Summary: We all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God, but God sent his Son to reddem those who have fallen if they believe.
Let us Pray- Merciful Father; we thank you for blessing us to serve your people according to your will in this place and we ask you to pour out your blessing on those who heard the Word and sprung into action that cause others to come or return to Christ. Thank you for gifting us your Son. We are not worthy, but you saw fit to do it anyway. We bless your name forever and ever. Amen.
Grace and Peace in The Lord! Today is Reformation Sunday, and it is only befitting to highlight some of Martin Luther’s theological views with regards to our Second Lesson from the 3rd chapter of Romans.
* We are given salvation by grace, which transforms us into being a new creation.
* We are justified by faith in Jesus Christ who is our perfecter and finisher of faith.
* There is no power on earth, under the earth that is more significant than that of the power of the Gospel. For within the Gospel we have the redeeming power of God through our Lord and Savior, the gift of eternal life.
* The Gospel as one of our church fathers proclaims- brings us to the fear of God. Origen states that, “For the one that fears God never ever fears the Power of the world.” The reason being, I might add, is because you indeed have more to work to with, in doing the right thing as the being a living witness of the one who came into this world as our Sacrificial Lamb. Through that sacrificial act, way back of Calvary, we have the victory over death and sin because those two things are defeated.
* It does not mean we are not capable of sinning, that we do not ever sin anymore, it just means that, we are on a quest not to sin, to not do harm to others or ourselves.
* From the Apostle Paul, we hear a lot about the Law. I want to make this one point clear, the Law that is reference here is not only the Ten Commandments or the Mosaic Laws, but when Paul makes reference to the Law, He means the whole entire Old Testament- The beginning, the Patriarchs, the Exodus, The Judges, and Kings and queens, royal families, the prophets, those that are known and those that are not so noted, the books of wisdom and history, Paul meant the entire kabodo.
* Within the church we understand that we need both Law and Gospel.
* The Law makes us look at how far down we are and when we want to rise out of our murk and mire we just cannot, when we want to become clean, under the Law we still fall short.
* Children of God, when we decide to believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, grace enters the scene, sins are forgiven, we struggle but are not defeated. We have the love of Christ which takes us to deeper depths and higher grounds. The Love of Christ will promote morally good and healthy living and takes away the fear of eternal damnation because we know without a shadow doubt that Jesus, God’s Son did it all for us on Calvary. Our spirit’s soars because we are rooted and grounded in God’s love and we know that no weapons form against God’s people will ever prosper.
* Under the Law we are given only a temporal solution, but by grace, divine grace, our acceptance of Christ, This gives us the ultimate solution which is eternal life. The Law discloses sin but grace takes it away;
* Verse 21 But now apart from the Law, if you are reading this with the naked eye, as St Augustine writes, some that read this passage would misconstrued the statement and believe that it is an attack on the Law. This is so false, like I mentioned before hand and I feel it worthy of mentioning it again, under the Law we struggle and our defeated because there is no grace. By faith the Law is abolished but not discredited. Grace therefore, makes it possible for us to do the right thing and to humble seek forgiveness when we fall.
* Verse23- Since we all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God: Folks sin is universal and embraces everyone, the young, old, teenagers, middle-agers, the rich or poor, all races and nationalities, no one is immune, we are born into sin.
* Here is the Good news once again; Christ redeems us from sin, he brings us back from sin, not because we are worthy, no one merits this gift, no one can claim it through their works no matter how good they maybe- God forbids.