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Romans 1-5

[Hate road trips, but this one was unavoidable. Ah, well - let's review and I will just summarize chapter 6 and 7, then on to 8.]

REVIEW

1) The unrighteous (non-believer) are enemies of God. Their backs are turned and they are in rebellion. Their is no excuse for the deniers, the good people but not believers, the isolated, nor the churchgoer (but not a believer).

2) God's anger goes out against the unrighteous in Paul's time even until today (Greek tenses). God gives the unrighteous over to a the desires of their heart and to the mind (reprobate, depraved) that rejects Him. The sins come out of the darkness and into the light, and society (non-believing, secular) not only sees them, but makes excuses for and even approves of the sins.

3) The answer is not the law nor circumcision (rites), but a righteousness apart frm the Law. Salvation (justification) comes from belief by faith (trust in God) in the imputed righteousness of Christ onto our account. We did not earn it, we receive it as a gift by grace.

4)Abraham was the example given. Abraham was declared righteous before circumcision was given and centuries before the Law was given on Mt. Sinai. thus righteousness could not come from being circumcised, nor from the Law.

5) The source of the condemnation of all mankind is Adam. Five comparisons of Adam and Christ were given, and none would be valid if one does not understand:

Man's condemnation is from Adams sin imputed on mankind.

Righteousness from Christ is imputed onto a believer's account.

Romans 6
[A summary]

Two good questions are addressed here from the point of a believer:

1)Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?

This question was raised earlier in a different way in Romans 3 as a justification for the unrighteous (Why not do evil so good may result?). It was declared illogical as it blurs the distinction between good and evil, and does not allow for God to do the good, and man still be responsible for evil.

Now the question here is for believers, who might think if Grace results God is glorified.

Paul says - NOT AT ALL! You died to sin. When we believed and were declared righteous (saved), we were baptized by the Holy Spirit, and our spirit is sealed by God.

[note: the baptism by water is symbolic as going under water means the being buried part, and the lifting out of the water is ressurecting into the new life.]

However, the real baptism as John the Baptist spoke of is not by water, but by fire (Holy Spirit). We are sealed at the time of belief, so let no one tell you that you are ever awaiting the coming of the Holy Spirit after believing, He is in you at belief.

If we were united with Christ in His death, then we are united with him in life. "United" in Greek has the connotation of being grafted in. Abiding in Him and He in you. Our spirits are no longer slaves to sin as they were when we were united with Adam in condemnation.

The body is a differant story. We know people still die. The body is corrupted, and still capable of sinning. However, if you truly believed and came to Christ, you will see change. You will begin to sin less and less. The spirit will lead you on your Christian walk. But it won't come from you, it will be by the guidance of the Father from the Holy Spirit.

What can we do? Can we speed up the process. Paul says, yes - instead of giving yourself over to sin, offer your body to God. God will honor that and amplify your walk.

God knows we will sin, and God knows we will struggle. Like any parent, God wants you to come to Him for help during your growth.

You are under grace from God. He understands. It does not mean He will not chastise, like any parent, but He understands and does not condemn - you are His child. The Law condemns by pointing out you cannot live up to a standard. God is not asking you to live up to a standard, but to listen and ask for help, and He will lead you through life and help you acheive the standard better than you ever could on your own. Trust in God for your Christian walk, just like you did to be saved, and with the same attitude and heart.

Romans 6
[A summary - Continued]

Second Question: Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?

What about one sin? Isn't one sin OK as God will understand and forgive.

It is going to happen, Paul does not deny that. Paul does point out that three things happened wen sinning before being saved.
- one became a slave to sin
- death
- You were free from the control of righteousness (God - who alone can save)

As a believer it happens also in a different way:
- sin once, the again, and it is easier and easier to sin.
- Not physical death, but spirtual (death) darkness. It is harder to understand Scripture, be acive in Church, to pray when you sin.
- You break fellowship with the Father, and while He is in control, sometimes He just sits back and waits for you to come to Him (like the prodigal son).

The answer to avoiding that first sin: realize who you are in Christ, and what it means. Offer yourselves up to God as in Vs. 13.

