How do you know if you, or anyone else, is a true Christian? Paul warns us that there are many false ideas about Christianity, and so identifies for us the marks of the circumcision—those things which invariably attend a regenerate heart, found in the life of a man or woman alive in Christ. Here he gives us three things: true worship, true joy, and true confidence, all in marked contrast to the external and carnal forms of those who might imagine themselves religious but who do not know God in Christ. These are the marks of the circumcision, the indicators that we belong to Christ and are part of the new covenant community of believers.
We're at the end. Paul has made it to Rome. The Holy Spirit has led Paul to Jerusalem to be arrested, to Caesarea to be tried, and now on to Rome to have his case heard by Caesar. But getting there was an adventure!
Introduction: From a huddled mass in Jerusalem (ch. 1) to the masses of Rome (28:11–14)
COURAGE FROM "THE BROTHERS" (V. 15)
CONFIDENCE BEFORE THE JEWS...AGAIN (VV. 17–28)
"How We Got Here" with Confidence (vv. 17–22)
His Confident Proclamation of Hope from Scripture (v. 23)
His Confident Application of the Scriptures (vv. 24–28)
"WITH ALL BOLDNESS AND WITHOUT HINDRANCE" ... APPLICATION TO US (V. 30–31)
God is our Refuge and Strength. Believers can have an unshakeable confidence in God because he has committed himself to his people, his Church, which is called the City of God. And he shall conquer all his foes and be exalted in the earth at last.
Trust is in short supply these days. That makes for lots of problems. Relationships take on a different nature when there is no trust. Love requires that we take a chance on trusting someone, but when that trust is betrayed then that love also takes on a different nature. Mercy and truth must be there for trust to exist. Love + mercy + truth = trust.
In the face of many persecutions and pains, David gives himself to awed meditation on the goodness of God. He speaks with happy confidence on that goodness stored up and worked out. He identifies the blessed companions who share in this divine bounty: all who fear the Lord and put their trust in him. From all this we can draw a number of useful lessons for ourselves.
As we look at the character of Caleb there are 3 things that we can learn from Caleb that will help all of us on our Christian journey.
First of all this morning we will see that Caleb was a Man of Commitment.
Secondly; Caleb was a Man of Courage.
Thirdly; Caleb was a Man of Combat.
As you read the Words of Caleb in the Bible there is one verse that sticks out that gives us an insight into his character.
When Caleb looks back at his life and at the age of 85 he makes this statement found in Joshua 14.8. Josh 14:8 … I wholly followed the Lord my God.
What a great statement that is: As this aged man of God surveyed his life he knew that he had commitment and had given himself unreservedly to the living God.
The Apostle Paul pleads with us to do the same in the Book of Romans. He asks us to give our lives as a living sacrifice.
Rom 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
If you are a Christian do you practice what you preach. Caleb had Commitment and courage.
Out of all the spies that went into the land, two stood strong. Caleb and Joshua.
Joshua and Caleb were men of courage. They were willing to take the Land and were prepared to stand against the majority whom had put fear over faith.
There's a lesson for God's people here: Never be afraid to be in the minority when you know the will of God!
If you go back through both biblical and world history you will often find that when God's man or God's woman take God's stand for God's honour in many cases they stand alone or with just a few.
Hezekiah was considered the best king Judah ever had. He refused to put his trust in the "great king of Assyria", Sennacherib, but fully trusted Jehovah, putting the LORD over governments. The question for us is, who do we trust? And if you say, God; how well do you know Him? In truth, to know Him well, is to know His Word well, because it is in His Word, Jehovah reveals Himself.
The stories we tell ourselves shape us. They shape our identity, our expectations, and our focus. If we tell ourselves, "I am unsafe; I am unclean; I am unable," we will be paralyzed by fear. On the other hand, merely adding positive thinking leads to pride and presumption. The problem with both is they are rooted in self. Psalm 18 shows us a third way – a way not rooted in self but in the saving work of God. David's praise teaches us to say, "Because I am in Jesus Christ, I am safe, I am clean, I am able.
In this message we see the One True and Living God He is worthy of all possible honor, confidence, and love; in the unity of the Godhead there are three Divine Persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, equal in every Divine perfection; executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption.