Title: Godís Alka-Seltzer
Focus: Our part in being Godís people is not our own works, but our own faith. We need to have faith because only God can save us and no one else. It is impossible for us to attain our own salvation or to bring God close to us. God has come near and made himself accessible through Christ. Therefore, we do not earn Godís nearness, we trust in it.
Function: To motivate the hearers to place their lives completely into Godís hands by doing things his way
Text: Romans 9:30 - 10:21
Intro: 1. Story of personís first time in art gallery a. Painting with yellow blobs, paint splattered b. Next one had purple blobs c. Said to Artist - I donít understand. Artist said, I paint what I feel d. Person said, ďHave you ever tried Alka-Seltzer? 2. Bible talks a lot about what is inside of us 3. Paul spent time talking about Godís part in chapter 9, now talks of our part 4. What does God want to find inside of us? Faith. Why? Reasons: I. Only God can save us (9:30-33) A. It is impossible for us to be our own salvation B. Israel did not understand this 1. They pursued a LAW of righteousness, but never arrived at it a. Why? They did not pursue it by faith b. They tried to pursue it by works 2. Incorrect to say God intended anyone to be saved by works a. They not to pursue righteousness by works but faith b. Abraham believed God and it credited as righteousness c. Now Gentiles also attain righteousness by faith 3. Still, people want to trust in own ability a. Example - Paul quote from Isa 28:16 and Ps 118:22 b. Context in Isaiah - Many wars plaguing world - Judah treaty with Assyria - Then renigged and treaty with Egypt - But God said to look to Zion (not treaties) c. But Israel more comfortable with treaties 4. Result? Trust in own ability led to failure a. Egyptian power not save them from Assyria b. If trust in God, would not have been disturbed C. Kind of like letting someone else drive 1. Hard to let Stacey drive 2. Never got rest on long trip. Every bump I jump 3. She reminds me that she never ran into telephone pole 4. I should just trust her, she better driver D. Problem - We want to be behind the wheel 1. But God has perfect driving record 2. God knows where to go, and best way to get there 3. Used to see bumper sticker - God is my co-pilot a. God is no oneís co-pilot b. God has to be the pilot 4. Only way to be saved is to give him the wheel II. Faith and Self-Righteousness are Diametrically opposed A. Self-Righteousness does not exist. It an illusion 1. When say someone self-righteous - Do you mean he righteous? 2. Usually mean he think he someone he not 3. Means he is arrogant 4. Usually has negative connotation B. Israel did not understand Godís righteousness (10:1-4) 1. Did not subject themselves to Godís righteousness a. What is ďGodísĒ righteousness? b. Abraham - Believed God, counted righteous by God c. The righteous shall live by faith (not works) d. But Israel wanted to be self-righteous 2. They tried to esablish their own righteousness a. Basis of self-righteousness was works of law b. Follow the letter of the law, and be righteous c. Most of us not able to hold candle to them 3. Problem: Never arrived (v.31) a. Why? Works of law not meant to make righteous b. v.4 - Christ is the ďendĒ of the law - He is the fulfillment or culmination of the law - Law points to faith in Christ - Law meant to engender faith c. Hebrew word - Law (Torah) means ďinstructionĒ - Instructions reminded of Godís salvation - Even festivals brought to rememberance - Meant to pass on the stories leading to faith d. That what it mean - Law to be pursued by faith 4. So, why would someone try to be self-righteous? C. Go to visit parents, shopping for dinner 1. I want to help pay, Dad says, ďput away your pride, I got itĒ 2. Have hard time accepting some things a. Harder when it something we donít deserve b. Want to feel we earned or paid for it c. Then can feel proud 3. Like Israel, so many not want to settle for something God gives a. Want to earn it b. Want to at least be a partner with God in salvation c. Then can feel proud of self d. Can feel good about what I accomplished 4. Problem - No such thing as self-righteousness - Only way to be justified, is accept it from God D. Self-Righteousness is an illusion 1. We canít make it on our own 2. Only true righteousness is Godís righteousness 3. Godís righteousness comes through faith in him 4. That means - GIVING HIM THE WHEEL! III. We do not make God accessible A. God is accessible because he chooses to be B. (v.5-8) God has made his word and himself accessible 1. Faith does not say (quotes -- Dt 30:11-14) a. God gave instruction (Torah); his word b. It was not too difficult or out of reach c. To say ďit is too hardĒ is not to have faith 2. Some still believe law was to hard to keep a. But God says it is not (they needed to trust him) b. Phil 3:6 - Paul said he blameless in keeping the law 3. Problem - When law pursued on works, not on faith a. When pursue based on works and not faith, will say -- b. ďWhat can we do to bring God to us?Ē C. That is sort of questions Pharisees wrestled with 1. Believed kingdom not come till they kept the Torah 2. Their solution - Oral Torah (eventually became Talmud) a. Pages after page of what constitutes work on Sabbath b. eg: Could not pluck hair on Sabbath - that work c. Also could not look in mirror, might pluck a hair 3. Rules after rules to bring the kingdom - Left God out of picture 4. So much focus and trust on own ability = subtle form of idolatry D. You donít ďearnĒ Godís nearness, you trust in it 1. New Testament says that God is accessible. Where? 2. Jn 1:14 - Word became flesh; Heb 2;4 - Faithful High Priest a. Did we bring Christ down b. Did we raise him from the Grave 3. Our part is to trust in his nearness 4. Trust means - Giving him the Wheel Concl: 1. If paint what see inside of you, what would it be? Would it be faith? a. Need faith because only God can save b. Self-Righteousness; Self-Salvation is an illusion c. God came near, we donít have to bring him near, just trust 2. If not see faith, maybe need Godís Alka-Seltzer - Blood of Christ a. You will not make you better, but Godís medicine will b. Faith is what leads you to take it c. If you believe, then repent and be baptized 3. Many of you already done this, maybe you need to let go of wheel (v.9-13) a. Faith lead you to confess Jesus as savior? No, as Lord!! b. That means giving him the wheel! He a better driver 4. What it mean to give him the wheel? a. When someone wrong you - Give God wheel - Bless them; no revenge b. Passed over for promotion - Congratulate him and do your best c. When someone in need - Take care of him, even if put self out d. Facing serious illness - More difficult - How do I give God the wheel? - Donít become so self-absorbed about life, forget God at wheel - Even if I die - I will live again - Because of my own ability, power, understanding, no!!! - Text say - GOD raised Jesus from dead! Me too!! 5. Rom 8 - end of chapter - Death not separated you from God - bring closer 6. Have you given him the wheel?