If you have sinned go to God in prayer and return like the prodigal son (even if it is the 1,000+ time). Ask for restoration and parental forgiveness. Ask Him to be active in a Fatherly role in your life. Then go back to Vs. 13 and offer yourselves up to God to lead your walk.

[Of course none of this is meant in a legalistic way. It is an outline. You color it in the way God leads you. Just talk to God in a humble trusting fashion - however you do it.]

Romans 7
[Summary]

Queston: Does the Law help us, as believers, to handle the problem of sin in our lives?"

Yes and No. Yes, the Law points out that we sinned. No, it does not help handle a believer's problem with sin.

Ex. Before we were married to Adam in our imputed condemnation. We may have tried to do right, but the Law pointed out that we were hypocrites. Our nature was rebellion and sin.

We believed by faith in the imputed righteous of Christ - our first husband Adam died and also the condemnation. Our new husband who we can legally (by the Law ) wed is Christ and we are under grace and imputed righteousness. Now when we try to do good, we are not hypocrites, we are doing what we are supposed to do in Christ.

The Law pointed out sin before we were saved. Yet the sin deceived us (by looking good and being appealing (remember the fruit in Eden)). And the Law condemned me for sinning.

It gets no better after believing if we try to follow the Law on our own. If we try to do the right things - obey the Law on our own - legalism.

We find, as believers it is a niserable life. We want to do good, but don't and because we are trying to follow the Law on our own it condemns we feel guilty, miserable, etc. The picture of an abject morose Christian.

7:22For in my inner being I delight in God's law;

Hence the struggle. Between the flesh and the spirit. What do we do?

7:24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?

The answer is Christ. Realize who you are in the new marriage, and how God sees you. Go to God and ask for parental forgiveness, and trust in God to guide your steps. Let God take over your life through the Holy Spirit. Walk in Love and trust, and see how things get better. You will fail and stumble, butr you will progressively get better at your walk, and will no longer have the bitter feelings of condemnation when stumbling, but under grace advance in your walk with God's fatherly aide.

Romans 8

[Finally, somewhat caught up.]

Romans 7 summary:
"So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God's law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin, but there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."

In our struggle we are not condemned. God does not kick us out of His family. God is not angry with you when this struggle comes into your life. There is no punishment for the stumbling - when we try to do good, but sin. (this is different from Romans 6 where one is willfully deciding to do sin - there may be chastisement/correction in that instance).

We need (again) to see ourselves as God sees us. God sees us as His own children, outside of time He sees us as the finished product. We are special to Him.

When we get down on ourselves, "at that point God says to you, "What is wrong is your view of yourself. That is not what you are; that is only a temporary delusion to which you are giving yourself over. The truth is, you have been cut free. You are married to Christ. Your human spirit has been indwelt by the Holy Spirit and it cannot sin. It has not sinned and does not sin. Now, you yourself, as a person, have been deceived by the sin in your flesh, and it has taken over and has gotten you into this difficulty. But that is not who you are. Don't believe that about yourself anymore. There is a fresh provision of the forgiveness of God and the righteousness of Christ waiting for you. You are in Christ -- this is who you are. Take his forgiveness, believe it, thank God for it, and go on, and know that your struggle has ended." [Ray Stedman]

The key to victory is to trust in God, submit yourself to God and allow Him to lead you through the Spirit.

Think I am off base? Who is our perfect model? Christ. How did Christ walk here on earth? He humbled himself, He trusted the Father, He allowed the Father to guide His every step, His every word, and even to do the miracles through Him by the power of the Holy Spirit. Are we any better than Christ. Why should we not be humbling following this model, instead of self-righteously trying to obey a list of do's and don'ts.

Romans 8
[Continued]

8:16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children.

