Developing Beautiful Feet

Dr. Steve Viars May 17, 2020 Romans 10:1-21
Outline

Romans 3:21-26 - But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

Mark 1:14-15 - Now after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”

“A Christ-centered, grace-based approach to sanctification that rightly accounts for the significance of our union with Christ will accomplish much more than a man-centered, fear-based, legalistic model ever will.”

Romans 8:18 - For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

3 characteristics of faith that truly saves

I. Biblical Faith is Not Satisfied with Sincerity Alone

Romans 10:1 - Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation.

Romans 9:2 - …that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart.

A. This should be an issue that concerns us all deeply

1. in our heart’s desire for ourselves and others

2. in our prayers for ourselves and those around us

B. Zeal without spiritually discerned knowledge falls short

Romans 10:2 - For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.

1. Paul knew all about being zealous

Philippians 3:6 - …as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.

“Fanatics are people who have zeal and sincerity (they are often willing to die for their cause) but it is a zeal that refuses reflection.” (Tim Keller, Romans 8-16, p. 76)

2. Knowing certain biblical truths is not enough

Romans 10:2 - For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.

James 2:19 - You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.

“The Jews had a certain degree or kind of knowledge (gnōsis), an intellectual awareness of the outward demands of God’s law. But they did not have the discerning spiritual knowledge (epignōsis) that comes only from a saving relationship to God. They had the kind of superficial religious knowledge that causes pride and arrogance (1 Cor. 8:1), but not the godly knowledge that both comes from and produces humility and holiness.” (John MacArthur, Romans 9-16, p. 59)

Ephesians 1:17 - …that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.

C. The core question is what you believe about righteousness

1. Many do not believe God’s righteousness is pure and uncompromising

Romans 10:3a - For not knowing about God’s righteousness…

2. As a result, many instead seek to establish their own definition of righteousness

Romans 10:3b - …and seeking to establish their own…

3. Many will not submit themselves to God’s definition and provision of righteousness

Romans 10:3c - …they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God…

4. Jesus Christ ends our attempts to be righteous on our own when we choose to repent and believe in Him

Romans 10:4 - For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

Galatians 3:24 - Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith.

Romans 10:8 - But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching…

“Verse 4 is justly famous as one of the most succinct yet significant theological assertions in all of the Pauline letters. Yet v. 3, with its explanation of Israel’s failure in terms of a contrast between God’s righteousness and their own, is the conceptual center of the paragraph.” (Douglas Moo, The Letter to the Romans, p. 649)

Romans 10:9-10 - …that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

II. Biblical Faith Seeks Righteousness that is Only Available in the Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ

Romans 10:3 - For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.

A. You must do your part with both your heart and your mouth

1. What you choose to believe

  • God’s definition of righteousness
  • God’s pronouncement of your sin and inability to be righteous on your own
  • Your need of a Savior and a Lord
  • Your trust in Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection ad your only way to be reconciled to God
  • Your submission to your resurrected Lord’s definition of righteousness
  • Your submission to your resurrected Lord’s process of practical righteousness He seeks to complete in you

2. What you choose to confess

B. When you do – both the positive and negative aspects of salvation are fulfilled

Romans 10:10 - …for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

“Those two truths represent the positive and the negative sides of God’s redemptive grace. The positive side reflects His own perfect righteousness, which He graciously imputes to and bestows on those who believe in His Son, Jesus Christ. The believer is simultaneously declared righteous (justified) and made righteous (regenerated)…The negative side of God’s work in the believer is salvation, divine deliverance from the sin that separates fallen man from holy God. Righteousness has to do with what we become, and salvation has to do with what we escape. The first has to do with the eternal life we receive but do not deserve, the second with the eternal punishment we deserve but do not receive. The first relates to entering into blessedness, the second relates to escaping cursedness.” (John MacArthur, Romans 9-16, p. 72)

C. This righteousness is available to all who call on Him

Romans 10:12-13 - For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

III. Biblical Faith is Joyfully Proclaimed by People with Feet that are Beautiful in God’s Eyes

A. The final link before a person repents and believes

Romans 10:14-15 - How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!”

