Friday, August 7, 2009

When in Rome...

Romans 1:16-17: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, the just shall live by faith.”

Paul was imprisoned because of his faith and belief in Jesus. Paul states in this scripture that he is not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. Paul was a Pharisee and a devout Jew until his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus. Then Paul accepted the Good news of Jesus’ death for the world. This conversion caused Paul to preach this gospel or “good news”. However, great hardship came along with this salvation decision. Paul was beaten, dragged, stoned, and imprisoned for his faith. Paul was finally arrested and placed in jail sitting in chains. The world would say that Paul should have been ashamed because it was the gospel that caused his imprisonment.

Paul gave this reason as to why he was not ashamed of the gospel; “for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek”. The gospel is the power behind salvation. It is the means by which one gets saved. Salvation comes by the good news. Jesus died to take the punishment that we deserved because of our sin. 1 John 1:8 says, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” Each of us has sinned. We deserve to be punished for that sin. Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” God provided a way for us so we wouldn’t receive our just punishment; that way is Jesus. How does that salvation work? It works through faith. Romans 10:9 declares, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” That is the Gospel of God. That is the power of God’s salvation for us.
Application – We do not need to be ashamed of the gospel, because it is the means of salvation.
Challenge – Live by faith and preach the gospel with boldness, because that is the means of salvation.

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