"We started in Adam; we are now, by faith, in Christ; if we are in Christ, we are in the Spirit; if we are in the Spirit, we can walk according to the Spirit; if we are in the Spirit, we are therefore led by the Spirit; andif we are led by the Spirit, we are the sons of God; and If we are the sons of God, we are heirs of God. All that God owns is to be committed to us. That is a staggering, mind-blowing thing, but that is what the apostle writes, and it runs all the way through the Scriptures." [Ray Stedman]
=================================================================================
8:18I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

Not to us , BUT "in us". It is gonna' be really cool down the line when we as believers are glorified.

All of creation (the universe) is looking with craned necks expectantly for that time.

This is is not just angels, but all of creation. For the Universe was broken when Adam sinned, and will be fixed and brought anew in the (final) end.

"Somebody has pointed out that all the sounds of nature are in the minor key. Listen to the sighing of the wind. Listen to the roaring of the tide. Listen to the roar of the cataract. Even most of the sounds of birds are in the minor key. All nature is singing, but it is singing a song of bondage. Yet it sings in hope, looking forward to that day, Paul says, when it shall step into the freedom of the glory of the children of God." [Ray Stedman]

We groan to as believers - we groan in disappointment, in bereavement, in sorrow. We groan physically in our pain and our limitation. Life consists of a great deal of groaning. waiting for the day when things will be perfect. That is our hope (certain expectation). We do not need to hope in being saved (redeemed in the spirit) that is done. But as to our glorification, we need to wait for it patiently - knowing there wil be frustrations and stumbling in our walk.

2 Chronicles 8:11-10:19


8:11 "Solomon marries the daughter of Pharaoh for political reasons and not necessarily because he loved her. You see, this would ensure that your father-in-law would not rise up and attack you and your nation, for you were married to his daughter. But Solomon does recognize that this is wrong, he is still feeling the conviction of God upon his heart for what he has done, he understands that God is not pleased with his actions."

8:12-13. "Many people today are following in the footsteps of Solomon. He was backsliding, moving away from God, and he was aware of it. And yet he continued with offering sacrifice unto the Lord, he was involved with religious activity, and he looked good outwardly. He was doing all the motion without the emotion. The problem is that when your heart is far from the Lord, all the religious activity you do won't change that."

8:17-18 "The Jews were not a sea faring people, even though they sailed on the Sea of Galilee and some were fishermen. The Sea of Galilee is not really a sea but more of a lake, some 7 miles wide and 17 miles long. It was not like the Mediterranean Sea. So Solomon hires Hiram, king of Tyre, to assist him in obtaining riches from other nations by his ships. Solomon does send some of his own men to assist in the work, but the Phoenicians were truly a great sea faring people.

These ships would return every 3 years full of riches and possessions from various nations. Solomon acquire 450 talents of gold from Ophir, which is in India. But if you look at II Chronicles 29:4, David was able to acquire 3,000 talents of gold from Ophir during the same amount of time. Why the difference? Solomon was trying to do this by the works of his hands, the works of his flesh. When you are doing it on your own you will never be as fruitful as you will when you are lead by the Spirit of the Lord. Solomon's focus was in obtaining wealth, and he was spiritually bankrupt."
http://www.ccmanitowoc.org/Library/Guglielmo-Joe/Studies/TH/14-2CH/TH1059.HTM

2 Chronicles 8:11-10:19
[Continued]

9:7-8"It seems that the Queen of Sheba turned and believed in the true and living God, not only from these verses do we get that, but from what Jesus said of her in Matthew 12:42. In that section of Scripture Jesus is saying that the Queen of Sheba will rise up in judgment against this generation, for she believed at the words of Solomon, and they did not believe and they had a greater than Solomon before them, God Himself. How sad when a pagan women is more responsive to the message than the Jewish nation itself!"

9:13-14 "Solomon placed a heavy tax burden upon the people, and the reality is, he did not need it any longer. The temple and the buildings were all completed, and he could have eased up on the taxation. His son Rehoboam is going to be asked to bring tax reform to the nation, but he refuses and because of that , the nation is divided."

