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The Potter's Power Over The Clay (part 1 of sermon)

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Title - The Potter’s Power Over The Clay
Text - Romans 9.21-24
Romans 9:21–24 NKJV
21 Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor? 22 What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, 23 and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, 24 even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?
Paul was explaining how God’s purpose according to election cannot be changed by circumstance and
Paul used to examples in history:
Jacob - whom God appointed over Esau evern before they were born
Pharaoh - whom God “raised up” to show His power and to declare His name in all the earth
For those who cannot fathom God’s sovereign will, Paul uses the illustration of the “potter”

Sermon Points

The “potter” illustration

Why use the potter illustration?

Like the potter who complete contorl over the clay in the wheel, God has full sovereignty over all the affairs of men
Like the potter who is able to shape the clay according to what he had in mind, so God can mould the clay to serve His predetermined purpose.

God wants to show His power through longsuffering!

Longsuffering - means patient endurance of pain or unhappiness

God’s longsuffering againts sin and evil

Example 1 - God’s longsuffering over Pharaoh

Romans 9.22
Romans 9:17 NKJV
17 For the Scripture says to the Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth.”
Note - this does not indicate that Pharaoh was predestined for this purpose
Exodus 9:13–26 NKJV
13 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh, and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God of the Hebrews: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me, 14 for at this time I will send all My plagues to your very heart, and on your servants and on your people, that you may know that there is none like Me in all the earth. 15 Now if I had stretched out My hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, then you would have been cut off from the earth. 16 But indeed for this purpose I have raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth. 17 As yet you exalt yourself against My people in that you will not let them go. 18 Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause very heavy hail to rain down, such as has not been in Egypt since its founding until now. 19 Therefore send now and gather your livestock and all that you have in the field, for the hail shall come down on every man and every animal which is found in the field and is not brought home; and they shall die.” ’ ” 20 He who feared the word of the Lord among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his livestock flee to the houses. 21 But he who did not regard the word of the Lord left his servants and his livestock in the field. 22 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt—on man, on beast, and on every herb of the field, throughout the land of Egypt.” 23 And Moses stretched out his rod toward heaven; and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and fire darted to the ground. And the Lord rained hail on the land of Egypt. 24 So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, so very heavy that there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. 25 And the hail struck throughout the whole land of Egypt, all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail struck every herb of the field and broke every tree of the field. 26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, there was no hail.
God showed pharaoh has quickly He can kill Pharaoh - Exodus 9.15
God showed pharaoh he did not it so that God can use hpharaoh to demonstration His mighty acts, since he does believe. - v. 16
God forewarned pharaoh and advised him to take precautions - vv. 18-20
God did not allow the hail storm to strike Goshen! - v.26

Example no. 2 - God’s longsuffering in the days of noah

1 Peter 3:20 NKJV
20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water.
God patiently endured the evil of that time, allowing Noah to preach righteousness before He finally sent the Flood.
Note - God has been very patient to the sin and wickedness of our generation!

God wants to express His longsuffering towards His people

God is longsuffering towards his “vessels of mercy”!

Romans 9:23–24 NKJV
23 and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, 24 even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?
There is no “double predestination”
double predestination means some are predestined to salvation, others are predestination to destruction
Note how Paul used 2 different words
prepared - for vessels of wrath (v. 22)
grk. KATARTIZO - equipped, furnished
prepared beforehand - for vessles of mercy (v. 23)
grk. PROETOIMAZO, prepare in advance, related to prohorizo

God’s longsuffering over Israel

Jeremiah 18:1–8 NKJV
1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying: 2 “Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.” 3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. 4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make. 5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: 6 “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the Lord. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel! 7 The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, 8 if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it.
God led Jeremiah to the potter’s house where he observed how the potter worked
Jeremiah saw the potter remake the clay many times
God showed His attitude towards Israel:
He was longsuffering to Israel’s sins
He was quick to remake and remould Israel to serve His purpose

God is longsuffering so He can extend His mercy to everyone

2 Peter 3:9 NKJV
9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
God is not slow concerning His promise
God’s longsuffering set his judgment away down towards the end of history.
2 Peter 3:15 NKJV
15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you,
God’s longsuffering is for our salvation


God is sovereign over all - sinner or righteous
they are all part of the clay
God is longsuffering towards the clay
If God can endure the sins of this evil world, so that He demonstrate His power through them
He is even more longsuffering towards His own people!
He will not quickly judge us, but remake and remake us, until everything is okay!
God is being patient to our generation!
the supposed “delay” in His return is simply God’s power at work!
His longsuffering makes way for those who hunger for righteousness to take the step of faith!
God is being patient with the Bride in our day!
He remakes and remakes His people to fit His thoughts
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