How can sinners such as we ever have a right relationship with a holy God? That is the central concern of the Gospel. There is only one true answer to that question—and we have to get it right. This is the concern of the eleventh article of the Baptist Confession of Faith, “Justification.” The sermon on this Lord’s Day will follow the apostle Paul’s explanation of this crucial doctrine in his letter to the Romans.
The hymns have been selected for their themes that flow from this great doctrine.
PREPARATION FOR WORSHIP
Call to Worship: Psalm 18:1-3
Hymn 427 My Hope Is in the Lord
Note: Christ secured a future hope for all who trust him. This hope rests on Jesus’ vicarious life and death, as well as his resurrection. Because he lives today, our eternal life is secure.
Worship through Giving
Hymn 392 The Solid Rock
Note: “My hope is built on nothing less Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” With these words, the Baptist minister who composed this song (Edward Mote) connected the believer’s hope with the double imputation that undergirds our justification: Jesus’ blood was the payment for our sin imputed to Him and Jesus’ righteousness was his perfect obedience imputed to us. Both are essential to our salvation. Only Christ could make such glorious provision.
Scripture Reading Romans 3:19-26
Note: As the apostle Paul unfolded his doctrine of justification in the book of Romans, he presented this paragraph as an essential building block. It shows the inseparable connection between Christ’s death that accomplished our forgiveness and the righteousness of God.
Hymn His Robes for Mine
Note: How is it that God can justify the ungodly (Romans 4:5)? By faith we are united with Christ. His righteousness is credited (imputed) to us and our sin was laid on him (imputed). This “marvelous exchange,” is the grand core of gospel truth.
Message: The Truth on Which We Stand or Fall
Romans 1:16-17; Various
Pastor Steven Thomas
Hymn (Insert) The Lord Is Righteous
Note: This hymn is selected from the collection, The Lord Is–, hymns on the attributes of God. Each hymn in the collection focuses on Christ in the second verse. Each is sung to the familiar tune EIN FESTE BURG (or, A Mighty Fortress is Our God). The righteousness of God, the focus of this hymn, is the foundation of our justification. The second verse makes direct connection with Romans 3:19-26:
The Lord has shown Himself as both the Just and Justifier:
The Christ has died to satisfy what Justice did require.
The guiltless One was slain
For guilty sinners’ gain—
Through faith His work is theirs,
The righteous Judge declares;
And none can stand against them.
Prayer Response: Mark Buhr
Benediction: John Miles