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How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!#goodnews

 

Romans 10:15b “As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!’”

 

When Paul quotes from Isaiah 52:7, he is making a twofold point. First, the reason Israel did not believe on Jesus wasn’t because no one preached God’s good news. Isaiah proclaimed that they had indeed been spreading the prophesied Messiah for many, many years. Secondly, Paul is reminding us that those who spread the news of Jesus Christ are beautiful and lovely, though not necessarily always from a physical standpoint. They are beautiful in that they spread the only means of life. The world would have no problem looking past any supposed physical maladies in a person whose feet carried them across the planet with a life-saving cure for a disease plaguing mankind. But do they see beauty in the same feet of missionaries all over the globe who are carrying the only cure for death in the name of Jesus Christ? God does. The most beautiful and lovely thing any of us can do is speak the name of Jesus to a dying soul, thereby serving as the instrument by which God brings that person life-giving transformation. “And how are they to hear without someone preaching?” (Romans 10:14c)

 

Study/Meditation: How is the work of missionaries “beautiful”? In what ways can you support or take part in missionary work today?

 

*Father, help me see those moments when my feet can be lovely enough to spread Your good news, and remind me of the times when I need to support those who already do, both in money and in prayer. Amen.

 

By Bobbie Rill, M.A., LPC

One of my favorite verses in the Bible is 2 Corinthians 2:14, which says, “Now thanks be to God who always causes us to triumph in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him.”

I remember the first time I read this verse.  Always causes us to triumph?  You’ve got to be kidding, I thought!  Not always.  As a Licensed Professional Counselor, one of the things I learned years ago when working on my Bachelor’s degree and then my Master’s in Counseling is that it’s important not to use the term always or never in reference to people because people change.  They are not always or never a certain way.  Yet the Bible says, always.  It says God always leads us in triumph or victory in Christ. (more…)

Why do some reject the gospel of Jesus Christ?

 

Romans 10:14-15a “But how are they to call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?”

 

Remember that Chapters 9 and 10 of the book of Romans is where Paul is addressing the unbelief of the Jews and whether or not this nullifies God’s sovereignty. He’s just said that God makes no distinction between Gentile and Jew in terms of His call. Now he is simply stating a few diagnostic questions, questions designed to ask why Israel has rejected Jesus. Is it because God hasn’t sent enough messengers? Is it because the messengers He sent didn’t proclaim the message clearly enough? Is it because the people disobeyed and wouldn’t believe? And these are relevant questions for us to ask today. Why do some people not believe? They problem comes when we try to solve this problem by addressing the wrong diagnostic. Oftentimes we think the problem is the message or the avenue by which we deliver it, so we change what we’re telling or we change the church so that it is less objectionable and more comforting. Believers, Paul poses these questions to be sure we know the problem is not with the message, nor is it ultimately with the church, though certainly problems exist in every church. He poses these questions so that we see exactly where the problem lies, and that will never be with the gospel.

 

Study/Meditation: Since we haven’t yet looked to Paul’s answer, what is, in your opinion, the reason some people reject the gospel?

 

*Father, give me the correct words to convey Your truth to those who do not know You, resting fully on Your sovereignty as the deciding element of their salvation. Amen.

 

The riches God gives are the riches of His glory.

 

Romans 10:11-13 “For the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

 

Verse 11 reiterates what the heart must do in order to be saved—believe, and verse 13 reiterates what the mouth must do for salvation—confess. This is true of everyone, no matter their nationality or gender or race. All who do these things will be saved. And what is the reward? Paul calls it God’s riches, and although these riches may sometimes include earthly wealth, these are certainly not the riches Paul speaks of here. God’s riches are so much more than cars or money or houses or clothes or jewels. God’s riches mean no more shame from our sinfulness—saved from God’s wrath, from condemnation, from hell, from the shame of sinning. But even more than that, the riches that God lavishly bestows on His children are, as Paul called them in 9:23, “the riches of his glory.” All those who call on His name in faith and confess Him with their mouths receive the bountiful riches of knowing Him, of experiencing His glory and His majesty for all eternity. God’s children receive Him. These riches are ours the moment we believe and confess that belief, and they are the riches to be most valued and sought.

