The Word of God, the worship of God, the way of God and the work of God

The Word of God calls us to worship God, to walk in his way and do his work. Worshipping the Lord, walking in his way and working for him: Here, we have a description of our whole life response to the Word of the Lord. When we read God's Word, it is so important that …

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Trust in Christ, not in yourself.

Romans 9:1-33 We read about 'Jews' and 'Gentiles'. We learn about salvation. The Jews are not saved because of their nationality. It is 'not because of works'. The Gentiles are not excluded because of their nationality. It is 'because of His call'. Salvation comes from God's grace, not from our good works. It is received …

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Pray that faith will come, as the Word of Christ is heard.

Romans 10:1-21 To 'Jew and Gentile', God says, 'Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved' (12-13). The Jews had praised the Lord Jesus: 'Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!'. Before long, they were shouting, 'Crucify Him, crucify Him!' (John …

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Learning from Martin Luther (The Kingdom Of God: Romans and Galatians)

This message was preached as part of a series in which we looked at what the books of the New Testament say about "the Kingdom of God." Since the focus is really on Martin Luther, I've given "Learning from Martin Luther" as the main title, with "The Kingdom of God: Romans and Galatians" being given …

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God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Romans 1:1-32 'I am not ashamed of the gospel: it is the power of God for salvation to every one who has faith' (16). Do you think it was easy for Paul to maintain such commitment to Christ, such confidence in Christ? What kind of world did he live in?: a world of 'ungodliness and …

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God has great things in store for His people.

Romans 5:1-21 God has great things in store for His people! (a) 'Much more' (9-10): 'Justified by Christ's blood', 'reconciled to God', 'We shall be saved by Christ from the wrath of God', 'saved by His life'. (b) 'Much more' (15,17): 'The grace of God' has 'abounded for many'. In Christ, we have 'received the abundance of …

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Jesus Christ our Lord: crucified for us and risen for us

"We do not preach ourselves but Jesus Christ as Lord" (2 Corinthians 4:5). This post is, really, a continuation of an earlier post, "When we preach Christ crucified, let us, also, preach that he is the risen Lord." If you want to read that post before starting to read this one, here's the link for …

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When we preach Christ crucified, let us, also, preach that he is the risen Lord.

"We preach Christ crucified" (1 Corinthians 1:23). In his preaching. Paul "reasoned with people from the Scriptures" (Acts 17:2), but he did not say, "We preach Isaiah", "We preach Jeremiah" or "We preach... ." He said, "We preach Christ crucified." When Paul spoke about the death of Christ, he spoke about the love of God: …

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Let us rejoice in Jesus, God’s Son. Let us rejoice in Jesus, our Saviour.

"God's Son, Jesus Christ our Lord" was "declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead" (Romans 1:3-4). This post is a continuation of my earlier post, "This is my Son. This is your Saviour." You should, really, read that post before reading …

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Romans 11-14

Romans 11:1-36 -  ‘You stand fast only through faith. So do not become proud, but stand in awe’ (20). In 9:32, Paul contrasted ‘faith’ and ‘works’. Here, he contrasts ‘grace’ and ‘works’ (6). Grace and faith belong together. ‘Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to Thy Cross I cling’ (Church Hymnary, 83) – This …

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Romans 14-16

In chapter 14, Paul speaks about problems which arise in relationships between Christians. In chapter 15, he emphasizes that the Gospel is for all, both Jews and Gentiles. Chapter 16 is, mainly, a series of personal greetings which Paul sends to indvidual Christians at Rome.

Romans 9-11

These are difficult chapters. Paul speaks about the place of Jews and Gentiles in God's work of salvation. Above all else, this great theme stands out: Salvation is the work of God's grace; it is His gift of grace which is received through faith in Jesus Christ, the Saviour of both Jews and Gentiles.

Romans 4-6

Here, Paul speaks about God's way of salvation. He emphasizes that we receive salvation through faith in Jesus Christ: we are justified by faith (chapter 4). This is just the beginning of our salvation. God has given us new life (chapter 6) and, now, He's leading us on to eternal glory (chapter 5).

God sees us as we really are – and he keeps on loving us.

"For many times, also, your own heart has known that even you have cursed others" (Ecclesiastes 7:22).  "Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things" (Romans 2:1).  The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector "Also …

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Led in the way of victory

Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost: Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28; Psalm 105:1-6, 16-22, 45b or 1 Kings 19:9-18; Psalm 85:8-13; Romans 10:5-15; Matthew 14:22-33 Strengthened by the Lord, we are led in the way of victory. In the story of Joseph, we see human sin and divine grace. We see jealousy (Genesis 37:11) and its effects: ‘where jealousy …

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Trust in the Lord. He is working in us to do us good.

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost: Genesis 29:15-28; Psalm 105:1-11, 45b (or Psalm 128) or 1 Kings 3:5-12; Psalm 119:129-136; Romans 8:26-39; Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52 Trust in the Lord. He is working in us to do us good. The tables are turned on Jacob. The trickster is tricked! The ‘trick’ was according to the ‘custom’ that the …

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Knowing Jesus and preaching him: it’s all about loving him.

"I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified" (1 Corinthians 2:2). "We preach Christ crucified" (1 Corinthians 1:23). Here, Paul speaks to us about knowing Christ crucified and preaching Christ crucified, Before we can preach him, we must know him. God speaks to us before we speak for him. What …

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Nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ our Lord.

