SUBJECT, COMPLEMENT, EXEGETICAL IDEA, HOMILETICAL IDEA, SERMON OUTLINE, AND MANUSCRIPT
Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations.Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. You turn people back to dust, saying, “Return to dust, you mortals.”A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night.Yet you sweep people away in the sleep of death— they are like the new grass of the morning:In the morning it springs up new, but by evening it is dry and withered. We are consumed by your anger and terrified by your indignation.You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your presence.All our days pass away under your wrath; we finish our years with a moan.Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away.If only we knew the power of your anger! Your wrath is as great as the fear that is your due.Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Relent, Lord! How long will it be? Have compassion on your servants.Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, for as many years as we have seen trouble.May your deeds be shown to your servants, your splendor to their children. May the favor[a] of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us—yes, establish the work of our hands ( Psalm 90:1–17 NIV).
| Text: Psalm 90:1–17 |
Subject: God’s Sovereign Power
| Complement: |
1. God protects (1).
2. God decides the destiny of humanity based on choices we make (2–6).
3. God punishes sins based on his moral attributes (7–11, 15a).
4. God allows suffering to be part of life and remains unexplainable and unquestionable (9–10, 15b).
5. God determines the life span of mankind on earth (10).
| Exegetical Idea: |
God’s sovereign power is encapsulated in his ability to protect, decides the destiny of humanity based choices, and punishes sin as the result of His moral attributes.
| Homiletical Idea: |
I. God’s sovereignty
A. God protects (1)
1. Thess 3:33
2. Psalm 5:11
B. God decides the destiny of humanity (2–6).
1. James 1:13–14
2. Romans 9:1–24
C. God punishes sin (7–11, 15a).
1. Prov 3:11–121
2. John 4:18
D. God allows suffering (9–11, 15b).
1. Gal 6:8
2. Romans 8:20–21
3. John 16:33
E. God determines humanity’s life span on earth (10).
1. Gen 6:33
2. Job 14:1
God is sovereign; therefore, we need to fear God because he punishes sin. Repent from your sin and submit to God in everything you do.
The choice we make determines our true existence in this world and the world to come eternal life; therefore, be careful of the choices you make today because it will have a repercussion.
How would you react to a situation if you were punished or being detained for a reason that you are guilty of? If you would be sincere with yourself, you could regret why you were involved in such situation that proves negative as per your action. This is what happened exactly with the children of Israel when they were delivered by Moses through the power of God. They arrived in the wilderness and stumbled by committing the sin of idolatry coupled with murmuring; for this reason, God detained them in the wilderness for 40 years (Num 32:13). This Psalm was written late during the captivity in Babylon as early as the deliverance of the children of Israel out of Egypt. It was written by Moses as a prayer. God has passed a sentence upon Israel in the wilderness due to unbelief, murmuring, and rebellion against God. The sentence determined by God should have been that their carcasses should fall in the wilderness and be wasted away by a series of miseries for 40 years together and that none of them were then of age should enter in the land of Canaan. Maybe Moses wrote this prayer to be used daily by the people in the tents or by the priests in the tabernacle-service during their tedious tiredness in the wilderness. Moses comforts himself and his people with the eternity of God and their interest in him (verses 1 & 2). He humbles himself and his people due to their depravity (verses 3 &6). He submits himself and his people to the punishment of God as the result of their sin (verses 7–11). He commits himself and his people to God by prayer for divine mercy and grace (verses 12–17). This wilderness experience is contemporary to the years we experience the wilderness in this world through the various troubles we encounter. It reminds and furnishes us with the meditations and prayers suitable to the solemnity of a funeral. The principle of life and the fortune that follows lies in the choices we make in this life. Our lives are the sum result of all the choices we make consciously and unconsciously. If we can control the practice of choices we make, we can manage all of the aspects of our lives; therefore, we can find the liberty that comes from being in charge of our lives. In conclusion, it is better to do the right thing than doing what is acceptable. For example, homosexual identity and practices are at ought to God’s intended sexuality; nevertheless, it has been acceptable in our society today. However, it is not the right thing to do and God is against it. In today’s message, we will examine the choices the children of Israel made before being detained in the wilderness for 40 years and how it can be applicable to our situation today.
In Christian theology, God’s sovereignty indicates that God is in control of everything that happens in the universe. There is nothing that happens that is outside of God’s influence. In Greek, sovereignty is nomenclature and transliterated as kyriarchía (κυριαρχία). God’s sovereignty is tied to the kingdom of God known as basileia (βασιλεία). Basileia is kingdom, sovereignty, or royal power that originates with or from God. In this junction, God’s sovereignty is related to His kingdom and power in the universe. His kingdom is associated with the power of influence. His tendency to protect, decides the destiny of humanity, punishes sin, and allows suffering are all tied to God’s sovereign power in the universe.
