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Romans 1:1-7 -- Introduction

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Romans Introduction – 9-7-08

1.  The Promised Messiah

—  John 1:45 -  Philip found Nathanael and said to him, "We have found Him of whom Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote-- Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph."

—  John 5:39-47 - You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me…"For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?"

—  Luke 24:25-27 - "O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!  "Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?"  Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures

Messiah Overview – Gen 3-Matt 1

·         The Old Testament Scriptures portray the promised Messiah as Prophet – emphasizing his preaching and teaching ministry.

·         He is portrayed as Priest – emphasizing his sacrificial death

·         He is portrayed as King – showing his kingdom rule

·         There are over 335 verses in the OT that deal with Messiah – we will take a brief look at the major ones, showing that the Gospel that Paul preached was indeed that which was promised beforehand, visualized in Christ Jesus

—  Genesis 3:15 – Context of the fall – Messiah will suffer in the process of defeating Satan

—  This is seen in Isaiah 53:5 & 10

—  Then in chapter 4, we see Satan going after the first seeds in Abel and Cain resulting in the first murder.

—  Genesis 9:26-27, we see the blessings of Shem and Japheth, after Ham’s curse.  After the flood, Noah gets drunk and Ham uncovers “his nakedness” which probably refers to “incest” and is used in Leviticus in the same way.  Noah curses Ham and Ham’s future son Canaan.  Shem and Japheth cover their father’s nakedness and are blessed.

—  Shem’s blessing is that God will be the God of Shem – which we see fulfilled in Shem’s lineage that goes to Abraham.

—  Yet Japheth is blessed too.  He is the father of what will be known as the Gentiles – The Gentiles will “dwell in the tents of Shem” meaning they will partake of Shem’s special relationship with God – setting up a common theme – that God has a plan for the nations.

—  He who is Messiah of Israel will be the savior of the world

—  Genesis 12:1-3 we see that God moves into a special relationship with a descendant of Shem – Abraham.

—  He is blessed and all the nations will be blessed in him.  In fact, in Galatians 3:8 – Paul says that this is the first time the gospel was preached and relates this blessing to the Gentiles coming to God in faith.

—  In Isaac and Jacob – The Abrahamic covenant is affirmed with them, that they will also be a blessing to the nations.

—  In Jacob’s last days, He blessed the tribe of Judah in Genesis 49:10.

—  Here, the promise is further defined as the Messiah, the promised seed, will be king and has the right to rule.

—  From this time on, people looked for the promised one to come from the tribe of Judah.

—  Deut 18:15 – Moses prophecies that someday a prophet will arrive like none who had appeared before.  The Messiah would not only be king, but he would be a prophet like Moses.

—  The book of Hebrews helps us understand that the Messiah, who is The prophet is much greater than Moses.

—  When John the Baptist was preaching in the wilderness, he was asked if he was “THE prophet.”  Israel was looking for a Messiah who was going to be a great prophet like Moses.

—  2 Samuel 7:12-16 is often called the Davidic Covenant, but it is an extension of the first covenant with Abraham.

—  Here, it gives further prophecy that David’s kingdom will last forever and one will rule forever on his throne.  He will have a special relationship in that God will be a father and the Messiah will be a son.

—  From David, there are several Psalms that discuss the Messiah as conquering King – Ps 2, Ps 89, Ps 110.

—  In Isaiah, as well as Daniel 9 and Zech 13 – The promised Messiah will also die – Something that the Jews had a difficult time with understanding, even to Jesus’ day.

—  The suffering servant, the Messiah in Isaiah 52:14-15 will be marred and will sprinkle many nations – having the idea of a priest sprinkling the altar - cleansing with blood

—  Isaiah 53:3 – Messiah would be despised – Forsaken – A man of sorrows – acquainted with grief.  V 5 – he will be pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities. V 6 – the Lord caused our iniquity to fall on him. V 10 – The Lord crushed him and he rendered himself as a guilt offering.  This identifies the Messiah with a priest function and sacrifice.

—  Then when we read Matthew 1:1 that Jesus is the Messiah, we begin to get the picture created by the OT.

—  No wonder Paul would write of the gospel, that it was promised beforehand, in the holy Scripture Concerning the Son. 

—  No wonder Jesus would say that Scripture pointed to him.

2.  The Proof of Deity

—  Paul, as he describes the gospel, which he was set apart for, begins with showing that the good news was promised in the Old Testament.

—  He first makes reference to the Messiah’s Davidic lineage.  Jesus was a descendant of Daviid

—  This is vital because if Jesus is not a descendant of David’s, then he could not be Messiah.

