READ | SERMON NOTES
Summary l Jesus fulfills God’s covenant, and saves us to proclaim the Good News!
God who has mercy on those who seek and love Him, fulfills His covenant through Jesus Christ in whose righteousness both Jews and Gentiles who believe, are redeemed. As clay in the Potter’s hand, we are saved to believe that God is sovereign to work out His good purposes in our lives. Romans 9-11 reflect Old Testament scriptures regarding the fulfillment of God’s covenant.
1. The Righteousness in Christ (v 9:30-10:4, Isaiah 8:14,28:16) – Those who sought their own righteousness through ritualistic observance of the Mosaic Law rejected Jesus as Messiah. Dismissing God’s righteousness and design for them, they stumbled on Christ, God’s purposeful “culmination of the Law”, thus losing their chance to be made righteous by God. Conversely, early Gentiles once far from God and undeserving of salvation, were made righteous when by faith they received Christ as their “precious cornerstone for a sure foundation.” Devoid of any merit, we are made righteous only by God’s grace to receive salvation when we humbly confess our needful dependency on Christ, believing in Him alone to save us.
2. The Accessibility of Christ (v 10:5-12) – Having fulfilled God’s covenant, Jesus is fully accessible “to all who call on Him” (v12) We don’t need to scale the heavens or dive into the grave in search of the Messiah – Christ has descended to us in His incarnation, and is alive having risen from the dead. Unable to obey the Law in whole, nor add to anything that God has already done, we need only claim God’s promise that if we confess with our mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in our heart that God raised Him from the dead, we will be saved. (v9) Unlike the Law which is unattainable, Christ is readily accessible to everyone without discrimination, and “anyone who believes in Him will never be put to shame.” (Isaiah 28:16)
3. The Proclamation of Christ (v13-21) – Having known and received God’s salvation gift, believers are called to proclaim Christ, for how can others know of Him if they have not heard? “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Isaiah 52:7) No other name can free us from sin’s bondage except Jesus Christ when we confess aloud our need for His saving grace. Faith comes from hearing the Good News proclaimed by messengers sent to herald the Gospel message of the King! Though not all who hear will respond (v10:16) – being obstinate and unbelieving (v17-21) – we are God’s faithful messengers when we go tell others of the Living Hope they too can have in Christ.
- Stumbling or Stable? Is Christ our stumbling stone who undermines prideful self-righteous willfulness, or cornerstone, the stable foundation upon which God’s church is founded, providing alignment for everything else in life? True humility acknowledges that we cannot save ourselves. But aligned to the Rock and Living Word of God, we can stand stably and unshakably firm to live victoriously by God’s purpose through a living relationship with Christ.
- Swift or Slow? Are our feet “kissably” super swift to bring God’s welcome Good News to a broken hurting world that needs His forgiving, reconciling grace, hope, peace and love? Are we ready, watching, waiting to serve and love? Will we avail ourselves in person or with digital opportunities like WhatsApp and social media, to reach someone for Christ – even this week, with a sermon link, prayer, scripture text? Know that we are responsible only for our role as God’s messengers; our listeners are accountable to God for their response.
- Stubborn or Surrendered? God grieves when we resist His welcome to be made right with Him. Come home, come in, and celebrate the turnaround that God can do for the lost. God rejects all outward forms of religious piety but receives tender hearts that will return to Him surrendered in faith and trust. Choosing to surrender all to Jesus, though difficult, frees us from willful control where we insist on our way and shut God out – only to forfeit His best plans for us, and incur His discipline to shape and turn us back to Him.
Made right to walk right with God, intentional disciples humbly submit, align and anchor wholeheartedly in Christ to swiftly proclaim the gospel that has saved them. May we be joyfully described as such.
(Sermon notes by Marjorie Tan)
PONDER | REFLECTION QUESTIONS
- What did Paul highlight about the nature of the righteousness of Christ from Romans 9:30 to 10:4? How do the 3 highlighted features of this righteousness assure you of God’s covenantal faithfulness to both Jew and Gentile?
- How does Paul demonstrate the accessibility of this righteousness in Christ? How do Romans 10:9-10 reveal how we may be saved?
- Romans 10:11-13 reveal that Christ is accessible to anyone and everyone. What does that reveal about the God we worship?
- If proclamation is necessary for salvation (Romans 10:13-14) and we are God’s messengers (10:15), what does that imply about the urgency of the task of proclamation?
- Is Christ your Stumbling Stone or Cornerstone? Carefully reflect and share the times you have stumbled by trying to “save” yourself through self-effort instead of relying on Christ to save you. What will you do to align with Christ as your Cornerstone?
- Why are our feet “beautiful” (10:15)? What message is God calling you to bring to someone in need to hear it? Will you be swift or slow to do that? What’s holding you back from being swift? Share and surrender your fears and inhibitions to God.
- What are the stubborn areas in your life where you have refused to respond to God’s call and love? Pray for each other to have surrendered hearts that will yield to God’s Word in submission and obedience.