:) Finally had some time! Next week should be fun... we're heading into some messianic prophecies... :)

Happy studying!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Romans Chapter 2

vs. 1-3- God is our Judge

- We are not to judge the people around us... God is the only one who can see the heart's condition.

- Romans 14:1-4

- Don't be hypocritical. Don't think that God doesn't know what you do in secret.

- Proverbs 16:2

- It talks about judging others when you do the exact same things... it may not be in the same form, or to the same extent in your eyes... but in God's eyes... sin is sin.

- Matthew 7:1-5

- A footnote in my bible made this comment: “Often the sins we notice most clearly in others are the ones that have taken root in us. If we look closely at ourselves, we may find that we are committing the same sins in more socially acceptable forms.”
- When you speak out against sin, do so in the spirit of humility. (and in the spirit of Love... always a necessary aspect.)

- Luke 17:1-3
- I Corinthians 10:12-13

- Be careful of the “holier than thou” attitude. Just because you don't happen to struggle with... say... alcoholism or holding grudges or lust, doesn't mean that someone else isn't having the battle of their life with it.

- Romans 3:21-26

- If God has delivered you from a particular sin and you feel led to share your experience, please do. Sometimes it helps to know someone else is struggling with a similar thing.
- If there is something you are struggling with right now, let us know so we can pray for you. Don't feel that you need to share the details. God knows the details. Sometimes it just helps to have someone else pray for you.

vs. 4-6- God is patient

- God has unconditional love for you. He wants you to love him and serve him with all your heart, soul, and mind.

- Matthew 22:34-40

- There are 3 things listed in vs. 4 that God uses to lead to repentance, these are: Goodness (chrestos and agathosune), forbearance (anoche), longsuffering (makrothumia). (These are also three things that we as Christians should take into account when witnessing to the lost.)
- Goodness- the virtue and beneficence of God whereby He leads
sinners to repentance
- Forbearance- the self-restraint of God whereby He tolerates
sinners and permits them to live to be saved
- Longsuffering- the leniency and patience of God where by God's
mercy and goodness are extended to men to bring them to eternal
reconciliation to Himself.
- But you have to turn from your sin and accept the sacrifice of Christ first. Forgiveness of sins comes with submitting yourself to God and His will for your life.

- Romans 3:25-26

- However, every man will be judged according to what he has done in this life. Even if punishment for sin is not immediate... there will eventually be consequences for your actions.
- Nothing is done in secret that the Father does not see.
- The Father, though patient and tolerant, is still our judge. Your stubbornness and refusal to change will destroy you.

- Amos 7:8

- God will not wait for forever. You have to give up your stubbornness. You have to submit yourself to God. Everyone will be judged according to their sin.

- Malachi 4
- Zephaniah 1:17-18

- footnote on vs. 4- “In his kindness, God holds back his judgment, giving people time to turn from their sin. It is easy to mistake God's patience for approval of the wrong way we are living. Self-evaluation is difficult, and it is even more difficult to bring ourselves to God and let him tell us where we need to change. But as Christians we must ask God to point out our sins, so that he can heal them. Unfortunately, we are more likely to be amazed at God's patience with others than humbled at his patience with us.” (I think those are some good points...)

- Will you agree to make time this week to sit down with God for a set time?
- During this time, will you ask God to pin-point out in your heart something that needs to be changed?

vs. 7-11- Judgment vs. Salvation
- vs. 7 talks of our persistence after God. Persistence in doing good and seeking after Christ. Despite what all else may come at us, to press forward in the work of the kingdom.

- Amos 5:17
- Galatians 2:10

- If we do this, there is much to gain, including eternal life.
- Those who refuse to obey truth and instead turn aside to live lives of wickedness, instead of receiving the good gifts from God, will receive His wrath.
- Proverbs 29:1- footnote- “Warnings rarely come with countdowns.
We can't tell when we've had our last chance to change. When we,
like the person in this proverb, refuse to consider valid criticism, we
leave ourselves open to sudden disaster. The moment we realize
that a change is necessary is the best moment to take action.”

- Revelation 20:13-15, 21:1-2

- No one is exempt. Jew or Gentile. (Whether you've been in church all your life, or have never wanted anything to do with God.) If you sin and do not repent and turn from the path you're on, there will be consequences.

- Proverbs 28:13

- God does not show favoritism.
- “Salvation is Free! God puts no price tag on the Gift of gifts—It's free! Preachers are not salesmen for they have nothing to sell. They are bearers of Good News, the good tidings that 'Christ died for our sins according tot he Scriptures.' Money can't buy it. Man's righteousness can't earn it. Social prestige can't help you acquire it. Morality can't purchase it. It is, as Isaiah said, 'without money and without price.' God is not a bargaining God. You cannot barter with Him. You must do business with Him on His own terms. He holds in His omnipotent hand the priceless, precious, eternal gift of salvation, and He bids you to take it without money and without price. The best things in life are free, are they not? The air we breathe is not sold by the cubic foot. The water which flows crystal clear from the mountain stream is free for the taking. Love is free, faith is free, hope is free.”- Billy Graham


