Summary: A sermon that encourages people from Romans 1-16 to be unashamed about Christ and the Gospel.
Romans 1:16New International Version (NIV)
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.
There once was a Shearer – All kinds of things had happened to him and one day he found himself in prison. He was devastated because he knew this was badly affecting his life. Then God met him in his prison cell and his life was changed – he gave his heart to Jesus. This Shearer then came and did a 3D course with us and his life was changed. Dave now lives in Perth and unashamably tells people that he follows Jesus.
Dave is not only a Christian sharer he is also a Christian shearer.
Paul says For I am not ashamed of the gospel.
Have you ever been embarrassed by someone.
I remember as a child at school in Winton – Parents were invited to inspect our work in our classrooms. I, and I believe a number of other students, sat like statues as our parents wandered around and inspected our work. I don’t know why but somehow I was embarrassed when my two worlds, home and school, collided.
We get embarrassed when worlds collide. And this is the case when this world and the world of Jesus collide.
Some things are just embarrassing. Imagine pouring out all your thoughts about some difficult person writing all the hideous things in your mind about them. Imagine coming into the room and finding them reading your diary.
People are not embarrassed by Anzac day – every year they gather together to remember the people who went out and fought in wars and sacrificed their time and sometimes their lives for the particular war that they fought in. Actually most countries are rather proud of their war heroes because they went out and risked their lives for a cause that is bigger than them.
Charles Upham won two Victoria Crosses for his service during world war two. His stories of heroism in the book Mark of the Lion make almost unbelievable reading. If you were asked to give a talk on him you wouldn’t be embarrassed even though he was a deadly killer because he was considered a war hero and here there is no collision of worlds.
Jesus the son of God gave his life for all of humanity all the wrong on both sides of arguments and war all the backbiting hatred lust and evil were dealt with in this one death. Greater love has no man than he lays down his life for his friends but Jesus who spilt his blood for the greatest of all causes is often discarded by the world. In fact his closest friends are too ashamed to share about him with others.
And most don’t even really understand why!!!
But not Paul!!!!!!!!
In Romans Paul is writing a letter to people who live in the most sophisticated society on the planet.
Rome - Rome was dominant throughout the Mediterranean region and was one of the most powerful entities of the ancient world.
Roman society contributed greatly to modern government, law, politics, engineering, art, literature, architecture, technology, warfare, religion, language and society. A civilization highly developed for its time, Rome professionalized and greatly expanded its military and created a system of government called res publica It achieved impressive technological and architectural feats, such as the construction of an extensive system of aqueducts and roads, as well as large monuments, palaces, and public facilities.
Under the Empire, the Romans absorbed the mythologies and religions of their conquered subjects but beginning with Emperor Nero in the 1st century AD, Roman official policy towards Christianity was negative, and at some points, simply being a Christian could be punishable by death.
How do you go head to head with all this culture, sophistication and religion with a story about a carpenter from an obscure village in a far flung outpost of the Roman empire when that very Empire had slaughtered him as a criminal?
Paul is about to visit Rome but he is not ashamed to share the gospel.
Why Paul tells the Roman’s , because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes
Sometimes you might think that your voice in the face of overwhelming opposition is meaningless what difference can I make? What difference can Paul make? – well some during his life, but also, he helped start a little snowball that turned into an avalanche so that by 391 ad All religions except Christianity were prohibited by an edict of Emperor Theodosius I.)
What is it that motivates Paul to unashamably share the gospel ? and what is it that motivates you?– You see when you get this motivation thing sorted amazing stuff happens.