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REVrant 22.6 - 2007 Off to Painful Start

REVved About Romans

This morning, I took the time to read through the entire Book of Romans in the New Testament.  It took about an hour to read all 16 chapters.  My FBC family knows that I started a sermon series last weekend titled, “Not Ashamed of the Gospel.”  I plan to preach  from this book for the rest of 2007 and 2008…and candidly, I’m not sure I’ll be finished with it until early in 2009.  In my introduction last weekend, I pointed out the high praise given to this book by Protestant Reformers Martin Luther and John Calvin.  I’m as excited about this sermon series as any I’ve undertaken in 21 years at FBC.  Reading through the whole book in one sitting this morning energized me once again.  Christians, you have to read Romans.  As I read today, I was swept away by both the majesty and simplicity of the gospel.  The American church desperately needs to hear the message of this book.

In my sermon this coming weekend, I’m going to consider a phrase in the next section – 1:17 – “For in the Gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last…”  <— See it? “A righteousness from God.”  That’s how we are saved.  We get “a righteousness from God.”  Not a righteousness we come up with, but a righteousness God gives us…simply because we believe in Him.  I’ve read this hundreds of times.  But today, it gripped me in a whole new way.  We’re saved because of what God does for us, not because of anything we do.  God effectively says, “Here’s my righteousness.  I know you can’t come up with your own, so I took care of it for you.  You want it?  Just believe and it’s yours!”

Every other religious system in history posits just the opposite idea –> “Here’s how to be righteous.”  Go to church.  Pray multiple times a day.  Fast.  Make a pilgrimage.  Read the holy book.  Give money.  Go to confession.  Care for the poor.  Give up worldly comforts.  You get the idea…in these other religious systems, if you want to be righteous, they say “prove it…and perhaps you will attain it some day!”  God’s idea is a polar opposite —> “If you want to be righteous, here’s My righteousness obtained for you by My Son.  It’s a free gift.”  Powerful truth.


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I am anticipating great things and lots and lots of fruit as we study the book of Romans. That truth alone that we are given "a
righteousness from God" ought to cause us to fall on our faces and worship. I am reading a book right now by Jeanne Guyon(likely one of the most influential 16th century Christian writers), entitled "Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ." She drives home the point throughout her book that we can only be righteous as we plug into the RIGHTEOUS ONE. MHR, I believe this study of the book of Romans is going to be quite the ride...I can't wait. I'm praying for you daily as you prepare for each Sat.eve/Sunday a.m. service :-)

Brian Bill

Preach it, brother. I started Romans recently and love it. I've finished the first five chapters. Feel free to check out what I've done: Will you make your sermons available?

Piper's material on Romans is outstanding.

Dave and Carolyn

Hello Bill and Jan,

I've been following you guys since we saw each other last July in MI. Thanks for the great posts and I'm looking forward to reading about the upcoming series in Romans. Would love to listen to it some time.....Hope you both are well and we are still under ice in the Ozarks. Hope to see you again in the future. Miss you both. Dave and Care


There are few who dare preach such bold truths, and even fewer who do so with love. Shannon and I have you and your wife in our prayers now more than ever, for you will need it, preaching through Romans. I am convinced there is no more scary book in the Bible to Satan, than Romans.
May God bless you!


Thanks for all the encouragement and prayers as I begin this imposing trip up spiritual "Mt. Everest." And a word to Brian Bill...some of my motivation to preach through Romans came via Ray Pritchard's web site link to your sermons. Thanks for paving the way. I've waited 21 years at FBC before preaching through Romans. And to Zach...I can already tell that Satan isn't thrilled with the powerful message of Romans. Keep those prayers coming.

Ray Pritchard

Congrats on beginning your journey through Romans. I first preached through it back in the early 90s. Now I'm working through it again in my weekly email sermons and discovering many truths that I didn't see the first time around. I am glad you are climbing this "Mt. Everest of Scripture" because Romans will be an enormous blessing you and to your congregation. If every pastor in America did as you are doing, our churches would be transformed.

Ray Pritchard


Thanks Ray! I'm thrilled that you've encouraged me and many other pastors to preach through the book of Romans. This book is foundational to the Christian faith and is desperately needed in this "lightweight" spiritual climate in the U.S. I'm grateful for the resources you've provided, as well as those by Brian Bill. Clearly, it's time for...Romans!

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