Tower Hill Church

The Road: From Romans to the Gospel, Part 2

January 15, 2018
Tower Hill Church
The Road: From Romans to the Gospel, Part 2
Chapters
Tower Hill Church
The Road: From Romans to the Gospel, Part 2
Jan 15, 2018
Tower Hill Church / Pastor Jason
Being a disciple is like an apprenticeship... you learn by doing (and eventually teach someone else)
Show Notes Transcript
Discipleship is not the process of knowing more about God, but rather, it's the process of knowing God. Therefore, we don't grow spiritually based on information but a relationship. Join us as we discover the power of a relationship with God through Paul's letter to the Romans.

Speaker 1:
0:01
Okay. What is the relationship between the gospel and the law? The apostle Paul talks about that in the book of Romans. We're talking about it and then what does that all have to do with being a disciple of Jesus Christ? That's what we're talking about today and the tower Hill podcast
Speaker 2:
0:25
[inaudible]
Speaker 1:
0:25
Hey everyone. Welcome to the podcast of tower Hill church, a church for all generations. This is pastor Jason. I hope that you're having a great week. I hope that you have had a chance to get caught up that up on the sermon series. This is now week number two in this series called the road from Romans to the gospel. And as I said in the sermon last week, a spoiler alert if you've, if you're listening to these out of order for some reason, but um, one thing that I said was if we're really going to grow in our faith this year, it's really going to take us being owners of that spiritual growth. In other words, we got to take some ownership in our walk with Jesus. Now, don't hear me wrong, God does the shaping of our lives. God brings spiritual growth to us, but we have a part to play.
Speaker 1:
1:17
It's a partnership. We have a part to play in. It's a willingness for God to work on our lives. Oftentimes you've heard people say things like, I'm not, I'm not being fed here. I'm not being fed at this church. I'm not feeling like I'm being fed. And this series is really a reminder that a feeding is our responsibility. Uh, you know, you feed babies, you don't feed adults that we have to learn how to grab a fork into dig into our spiritual journey. Otherwise we're never really gonna grow. We're never gonna grow past, um, whatever other people can feed us, which isn't that much because really in this journey of faith, the learning comes from the doing. And that's what this week's installment is all about. It's all about, uh, thinking about discipleship as an apprenticeship. Now, what does an apprentice do? They learn by doing so that one day they can teach somebody else.
Speaker 1:
2:19
This is really a model of what discipleship is and it's easy to forget that as they're going about our everyday life. So hopefully today will be a good reminder of that. Hey, before we get into the sermon, I just, I do want to say again, we're going to do a Facebook group for lent, where I'm going to do a daily video devotional. It's going to be like three to five minutes and I'm going to go through the sermon on the Mount and I thought it'd be really cool if us as a church or anybody who's listening in wanted to just join in on that for a 40 day commitment to spending some quiet time with Jesus, I think is a great way to prepare our hearts for, for Easter, but also to really take seriously the idea of digging in and letting God transform us.
Speaker 1:
3:10
So, uh, I'll give you some real specific information on that in the coming weeks, but I just wanted you to get that on your radar and start thinking about it cause I'm really excited about it. Anyway, I hope that, uh, this message blesses you. Whatever you're doing today and uh, feel free to drop me a line or if you're in the area and, uh, you know, usually come to this church. If you're in the area and you come, let me know. I'd love to say hi and to encourage you, uh, in your journey of faith. So without any further ado, here is this week's message of the road
Speaker 3:
3:43
and the word disciple means students are perhaps better apprentice. And what do you know about an apprenticeship and apprenticeship? You learn by doing. This is the Christian faith. We are in an apprenticeship program with Jesus Christ. How's it going? Do you feel like you're getting the hang of it? Do you feel like you're able to start learning and doing what Jesus has asked you to do?
Speaker 3:
4:16
See, the thing is an apprentice then therefore at some point becomes a teacher themselves. I think one of the things about the discipleship journey that many of us don't think about on a regular basis is that not only are it's our job as disciples of Jesus Christ to learn, but then to do that for somebody else to teach that we are disciples who make other disciples. It's not just the pastors making disciples. If we rely on that, we're all in big trouble. It's all of us making disciples, learning, teaching. And so we've been talking the last couple of weeks about digging in. What does it take for us to dig in as fellow apprentices on this great apprenticeship program that we are on? And that's what this series is about. And I hope that it encourages you to dig, to learn, to grow, and to teach someone else. Now, why is it that God wants us on this apprenticeship program? I mean, why is that? Well, I think the reason is two fold at least twofold and that is first of all, he wants a relationship with his children. It's like we are all going to take over the family business. He wants a relationship with us first and foremost. He wants a relationship with us and he wants to teach us so that he can watch us take what he's done and let it blossom throughout the world. This is the work of the church.
Speaker 2:
5:52
Yeah.