God Protects (1).
In Moses’ prayer to God, he realizes and recognizes God to be their dwelling place throughout generations. Despite of God’s punishment on the children of Israel during the 40 years period, he protected them in the wilderness from wild animals and among other things. In this prayer, he testifies that God has been their dwelling place despite of them being detained or punished as the result of their sins. Applying their situation to us as paralleled, we can admit that we ourselves have failed God on some many occasions when we are tempted or distracted by the spirit of materialism and self-gratification imposed by our impulses; nevertheless, God has protected us from many dangers that may have cause tragic events to our well-being. David testifies in Psalm 23 that the Lord is his Shepherd, leader, and protector when he walks in the shadow of death he will fear no evil. He acknowledges that the Lord is with him as He anoints him with oil of empowerment to defeat his enemies (Satan and demons). What is your testimony today?
God Decides The Destiny Of Humanity (2–6, 10)
In verse two, Moses testifies concerning the pre-existence of God before natural creation giving reference to mountains as indicators of God’s creation that gives birth to natural revelation. He mentions the wrath of God against mankind as the result of sin indicating God’s morality being unveiled by virtue of His justice being displayed. His pre-existence, his creation acts revealed through general revelation, and justice being displayed to protect His morality as the just or righteous God equate Him to decide the destiny of humanity. God has lived in the eternity past before everything. He has no beginning and no ending. He is the Creator, the judge, and the justifier. Moses knows God very well and exactly describes Him well. He describes God as the Creator, the God of wrath, and the God of morality. Moses talked, walked, heard, and saw God partially as the prophet of God during the liberation of the children of Israel. It tells us today that we should fear God as we walk with Him. We cannot live a reckless lifestyle as believers and become successful in this Christian journey. We must separate from sinful habits in order for God to receive us when we pray to Him. If God brought His wrath on the children of Israel that he dearly loved, he can bring his wrath on believers today that repeatedly disobey him. We must repent from our sin in order to be in good relationship with the holy God.
God Punishes Sin (7–12, 15a).
Moses asks God in his supplication to teach them to number their days as the result of the heart of wisdom. After he has named the activities experienced as the result of God’s wrath on them, he asks God to enable him gain a heart of wisdom to enable him and his people to number their days. Having a heart of wisdom means fearing God in everything you do. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 15:33). Many Christians who make wrong choices in lives do not pray to God for direction; as the result, they make choices based on their human sentiments. They do not fear God as the result of disobedience; therefore, they lack wisdom to function in this world. The heart of wisdom enables the Christians to repent from sin knowing that God punishes sin. We must be reminded as Christians on the daily basis that God punishes sin. If God is holy, he cannot condone sin; therefore, he will eventually punish the sinners who refuse to repent from sin.
God Allows Suffering (9–11, 15b)
Moses experiences and recognizes that indeed he and his people sustained lot of troubles in this life as the result of sin. He said that God has numbered and determined how long we should live on earth; unfortunately, the time spent on earth is full of sorrow and trouble. If we have limited time here on earth to live with lot of sorrow and trouble, why can we prepare now for heaven where we are going to spend eternity with no sorrow and trouble? Why live on earth for a season characterized by sorrow and trouble in disobedience and die heading to eternal damnation or hell? This is a common sense. The things that you are chasing today that make you to go far away from God will profit you nothing in this life and the life to come. Repent from you sin today in order to be forgiven so that you can be in good relationship with God to enter heaven when you shall have died.
Mr. Y fled his country in 1991 during the civil uprising in his country and sought refuge in the Republic of Cote D’Ivoire. One of the reasons he fled his country is because he was hunted for as the result of his political affiliation with the ruling government. On some many occasions while passing through check points in rebels’ control areas, he was mal-handled and beating severely to the point of death. During these incidences, no one figured out that he was connected to the ruling government based on party affiliation as one of the chairmen; consciously, he knew his identity with respect to his position and party affiliation in the country he served. Mr. Y was opportune to have travel to the United States on asylum; unfortunately, when he went for the blood test, he was detained in Cote D’Ivoire indefinitely to travel to the United States based on the negative result he obtained from the blood test. He needed to meet certain criteria health wise before he could be permitted entrance into the United States. How do you think Mr. Y felt as he continues to live in the refugee camp? Have you lived in refugee camp before? I have lived in refugee camp for years. The lack of food, good health care, sickness, lack of good housing, good sanitations, insecurity, fear, trauma, and among other things are experienced in the refugee camp. Mr. Y was detained in Cote D’Ivoire in the refugee camp based on his health identity. This is what happened to the children of Israel. They were detained in the wilderness for 40 years based on their rebellious identities.
