THOSE MADE RIGHTEOUS BY FAITH ARE UNITED/A Christlike Spirit promotes Unity among Jewish and Gentile Chritians Romans 15
Thesis: Through graceful treatment and acceptance of one another, as Christ accepts us through grace, we can promote unity among Christians with diverse backgrounds and varied understandings.
I. THE STRONG ARE OBLIGATED TO BEAR PATIENTLY WITH THE FRAILTIES OF THE WEAK (1-4).
A. Christians ought not to be concerned with pleasing themselves, but others (1).
B. Each Christian ought to try to please his neighbor (2).
1. This is to be done when it will do the other good (2).
2. This is to be done when it will build the neighbor up (2).
C. Even Christ did not please himself (3).
1. It is written in Psalm 69:9 of Christ, “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me” (3).
2. Everything written in the past was written to teach us so that we might have hope (4).
a. This hope comes through endurance (4).
b. This hope comes through the encouragement of the Scripture (4).
II. CHRISTIANS NEED A GOD GIVEN SPIRIT OF UNITY AMONG US (5, 6).
A. God gives us endurance and encouragement, as well as a spirit of unity (5).
B. This spirit of unity comes to those who follow Christ Jesus (5).
C. The goal of this is Christians glorifying God with one heart and one mouth (6)
III. CHRISTIANS SHOULD ACCEPT ONE ANOTHER (7-12).
A. We are to accept one anoter as Christ accepts us (7).
B. We should accept each other in order to bring praise to God (7).
C. Christ has become a servant of the Jews (8).
1. He is the servant of the Jews on behalf of God’s truth (8).
2. He is their servant to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs (8)
3. He is their servant so that the Gentiles may glorify God for his mercy (9; cf. Psalm 18:49; Deuteronomy 32:43; Psalm 117:1; Isaiah 11:10).
IV. TRUST IN GOD BRINGS GREAT BLESSINGS OF PEACE, JOY AND HOPE (13).
A. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, God fills those who trust with great joy .
B. God fills those who trust with peace.
C. God causes those who trust to overflow with hope.
V. INFORMED CHRISTIANS ARE ABLE TO INSTRUCT ONE ANOTHER (14- 16).
A. The Roman Christians were full of goodness, complete in knowledge, and competent to instruct one another (14).
B They were competent to instruct one another because Paul had written boldly on some points (15).
1. He wrote to remind them on these points (15).
2. He wrote because of the grace God gave him to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles (15, 16).
3. His ministry to the Gentiles was a priestly duty (16).
a. His priestly work was to minister the message of grace and make the Gentiles an offering acceptable to God (16).
b. The Gentiles were acceptable because sanctified by the Holy Spirit (16).
VI. SERVANTS OF THE GOSPEL CAN GLORY ONLY IN CHRIST JESUS IN THEIR SERVICE TO GOD (17-22).
A. Paul could glory only through Christ for his work (17).
B. What Paul accomplished Christ accomplished through him (18).
C. The good Paul accomplished he accomplished through the power of the Spirit (19).
D. He proclaimed the gospel of Christ fully (19).
E. Paul had an ambition to preach the gospel where Christ is not known so that he would not build on someone else’s foundation (20; cf. Isaiah 52:15).
F. His desire to preach where Christ was not known caused him to be hindered from coming to Rome (22).
Conclusion: An understanding and application of God’s grace in the church brings peace, joy, and confidence about salvation.
© 2004, Dr. Wm. T. (Bill) Lambert
Professor Emeritus – NT Literature and Interpretation
College of Bible and Religion