The Centrality of the Gospel, Romans 1-8

The gospel is central to all of life –  summarizing the message

If you do not understand the gospel you cannot be saved, you cannot rightly interpret your feelings, govern your thoughts, raise your children, maintain relationships with friends, conduct your work life or maintain loving church life.”

Romans begins and ends with the gospel. In Romans 1,Paul says that he is separated to the Gospel of God and that he is “not ashamed of the gospel for it is the power of God to salvation,” Romans ends with a prayer that “Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ.”

Statements by great men on the importance of the gospel make this perfectly clear

C.H. Spurgeon

“Never lose heart in the power of the gospel. Do not believe that there exists any man, much less any race of men, for whom the gospel is not fitted.” (CHS)

“Let this be to you the mark of true gospel preaching – where Christ is everything, and the creature is nothing; where it is salvation all of grace, through the work of the Holy Spirit applying to the soul the precious blood of Jesus.” (CHS)

“On Christ, and what he has done, my soul hangs for time and eternity. And if your soul also hangs there, it will be saved as surely as mine shall be. And if you are lost trusting in Christ, I will be lost with you and will go to hell with you. I must do so, for I have nothing else to rely upon but the fact that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, lived, died, was buried, rose again, went to heaven, and still lives and pleads for sinners at the right hand of God.” (CHS)

“We have an unchanging gospel, which is not today green grass and tomorrow dry hay; but always the abiding truth of the immutable Jehovah.” (CHS)

“The gospel is not ‘God loves us,’ but ‘God loves us at the cost of his Son.'” (Derek Thomas)

“As there is only one God, so there can be only one gospel.” (James Denney)

“The gospel begins and ends with what God is, not what we want or think we need.” (Tom Houston)

“If you believe what you like in the gospel, and reject what you don’t like, it is not the gospel you believe, but yourself.” (Augustine)

“Whenever the gospel is preached it is as if God himself came into the midst of us.” (John Calvin)

“There is nothing attractive about the gospel to the natural man; the only man who finds the gospel attractive is the man who is convicted of sin.” (Oswald Chambers)

“A gospel that elevates man and dethrones God is not the gospel.” (Will Metzger)

“The man who does not glory in the gospel can surely know little of the plague of sin that is within him. (J.C. Ryle)

“The revelation of the gospel is to a world that is already under indictment for its universal rejection of God the Father.” (R.C. Sproul)

“The heart of the gospel is redemption, and the essence of redemption is the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ.” (C.H. Spurgeon)

 

In summing up Romans 1-8, I spent about a half hour by reminding of the centrality of the gospel throughout the letter, then we read Romans 1-8 out loud in the congregation

.Quotes From Together for the Gospel web site, May 17 and 19, 2006, “About the Gospel,” by Ligon Duncan

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A Vote for a Curse?

Your_Vote_Counts

On Wednesday night I gathered my family around the TV to hear what I told them would be a superior delivery of a speech. We were not disappointed – candidate Palin was out Raygunning Reagan (“the great communicator”) with her amazing platform skills. We heard things that we have been waiting for politicians to say and it was indeed refreshing. While we can all easily praise many of the perspectives that the candidate holds, we must think beyond appearances. While evangelicalism is giddy to vote for this candidate (in spite of many very serious biblical reasons not to) it is appropriate to pause to consider what this really is. For many, it may be a vote against Obama. But this vote is also on many other critical family issues. Consider these,

Why would anyone want to vote for something that the Bible calls a curse? Isaiah 3:12, “As for My people, children are their oppressors, And women rule over them. O My people! Those who lead you cause you to err, And destroy the way of your paths.”

Why would anyone want to vote for something that would cause the Word of God to be blasphemed? Titus 2:5, “that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.”

Why would anyone want to encourage a mother of five to leave home? Titus 2:5, “that they admonish the young women to be… homemakers.”

Why would anyone want to encourage a wife to submit to another man? Ephesians 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.”

Why would anyone want to encourage a woman to defy the authority structure of the universe? 1 Corinthians 11:3 “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.”

Why would anyone want to vote for a woman, when scripture always requires men for civil offices? Ex. 18:21-27; Deut. 1:13; 17:14-20; 2 Sam. 23:3; Neh. 7:2; Prov. 16:10; 20:8, 28; 29:14.