God has called us unto holiness; therefore, we need to follow his instruction through total obedience in order to be in right standing relationship with him. The children of Israel were rebellious and became idolatrous. They committed indecent acts such as lesbianism and homosexuality. They created religions of self-gratification to please their flesh and biological impulses that arouse in them. Today the homosexual and lesbians said that they have been born in this way to be homosexuals or lesbians. This is not true and it is at ought with biblical principle and it is sinful. Today you can make a turn around and go to God in prayer and he can forgive your sin. Find yourself a bible believing church and attend weekly bible studies, prayer meetings, and be party of departmental institutions such as the youth department, women department, men department, children ministry, and among others.
The principle of life and the fortune or misfortune that follows lies in the choices we make in this life. Our lives are the sum result of all the choices we make consciously and unconsciously. If we can control the practice of choices we make, we can manage all of the aspects of our lives; therefore, we can find the liberty that comes from being in charge of our lives.
SUBJECT, COMPLEMENT, EXEGETICAL IDEA, HOMILETICAL IDEA, AND SERMON OUTLINE AND MANUSCRIPT
In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires.Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace (Romans 6:11–14 NIV).
| Text: Romans 6:11–14 |
Subject: The Call to Maintaining Christian Identity
| Complement: |
1. Do not offer yourself to sin (11–13a).
2. Offer yourself to God as instrument of righteousness (13b).
3. Grace has provided the empowerment instead of the law (14).
| Exegetical Idea: |
The true meaning of the Christian life and the source of the believer’s freedom is total obedience empowered by God’s grace.
| Homiletical Idea:|
You are called to obey.
| Outline: |
I. Maintaining Christian Identity
A. Do not offer yourselves to sin (11–13a).
1. Thess 5:16–22
B. Offer yourselves to God as instrument of righteousness (13b).
1. Romans 12:1
II. The Law or Grace
A. You are under grace instead of the law (14).
1. Eph 2:8–9; 4:7
2. Heb 13:9; 14:16
3. Exodus 12:14–16
4. Lev 1:10–13
5. Matt 5:17–18
Repent from your sin because you are dead to sin and under grace.
The choice you make in life is the sum total of your true existence in this world and the world to come in eternity; therefore, be careful of the choices you make today.
The principle of life and the fortune or misfortune that follows lies in the choices we make in this life. Our lives are the sum result of all the choices we make consciously and unconsciously. If we can control the practice of choices we make, we can manage all of the aspects of our lives; therefore, we can find the liberty that comes from being in charge of our lives. In this junction, it is better to do the right thing than doing what is acceptable. Romans 6:11–14 calls for maintaining Christian identity that is strongly tied to the choices we make in this life. Paul did not start church in Rome, but he knew many leaders in the Romans churches. These churches were made up of Jews and non-Jews and from A.D 49–54 all Jews were expelled from Rome by the Roman Emperor. After their return, having been allowed, the Jewish and non-Jewish Christians had a difficult time co-existing peaceably. They had controversy concerning the exact meaning of the Gospel and the practice of regulations in their lives which center on following Jesus especially in the area of religious customs and holy days. His larger dream was to make the church in Rome as a staging ground for the Gospel to proliferate further west to Spain and beyond. Evidentially manifested concerning the division of the Jews and non-Jews, Paul had a task to bring these groups together through instructional approach using the Gospel message centralizing Jesus as the core of their beliefs system. If the Roman Christians were opinionated concerning the message of the Gospel and could not consent on the definition of the Gospel, Paul’s plan and mission would be taken for granted or compromised. His mission in the epistle is to elucidate the message of the Gospel about salvation through faith in Jesus. He points out that Jesus is the completion of God’s relation with Israel and that God intended that the Gospel spread beyond Israel to non-Jews. This is the reason Paul focuses on Old Testament themes such as Abraham, Torah or circumcision and he implicates the Gospel for the Jew or Gentile affiliation or relationship. In the introduction, few scholars had debated the Pauline authorship in regards to the epistle to the Romans. Evidence is revealed not only in the theme of the grace of God but in the evidence the individual who scribed the letter was “without doubt a Jew who was thoroughly familiar with the Pharisaical Judaism (Acts 23:6), as well as one who was burdened to proclaim the gospel to the Gentiles world (Acts 13:47).” The Apostle Paul wrote the letter to the brethren of faith in Rome. Brooten refers to the recipients as “the Roman community of those who believed in Christ.”
