Friday, October 5, 2007


2007-10-07 PM The Gates of Heaven - Romans 10.mp3

The Gates of Heaven

Romans 10:5-21
Dr. Edwin P. Elliott

I. Scripture Explains Access to Heaven

A. If one were to keep the law with no variation, one would go to heaven; God likes perfection. “For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.”
(Romans 10:5)

B. Scripture confirms what experience teaches; no one keeps God’s law. “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” (Romans 3:10) “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
(Isaiah 64:6)

C. Righteousness based on faith excludes all the schemes and methods to get around the facts. “But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)” (Romans 10:6-7)

D. God states the only reliable way to approach Him. “But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
(Romans 10:8-9)

E. Trust and profession lead to the open door. “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:10)

F. Salvation by grace puts the emphasis on God rather than the person. “For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
(Romans 10:11-13)

II. Christians Must Become Doorkeepers

A. David explained the joy of being a doorkeeper for God. “For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.”
(Psalm 84:10)

B. No one will believe without hearing the message; believers get the message from God’s appointed evangelistic method. “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Romans 10:14)

C. The church is a mission agency by definition; the spread of the gospel is beautiful but it does not take place by accident or by spontaneous generation. “And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!”
(Romans 10:15)

D. The message is essential, but it is not the effective force in the spread of the gospel. “But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?” (Romans 10:16)

E. The word of God arrives through human agents, but it is the Word of God Who accomplishes the redemption. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17)

F. The redemption process is in the world but it is supernatural; worldly wisdom could never on its own lead to redemption by grace. “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.”
(1 Corinthians 1:18-24)

III. Grace, Not Witnessing, Is the Explanation

A. No one is excusable; all reality points to God. “But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.”
(Romans 10:18)

B. When people refuse what God provides, He gives His gifts to others; salvation is by grace rather than by institution. “But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.”
(Romans 10:19)

C. Isaiah predicted the shift from Israel to the nations. “But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me.”
(Romans 10:20)

D. God never stopped being concerned with Israel. “But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.” (Romans 10:21)

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