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Religious But Lost
Rom. 10:1-7

1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, "The man who does those things shall live by them." 6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down from above) 7 or, "'Who will descend into the abyss?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). NKJV


1. The . . Revelation Of This Truth. 10:1-3
1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God.

A. The Revelation . . Declared. 10:1-2
1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.

1. Note The . . Entreaty For Israel. 10:1

2. Note The . . Enthusiasm Of Israel. 10:2

Illustration
Enthusiasm is fine if it is based on correct theology. One Baptist pastor was asked about a Pentecostal group in his town. The question was; "do you think those people will go to heaven." He answered "Yes they believe in Jesus, now they may miss the pearly gates on the way up, but the catch the gates on their way back down. Enthusiasm is fine if it focuses on Jesus.

B. The Revelation . . Defined. 10:3
3 For they being
ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God.

1. Defined In Their . . Stubbornness. 10:3a

2. Defined In Their . . Seeking. 10:3b

3. Defined In Their . . Submission. 10:3c

Illustration
God is a loving God and won't send anyone to hell.

A man told me If your sincere you can worship anything.

Illustration Presbyterian Pastor Robert Mccheyne
This pastor was passing out gospel tracts one day. A very wealthy and socially prominent lady received a tract and said "you must not know who I am."
McCheyne responded "judgement day is coming and on that day it will not make any difference who you are!

Application

The . . Revelation Of This Truth.

2. The . . Receiving Of This Truth. 10:4-5
4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, "The man who does those things shall live by them."

A. Receiving . . Truth In Christ. v 4
4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.
1. Ended In His Death and Resurrection.
2. To all who believe.

B. Rejecting . . Error In The Law. v 5
5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, "The man who does those things shall live by them."
1. It Is An Impossible Burden.
2. Note These Verses.

Ro 3:20-24 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin. 21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, NKJV

Gal 2:16 knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. NKJV

Gal 3:24-25 24 Therefore the law was our tutor to bring
us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. NKJV

Illustration
Now it is just a week after July 4th and our celebration of Independence. We declared our independence and won the Revolutionary War. We are no longer under British Rule. Why? Because George Washington and our troops won the battle. As Christian we are not under Moses and the Law but under Christ. He won the victory and completed or finished the law.

I still respect the Law and try to obey the 10 commandments, but my hope of righteousness is not in the Law but in Christ.

Illustration
In a 3rd-century debate on Christianity, Celsus said to Origen, "When most teachers go forth to teach, they cry, 'Come to me, you who are clean and worthy,' and they are followed by the highest caliber of people available. But your Master cries, 'Come to me, you who are down and beaten by life,' and so he accumulates around him the rag, tag and bobtail of humanity."

And Origen replied: "Yes, they are the rag, tag and bobtail of humanity. But Jesus does not leave them that way. Out of material you would have thrown away as useless, he fashions men, giving them back their self-respect, enabling them to stand on their feet and look God in the eyes. They were cowed, cringing, broken things. But the Son has set them free."

Religious But Lost
The . . Revelation Of This Truth. 10:1-3
The . . Receiving Of This Truth. 10:4-5

3. The . . Reasoning Of This Truth. 10:6-7
6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down from above) 7 or, "'Who will descend into the abyss?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). NKJV

A. Reasoning About Christ Presence From . . Above. 10:7
6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down from above)

B. Reasoning About Christ Presence From . . Below. 10:7
7 or, "'Who will descend into the abyss?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). NKJV

Dt 30:12-13
12 It is not in heaven, that you should say, 'Who will ascend into heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' 13 Nor is it beyond the sea, that you should say, 'Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' NKJV

Rom 10:6
6b "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down from above)
7 or, "'Who will descend into the abyss?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). NKJV

Illustration
Suppose here in Piedmont a man asked you how to get to Ironton. You tell him go straight up Highway 49 and it will take you straight there. The man says I don't like to drive on Highway 49 I want to go on Highway 34. You tell him friend 34 will take you to Greenville, Marble Hill, Jackson, and Cape, but never to Ironton. The man says I don't believe you and I am going to Ironton driving on Highway 34. The man says I am going 34 regardless of what you say. He is stubborn about it and will not be submissive to what you tell him.

You say that is stupid. Yes! It is similar to the YOU AND I, OR Jews rejecting Jesus as the way to heaven. Any other plan of self appointed righteousness will take you to hell.

Illustration
I read this yesterday from Billy Graham's Decision Magazine. In one of the first Billy Graham Crusades of prominence a man named Jim Vaus attended with his wife. He was involved with the under world, and had reject the claims of Christ. This night he was riveted in his attention to every word Billy preached. At the invitation time he said to his wife, "I'll go, and invited his wife to go with him. He feel to his knees and said, "God if you will mean business with me I will mean business with you." If you can take the tangled mess of my life and straighten it out, all I have is yours.

I'll hold back nothing." Jim Vaus quit organized crime, and paid back everyone he had cheated. He established a ministry to Delinquent Youth in New York City that grew to minister all over this nation.

Paul emphasized the reality of being Religious but lost.

Rom. 10:1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.