People say, “My vote is a vote against Obama.” But we must remember it is also a vote for a curse, for blaspheming, for mothers to leave home, for wives to submit to another man, for women to rebel against the authority structure of the universe, for positions scripture limits to men?

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The False Promises of Women’s Liberation

The Lord Jesus Christ leads the world in desire that women be liberated, for He has said, “You shall know the truth and truth shall make you free.” But there is a false liberation that many are experiencing. The feminists cry “liberation, liberation,” but there is no liberation except this kind,

  • Liberation from God’s order for manhood and womanhood
  • Liberation from femininity and modesty
  • Liberation from men and service
  • Liberation from submission and authority
  • Liberation from staying home and a quiet life
  • Liberation from childbearing and generational vision
  • Liberation from the bondage of teaching and personal discipleship of her children
  • Liberation from home centered work and production
  • Liberation from mentoring the younger in her old age

In short, she has been “liberated” but she has also been stripped from all that God has declared to be beautiful and good. The home life that God has ordained for her provides the elemental building blocks for her satisfaction and success that extends for many generations. Shalom!

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When Motherhood Causes the Word of God to be Blasphemed

The Bible says that when a woman refuses to be a keeper at home she causes the Word of God to be blasphemed. This means that she creates conditions that discredit the Word of God. It gives people reason to rail against God. Instead of glorifying God, they blaspheme. This is why it is so striking that there is little Christian resistance to the recent announcement of the Republican Vice Presidential Candidate, Sarah Palin. But God has established that women be keepers at home, “that the word of God may not be blasphemed,” (Titus 2:5). With something so important at stake (blasphemy) it is no wonder that home making is so viciously attacked, so casually undervalued and so easily dismissed. And it is no wonder that a biblically illiterate and historically ignorant Christian populace does not even know what the Bible says about motherhood, women’s roles and the creation order… (more…)

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Why Men Keep Their Mouths Shut

Reasons men keep their mouths shut on the issue of women in authority.

John Knox proposes three reasons why men shrink back and say nothing about women ruling over men, even when such an obvious biblical principle is being violated. The first reason men keep their mouths shut is for fear that “It may seem to tend to sedition.” Second it is “dangerous to the writer and the publisher.” And third, it won’t fix the problem because it may never come to the ears of those who need to hear it. (First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women, John Knox, Presbyterian Heritage Publications, 1993, p12)

I am glad some men are speaking out,

Doug Phillips

Voddie Baucham

Kevin Swanson

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Feminism’s Historic “Firsts” Defy 1 Cor. 11:3

We are seeing a rush of “firsts” in history in the area of gender roles. Each one of them subverts the creation order.

  • First Female Republican Vice Presidential Candidate, Sarah Palin – 9-29-08.
  • First Female President, Harvard University, Drew G. Faust – 10-12-07.
  • First Female President, Yale University, Sharon Kugler – 10-13-07.
  • First Female Presidential Candidate, Hillary Rodham Clinton – 1-20-07.
  • First Female Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi – 1-4-07.
  • First Female Secretary of State in US history, Madeline Albright – 12-5-96.

Why is this? It is because the historic Christian understanding of womanhood has been shelved. For some historical perspective we should remember that a female vice presidential candidate would have been unthinkable for our founding fathers. They were not all believers but they had a biblical world view regarding men and women and authority. They believed that women should never be in authority over a man for “God is the head of Christ, and Christ is the head of man and man is the head of woman” (1 Cor 11:3). If you get any of these out of order you have insurrection against the divine order. But today, order and authority are despised and thrown off. And to make matters worse, most people in the Christian community do not understand that it is just as much a heresy to put a man as head of Christ as it is to put a woman over a man.

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Scary Statistics on Illiteracy

     

    • ?65% of Bible-believing Christians have never read the entire New Testament (www.chronologicalbiblestorying.com).
    • ?43% of American adults function at or below basic literacy levels – making them incapable of meaningful Bible reading (ccclib.org)
    • ?In a survey of more than 500 pastors, 47% cited “lack of time” as the main reason more Christians don’t read the Bible (Phone survey, Hosanna, 1996).
    • ?58% of the U.S. adult population will never read another book after high school (oralbible.com Aug 2007).
    • ?42% of U.S. university graduates never read another book (oralbible.com Aug 2007)
    • ?Over 50% of teens in America believe that Jesus may have committed sins (www.barna.org)

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