Paul did not establish the church in Rome and he had not yet paid any visit at the time of writing the epistle to the Roman Christians. Corley presents two possibilities of church establishment in Rome. Primarily, the church might have been established through the evangelization of the early converts. Secondly, the church in Rome might have been established as a result of the witnessing of the proselytes, Roman Jews who were in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost. The establishment or institution of the church ministry in Rome might have come from both of these factors. A relatively small number of scholars maintains that the church in Rome was Jewish in majority; however, the traditional view holds that the church was by large a Gentile church. Paul wrote this letter primarily to teach on universal holiness
MAINTAINING CHRISTIAN IDENTITY
The Christian identity in Christ is an individual uniqueness that is associated or directly linked to the soul of mankind. It is an individual personhood that is invisible in the natural but it can be seen or viewed in the spiritual. It is transliterated in Greek as psuché (ψυχή, ῆς, ἡ). It is a feminine noun and it is called the soul, life, or self. It is the seat of affection and will. It is an invisible individualism that is directly linked to God’s identity (holiness). Identity in Christ means that believers should look like Christ in God. Christ was without sin; on the contrary, we were born as sinners by virtue of the Adamic nature in us; fortunately, when Christ was revealed, he was revealed to atone for sin once for all (Romans 5:12–18). He died for sin so that the body of sin might be done away with so that we can live new life. The new life is actualized in Christ when the sinner believes in Christ and accepts him as Lord and Savior. The human soul that experienced the sin nature as the result of disobedience becomes anew through the Spirit. Christ’s identity is joined to the human soul identity (psuché). This identity is what the believer needs to live an overcoming Christian life in this world of perversion or sin.
Do Not Offer Yourselves To Sin (11–13a, 13b)
Paul admonishes the Christians at Rome to not offer themselves to sin as instrument of unrighteousness, but rather they should offer themselves to God as instrument of righteousness. The focus of this commandment is placed on obedience in the Christian life. He uses the reflexive pronoun in this passage indicating an action that is performed by self. It indicates that despite of men being tempted by Satan, he has the will power to make decision. He or she can choose to say no to the devil or he or she can choose to say yes to the devil. The devil does not infringe on the decision we make in life. The choices we make in this life can become the sum total of our existence. If the devil had the power to infringe on people’s decision making, no one could be saved in this world. Thanks be to God that Jesus died to stop the devil to infringe on the decision we make. You have been made freed by the reason of Jesus’ redemptive works on the cross. Paul re-emphasized to the Christians in Rome to not offer themselves to sin. The Greek word offer is transliterated as paristémi (παρίστημι). It means to present, stand by, appear, or place beside. It has to do with having fellowship with sin or yielding or living in sin. It is forbidden for believers to offer the parts of their body to sinful living. Examine the activities of your body parts to see what each member of your body is involved. What part of your body is used to commit sin? Do you use your feet, mouth, hands, mind etc. to destroy someone’s home or do you use them to bring glory to God? Christians are admonished to not offer the parts of their body to sin because they are dead to sin. Nekros (νεκρός) as transliterated means dead, lifeless, subject to death, mortal or dead body. Literally, it means what lack life. Figuratively, it means the inability to respond to impulses or perform function. It is an adjective that describes the unresponsiveness to life-giving influences (opportunities) that are inoperative to the things of God. One must be dead to sin through the works of Christ on the cross coupled with the believer’s obedience to God. The believer’s responsibility to total obedience becomes God’s ability in him or her to live above sin. Our empowerment before God to overcome sin in this world demands our obedience. Our responsibility is God’s ability in us to function with Him.