B. Regardless of whether a person will choose to listen

C. Understanding that God will save anyone who will not respond to the gospel message with disobedience and obstinance

Romans 10:21 - But as for Israel He says, “All the day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.”

Romans 1:16-17 - For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “But the righteous man shall live by faith.”

- I want to thank Pastor Green and his team for a marvelous Mother’s Day service…

- I especially enjoyed the video montage our Director of Electronic Communication Jeremy Vegter assembled…they were great and everyone who participated did such a great job…

- it goes to show that God’s people can find creative ways to worship and celebrate even when we weren’t able to gather the way we wanted to…

- let me just say a word about our reopening plan…a week and a half ago you should have received the rough draft of our re-opening plan…

- if you’re not on that distribution list but would like to be…please e-mail my professional assistant Heather Smith at hsmith@faithlafayette.org...and she’ll be happy to add you…you don’t have to be a member…those messages are for anyone interested in our ministry plans during this pandemic…

- we called it a rough draft because even though we had heard from our medical professionals, and our staff, and our pastors/deacons – we also wanted to hear from our church family…and we appreciate the input we’ve received…

- now we’re baking all of that into our final re-opening plan for May 31st – 2 weeks from today…

- Lord willing, you’ll be receiving a final version of that plan this week…along with a video that walks you through the highlights for those who prefer to receive information in that form…

- a few highlights – please be assured that there will no pressure whatsoever to return to public worship until you’re absolutely ready to do so…

- we’ll continue to offer on-line services just like we did before the pandemic and we agree with our Governor that for many men and women, that’s the best option right now…

- for those who are ready, the handout and video will explain our priorities for this upcoming season of ministry, along with what we will and won’t be doing over the next several months, and the various kinds of services we’re designing to both minister to your soul but also protect your body…

- the truth is – we are in a much better situation than many for several reasons…

- we have lot of large rooms with moveable seating and potentially separate entrances…

- that’s allows us to practice physical distancing…and that’s an important value right now…we’re going to err on the side of caution during these days – you’ll hear that over and over and see evidence of it wherever you look…

- we also have a great staff…so whether it is one of the services for healthy adults and teens, or for healthy families and children, or for those who consider themselves high-risk or just prefer that approach to safety right now…there will be a live pastoral team ready to minister God’s Word to you and I am very thankful for the strong team we have in place…

- One other issue to keep in mind – we are going to be asking people to go on-line and sign up for tickets and actual seats in the whatever space you would like to attend…

- they are free of course…[unless the demand gets so high, I guess we could do a little price gouging…] but we want to be sure that when you come, there is a seat ready for you…so you don’t have to wait around and you know exactly where to go…

- the services have staggered start times to prevent people passing one another unnecessarily…

- we’re also going to be cleaning all of our venues between services…and if you would like to join one of those crews, we could really use that right now…

- you might also be wondering about the mask issue – for the high-risk services, they are required…for the others they are highly recommended…

- I realize there are very strong views on that issue…every so often I have to turn off my computer and let my e-mail in-box cool down…

- and we may change that approach depending on what we and other churches learn as we proceed throughout the summer…

- and I understand that some people might say – is all of this really necessary?...there are many practical and biblical reasons for the people of God to take this pandemic very seriously…

- and we would rather look back and laugh at some of the precautions we took that look back and cry because we weren’t as careful as we should have been…

- it’s also a matter of respect for our health-care workers…and we have many in our church family on the front lines of all of this…but I would say those for every health-care worker and front-line responder regardless of what they believe…

- one of the many reasons to try to stay safe and healthy is to not give them additional work because weren’t as cautious as we should have been…

- in other words – this church has an opportunity to communicate a message to the health-care community about the value we place on everything they do for us…

- now, for our purposes this am, have you ever heard the saying, “It doesn’t matter what a person believes, as long as he or she is sincere?”...

