Summary: This is an introductory sermon for the book of Romans. I am looking at the heart of Paul
• It has been said that the pen is mightier than the sword. In many cases that can be a true statement. A sword put in the hands of another person has the power to take life, but the sword does not have the power to truly change a life.
• The pen put in the wrong hands can destroy a life, but the pen put in the right hands with the guidance of the Holy Spirit has the power to change lives, and to change history itself!
• Today we are going to embark on a study of the book of Romans.
• There have been many great people who have left their mark on history because of the change that happened in their life because of the book of Romans.
• Augustine, a man who led an immoral life, in 386 A.D. read the book of Romans. When he got to Romans 13:13-14, his life was never the same. Romans 13:13-14 says, “Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.”
• In 1515, Martin Luther went from a man of torment to a man of great faith because of the book of Romans. John Bunyan in 1653, John Wesley in 1738, and Karl Barth in 1918 were never the same after they studied the book of Romans. These are but a few men who led great spiritual movements which left their marks on world history.
• Words on a page or the Words of God on a page?
• What about you? Do you need some change in your life? As we begin this sermon series on Romans, I hope that you will allow the Holy Spirit of God to penetrate your heart and soul. Who knows, maybe you will be one of the lives so changed that you end up leaving a mark on history!
• Today I will take us through the first seventeen verses of Romans chapter one.
• Today I want us to look at the heart of a man who was changed to the core by Jesus. We will look at Paul’s heart for the Gospel, his heart for the people and we will finish up with what motivated Paul’s heart for God, Gospel and the people by looking at the theme of the book of Romans.
• Please turn with me to Romans, chapter one! It is my hope that you will see that the pen is mightier than the sword when it comes to changing a person’s life and eternal destiny!
I. PAUL’S HEART FOR THE GOSPEL (1-7)
A. Introductory material
• The letter was written by the apostle Paul during the winter of 58 A.D.
• The letter begins with some biographical information about the man who shook the world with the Gospel. READ VERSE 1.
• The writer calls himself a bond-servant of God. A huge percentage of the Roman world was enslaved. A bond-servant was one who had no control of their life; they were at the mercy of their master. They were totally dependent on their master for everything. The bond-servant was to be totally submissive to the will of their master! Paul is saying that he has given himself up to Jesus in this manner.
• There also may be a play on words here also. In the Old Testament (Isa 20:3, Jer 7:25, Amos 3:7) the word servant was used to designate the prophets of God. Paul may also be indicating that he is a mouth-piece for God.
• All who call themselves Christian are supposed to be bond-servants of Jesus. How submissive are you to the will of God in your life? Do you ignore God at your leisure? Are you willing to be used by God?
• Paul also says was called to be an apostle and that he was set apart for the gospel of God. Paul’s life was dedicated to the spread of the Gospel of Jesus. Each of us has been called to take the Gospel everywhere we go, to everyone who needs it!
B. The Gospel
• In verses 2-6 we see a brief summary of the gospel that Paul was set apart to preach. Let’s read verses 2-6.
• The basic message of these verses is that Paul is saying the gospel he is preaching is the same as what the other apostles are preaching along with the fact the gospel he preaches is rooted in the Old Testament clear back to the Garden of Eden. In verses 3 and 4, Paul emphasizes two important points about Jesus, His humanity and His divinity. He shows Jesus fulfills the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Messiah and he says the resurrection proves His deity.