January 28 - A Model for Loving the Church (Romans 1:8-17)
Prepare for Sunday morning worship using the guide below.
Ray Rutledge will be subbing for Brandon Jordan's class on the doctrine of vocation at 10:00am in the youth room. This is a 10 week study discussing the doctrine of vocation and in particular how it deals with the gospel in our "workplaces." Are all jobs the same (sacred and secular)? What does our work ethic/interaction with coworkers reveal about our view of the gospel? We will also have some of our own members here speak about their work and how the gospel is applied. Over 10 weeks we hope to answer these and a few more questions that will allow us to find greater purpose in what we do day to day.
Bo Pritchard will be teaching the final class of the Gospel Project going through the New Testament. This class will meet at 10:00am in Adult 1.
Starting next Sunday (2/4), Bryan Launer will start a class on Understanding the Heart in Adult 1 at 10:00am. This class explores what Scripture says about the heart, why it's so important, and how you can better understand your own heart and help others. The first four weeks will be identical to his class in the Fall, but the second half will include a case study on anxiety.
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world. 9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you 10 always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God's will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. 11 For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— 12 that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and mine. 13 I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as well as among the rest of the Gentiles. 14 I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. 15 So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
After the apostle Paul greets the church with the gloriousness of the gospel (1-7), he turns to express his desire to serve and care for this church of which he was only acquainted with through reports of their great faith. It is clear what kind of heart Paul has for this church and in this offers us a model for caring for one another. He begins by telling them that he prays for them, giving thanks and calling to God that he might come to visit. Second, he expresses his intention once he is with them to strengthen or establish them in faith. This will come as they sink deep roots of faith into the gospel of Jesus. This gospel is the power of God for all who believe for in it, a righteousness from God is ours by grace. This is why he is so eager to come and encourage them. Consider his heart for the church and draw yours to it for instruction and encouragement.
Review and Apply
How has faith been revealed in your life? In what practical ways do people see your love for God?
How can you develop a better pattern of giving thanks to God for the faithful in our church?
What spiritual gifts do you have that are useful in establishing others in faith?
What hinders/thwarts you from trying to strengthen others?
How have others encouraged you? How can others encourage you?
What does he mean that he is under obligation to preach? Do you feel a sense of burden to share the gospel with others? What prohibits you from doing this? What are you ashamed of?
What makes Paul so eager to preach the gospel?
How does this increase your enthusiasm to be bolder in faith with the gospel?
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