Offer Yourselves To God As Instrument Of Righteousness (13b)
Believers are admonished to offer the parts of their body to God as instrument of righteousness. He uses the words consider or reckon. Logizomai (λογίζομαι) in Greek means I reckon, I count, I am charge with, I reason, I decide, I conclude, I think, or I suppose. It is an act of making decision to carry out specific task assigned to an individual. The word instrument in Greek is hoplon (ὅπλον) which means an instrument, a tool, an implement, weapons, or arms. It means an instrument to make war which underlines that God has given us all resources we need to prevail in spiritual warfare provided we consider our body parts as instruments of war. Our parts should not be offered to sin; instead, they should be offered to God in holiness to become effective in fighting this spiritual warfare. The fervent prayer of the righteousness man is effective before God to answer prayer (James 5:14–17). God has called us into spiritual warfare. The victory we have is determined by our obedience before him (Romans 1:4). The victory we obtain in spiritual warfare is the result of being alive in Christ. We cannot fight Satan and overcome him if we are outside of Christ. It will be a spiritual suicide for anyone outside of Christ and who tries to fight Satan. You cannot fight someone whom you belong to. The life we have in Christ is characterized by the experience God’s gift of life. This God’s gift of life called zaó in Greek that is tied to charisma (anointing or gift). God has empowered believers through his anointing. The anointing that has two sides of life is God’s. It can heal, deliver, or it can kill or destroy. This is the reason God said that no one should touch his anointed or does his prophet any harm (Psalm 105:15). The end product of obedience is tied to believers reigning with Christ through righteousness. The Greek word, transliterated as basileuó means to rule as king in exercising dominion. This rule is tied to the kingdom of God which has to do with influence. Believers are called and predestined to exercise influence in any given situation. Knowing your kingdom authority as a believer is paramount to your victory in Christ. You are called to represent God on planet earth. You can declare God’s presence in a given situation to advert unfavorable situation provided you know and understand your authority. You are called to rule (kurieuó) as the result of God’s righteousness (dikaiosuné). God is the source or author of this righteousness that you have inherited by adoption as sons when you accepted Christ.
THE LAW OR GRACE
Law and grace are two things with respect to covenants and dispensations. Paul declares to the Roman Christians that they are not under the law; instead, they are under grace by reason of covenants and dispensations. The law (nomos) in this scripture refers to the Old Testament or the Mosaic Law. The believers in Rome were both Jews and Gentiles in populations. The Jews were capitalizing on the Old Testament Law observance; on the other hand, the Gentiles believers were capitalizing on faith in Jesus Christ. The gospel message was misunderstood by the Jews populations in this setting. Paul having planned to visit them in order to impart to them some spiritual gifts (Romans 1:11), wrote to correct this erroneous doctrine taught by the Jews. Grace is tied to Jesus’ death on the cross to bring redemption and empowerment to believers; on the contrary, the law could not save mankind neither empowers anyone to live above sin. Paul mentions the law of sin and death and the law of the Spirit in Christ Jesus in Romans 8:1–5. These laws correlate to the Law (nomos) and grace (charis) at different dispensations with respect to covenant and sacrifice.
During the Liberian Civil conflict, check points were set up on various roads to check the identity of people who happened to cross in the check points of both government and rebels’ control areas. The search was carried out in order to check who were rebels, government soldiers or civilians. Those who were not properly identified or found to be opponents were in serious troubles; eventually, they were drastically dealt with. Some were inhumanely treated or killed as the result of identity issues. Today, we will discuss how we as Christians can maintain our identities in Christ to help us stand in God and to enable us face the devil in spiritual warfare.
Primarily, identify yourselves as being dead to sin because you are a Christian. One way to do this is to take a retrospect and introspect of your life some years ago and compare it with your present Christian life. Do you see or find any difference the way you live on the daily basis. Does your life show strength in the area of overcoming the desire of the sinful nature? Spend time in the reading of God’s word followed by praying and fasting. Read scriptures that talk about obedience, sin, holiness, authority, and who you are in Christ. Say totally to temptation and sin no in the name of Jesus and victory is sure based on your obedience to the word of God.
The principle of life
and the fortune or misfortune that follows lies in the choices we make in this
life and this can make a lasting impact to our visions, ministries, calling,
and family life. Our lives are the sum result of all the choices we make
consciously and unconsciously. If we can control the practice of choices we
make, we can manage all of the aspects of our lives; therefore, we can find the
liberty that comes from being in charge of our lives. It is better to do the
right thing than doing what is acceptable. Acceptability with respect how
people make choices liberally is relatively graded based on what individual
sees right rather than considering what God sees right. It is obvious that
relativism is in battles with absolutism with regards to the choices people
make. There is real war taking place in the human soul that draws attention to
the battle believers are involved. We must fight spiritually looking at Jesus
who is the author and finisher of our faith.
Bernadette J Brooten, Love between Women: Early Christian Responses to Female Homoeroticism (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press), 105, 1996.
 Vaughan, Curtis and Corley, Bruce, Romans: A Study Guide Commentary (Grand Rapids: The Zondervan Corporation), 45, 1976.