Solomon's yearly income was 666 talents of gold, why would that be? I think God is trying to show us a comparison or a type here. Listen to what is said in Revelation 13:16-18, we read, "He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666." Now Solomon is not the Antichrist, but he is a type that is being illustrated for us to see. Solomon came on the scene after a Godly king, David. The Antichrist comes on the scene after Jesus Christ came. Solomon was a man of peace, and the Antichrist comes on the scene as a man of peace. Solomon built the temple, and the Antichrist will come on the scene and help the Jews to build the temple again. During the reign of Solomon they enjoyed a time of great prosperity, and during the first 3 1/2 years of the tribulation period, the Antichrist will bring to the world a time of peace and prosperity. We can see a lot of parallels and I think God is saying to us, don't let the things of this world draw you away from Me, Solomon is now serving himself instead of the Lord and His people. It is very easy to be taken in by smooth talking people, and the Antichrist, like many politicians, is no exception."

9:21 Every 3 years ships would return from their voyages and bring back with them a huge cargo of merchandise. And now the common things are not satisfying anymore and it is taking more and to try to fill that void. And the things he is acquiring seem to be getting more and more bizarre. That is true for any one that turns from the Lord and tries to fill that void with other things.

VERSES 22-24

1. Who gave Solomon this wisdom? God did! And now Solomon is charging people to share that gift that God has given to him. God gave him this wisdom and now he is making a profit off that which God has given to him. How sad when people prostitute the things that God has given to them. Greed is a terrible enemy to our relationship with God and we see that monster show its ugly face far to often within the church today.

VERSES 25-28

1. Solomon is doing everything that God told him not to do back in Deuteronomy chapter 17. And maybe Solomon thought he was above the common people and that God knew his wisdom and was surely not speaking to him. He found out how wrong he was, how prideful that kind of attitude was.

2. Also, during this time the camel was domesticated and was used for transportation by traders and merchants. They could travel long distances through the desert without the need for water. And Jerusalem was the hub, you might say, between Egypt and Mesopotamia. Thus, Solomon was charging them a toll for using this route. (See II Chronicles 9:14). He is trying to obtain more and more wealth anyway he can. Using his wisdom for the wrong things.
http://www.ccmanitowoc.org/Library/Guglielmo-Joe/Studies/TH/14-2CH/TH1059.HTM

2 Chronicles 8:11-10:19
[Continued]

VERSES 1-2

1. "Rehoboam, Israel's next king, and the son of Solomon, reigned for 17 years and in those 17 years the nation deteriorated into a second class nation. At one time people from near and far came to see the glory of this kingdom, but that is going to change very quickly.

2. Jeroboam, if your remember from our study of I Kings, was a very young and industrious man whom Solomon took notice of. And Solomon placed him in charge of the labor force over the house of Joseph. It was after this that Ahijah the Shilonite, a prophet of God, met with him in a field. And Ahijah took the garment of Jeroboam and tore it into 12 pieces and told him to take ten of those pieces. He said, "...'Take for yourself ten pieces, for thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: 'Behold, I will tear the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon and will give ten tribes to you'" I Kings 11:31. As Solomon hears about this he tries to stop what God said was going to happen by killing Jeroboam, who then flees to Egypt for safety. But now that Solomon is dead, he returns from Egypt to Jerusalem."

VERSE 8

1. "Now Rehoboam consults these young men that he grew up with, to hear their counsel, for he rejected the counsel of the wise men. And understand that these were not some rebellious or punk teenagers giving him this advice, these guys he grew up with. And at this time Rehoboam was some 41 years old, and so were these young men. And listen to the counsel of these guys, for it was truly foolish."

VERSES 9-11

1. They are basically telling Rehoboam to let the people know who is in charge, who the boss is. "You thought my dad was tough, you ain't seen nothing yet!"

VERSES 12-15

1. God was the one who ordained this to happen, He knew what Rehoboam was going to do. On the other hand, Rehoboam, in his pride and arrogance thinks that he is in control, he is the boss, and he is completely unaware that he was going to fulfill what God had said was to happen.

VERSE 16

1. The people had finally had enough and the 10 northern tribes separate from Judah and Benjamin in the south.
http://www.ccmanitowoc.org/Library/Guglielmo-Joe/Studies/TH/14-2CH/TH1059.HTM

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