- usually that comes up in a discussion of religious ideas…or eternal destiny…or heaven and hell [mostly heaven]…

- but often an individual will default to…”It doesn’t matter what a person believes, as long as he or she is sincere”…and the corollary to that is – “I’m sincere in what I believe, so I’m OK”…

- Is that position true – is it logically defensible?...and does it stand up in every area of life?...

- for example…let’s say you’re out driving…and you’re not paying attention…and a police officer pulls you over and says…excuse me, but did you know you were going 70 miles an hour in a 30 MPH zone…

- and you’re talking on your cell phone, and you don’t have your seat belt buckled…

- what’s going to happen if you say – but officer, I sincerely felt like I was only going 25, and I sincerely needed to take that phone call, and I sincerely did not want to wrinkle my outfit with that seat belt…especially since it seems to fit tighter than ever after this government imposed quarantine…

- what do you think that the officer is going to say to that…not that I would have any experience in such matters…

- if you’re listening to this with someone else right now…please look over at them and guess what that officer is going to say next…

- I’m going to sincerely give you a ticket…

- sincerity does not determine truth…and that’s the case in every area of life including, and perhaps even especially, the matter of your faith…

- that is why the Bible uses this haunting phrase – it’s possible to have zeal, without knowledge…and friends that’s a place you never want to be…

- with that in mind, please open your Bible to Romans chapter 10…

- this year we’re Celebrating God’s Truth…and we had no idea when we launched this series in January how important it would be to be to our souls to be in the middle of this celebration when the pandemic struck…but we praise God for His sovereignty and His obvious concern for the care and nurture of our souls…

- we’re now in the third major section of this book…

- chapters 1-5 were all about the beauty of the gospel…the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and how there is a kind of righteousness available through admitting our sin and accepting the gift of His forgiveness and imputed righteousness that is not available any other way…

- the heart of that message is Romans 3:21–26 - But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

- so it’s not a matter of sincerely believing whatever you want…it’s a matter of sincerely believing the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ…

- we’re going to see in minute that the gospel is not only a story to be heard…

- or a message to be believed…it’s a command to be believed…

- that’s why Mark summarizes the beginning of Christ’s public ministry like this…Mark 1:14–15 - Now after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”

- please keep those words in your back pocket for our study this am…

- so the first 5 chapters are about the beauty of the gospel, and chapters 6-8 are about Christian Growth…progressive sanctification…what are the practical outworkings of the gospel of grace…

- because some would object to all of this by saying, well, if a person is saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone…that won’t produce personal change or practical holiness…

- and what did Paul explain in chapters 6-8…that fails to take into account the power and centrality of our union with Christ…

- once we have been forgiven of our sin…and His righteousness has been placed on our account…we are united with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection…

- and now we have an entirely different motivation to change, and source of power to change…remember the way we summarized that?...

  • A Christ-centered, grace-based approach to sanctification that rightly accounts for the significance of our union with Christ will accomplish much more than a man-centered, fear based legalistic model ever will
  • · God’s definition of righteousness
  • · God’s pronouncement of your sin and inability to be righteous on your own
  • · Your need of a Savior and a Lord
  • · Your trust in Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection ad your only way to be reconciled to God
  • · Your submission to your resurrected Lord’s definition of righteousness
  • · Your submission to your resurrected Lord’s process of practical righteousness He seeks to complete in you

- that’s why that sections ends with a comprehensive discussion of the topic of suffering…because often it is in the crucible of suffering that this approach to sanctification and Christian growth is especially on display…

- in chemistry terms – suffering is that catalyst that accelerates our growth in Christ…Romans 8:18 - For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

- which brings us to chapters 9-11…where Paul answers the question, well then, what happened to Israel?...which leads to a section of Scripture that contains some of the richest, and deepest, and understandably most controversial material in the entire New Testament…and Paul has already addressed the likely objections to the gospel…namely that he doesn’t love Jewish people anymore…and that perhaps God’s promises to Israel to not come to pass because of their chosen unbelief…

- now we move into chapter 10…which helps us understand why being zealous without knowledge is a terrible way to approach ones faith…

- read Romans 10:1-21

- we’re talking this morning about Developing Beautiful Feet…and with the time we have remaining, let’s think about 3 characteristics of faith that truly saves.

