
(2 Corinthians 5:21) God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
We have a substitute and that substitute is Jesus Christ. When we put our faith in Him, our lives changed. When we put our faith in Him, the sin was taken away. The Bible says (2 Corinthians 5:17) “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” Our sins are no longer remembered. When we put our faith in Jesus, that sin is removed by God and is remembered no more:
9 He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; 10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. 11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
That all happened in the beginning. That all happened when we put our faith in Jesus Christ, the one who paid the debt for you. But, that may have been some time ago. And, as time goes by, Satan begins to work. He begins by getting you too busy. Busy is just another term for