"I can't take any more of this." What are we to do when we feel like this? What about listening to what God's Word has to say to us? "I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else …

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We are sinners. We’re called to be servants. Jesus is our Saviour.

"I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that the gospel I preached is not of human origin. 12 I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ" (Galatians 1:11-12). We read the words of Paul - and we look beyond him to Jesus …

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Our feelings are changeable. God’s love is unchangeable.

"Salvation is nearer to us than when we first believed" (Romans 13:11). We read these great words, and we are encouraged. The Lord is leading us on the most wonderful journey. At the end of this journey, there is the most glorious destination. As we travel towards this glorious destination, we must keep our eyes …

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Love has the victory forever.

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does …

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Think, often, of what Jesus has done for you. Thank Him for dying for you.

"When people work, their pay is not regarded as a gift but something they have earned" (Romans 4:4). When God is at work in us, bringing us to faith in His Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ, everything is very different. His salvation is His gift to us. It's not our reward from Him.   Grace gives …

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"His dominion shall be… to the ends of the earth" (Zechariah 9:10).

God's purpose was moving on. He had begun with Israel. Their deliverance from bondage in Egypt was a mighty demonstration of His saving power. This was only the beginning. God was moving on to Jesus - "the Saviour of the world" (John 4:42). In Jesus Christ, crucified for us, God was reaching out, in love, …

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Lord, help us to keep on going – with you and for you.

"May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, 6 so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 15:5). Let us keep on encouraging one another - to keep on worshipping the Lord. Where …

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The Word and the words (13): God’s salvation covers our past, our present and our future.

"I am the good shepherd" (John 10:11). "The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing" (Psalm 23:1). I lack nothing - God has given us a full salvation. It's a salvation that covers our past, our present and our future. -- We begin by emphasizing that God's salvation covers our past. "He makes me lie …

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Let’s keep on confessing our sins, and let’s keep on confessing our faith in Jesus Christ, our Saviour.

"What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin" (Romans 7:24-25). What …

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King Saul – physically strong, spiritually weak

1 Chronicles 9:1b-10:14; Romans 14:1-18; Proverbs 18:17-19:2 1 Chronicles 10 tells of the death of Saul: “Saul died because he was unfaithful to the Lord …” (1 Chronicles 10:13-14). Romans 14 speaks of the strong and the weak. Physically, Saul was strong.  Spiritually, he was weak. Maintaining our spiritual strength, our relationship with God, is to be …

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The love of God goes on and on.

1 Chronicles 6:1-81; Romans 11:33-12:21; Psalm 89:30-37 The names tell a story – the story of the historical development of the Lord’s purpose with His people. The many names, stretching over a vast expanse of time, highlight the greatness of God and the great work He is doing among His people. They draw out from us …

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The Holy Spirit Leads Us In The Way Of Victory.

John 15:20, 26, 16:13–15, 33, Rom 12:2, 2 Tim 3:12, 1 John 5:4–5 Jesus was ‘persecuted’. We will be ‘persecuted’ - ‘all who desire to live a godly life will be persecuted’ (John 15:20; 2 Timothy 3:12). We have no guarantee that life will be easy. In all our difficulties, ‘the Spirit of truth’ directs …

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When God works in mighty power

Jonah 1:1-4:11; Romans 2:1-16; Psalm 85:1-7 In Nineveh, God works in mighty power. "Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry" (Jonah 3:10-4:1). To this proud attitude, God says, "You ... have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else" (Romans 2:1). He calls for a change of attitude: "Do you show contempt for the …

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We need to be changed by the Lord.

Ezekiel 37:1-14; Psalm 130; Romans 8:6-11; John 11:1-45 We need to be changed by the Lord. It was ‘a valley of dry bones’ (Ezekiel 37:1-2). Then, the Lord changed everything - ‘I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live’ (Ezekiel 37:5). What a difference the Lord makes! ‘Breathe on me, Breath of …

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The Name of the Lord – the Name of our Salvation

1 Chronicles 2:18-4:8; Romans 10:5-11:10; Proverbs 18:7-16 More names! It’s great to have a name – and not to be a nameless person of unknown identity. It’s even greater to have the Name of the Lord given to us for our salvation. “Everyone who calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans …

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The commonplace and the deeper experience of worship

1 Chronicles 15:1-16:36; Romans 16:1-27; Psalm 90:11-17 In a book full of so many names, David’s psalm of thanksgiving (1 Chronicles 16) stands out. It is a high-point in the midst of the commonplace. The commonplace is not insignificant in God’s purpose. It is the backcloth against which God gives to us His special high-points. In …

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God’s purpose – for all nations and all generations

1 Chronicles 12:23-14:17; Romans 15:14-33; Psalm 90:1-10 God’s purpose concerns all the nations – “The Lord made all the nations fear David” (1 Chronicles 14:17). Paul was “a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles” (Romans 15:16). God’s purpose concerns all generations – “Lord, You have been our dwelling-place throughout all generations” (Psalm 90:1). From …

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The great blessing of forgiveness

Amos 8:1-9:15; Romans 5:12-21; Proverbs 17:15-24 Christ restored what Adam lost (Romans 5:15). The Garden of Eden was devastated, but God promises to restore the garden (Amos 9:13-15). This is a prophecy – “The days are coming … “ (Amos 9:13). It is fulfilled in Christ, through whom we receive eternal life (Romans 5:21). In …

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