I. Biblical Faith is Not Satisfied with Sincerity Alone – vv. 1-8

- I hope verse is the heart cry of every person associated with our church during this pandemic and always….

- Romans 10:1 - Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation.

- this is very similar to the way chapter 9 began…

- Romans 9:2 - that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart.

- a person’s eternal destiny hangs in the balance here…

A. This should be an issue that concerns us all deeply

1. in our heart’s desire for ourselves and others…

- Paul’s told us what his heart’s desire is…which should lead each of us to ask…what’s mine?

- what do I want the most for myself and others during this incredible point in world history?...

- and if the answer is – I want to be sure that I have established a person relationship with God His way and that everyone in my sphere of influence has the information they need to make that choice…then where does that often lead?...

2. in our prayers for ourselves and those around us.

- I hope you are spending significant amounts of time in prayer right now asking the Lord to help you wisely identify and act on opportunities to proclaim the gospel…

- friend, can you honestly say that Romans 10:1 reflects the b nature of your heart’s desires and corresponding prayers?...and if not, why/how/when can that be different in the days ahead?...

- and the reason we need to bathe all of this in prayer is because…

B. Zeal without spiritually discerned knowledge falls short.

- now, if that sounds like a loaded statement – it is…but that’s Paul’s point in verse 2…

- Romans 10:2 - For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.

- now, this is a very important question…was Paul being dismissive or disrespectful of his Jewish brothers and sisters by saying that?...I don’t think so…and…

1. Paul knew all about being zealous.

- in fact, if you know your Bible, you’re probably already thinking of a very important parallel passage…

- Philippians 3:6 - as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.

- it doesn’t get much more zealous than that…Tim Keller pointed out – “Fanatics are people who have zeal and sincerity (they are often willing to die for their cause) but it is a zeal that refuses reflection” (Tim Keller, Romans 8-16, p. 76)

- now, this is very important – please lock onto the end of verse 2…

2. Knowing certain biblical truths is not enough.

- Romans 10:2 - For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.

- what does that mean?...it’s a lot more than knowing certain ideas about the Bible…

- James 2:19 - You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.

- The Jews had a certain degree or kind of knowledge (gnōsis), an intellectual awareness of the outward demands of God’s law. But they did not have the discerning spiritual knowledge (epignōsis) that comes only from a saving relationship to God. They had the kind of superficial religious knowledge that causes pride and arrogance (1 Cor. 8:1), but not the godly knowledge that both comes from and produces humility and holiness (John MacArthur, Romans 9-16, p. 59).

- now here’s the next question logically...where would godly knowledge – or “spiritually discerned knowledge” have led them, or us, or anyone else know and love?...

- to the cross…to an understanding that I can never meet God’s righteous standards on my own…my sin is too great…it demands a sacrifice I can’t make and a righteousness I can’t earn…

- and just like Paul prayed for that for his Jewish friends…he prayed the same for us…

- Ephesians 1:17 - that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.

- that’s why these next 2 verses are so crucial to our faith…

C. The core question is what you believe about righteousness

- look at the three parts of verse 3…

1. Many do not believe God’s righteousness is pure and uncompromising

- Romans 10:3a – For not knowing about God’s righteousness…

- now this is very important – did they know that intellectually?...of course they did, to some point…just like if you asked the average American…Is God Holy?...of course…

- but this is where that Tim Keller quote is so helpful…you don’t just want a zeal that refuses reflection…

- because if God is completely holy…then the logical corollary is that we’re not…we fall short…and in need of both forgiveness and a kind of righteousness that comes from someone else…

- and please tell me according to the next phrase in verse 3…what happens when people don’t know that [they don’t choose to reflect carefully and deeply on that]?

