In many ways, it’s Paul’s great longing for unity in the churches that underpins this letter from beginning to end! And now in the final chapter he gives powerful personal expression to this as he sends his affectionate love and greetings to dozens of named members of the church in Rome. They’re his “co-workers”, “brothers” and “dear friends”; they “work hard” and are “approved in Christ”; they’re like family to Paul. They comprise men and women, Jews and Greeks, slaves and freed-men; and all are loved dearly and greatly valued by Paul. This great apostle didn’t just write about fellowship, teamwork and unity in Christ – he set us all a great example by living it out in his life and ministry!
We read in Ephesians 4:16 about how God is building His church: “He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”. As we look at this further we discover that the Church that is being built is not made of bricks and mortar, but of people! It can be easy to become focussed on physical buildings, but as we develop our understanding of the Church, we see how each person fits in to the whole ‘building’ and how we can make room for each of us to be shaped and cut to size, in order that God’s Church is built according to His plan and purpose.
Romans 4:13-21– The righteous have always lived by faith (Rom 1:17). God revealed to Abraham who He had MADE HIM TO BE, and in so doing, showed Himself to be the God who GIVES LIFE TO THE DEAD and CALLS INTO EXISTENCE THE THINGS THAT DO NOT EXIST
Abraham’s resulting faith enabled him to see, beyond all human hope, what God was going to do in his life. It enabled him to see his own future promised son, Isaac whom God was calling into being, and even beyond to God’s Promised Son, Jesus through whom many nations would come into the same faith. Abraham’s example can show us how to see what God has MADE YOU to be, what the Spirit is doing IN YOU to bring you into the full stature of Christ, and all that God is seeking to do THROUGH YOU to call many nations into His Kingdom. Let us align ourselves with what God has said He will do, and call into existence those things which He has promised, but do not yet exist!
When God says to us “I Promise” we can expect that we will be stretched and changed us to become more like Christ, we can expect to grow in clearly hearing and diligently responding to the voice of God, and we can expect that our faith in God can inspire faith in others to believe that the One who promises is faithful. How awesome that God loves us and considers us to be a people whom He can bless and trust with His promises.
What does the bible say about our salvation in terms of our body, soul and spirit? In this message, we attempt to sensitively unpack the elements that make up the whole human person and look at some of this in the context of anxiety, stress and depression. We then look at some keys to help us live in fullness with a spiritual mind.
In Romans chapter 8 the great apostle Paul introduces us to what he’s previously described as “the new way of living” (Ro 7:6), and which we now discover is a life filled with, led by and in the power of the wonderful Holy Spirit! In this fantastic chapter we find that the Spirit frees us from failure and liberates us from legalism; He the One who verifies our sonship and gives us victory over sin; and He’s the One who energises our bodies and empowers our prayers! The Holy Spirit is our greatest advocate and we pray that this message will encourage and enrich you in your walk with God.
This week we consider Paul’s description of the believer – not controlled by sinful nature but rather in radical relationship with the Holy Spirit. We think about how the Holy Spirit confirms our adoption, identity and inheritance as children of God and we take a look how Paul’s ‘theory’ found in the book of Romans played out in practice in his real-life care for the churches.
Romans 13:8 tells is about one ‘debt’ that you will always owe and can never pay off – the debt of love to others. As we explore what this means together, we see how we will never be able to reach the point where we can say “now I love others as much as I should”! No matter how much we have grown as a Christian, we still have room to grow in love.
How radical is our rationale? How radical is our way of thinking? Paul tells us in Romans 12 to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice but then goes on to tell us that this is our rational service – our totally rational response to all God has done for us. God wants to challenge us not only to think radically as our minds are renewed but also then to live radically in light of that… and Romans 12 gives us some great keys on how we can do that.
Romans 8:28 – In our present uncertain age, this Biblical truth is a steel peg which can be punched into the Rock. It is an anchor point in the storms of life. During this message we examine the different parts of this wonderful declaration, to consider some important aspects which we often overlook, and discover some revelatory truths we may not have known were there! The Apostle Paul acknowledges that there are things in life which we don’t know (v.26), but tells us emphatically that this is an eternal truth we MUST know, with a confidence that nothing is equal to shaking.
As we read through Romans 12, we see what our ’new life’ should look like. Paul encourages us in this chapter that we are no longer bound by sin and death because Christ has been raised up and we sit alongside him in heavenly places. In this message, Stephen unpacks what this means for us and gives us some practical ways that we can enjoy our new life in Christ.
In Romans 5 Paul continues to tell of the God-given Radical Righteousness that is freely ours when we repent and make Jesus the Lord of our lives. Unless we are completely convinced that God has given us a free gift of righteousness that makes us completely acceptable to Him, we can be forever battling a sense of guilt and unworthiness which can paralyse us spiritually and if uncorrected will prevent us from being effective within our families, in the body and in the mission of the church.
Reading Romans chapter 5 is like taking giant strides to the very top of a magnificent mountain-peak, and from that vantage point gazing at the vast panoramic views now spread before us! Because we’ve been “declared righteous by faith”, Paul explains, we now have blessing-upon-blessing (v1-11): Peace, access into Grace, Joy, Hope, indwelling Love, the Holy Spirit, Salvation! And all this is made possible because Christ came to create a new humanity: to reverse the effects of Adam’s sin, to restore mankind completely, and by “one righteous act” on the Cross to obtain life for everyone! May this great message of new life and fresh hope bless you and strengthen you for the year ahead…
We learn in Romans that we have the freedom to become like Christ, and discover God’s limitlessness love and power in our lives. We can be identified or defined by many things, but in this message we discover how we can find out identity in Jesus Christ. Romans 8:5-17 says that Christ lives in you; the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwells within us! We are adopted as His own children and we are heirs of Gods glory. Once you become a new creation in Him, everything changes for the better. You’re given a new name. Your whole identity changes because you’ve been rescued and redeemed from sin and darkness and welcomed into God’s Kingdom family.
If we confess that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised Him from the dead, we will be saved. Our hearts matter most to God, because what is in our hearts matters most to us! In Paul’s letter to the church in Rome, we read that God looks at the heart, and only He can truly change our hearts.
In the opening verses of Romans chapter 1 Paul introduces himself to the church at the heart of the Empire as a “slave of Christ” who’s been “set apart for the Gospel of God”. In this message, we discover that we too are “set apart” by God, saved by a powerful and gigantic gospel, and called to join the ‘revolution’ – declaring that JESUS IS LORD and abandoning our allegiance to anything else!…
As we launch our teaching series, based in the letter to the Romans, we start by considering the background and circumstances of this great work of the Apostle Paul. We also consider what it has to say about 3 great existential questions of our time, (1) Who am I? (2) What am I here for? and (3) What does the future hold for me? The unfolding divine revelation in these pages speaks of our IDENTITY in Christ, our PURPOSE in His Kingdom, and our DESTINY as faithful children laying hold of God’s promises for a glorious future!