Faithlife Sermons

Not Ashamed-Part 35- Righteous or Religious

Not Ashamed  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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In this passage we learn that righteous cannot be attained through

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Introduction-Romans 10:1-4

The Need (Vs. 1)

The majority of the people of Israel still stood in need of salvation.
Certainly there were some who had believed on Christ individually but as a whole the nation had rejected Him.
Paul once again expresses the burden that he has for their salvation and in this instance he also makes mention of the fact that he is praying to God for them.
We should have a heartfelt desire to see the lost in our community come to Christ and we ought to be praying specifically to that end.
I wonder tonight how many of us are regularly praying for the lost around us.
Do you have the names of specific individuals who need Christ on your prayer list?
If we long to see the lost come to Christ we must carry the gospel to them but we ought also to pray for their salvation for it is God alone who can save them.

The Hindrances (Vs. 2-3)

Once Paul has expressed his desire to for the salvation of the people of Israel, he then begins to detail those things which were currently standing in the way of their salvation.
The things that were hindrances to the people of Israel are still the very same things which serve to hinder many from coming to Christ today.

Misinformed Zeal (Vs. 2)

The problem is that though they were zealous for God their zeal was not according to knowledge.
This means that their zeal was misinformed and was actually only serving to hinder their salvation.
The problem is that the Israelites were zealously working for their salvation instead of zealously serving because they had been saved.
Paul was certainly aware of their zeal for he had himself been very zealous in defending the religious traditions that he had been taught before he came to faith in Christ.
Galatians 1:13–14 KJV 1900
For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.
Before Paul encountered Jesus on the road to Damascus he was himself convinced that he was serving God through persecuting those who followed Christ.
Paul was very zealous and yet he was lost because his zeal was not according to knowledge.
There can be no doubt that the Jews were sincere and that many of them were very zealous for God, the problem was that they were convinced that righteousness was the result of their works and as a result they were actually zealously fighting against God.
There are many people in our world who are in the same condition.
They are very sincere in their religious convictions and they have a zeal for God but in their zeal that have ignored the truth and have thus been led into error.
Some are zealously trying to do good in an attempt to atone for the sin they have committed.
Some are zealously laboring to follow a prescribed set of rituals and traditions in the hope that this will earn them favor with God.
Others have a great zeal for justice and equality and are convinced that in pursuing these ideals they will please God.
It is clear however that zeal alone cannot make one right with God.

Misunderstanding of Righteousness (Vs. 3)

The Israelites as a whole had failed to understand God’s righteousness.
They were ignorant to the fact that the righteousness of God was not attainable by their own human efforts.
They had created their own standard of righteousness which was not the same as God’s standard.
The reason that some still believe that they can somehow earn the favor of God is because they have failed to understand God’s righteousness which is a standard of righteousness wholly beyond us.
If we have a right understanding of God’s righteousness we will quickly realize that we can never meet up to the standard alone.
The Israelites were intent upon establishing their own righteousness by the keeping of the law failing to recognize that they could not attain to the standard of righteousness which God has set.
A great many of the people of Israel were consumed with establishing their own righteousness, to the point that they were not only attempting to keep the law, but were also adding additional restrictions to prove their righteousness.
In their pride they were unwilling to admit their unrighteousness and were intent upon proving that they were righteous.
This is still a great hindrance to many today. So many are attempting to establish their own righteousness by doing good deeds or going through religious rituals.
It is still a difficult thing to bring a person to the admission that they are unrighteous and that they make themselves righteous.
Refusal to Submit
Ultimately the people Paul is referring to refused to submit themselves to God’s righteousness.
These were so determined to pursue righteousness on their own terms that they were wholly unwilling to accept God’s terms.
They were determined to go their own way in attempting to attain righteousness instead of humbly submitting to God and receiving the righteousness of Jesus Christ.
They were so committed to their own pursuit of self-righteousness that they missed the fact that Jesus Christ was the only way they could receive righteousness.
What they were trying and failing to do, Jesus had already done for them.
If they would only turn to Him in faith believing on Him as savior they could have the righteousness they were so desperately striving to gain.
Matthew 5:17–18 KJV 1900
Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
Philippians 3:9 KJV 1900
And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
There is still a great need in our world today and specifically in our community for men and women to be saved.
The lost right here in Clovis, NM undoubtedly number in the thousands.
Do we desire to see them saved, are we praying for them generally and for those we know specifically?
As we begin to understand those things which hindered people of Israel from trusting Christ we will also gain an understanding of the things which still hinder men and women from coming to Christ today.
It is also possible tonight that there may be one or more here who has not yet received Christ as savior.
If you are here tonight and your are trying to attain righteousness on your own I can tell you now that you are destined to fail.
What you need to do tonight is to turn to Christ and put your faith in Him and you will receive His righteousness.
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