The Lordship of Christ, probably one of the least popular truths amongst professing Christians today.
Preach to us about heaven and Christ, but don't tell us what to do!
Everything we have studied together over the past couple of years in Romans is being denied today in professing Christendom:
Total Depravity (Chps 1 -3)
We have men today invited to do a course, to get to heaven!
The apostles didn't invite anyone to do a course!
They preached that God now commands all men everywhere to repent and believe
They preached Christ and Him crucified!
But that won't appeal to the intelligence, that might offend, that won't win anyone over to your side!
I agree with you.
Paul agrees with you: “But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;”(1Co 1:23)
But none the less, he preached it!
In fact he determined to make nothing else known but Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Co2:2)
Dead men don't do courses!
Dead men need the regenerating power of the Spirit of God.
No amount of our smartness will substitute for it!
Justification by faith (chp 4)
Being slowly eroded and substituted for another gospel of membership, course completed and baptised, deciding for Jesus, coming forward at the altar call, charismatic phenomenon.
Sovereign grace (chp 5)
Substituted for part my desire and part Gods
Part my credit and part His
Sanctification of the Spirit of God (chps 6 to 8)
Giving over of my life to His, to be filled by and surrendered to His Spirit
Not at all popular
Look at the popular concept of Spirit filled life: little more than Christianised entertainment.
Not saying all of our hymns have to come from the Victorian era
Not saying we ought to sing like its a funeral
If the Christians can't be happy then who can be?
But you can bang as many drums as you like, wave your hands about in the air as much as you like, talk Swahili all the way to Swaziland but it you bring you into conflict with the flesh, it won't crush the flesh, starve the flesh, deny the flesh, mortify the flesh, till there is nothing left to usurp the filling of Gods Holy Spirit.
Sovereign Election (chp 9)
Sound doctrine in general, pushed to the side, dismissed and in its place: the DVD, sound bite, the praise band, milk, semi-skimmed milk at that.
Lordship of Christ (10:9)
Few things as unpopular as the Lordship of Christ!
It involves such ideas as:
Doing as I am told by Him
It explodes out of the water, like a submarine torpedo the idea that I can be a heaven bound Christian whilst living an earth bound life.
This truth of the Lordship of Christ has the power like none other to expose the fake, the false and the fraudulent.
This truths says: 'If He is not my Lord, then He is not my Saviour'
The idea that I'll get saved today and then work on my repenting of my sin over the ensuing years is just nonsense.
The idea that I am saved and yet when some sin comes along, that I know fine well is wrong, and is not the will of God, but its what I want to do, where I want to go, what I want to be, and so that's just what I will do, is a denial of the Lordship of Christ and Romans 10:9 says this that if He is not my Lord, He is not my Saviour.
The idea has come to permeate Christian thinking that God saved me and freed me from the bondage to the law that I might be free to do as I please, to be in bondage to the flesh.
The biblical principle is clear enough:
What I live by is what is Lord over me (10:5)
What saves me, what sustains me, is what is sovereign over me (10:5)
We are not freed from the law to do as we please.
We are liberated from the Lordship of the Law to the Lordship of Christ (Rom 6:22; 7:4).
If there is one earth shattering truth, one life changing truth that is fundamental to the Lordship of Christ, it is this, that Salvation by Grace is not all about me, what I want, what I choose, it is all about Him! Where He wants me to be, what He commands me to do, how He calls me to serve.
Christ is not there for my amusement or entertainment but for my worship and devotion.
He does not fit around me but I around Him!
He does not accommodate Himself to my priorities, passions, preferences and perspective, but I to His.
It is all about Him (Eph 1,2,3)
When He is given that supreme place of Lordship then my life is being lived as it ought.
Such a life is:
No folly or disappointment (10:11)
Does not impoverish but rather enriches (10:12) “He is rich” - a verb, not an adjective, do you want real, enduring wealth? “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:” (Mat 6:19-20). 'He is no fool, who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.' Have you sacrificed for heaven? Do you have anything there? Is it all being lived selfishly, for earth? Jim Elliot, mission praise 735.
