Greetings From Paul's Friends and the Beginnging of Praise

Romans  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  49:02
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Romans 16:21–27 NKJV
21 Timothy, my fellow worker, and Lucius, Jason, and Sosipater, my countrymen, greet you. 22 I, Tertius, who wrote this epistle, greet you in the Lord. 23 Gaius, my host and the host of the whole church, greets you. Erastus, the treasurer of the city, greets you, and Quartus, a brother. 24 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. 25 Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began 26 but now made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith— 27 to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.
Much of chapter 16 is taken up with formalities. Greetings and commendations. However, as we have already found there are also some very profound instructions and in the last three verses we find a doxology that hits on key points of this whole epistle.
After Paul sent his own greeting to 26 people in the church in Rome he interrupted the formalities in order to give special instruction concerning those who cause divisions and offences, contrary to the doctrine which they had learned form Paul and the other apostles.
Paul spoke very sternly in Gal concerning false teachers
Galatians 1:6–9 NKJV
6 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.
Paul concluded that particular instruction with a reference to the great spiritual battle. But it’s interesting that his words here are so brief. No doubt there is a spiritual war raging in the unseen world. But I find that we as Christians tend to lean one of two ways when it comes to spiritual warfare. We either ignore it altogether some even deny the existence of the spiritual realm. Or we become obsessed with it. It becomes our whole focus and in every issue we face we are certain that Satan and his demons are behind it and giving Satan far too much credit and believing that he has more power and influence than he does.
A couple of weeks ago we looked at Paul’s teaching in Eph. about putting on the whole armour of God. Amour which is all about truth, and faith and trust in God. And the purpose that Paul gave for wearing that armour was to be able to stand. Satan’s greatest power against God’s people is lies and getting people to believe those lies. When we know the truth Satan has no power over us. So Paul’s words concerning spiritual warfare in Romans is simple and brief. He speaks the truth, “The God os peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. Know what Satan’s end is and know that it will come quickly.

Greetings from Paul’s Friends

So now Paul jumps back to greetings but these are not from him but those who are with Paul. We can imagine as Paul is writing this letter that those who were with him said oh, can you send our regards? tell them we said hi.
First there is Timothy My fellow worker.
Timothy was truly a faithful assistant to Paul. Paul had lead him to Christ personally and considered him his own son in the faith. They had a special bond as we can see in the two letters that Paul wrote to him. Paul appointed Timothy as an elder in the church in Ephesus. At this time Timothy was travelling with Paul to Jerusalem to delivery the offering made by the Gentile churches.
He then mentions Lucius, Jason and Sosipater who he says are his countrymen. The Greek word here translates kinsmen and could mean that they were family members or of the same tribe or in the broader sense Israelites. They could have been part of Paul’s ministry team or they could have been delegates from the churches that had given the offering who had been chosen to ensure it was safely delivered to the church in Jerusalem.
Then we have this strange interruption in verse 22. Another voice. Through out Romans there has been only one voice and that was Paul’s but now we hear the voice of Tertius. and further more he claims to have written the whole letter. So who is Tertius?
As was the common practice in ancient writing Tertius was what we might call a secretary. Scholars call them an amanuensis. This was a professional writer. Papyrus and ink were very expensive and most people did not learn to write well unless that was their profession. So you would use an amanuensis to write as you dictate. They write small and neat and don’t make many mistakes to save on supplies. So when Tertius says that he wrote this epistle it means that he penned the words. Paul is of course still the author. Of all scripture was given by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit so it is right and proper to call Romans God’s words.
Gaius Was most likely the same Gaius that Paul baptised 1 Corinthians 1:14. Many Believe that his full name was Gaius Titius Justus and that he is the same Justus mentioned in Acts 18:7 who had a large house next to the synagogue. Paul stayed there when the Jews opposed him in the synagogue. He held church services in his home because he had a large home.
What ever God has blessed us with whether homes vehicles tools or what ever, be certain that He intends you to use it for His service and the joy of being a steward of anything is found when we surrender it to the Lord’s work.
Erastus who was the treasurer of the city (or in the NIV the’s city’s director of public works. God’s people are found in every place.
And Quartus our brother. All these sent their greetings to the church in Rome.
Perhaps they knew some of the people in Rome or perhaps they had only heard reports. But either way they wanted to let them know that they were thinking of them. When you become a believer you are adopted into the family of God and you have brothers and sisters all over the world. We support several missionaries in our church. You can find their letters on the wall in the fellowship hall. We give financially to their ministries and they keep us informed of the work of the gospel in the countries that they work in. Through them we have connection with thousands of brothers and sisters in Christ all over the world. We can pray for them, we can write them and encourage them in their faith and if you want to give to them you can specify your gift to missions and it will be distributed directly to our missionaries who can use the funds for their own living expenses as well as ministry related expenses.

To Him Who is Able to Establish You

I would like to begin looking at this beautiful doxology. A doxology is a praise to the glory of God. They can be spoken or sung but they alway glorify and praise God.
So it begins with “to” What is to? Praise to, Glory to as in 27
Romans 16:27 NKJV
27 to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.
He who is alone worthy or all praise and glory and honour. All of these verses express the grounds of Paul’s glory and praise of God. The grounds which are the themes of this letter. The first of which is that He is able to establish you according to my gospel.
In Rom 1:16
Romans 1:16 NKJV
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.
The gospel is the power of God which empowers you and strengthens you. God is not a god who sits high above in the heavens and is not involved in our lives. His is a personal God He is an interested God. Some people have this idea of God that He has just set things in motion and now that He is uninvolved with the affairs of man kind. They even see the gospel in this way. That God sent Christ to redeem us and that His has left it to us whether or not we will believe and be saved. And if we have believed that he has left it to us to persevere in the faith. And if we fail then we are lost.
It is true, only those who persevere to the end will be saved. But how do we persevere? The gospel is not just the power to save those who believe but it is the power to keep those who believe, believing.
let me draw your attention back to
Romans 14:3–4 NKJV
3 Let not him who eats despise him who does not eat, and let not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for God has received him. 4 Who are you to judge another’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand.
Let me ask you, how do you stand? Not just today, but tomorrow, the next day, the day after that? How will you stand until the last day? Not by your own strength. But by Him who is able to make you stand by Him who is able to strengthen you. establish you
Let me read you another doxology at the end of Jude
Jude 24–25 NKJV
24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, 25 To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty, Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen.
Brothers sisters, if you know Jesus Christ, or more importantly, if Jesus Christ knows you. He will establish according to my gospel, He is able to keep you from stumbling, Me will make you stand, today, tomorrow, and the day after that, He will cause you to persevere until the last day because you are His sheep and He is not willing to lose one of you.
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