—  Yet in verse 4, we see a contrast from Jesus being the physical seed of David to the proof of His deity.

—  The fact that Messiah was not only a son of David, but also the Son of God troubled many Jewish people during Christ’s ministry.

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MESSIAH WAS ALSO GOD

—  Turn to Matthew 22.  Here Jesus is being questioned by the Sadducees and the Pharisees.  After their questions, Jesus poses a question to them in 22:41ff

—  It was a question that seemed simple enough to the Pharisees.  He asked them, “whose son is the Christ?”

—  They answered probably matter of factly..David’s son….stupid.”  It was an easy softball lob of a question, the kind of question that everyone knew the answer too.

—  David’s son….stupid.

—  Then Jesus quotes Ps 110:1 – and asks the question, why does David, in the spirit call “his son’” Lord?  

—  You could just imagine their blank stares….ahhh….I don’t know.

—  Here is the issue…Why would David call a future unborn physical son Lord?

—  Turn to Psalm 110.  Literally, Yahweh says to my Adonai – 2 names for God in the Old Testament linking the Messiah as God having a conversation with God and David calls both of them God.

—  But Ps 110 also helps us know that not only is Messiah Lord, but he will rule and in verse 4, He is a priest like Melchizedek.

—  This idea of deity, priesthood and resurrection are important theologically.

—  That is what Paul is linking together here.  Not only is Jesus the physical son of David, but He is also the Son of God who has been resurrected.

THE PROMISE OF THE RESURRECTION

—  Psalm 16:10 – promises the Messiah will not undergo decay but will be resurrected.

—  In Acts 2:25-31, Peter is preaching at Pentecost and uses Psalm 16:8-11, which he shows that since David died and was buried but was a prophet, he predicts the resurrection of the Messiah and Jesus, verse 32-33 is raised up and sitting at the right hand of God.

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THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RESURRECTION IN CONNECTION WITH CHRIST

—  Paul writes that the Son was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection

—  What does that mean? Does that mean that Jesus became the son of God at the time of the resurrection?

—  We know that Jesus has always been the Son of God, for he is the pre-existing Son of God.

—  The Gospels call him the Son of God numerous times before his resurrection

—  What Paul is saying here is not that he became the son of God, but that he was “declared” or shown to be – validated as the Son of God by the resurrection

—  The resurrection was an important theological event because it shows that the Father accepted the redemptive work of the son.

—  Therefore, Paul looking at the resurrection states that this proves – shows – demonstrates and declares that Christ is truly God.

—  It was in the incarnation that Christ took on human flesh, being born a descendant of David.

—  It was in the resurrection that God the Father accepted the work of redemption which also included Christ being exalted again.

—  Philippians 2 shows both the lowly position of Christ taking on humanity and dying but then being exalted afterwards.

—  Christ even states this in Luke 24, that he had to suffer and then enter into glory.

—  In his High priestly prayer, Christ notes that He had glory before with the Father before the world existed and now He is returning to that glory through the resurrection.

—  Yet remember Psalm 110:1 – Sit at my right hand – Not only does the Messiah rule, but he sits at the right hand of God.

—  The author of Hebrews 10:11-14 helps us understand that the Messiah, who is high priest, made sacrifice for sins and sat down, showing completeness of the redemptive work. 

—  The resurrection and ascension is an important part of the unfolding promises of God in the Messiah.  The sacrifice was accepted, shown by proof of the resurrection and now Christ currently is at the right hand of God until the second coming, when he comes to set up his kingdom and his enemies are a footstool under his feet.

3.  The Proclamation of this Good News

  • WOW, what a promise that has unfolded and that we benefit from.
  • No wonder Paul was so excited to share God’s plan for the nations with the nations!
  • In verse 1 and 5-7, we see Paul’s passion for sharing the gospel.
  • Paul saw himself as a slave (1:1)
  • Paul saw himself as set apart for the gospel proclamation (1:1)
  • Paul knew the promise was available to all, both Jew and Gentile (1:5)
  • Paul proclaimed to the Nations for “His Name’s Sake”  (1:5)

APPLICATION

—  To be amazed at and thankful for our Salvation

—  To be passionate about God’s plan for the nations

—  To do all “For His Name’s Sake

Romans 11:33-36

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!  For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, OR WHO BECAME HIS COUNSELOR?  Or WHO HAS FIRST GIVEN TO HIM THAT IT MIGHT BE PAID BACK TO HIM AGAIN?   For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.

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