2. As a result, many instead seek to establish their own definition of righteousness.

- Romans 10:3b – and seeking to establish their own

- please listen carefully – this is a disease far worse than COVID-19…

- and I have to love you enough as a pastor to tell you that that is exactly where some people who will listen to this message find yourself right now…and that is where many people God has placed around us find themselves…in some cases in our culture…because no one ever told them any differently…because there’s not enough pretty feet walking around these days…

3. Many will not submit themselves to God’s definition and provision of righteousness

- Romans 10:3c – they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God

- that’s the difference between “having zeal without knowledge” or letting God be the One who defines the terms and determines the path…

- I say again… the gospel is not only a story to be heard…or a message to be believed…it’s a command to be believed…

- which is how verse 4 fits into the conversation…

4. Jesus Christ ends our attempts to be righteous on our own when we choose to repent and believe in Him.

- Romans 10:4 - For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

- the law was never intended to be an end in itself…as if a person could keep it and be right with God…

- it always identified our sin and our need for forgiveness which was the purpose of the sacrificial system…each and every aspect pointing like a laser beam to the cross of Calvary…

- Galatians 3:24 - Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith.

- Paul goes on to explain – that’s always what Moses taught – you can try to live perfectly but that will never work…you always need repentance and faith in God’s provision…

- and it isn’t a matter of some esoteric experience…ascending into heaven or descending into the abyss…

- did you see verses 8…

- Romans 10:8 - But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,

- see friend, can I ask you this morning…what do you believe about righteousness?...

- Commentator Douglas Moo wrote – “Verse 4 is justly famous as one of the most succinct yet significant theological assertions in all of the Pauline letters. Yet v. 3, with its explanation of Israel’s failure in terms of a contrast between God’s righteousness and their own, is the conceptual center of the paragraph” (Douglas Moo, The Letter to the Romans, p. 649).

- Biblical faith is not satisfied with sincerity alone…it submits itself to God’s definition and provision of righteousness…

- that leads to some of the best known verses in the entire book…you and I have to do something with this knowledge…

- Romans 10:9–10 - that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

II. Biblical Faith Seeks Righteousness that is Only Available in the Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ.

- friend, I would just ask you this morning – is what we’re seeing here worth believing and proclaiming…regardless of the price?...

- a couple of days before I prepared this message, an article appeared in the NYT entitled “Franklin Graham is Taking Down His NY Hospital, but Not Going Quietly” …

- it is a fascinating article that gets at the very core of what we’re studying here – who decides what constitutes righteousness…

- one picture contains the caption – Samaritan’s Purse website says its primary mission if to share the gospel of Jesus Christ…

- I did not know that the original plan was for the hospital to be set up inside a church…

- but that plan was scuttled by some of the church and denomination’s own bishops…one who said that Franklin Graham espouses “an exclusionary view and a very narrow view of what constitutes being a Christian…”

- he went on to say – Most of the members of my own churches in the Diocese of NY would not have been able to sign off on that creedal statement and would therefore not be invited or to participate in that ministry inside their own cathedral.

- friends – that is Romans 10:3 coming alive right before our eyes… Romans 10:3 For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.

- the next sentence, buried deep in the paragraph was equally amazing…On Friday afternoon, the City’s Commission on Human Rights closed an investigation into the hospital after finding no evidence it had discriminated against patients.

