Weekly Readings – January 9
Jan 9, 2022
The Apostle Paul wrote the book of Romans so that we would understand our salvation and how to live in light of it. This week we will look at some passages in Romans to better understand our faith and not succumb to the lies that say I’m good enough, I’m not so bad, or I’m too far gone to be saved.
Day 1 – We all have a problem
Read Romans 3:9-20.
In this paragraph Paul is addressing whether the Jews have an advantage over the non-Jews when it comes to salvation.
What charge did Paul make in verse 9?
In verses 10-18, Paul backs up his charge that everyone is under the power of sin with quotes from passages in the Old Testament.
Read Psalm 14:1-3 (Psalm 53:1-3 is almost identical)
What does the fool say in His heart (1)?
What phrase does David repeat in verses 1 and 3?
What is the Lord looking for (2)?
What does He find (3)?
What are some of the other actions that Paul quotes in Romans 3:13-18 that show that everyone is under the power of sin?
The Jews sought to be righteous by works of the Law – by following the commandments. What did Paul make clear in verse 20?
What was the purpose of the Law (20)?
The bad news is that everyone is or was under the power of sin and separated from God because of sin. The good news is that there is a way to be saved. It just doesn’t come through works, trying to be good and earn our salvation.
What works have you done to try to earn God’s favor (gone to church, prayed, read your Bible, helped a neighbor…)?
Those are good things, they just don’t earn our salvation. We do those things because we are saved.
God gave us the Law to show us that we are sinners and incapable of living truly righteous lives. List one or two verses from the Bible that have convicted you and shown you that you are a sinner and not really as good as you want to believe you are?
Prayer: Jesus, help me to understand my faith. Thank you for Your Word that shows me that I am a sinner in need of a Savior. Help me grasp that I too was powerless against sin and I couldn’t and can’t do anything to earn my salvation. Amen.
Day 2 – Just as if I never sinned
Read Romans 3:21-26.
The Jews thought that the only way to obtain righteousness (right standing before God, salvation) was through obedience to the Law. Who testified that there is a righteousness of God that is apart from obedience to the Law (21)?
How was this righteousness given (22)?
To whom was it given (22)?
What was true about both Jew and Gentile (22-23)?
What else was true about both (24-25)?
How was an unbeliever to receive this right standing before God (25)?
A good way to understand what it means to be justified by faith is to replace it with the phrase “just as if I never sinned.” When we put our faith in Jesus, we are justified and made righteous, just as if we had never sinned. This enables us to approach and have a relationship with a holy and righteous God. This was made possible through Jesus’ payment for our sin which was accomplished through His death on the cross. He paid the penalty for our sin and in exchange, when we receive Him by faith, we receive His righteousness (salvation). It is just as if we never sinned because Jesus never sinned.
Read Romans 4:7-8.
Why are those who have received Jesus by faith blessed (7-8)?
How does it make you feel that God does not count your sins against you if you have put your faith in Jesus?
Spend some time meditating on what it really means that God views you as forgiven, having a clean slate and access to His presence. To Him it is just as if you had never sinned even though on this earth, the struggle with sin still is very real.
How will knowing this help you to draw near to Jesus?
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for dying for me so that my sin would not be counted against me. Help me to grasp how much I don’t deserve what You did for me. Help me to draw near to you and learn to walk in a way pleasing to You. Amen.
Day 3 – Peace with God
Read Romans 5:1-11.
As we learned yesterday, we all had a problem. Our sin had separated us from God.
What does our justification through faith give us (1)?
What did Jesus give us access to (2)?
Grace is getting what we did not deserve. What did you get that you did not deserve?
In what can we boast (rejoice) (2)?
Why (keyword: because) can we glory (rejoice) in our sufferings (3-4)?
Why (keyword: because) does hope not put us to shame (5)?
What did Christ do when we were powerless against sin (6)?
How did God demonstrate his love for us (8)?
Application and Prayer:
Let’s praise Jesus for:
- Peace with God
- Access into the grace of God
- The hope of glory of God
- Perseverance, character, hope that God develops in our lives through suffering
- The love of God poured into our hearts
- That Christ died for us while we were sinners and powerless to save ourselves.
Day 4 – Hope for the worst of all sinners
Read Philippians 3:5-6.
How did Paul try to attain righteousness as a Jew?
Read Acts 22:19-20.
How had Paul persecuted the church (succumb to the power of sin)?
Read 1 Timothy 1:15-17.
How did Paul view himself (15)?
For what purpose was he shown mercy (16)?
Mercy is not getting what you deserve. What did Paul deserve but not receive because Christ came into the world to save sinners?
Jesus shows us the same mercy that He showed Paul. He came to save us so that we too can be examples for those who one day will believe in Jesus and receive eternal life. In what ways is your life an example for those who will one day believe?
What changes do you need to make so that your life will be an example of a sinner shown mercy by a loving God?
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for saving me, a sinner. Help me to live humbly before You. I am so grateful for what You’ve done for me. Amen.
Day 5 – Assurance of Salvation
Read 1 John 5:11-13.
What has God given us (11)?
Where is eternal life found (11)?
What does the person who has the Son (Jesus) have (12)?
What about the person who does not have the Son (12)?
For what purpose (keyword: so that) did John write these things (13)?
Read Hebrews 13:5.
If you have the Son and sin badly, will Jesus leave you (5)?
Read Hebrews 4:14-16.
What do we need to do when we sin?
On a scale of 1-10, how certain are you that you will go to heaven? Why?
Do you have the Son? If not, consider giving your life to Him today.
When did you get the Son?
What do you have if you have the Son (1 John 5:11)?
How has shame for your sin kept you from drawing near to God?
Jesus died for you. He wants a relationship with you. Don’t let past sin keep you away.
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for giving me eternal life. Forgive me for all the times I have pulled away from You in shame. Help me to draw near to You and find the help I need to walk with You. Amen.