 

Study/Meditation: Read what Paul wrote in Philippians 3:8. How does he describe his own feelings about the riches of God’s glory? How can you better do this in your life?

 

*Father, thank You for the riches of Your glory. Thank You that I will enjoy those riches for all eternity. Amen.

 

The riches God gives are the riches of His glory.

Romans 10:11-13 “For the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Verse 11 reiterates what the heart must do in order to be saved—believe, and verse 13 reiterates what the mouth must do for salvation—confess. This is true of everyone, no matter their nationality or gender or race. All who do these things will be saved. And what is the reward? Paul calls it God’s riches, and although these riches may sometimes include earthly wealth, these are certainly not the riches Paul speaks of here. God’s riches are so much more than cars or money or houses or clothes or jewels. God’s riches mean no more shame from our sinfulness—saved from God’s wrath, from condemnation, from hell, from the shame of sinning. But even more than that, the riches that God lavishly bestows on His children are, as Paul called them in 9:23, “the riches of his glory.” All those who call on His name in faith and confess Him with their mouths receive the bountiful riches of knowing Him, of experiencing His glory and His majesty for all eternity. God’s children receive Him. These riches are ours the moment we believe and confess that belief, and they are the riches to be most valued and sought.

Study/Meditation: Read what Paul wrote in Philippians 3:8. How does he describe his own feelings about the riches of God’s glory? How can you better do this in your life?

*Father, thank You for the riches of Your glory. Thank You that I will enjoy those riches for all eternity. Amen.

Jesus isn’t “a” lord; He is “the” Lord. It is in Him that we have placed our trust.

 

Romans 10:9-10 “Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”

 

Paul is continuing to make the distinction between those who are God’s children and those who are not, and it has nothing whatsoever to do with heritage or nationality or merit or ceremony. These two beautiful verses sum up the distinction placed upon those who will live in eternity in heaven: Children of God believe that Jesus is Lord and was raised from the dead, and they confess this with their mouths. It really does seem simple, but it flies in the face of all that natural man would believe. First, there is nothing about believing in one’s self in that statement. As a matter of fact, besides the act of believing, which must first come from a heart changed by the Holy Spirit, the entire process is about Christ. Secondly, the belief must be in Christ as Lord—not “a” lord, but “the” Lord. The Greek word used here is “kurios,” which was the Greek Old Testament translation used for God’s personal name, Yahweh. Therefore one has to believe and confess that Jesus is God and that He was raised from the dead, which will lead to confessing that out loud. The authentic act of salvation is really not simple at all, but it is clear and there are no variances. Jesus is Lord. He was resurrected and now sits at the right hand of the Almighty. This is what we know. This is what we believe. This is what we proclaim.

 

Study/Meditation: What is the difference between a person who believes in Jesus and one who believes in Him as Lord? Why is this distinction so very important?

 

*Father, thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus Christ, to be the propitiation for my sins. Jesus is Lord and Savior. Amen.

 

God doesn’t expect from us what only Christ could do. From us He expects faith in that very work.

Romans 10:6-8 “But the righteousness based on faith says, ‘Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’’ (that is, to bring Christ down) or ‘‘Who will descend into the abyss?’’ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? ‘The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim).”

Paul is using popular phrases of the day, which was also a quote from Deuteronomy 30:11-14, to further make his point that man cannot do the impossible, that is, save himself. Paul is basically telling his readers that God isn’t expecting them to do the things that only Christ can do, i.e. ascension and resurrection. You can see the hyperbole here: trying to save yourself is as easy as ascending into heaven or coming back from the abyss, and thankfully that is not what is expected of us. No, the “righteousness based on faith” knows that Christ has come near you (He came down from heaven); He has come near you (He was raised from the dead), and all so that you would believe on Him and live.

Study/Meditation: How is trying to achieve salvation on your own merit comparable to trying to ascend into heaven or descend into the abyss? What solution has our loving Father provided us?

*Father, thank You for not expecting me to do what I have no ability to do. Thank You for bringing me into fellowship with You. Amen.