Speaker 3:
5:54
He wants us to take over the family business. The is there is a barrier in our way. There is a barrier to our apprenticeship that keeps coming up. It's preventing us from having a relationship with him. It causes us to to blow the whole thing and that is the barrier of sin.
Speaker 2:
6:17
[inaudible]
Speaker 3:
6:18
sin is a deep, deep problem we talked about last week that it goes much deeper than we even realize. It's much worse than we ever thought. Sin corrupts us completely and we are unable to have a relationship with God and the whole story of the old Testament, it's God trying to help us understand the gravity of sin and why it's such a problem
Speaker 3:
6:52
and that there was no human solution to that problem. It was something God alone could do. Here's an example. Imagine that it's like a classroom of students, so you have a classroom of students and I know there's some teachers out there, you know this to be true. The teacher sets the expectations of the class. The idea is they want each student to meet expectations and there's a couple of ways they want them to meet those expectations. One is they want them to learn the curriculum in such a way that they can reproduce what they've been taught, got to learn the curriculum and that's how they're going to meet expectations for that year in all the different subjects. The other thing is there's a behavioral piece of the expectations. The children not only have to meet the curriculum expectations, but they have to behave appropriately. There are behavior, behavioral expectations as well.
Speaker 3:
7:53
Imagine that the teacher is the law, the commandments of God. Imagine that that's the teacher trying to teach all of us how to meet the expectations. The Pharisees believed that the problem was all behavioral, that if we just fixed the behavior, we'll be able to meet those expectations of the law and so that's why they thought all those 613 commandments in the old Testament that you absolutely can follow them all the interpretations of the mid rash. Yes, you can do that and therefore you will be righteous. You will learn the curriculum, you will be Holy and set apart that the problem is behavioral and if you just get your act together, you two can meet the expectations and what Paul tells us in his work in Romans, he reminds us, he says, no, no, no, no. The problem isn't behavioral. It's much worse that we are actually incapable of learning the curriculum. The behavioral is just the surface because sin has affected us from the inside out as I described last week. It's like somebody has a pitcher of water and they put a drop of black ink into that water. It doesn't stay in its little drop and all the rest of the water is fine. No, it ruins the entire picture.
Speaker 3:
9:24
Sin has ruined the picture of our hearts thoroughly corrupted and so honestly, we're like kids who have a a learning disability, you know? I mean, what's a learning disability? It's, it's a, it's a neurological problem that prevents you from learning. It's not the kid's fault, but if that kid is, if there's never any intervention, it's going to be hard for that kid to meet the expectations. They can't do it on their own. If they're going to experience success, they need somebody to intervene. This is our relationship with the law, with the commandments of God. The behavioral problem is usually a sign of a deeper issue and it is, yes, we have a behavioral problem, but it's worse. It's much worse unless somebody intervenes on our behalf. We can't learn the curriculum. We can't meet the expectations of the law without some help, and this is what Paul believes happened in Jesus Christ. Jesus intervened. Jesus broke our bondage, our slavery to sin, where we were stuck and he changed our hearts. We had been released from sins, power
Speaker 3:
11:06
and just following. The law won't give us this result because the law doesn't change us from the inside out. It is only Jesus Christ who changes us from the inside out. Jesus changes our hearts and that's why you follow Jesus because it's God's intervention on our behalf so that we can meet the expectations of the law because you remember what the law is for the law of the old Testament wasn't so that we can just get pointed at and say, well, don't do this and don't do this and don't do this. No, it was to show that if you're going to live as God's people, a Holy God, you have to live in such a way that reflects that relationship. You have to live a Holy life. If you're going to call God your father, and this is how it's done and now, Oh my goodness. Now we discovered that the grace of God is so much bigger and better than we could have realized. He freely gives it
Speaker 2:
12:05
[inaudible].
Speaker 3:
12:06
In fact, he stands on our behalf and says, expectations met.
Speaker 2:
12:21
[inaudible].
Speaker 3:
12:21
Let's dive into the scripture this morning. If you brought your own Bible, we are in, we're going to be in Romans chapter six today. You can also read this in your bulletin. We're actually going to start with the last verse and we're going to unpack that verse of it and then go back and read that verse in context. Romans six 23 this is our next stop on the road. Romans six 23 Romans six 23 says this, for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus
Speaker 2:
12:59
our Lord.
Speaker 3:
13:01
This is a great verse. If you're looking for a summary of the gospel in one verse, I'm going to show you how, if you have something to write with, I'm going to show you how you can turn this verse into an easy way to explain to somebody else what the gospel is and to clarify it for yourself as well. So let's unpack this verse a little bit, cause this really gets to the heart of what Paul is talking about. So let's imagine, and we've done this before, let's imagine that, uh, that God is standing on this side of, of the sanctuary, and that this aisle is kind of like a big chasm, that it's impossible to cross. And then you have human beings on this side.