- What significant adjustments have been on hold in your life for too long?
- Have you been trying to buy time from God? Are you sure you have tomorrow? (Luke 12:16-21)

vs. 12-16- Obedience

- Knowing the law and obeying it are two very different things.
- Obedience, not knowledge is what makes a person right before God.
- People are born into sin, but even Adam and Eve, when first they sinned, they knew it. In vs.14, it speaks of an instinctive knowledge of the law. All people are born with an internal sense of basic right and wrong. A moral code if you will. (What damage your society and surroundings do to that compass are a whole other story.) There is no temporary insanity clause in God's law. Your conscious sinful decisions are always made with a sound mind.
- If today you were arrested for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to find you guilty?
- Footnote - “ People are condemned not for what they don't know but for what they do with what they know. Those who know God's written Word and his law will be judged by them. Those who have never seen a bible still know right from wrong, and they will be judged because they violated those standards that their own consciences dictated. God's law is written within them.
- Footnote- “If you traveled around the world, you would find evidence in every society and culture of God's moral law. For example, all cultures prohibit murder, and yet in all societies that law has been broken. We belong to a stubborn, sinful race. We know what is right, but we insist on doing what is wrong. It is now enough to know what is right; we must also do it. Admit to yourself and to God that you frequently fail to live up to your own standards (much less to God's standards). That's the first step to forgiveness and healing.
- Christ knows the secret life. There is nothing hidden from the eyes of the Father.


- Will you take some time out today to do some soul searching on your own? Allow God to speak through his word to you today.
- Are you willing to take that first step? Are you willing to admit that you're not perfect? That you have a need for a savior?

vs. 17-20- Jew vs. Gentile

- The Jewish people thought they had it all figured out. They had the law and they were ahead of the game. They were above all the Gentiles. They thought that the law was going to save them.
- the law can't save you. You are righteous through Christ... not through your own trying to be good.
- Don't think that just because you lead a “good” life that you know all there is to know.

- Romans 7:7
- Romans 8:2-3
- Galatians 2:23-26
- Proverbs 29: 13-18

- Gal. 3:18-19- Footnote- The law has two functions. On the positive side, it reveals the nature and will of God and shows people how to live. On the negative side, it points out people's sin and shows them that it is impossible to please God by trying to obey all his laws completely. God's promise to Abraham dealt with Abraham's faith; the law focuses on actions. The covenant with Abraham shows that faith is the only way to be saved; the law shows how to obey God in grateful response. Faith does not annul the law; but the more we know God, the more we see how sinful we are. Then we are driven to depend on our faith in Christ alone for our salvation.

- Are you following God's moral laws?
- Where is your heart's focus?
- Are you walking in faith?
- Are you depending on Christ for your salvation?

vs. 21-24- Hypocritical?

- As we walk in this Christian life, we need to watch our steps. It talks about the world or the Gentiles blaspheming the name of God because of the Jews. If you are naming the name of Christ in your life, your lifestyle should reflect the attributes of Christ. Those who name the name of Christ and follow not what He teaches, cause the world to see ALL Christians as hypocrites. How many times have you heard people put down Christians in general because of one person that they've had contact with? Keep yourself above reproach and don't hesitate to ask for forgiveness from God and those around you when you stumble.

- Matthew 23:27-28
- Matthew 5:17-20
- I Peter 4:12-19
- Galatians 1:10
- James 2:7-24
- Philippians 2:12-15
- Colossians 3:1-10
- Ephesians 5:1-2, 10-13

- Is your life a reflection of Christ working in your heart?
- Is there some part of your life that you feel you need to change to be a better living witness for the name of Christ?
- Is there someone you need to apologize to for showing un-Christ-like behavior?

vs. 25-27- outward sign of commitment

- circumcision was given as an outward sign of self-dedication to God.
- This scripture reminds me of stories you've probably heard... the righteous church members who turn away the smelly dirty man who comes to the door... who turns out to be the visiting pastor or something. : ) To look righteous, doesn't make you righteous. You have to act on it, live it.

- Isaiah 64:5-6

- Do the people around you see Christ in your daily life?
- Is your life committed to following the heart of Christ?
- Is there a way that you can further your commitment? Is there something more that you as an individual or as a church can do in your community to show the love of Christ to your community?
- If you have ideas or past stories that you'd like to share about community outreaches, please feel free to do so.

vs. 28-29- A changed heart

- Just because your parents are right with God... doesn't mean that you're ok. This is a personal relationship. It depends on YOUR heart's condition.
- Someone who pleases God is not someone who outwardly does all the right things, rather, it is the person whose heart is right with God and obeys Him.
- Paul brings forward the fact that, membership into God's family is not dependent on pedigree... we are heirs of the promise on the basis of INTERNAL qualities, not external. (Don't turn away from the “unlovely's”. ALL people are special to the heart of Christ.)
- Attending church, or being baptized, confirmed, or accepted for membership is not enough, just as submitting to circumcision was not enough for the Jews. God desires our heartfelt devotion and obedience

- Duet. 10: 12-21
- Jeremiah 4:3-4
- I Peter 4:1-3
- Romans 7:14-25
- Philippians 4:6-9

- Have you invited someone new to church lately?
- Have you talked to someone new?
- Have you left your comfort zone lately?
- Has God been calling you out of your comfort zone? Are you resisting?
- Is your heart chasing after the heart of God?
- Are you willing to go wherever He asks and do whatever He asks?
- Are you fully devoted to the cause of Christ?

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