- so Paul makes it clear…

A. You must do your part with both your heart and your mouth

1. What you choose to believe

- can I ask you friend – are you sure you have believed that?...in the sense that you are staking your eternal destiny on what Christ did on the cross for you?...which leads naturally to,,,,

2. What you choose to confess

B. When you do – both the positive and negative aspects of salvation are fulfilled.

- Romans 10:10 - for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

- Those two truths represent the positive and the negative sides of God’s redemptive grace. The positive side reflects His own perfect righteousness, which He graciously imputes to and bestows on those who believe in His Son, Jesus Christ. The believer is simultaneously declared righteous (justified) and made righteous (regenerated)…The negative side of God’s work in the believer is salvation, divine deliverance from the sin that separates fallen man from holy God. Righteousness has to do with what we become, and salvation has to do with what we escape. The first has to do with the eternal life we receive but do not deserve, the second with the eternal punishment we deserve but do not receive. The first relates to entering into blessedness, the second relates to escaping cursedness. (John MacArthur, Romans 9-16, p. 72).

- if that’s true, and it is – it is eternally important that we get this right…

- then Paul adds to the great news…

C. This righteousness is available to all who call on Him.

- Romans 10:12–13 - For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

- that is a very important balance to everything we studied in chapter 9 about God’s perspective in the process…and it is fascinating that the concepts are located this closely together in God’s Word…

- remember the arch we described a couple of weeks ago…when you trust Christ, from your perspective you are walking through an arch over which reads “whosoever will may come”…while at the same time from God’s perspective the arch reads “chosen before the foundation of the world”…but are true, and both are absolutely essential…

- so where does that leave us?...what’s the answer to that question?...looking down at our feet…

III. Biblical Faith is Joyfully Proclaimed by People with Feet that are Beautiful in God’s Eyes.

- see friends, what’s….

A. The final link before a person repents and believes

- the answer is – the appearance of a person with pretty feet…

- please think about all of the persons God has placed in your sphere of influence…

- many of them are probably more open to spiritual things than any other times in our lives…

- and if you asked many of them if they believe they will go to heaven when they die…the typical answer is – well, I hope so…

- and then if you asked – on what do you base that belief…they will almost always default to some version of Romans 10:3 – an attempt to establish their own definition of righteousness…

- what do they need?...

- Romans 10:14–15 - How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!”

- [if time, develop the issue of how sad it is that supposedly “religious people” at one of the epicenters of the pandemic would be ashamed of the gospel – those are ugly looking feet – but what about ours]…

B. Regardless of whether a person will choose to listen

- the chapter ends on a negative note in the sense that Israel as a nation refused to listen to the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ…

- but that is where the previous chapter is so encouraging…we’re not responsible for the results…and we never know how God may be working in someone’s heart and life…

C. Understanding that God will save anyone who will not respond to the gospel message with disobedience and obstinance.

- Romans 10:21 - But as for Israel He says, “All the day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.”

- how long did God do that with us, and with others?...all the day long…

Implications:

  1. Do you know that you know that you know that there has been a definite time when you repented and believed?...
  2. What’s the condition of your feet?...

- [develop – the smell of fresh plowed ground…]

- making a commitment as you get back into public life…

- Romans 1:16–17 - For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “But the righteous man shall live by faith.”

Dr. Steve Viars

Roles

Senior Pastor - Faith Church

Director - Faith Legacy Foundation

Bio

B.S.: Pre-Seminary & Bible, Baptist Bible College (Now Clarks Summit University)
M.Div.: Grace Theological Seminary
D.Min.: Biblical Counseling, Westminster Theological Seminary

Dr. Steve Viars has served at Faith Church in Lafayette, IN since 1987. Pastor Viars leads and equips Faith Church as Senior Pastor with a focus on preaching and teaching God’s Word and using his organizational skills in guiding the implementation of the Faith Church mission and vision. He oversees the staff, deacons, and all Faith Church ministries. Dr. Viars serves on the boards of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, Biblical Counseling Coalition, Vision of Hope, and the Faith Community Development Corporation. Steve is the author, co-author, or contributor to six books and numerous booklets. He and his wife, Kris, were married in 1982 and have two married daughters, a son, and three grandchildren.

Read Steve Viars’ Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Viars to Faith Church.

View Pastor Viars' Salvation Testimony Video