No loss; it is life eternal (10:13)
As a boy at Sunday school:
Romans 10 and 9 is a favourite verse of mine
Confessing Christ as Lord
I am saved by Grace Divine
Now there's a Word of Promise
In golden letters shine
Romans 10 and 9
If salvation is a work of God, how do we get it?
How do you do what God does?
How do you get what God alone can give?
We trust Him to do what He alone can do.
We put God in a position where we trust Him completely, so that if our salvation were to fail, it would be His failure, therefore it cannot fail.
So that if we were disappointed, it is He who would disappoint!
We depend upon His faithfulness, so that if there was no fulfilment it is He who would be unfaithful, and this cannot be!
We trust Him to do what He does and to be who He is.
Romans 10:9 – 2 truths emphasised:
Confession of mouth
Conviction of heart
v8 – mouth and heart
v9 – mouth heart
v10 – heart and mouth
“if thou shalt confess” (10:9) - “confess” - “homologeō” - often a public confession (Matt 10:32; Luke 12:8):
Confession with Cost: “These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue.” (Joh 9:22), “Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue:” (Joh 12:42)
Cf. the cost paid by Antipas (Rev 2:13) : “Antipas” : 'against all'
Cf. pinch of incense to Caesar, religious pleuralism
Cf. Philadelphia (Rev 3:8)
Confession with Consequences, and those consequences are eternal: Matt 10:28-32; Luke 12:5-8
Confession out of Commitment: “Whereupon he promised (committed) with an oath to give her whatsoever she would ask.” (Mat 14:7)
Confession Consistent with life: “They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” (Tit 1:16)
“the Lord Jesus”
Confession of Christ as Lord
Much said over the years about Lordship salvation
My understanding is very simple: 'if he is my Saviour, He is my Lord.'
'Lord and Saviour' : 1 Tim1:1; Titus 1:4; 2 Peter 1:11; 2 Peter 2:20; 2 Peter 3:2; 2 Peter 3:18
This is not new, this is something, we often say, many times, but in different language, that God saves us for a two fold purpose:
God saves me to change me!
Has He ever saved me? Then He must have changed me!
That is what it means to be saved!
He saved me to change me to be like Christ (Rom 8:28)
I cannot be Lord of my own life and end up like Christ! Just take a look around you at the world! How many Christ like figures do you see?
Do men and women naturally or progressively become unselfish, kind hearted, self sacrificial, pursuing holiness and righteousness even when it costs?
To have Christ likeness requires Christs Lordship.
What does Lordship mean?
Lord of my occupation (Eph 6)
Lord of my home life (Eph 6)
Lord over my gifts, talents and abilities (Matt 25:15) – responsible to the Lord for how we use them.
Lord over our service in the gospel (Matt 9:38)
Lord over all service (Matt 24:48)
Lord over the Day : 'Lords Day'
Lord over the assembly
Lord over relationship (1 Co 7:39) – no unequal yolk, and no unbalanced yolk!
“In thine heart” : there must be a motive / a drive / a power behind this confession.
“raised from the dead” - why is this the confession? It is His resurrection which fits Him not simply as a means or method of salvation but as an able Saviour (cf. Rom 1:4), He is alive and able to save (Heb 7:25). Salvation is by relationship with a person rather than by a specific understanding of the work of Christ. It is trusting Christ to do what He does and to be who He is.
V9 + 10 – note the chiasm:
v9 – mouth
v9 – heart
v10 – heart
v10 – mouth
Chiasm as an aide memoir.
Chiasm also points to what is at the 'heart of the message.'
The pattern leads up and away from the central point.
What is at the heart of the Christian experience?
Part of our bible study teaching series of messages preached systematically through Paul's letter to the Romans. Free to download audio mp3 recordings of this sermon and other sermons are available at the end of this blog and on the website page.
Yours by Grace in Christ
Dr J Stewart Gillespie