Romans 1:1-31, “16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”
As we continue to work our way backwards, we briefly touch on vs. 18. Men’s hearts have been hardened as they suppress the truth in unrighteousness, the soil of their heart is rigid. For this reason vs. 18 says , “ For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness”. This is the bad news for all sinners, however this bad news highlights the good news. The bad news gives the good news such great weight. Without the bad news, the good news makes no sense.
Paul then tells us in vs. 17, “17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” “In it” here is in reference to the gospel which is good news. In other words, it’s in the gospel where the righteousness of God is revealed, the more it’s revealed the more it truly reveals who we are Isaiah 6. How do we define righteousness? Being made in right standing order with one who is wronged Or The character or quality of being right or just. In contrast to Holiness, holiness is to set apart, uncommon. This is why Holiness is not what God DOES but who He IS.
What man desperately needs is not happiness, self-fulfillment or even self-worth. What man desperately needs is God’s righteousness. Proverbs 11:4, “Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, But righteousness delivers from death” Acts 17:31, “… He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained His throne is about righteousness and justice. Psalm 89:14, “Righteousness and Justice are the foundations of His throne”. Jeremiah 4:2,”… ‘The LORD lives,’ In truth, in judgment, and in righteousness”. In the gospel is the requirements of His throne spelled out and right there we see that we have fallen short in need of the Savior. God demands perfect righteousness, only He can provide.
The Bad news of Romans 1:18-3:20 highlights the good news Romans 1:16&17, it makes GRACE AMAZING. This is why we must preach LAW and GRACE. Law wounds, Grace heals. The law was designed to call to attention the state of the heart which is the real value in God’s sight. If a sinner does not understand what he is being saved from, he will not fully appreciate what he is being saved for”. If a patient is not told the bad news of his sickness, he will not appreciate the medicine. He will despise it because he does not feel he needs it. “This gospel plan seems to sinners deep and dark as midnight, till the Holy Ghost reveals to him his self-righteousness, cleaves down that self-righteous spirit, knocks out his props, and he falls down and dies!.. then the cross reveals life, and he rejoices with exceeding joy in a salvation wrought of God through His redeeming blood”, C. Finney
The gospel compels men to face the reality of their own sin and guilt, divine judgment and need for perfect substitution by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone. The gospel is a dynamite, it blasts away self-righteousness, self-complacency, self-delusion and sinful self-reliance. The gospel carries with it the omnipotence of God, whose power is sufficient to save men and give them eternal life. Blessings Ev