Speaker 3:
13:48
And let's begin with that first part of the verse. You don't like. We see God over there. We can't get to God because of sin. Sin is in the way sin is this barrier that we can't cross on our own. And so this verse explains how it's done for the wages of sin is death. What our wages, what our wages. This is interactive. You can, you can talk what our wages pay for work, right? It's, is it something that you were just given or, or how do you get them? It's earned, right? So the wages of sin is what is that? Just physical death.
Speaker 2:
14:31
[inaudible]
Speaker 3:
14:32
spiritual death as well. The wages of sin is that, in other words, what you earn for your sin is death bomber. Yeah. Yeah. Not, not good, but, and here comes the gospel, but let's go over to the gods side. But the gift of God. How is a gift different than wages? It's not ERD, it's given, but the gift of who God. I imagine a gift from God is pretty amazing is what? Eternal life, but we're not done yet so we have the gift of God is eternal life. The wages of sin is death and there is no human way to cross that until that last part through Jesus Christ
Speaker 2:
15:32
our Lord.
Speaker 3:
15:35
Jesus is the bridge that enables humanity through faith to enjoy the gifts of God forever. It's not something we earn. It's not something we do. It's something that Jesus did when he went to the cross for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. This is the heart of what Paul is getting at. God intervene so that we may live. Now let's read the whole thing in context. We'll go to Romans six starting with verse 17
Speaker 3:
16:17
but thanks be to God that though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your hearts. The pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. I'm using an example from everyday life because of your human limitations. Just as you used to offer yourselves as slaves to impurity and to ever increasing wickedness. So now offer yourselves as slaves to righteousness, leading to holiness. When you are slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. What benefit did you reap at that time? From the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death, but now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the benefit you read leads to holiness and the result is eternal life for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Paul believes now that Jesus has intervened, it's possible to have that relationship with God and not. We have that relationship with God and now the apprenticeship program can actually begin. We can be with God. He took care of that barrier of sin
Speaker 3:
17:43
and how we can be disciples. We can follow him. We can't experience a relationship love with our heavenly father, and so God walks with us on our road. He walks with us on the road of life. He walks with us on the road to life. So as we walked this road, this is the second marker on our journey. The first marker was
Speaker 2:
18:16
no. If your member not going to test you, don't worry
Speaker 3:
18:20
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. The reality is doesn't matter if you're born a Jew or a Gentile, it does not matter who you are, how good you think you are. We all have the same problem. We all fall short of the glory of God. That's marker number one on this journey of the road and marker number two is for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus,
Speaker 2:
18:46
our Lord.
Speaker 3:
18:51
Where are you in this apprenticeship
Speaker 2:
18:57
program? I think
Speaker 3:
19:05
one of the big dangers of of church life, and I'll just speak for church life in America, that's really the only church life I know or understand well is that we've turned faith into something that's very passive or the idea of discipleship because I think it has to do with it. If we think of disciple is student, we think of a student as somebody that just sits there and just takes the lecture, takes notes and is able to regurgitate information, but that is such a far cry from what a disciple is. Disciple is a doer of the things that they are learning. If we're going to own our spiritual growth with Jesus,
Speaker 2:
19:54
for going to own that, we have to own the fact that we have to get out there and start doing what Jesus is teaching and more than that we have to start teaching others about what Jesus is doing.
Speaker 3:
20:20
This is all of us, not just professional ministers,
Speaker 2:
20:25
church staff,
Speaker 3:
20:29
mother Theresa types that we think are so amazing and they are, but it's not the super limited elite club of people who make a difference. It's every single apprentice of Jesus Christ. Everywhere in the world. Every time place you carry Jesus with you into the world, everywhere you go. And he just asks us, please do what I'm teaching you. You're taking over the family business right now,
Speaker 3:
21:14
so how can you, I really just want to encourage you. How can you dig in this week? Where is it in your life as an apprentice of Jesus Christ that that you're feeling like you need some more workout? Pay attention to that as I'm speaking. Usually the best things in a sermon have nothing to do with what the pastor says. It's what the spirit brings to life in you in the middle of this. Or you might be thinking of something totally different, but it's created a spark and you're like, you know what? I need to do that. I need to explore that area. I need to maybe, uh, start getting back into my Bible. I need to get on a reading plan. I need to pray more. Maybe I need to be in a small group. Maybe I need to go volunteer for a ministry opportunity. Something I need to take another step, take that step. We don't know how long we have. Let's not waste another minute. And as I said before, I never met anybody. Anybody who is growing closer in their relationship with Jesus who said their life got worse, even if the circumstances of their life got worse, I never heard them say their life got worse.
Speaker 3:
22:33
Let's take this road and let's walk it right now. In Jesus name.
Speaker 2:
22:56
[inaudible] [inaudible].
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