Summary: What Jesus can do in a life that is truly saved.
QUOTE BY EUGENE PETERSON: ‘A Long Obedience in the Same Direction’. ‘It is not difficult to get a person interested in the message of the gospel; it is terrifically difficult to sustain the interest.
Millions of people in our culture make decision for Christ, but there is a dreadful attrition rate.
Many claim to have been born again, but the evidence for mature Christian discipleship is slim.
In our kind of culture anything, even news about God, can be sold if it is packaged freshly; but when it loses it’s novelty, it goes on the garbage heap.
There is a great market for religious experience in our world; there is little enthusiasm for the patient acquisition of virtue. Little inclination to sign up for a long apprenticeship in what earlier Christians called holiness.
PAUL has challenged us in the book of Romans to declare our true spiritual condition:
1) Am I really Lost?
2) Am I really saved? Only thru Faith
3) What difference does it make?
• This morning we looked at the term Justified by faith. What difference does it make to be justified by faith.
1) To have right standing in God’s sight
2) Only attainable thru the avenue of faith: Absolute trust and surrender to God’s will and plan for our life.
• Difference regarding our PAST(No longer an enemy before God)
Difference in the PRESENT: We have PEACE – An introduction and continual access to GRACE
3. WE CAN REST UPON OUR HOPE IN GOD …and we exult in hope of the glory of God.
a. This glory that we continually fell short of we can now exult in.
A man was sentenced to death by a king. He received a reprieve by assuring the King he would teach his majesty’s horse to fly within a year. If he didn’t succeed then he would be put to death.
A friend asked why he did this crazy thing, ‘Within a year the king may die, or I may die, or the horse may die. In a year, who knows maybe the horse will learn to fly’.
Not such hope as the Bible speaks of: Anticipation connected to the absolute assurance of a promised fact .
b. Not wishful thinking as in the English. ‘I hope the _____ win the Superbowl’. _____ win the national champion ______gets the million dollars as the winner of survivor please don’t say ______ hope so and so gets the bachelor. Gag me with a fork
Hope is having a fact so established that it gives direction for your life now even though you have not received it’.
1) Yet to receive the fullness of my salvation……I know God will be faithful to His promises…one day I will be set free from the presence of sin…..one day I will be in God ‘s presence for eternity.
c. Hope is a powerful thing. It can carry your through many difficult things that this life might toss in your direction. When you sense you want to give up you can place you thoughts on what is true but yet to be revealed.
Scientists did a study on rats. They put a number of them in a tank of water. The tank had slick metal sides so the rats could not escape but swam as long as the could. The average time a rat survived before drowning was 17 minutes.
They repeated the experiment. This time at the point of drowning they rescued the rats and dried them off and placed them in their cages. They were fed and left alone for a few days. Then they were again put in the water tank. This time their survival rate went from 17 minutes to 36 hours. The difference was the second the rats had hope. The believed they could survive this because of what they knew from the past.
When we by faith plants the seeds of hope in our minds then we can face most anything realizing God has it all in control. He who lived before us and will live beyond us can sustain us today.
The Blessings of the FUTURE: (3) And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; (4) and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; (5) and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
• Paul stresses that all have futures have one common fact that should give us hope: The fact that we are all projects in God’s hand. He is working out His purpose in our lives.
a. The most important thing is not what we do in life but who life makes us to be.