Start Here: Faith Comes First for You (Romans 4:13–25)
This year we lost faith in Gov’t, Media, Medicine, Self-Help, Economy, Human Goodness
Time for Faith in God: Abraham
· Ungodly father
· Godless government
· No Bible
· Few if any believing friends or family
· Left city, nation, family, friends, business, security – to get a new life leave old one
· The time between the times is the place of faith
· The time between the times is the place of worship – boasting in God to grow faith
Faith over Fear
Romans 4:18 In hope he believed against hope
Romans 4:20-21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.
- Faith is not irresponsibility
- Faith is not positive thinking
- Faith is not optimism
- Faith is not hope in a possible outcome
- Faith is not having proof
- Faith is not a fleeting feeling, but a concrete conviction
- Faith is marching forward based upon what God says, not what you see
Heb 11:1 faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
Everyone trusts in something or something – medication, airplane, spouse
- Find God’s will (Scripture, HS, wise counsel)
- Choose faith over fear
Worship is Boasting on God to Give us Hope
- Romans 1:30, 2:17, 2:23, 3:27, 4:2 – boasting as negative human trait
- Boasting is the counterfeit of worshipping
Our God Can Make A Momma out of the Barren and Virgin
Romans 4:13 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith.
- Sarah’s womb was a tomb – promise @ 65, Isaac born 90
- Mary needed a miracle
- Sight believes the seen & natural
- Faith believes the unseen & supernatural
Our God Trades Rebellion for Righteousness
Romans 4:14-15 For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.
1. Trespassing – unknowingly wander over a boundary line = everyone
2. Transgression– knowingly step over boundary line (“keep out” sign & fence) = w/Bible
Our God Can Rescue Anyone Anywhere Anytime
Romans 4:16 That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17 as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead
- One problem – human sin
- One Savior – Jesus Christ
- One salvation – by “grace” through “faith”
Our God Needs Nothing to Succeed
Romans 4:17 the God in whom he believed, who…calls into existence the things that do not exist.
Hebrews 11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
=This church did not start with a dollar, building, or a person but a promise!
Our God Has Proven 100% Trustworthy
Romans 4:18 In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” 19 He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb.
It is impossible for God to break a promise
-1916 Woodrow Wilson promised avoid war, 29 days 2nd term declared war Germany
-1928 Herbert Hoover promised prosperity “a chicken in every pot” & “a car in every backyard” – 8 months in office Great Depression
-1940 Franklin D. Roosevelt – “your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars”. Declared war on Japan after bombing Pearl Harbor
-1964 Lyndon B. Johnson – promised not to send American soldiers to Asia. Deployed troops to Vietnam multiple times
-1976 Jimmy Carter – solve energy crisis, only got worse
-1988 George HW Bush – “read my lips, no new taxes” then recession & new taxes
= PROMISES (oath/vow/pledge)– largely relational & eternal
Our God Makes Weak People Strong
Romans 4:20 No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22 That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.”
Real Faith is not perfect faith
· Abraham had “no unbelief”, did not “waver”, was “fully convinced”, and “grew strong”
· ? 1. Gave away promised land 2. Gave away Sarah 2x 3. impregnated Hagar
- Faith is big enough for questions, struggles, doubts (vs unbelief)
- Faith tests today are preparing you for tomorrow.
Our God Makes Dead People Alive
Romans 4:23 But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25 who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.
- Sometimes things die so God can raise them up better than ever
- Buddha is dead. Mohammed is dead. Krishna is dead. Jesus ain’t dead!
CLOSE – READ PROMISES OF GOD OVER THE PEOPLE AS A BLESSING
Romans 10:17 NKJV faith comes by hearing…the word of God.
Isaiah 41:10 do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.
Deuteronomy 31:8 The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Psalm 32:8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Psalm 37:23-24 The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
Matthew 11:28-29 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Philippians 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
1 Peter 2:24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”
James 1:2-3 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
Exodus 14:14 The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Isaiah 40:29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
Isaiah 41:13 For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.
Isaiah 43:2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
Isaiah 54:10 Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
James 4:7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.
John 8:36 if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
Mark 11:24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Philippians 4:19 my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.
Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
Psalm 27:1 The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 34:17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.
Psalm 50:15 call on me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me.”
Psalm 86:5 You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.
Psalm 9:9-10 The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Matthew 6:31-33 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Matthew 7:9-11 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
Psalm 103:2-5 Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
John 14:13-16 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—
Luke 11:9-13 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. “Which of you fathers, if your son asks fora fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Romans 8:31-35 If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
Matthew 28:18-20 Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 7:7–11 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!
Mark 10:31 many who are first will be last, and the last first.”
Luke 11:9–13 I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Luke 12:22–32 And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you. “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
John 16:33 in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
Romans 8:31-38 If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
This practical sermon from Romans 4 shows many ways in the Bible in which God has been faithful and shows how He continues to be faithful to His people even today.