The Crossroad on the Roman’s Road
Text: Romans 10-11
Paul’s answer to the question of life, “What must we do to be saved?”
Acts 16:25–30 (ESV)
25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, 26 and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened. 27 When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. 28 But Paul cried with a loud voice, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here.” 29 And the jailer called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas. 30 Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
Paul answers with plain, unmistakable clarity.
“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” Rom 10:9
Romans 10 is the CROSSROAD on the Roman’s road
The Roman’s Road
Question One: How can I know there is a God?
- “For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20-21, ESV)
Question Two: I’m a good person, isn’t that enough?
- “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.“ (Romans 3:23, ESV)
Question Three: What’s the big deal about sin?
- “ but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8, ESV)
- “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23, ESV)
Question Four: What must I do to be saved?
- “because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him.” (Romans 10:9–13, ESV)
Question Five: How can I know that I am saved?
- For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:13, ESV)
Question Six: Now what?
- “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”(Romans 12:2, ESV)
Two decisions we must make
#1 The Decision to Confess Jesus
Confess means to make public. To admit, acknowledge, reveal, make known, disclose, divulge, make public, avow, declare, blurt out, profess, own up to, tell all about, bring into the open, bring to light.
What confession is not: Words I don’t mean; hollow words, religious repetitions that don’t reflect belief
What it is:
- A declaration of His Lordship at every crossroad
- A profession of His Lordship in the face of persecution
“Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will confess him before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven” (Mt 10:32–33).
- A resolution of His Lordship every day for the rest of my life
“But the one who endures to the end will be saved” (Mt 24:13).
# 2 The Decision to Believe On Jesus
Belief is a faith, trust and reliance upon Christ alone as the sole source of eternal life and salvation
- Jesus is the eternal Son of God
- Jesus was born of a virgin
- Jesus was lived a sinless life
- Jesus died upon a cross for the sins of all mankind, myself included
- Jesus was buried for three days and on the third day he rose from the dead
- Jesus ascended to the right hand of the father and lives forever
What belief is not: Mental ascent or an acknowledgment of a fact.
What it is:
- More than a knowledge of truth, it is a relationship with truth
- Being ALL-IN on Jesus. Full trust and confidence as my only hope for salvation
What was your first response when you heard the gospel? Did you yield, delay or refuse? Tell us why.
Who was the first person to explain the gospel to you (a Sunday-school teacher, parent, grandparent, friend)? Tell us about it.
What About Those Still In the Cross Road?
Romans 11:1–6 (ESV)
11 I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 2 God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to God against Israel? 3 “Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life.” 4 But what is God’s reply to him? “I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” 5 So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace. 6 But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace.
Remember God has not forgotten or forsaken!
How Do I Pray For Those In The Cross Road?
- Don’t write anyone off!
- Don’t let their decisions affect your determination
- Don’t focus on the enemy
- Don’t get preachy
- Don’t Forget…
God is relentless.
God knows reason for resistance
God is at work at all time
God is patient
God knows when they are ready
Paul said, remember Elijah
• Spiritual warfare is exhausting.
• Even when God wins, there is a physical and emotional price to pay.
• The situation may appear hopeless, worse than it really is.
• We can feel isolated, alone.
• We can become self-righteous: I’m the only faithful one left.
• He understands our struggle, our weakness, our weariness.
• He calls us to rest physically as well as spiritually.
• We need fresh hope and vision which come only by waiting on Him until He speaks.
We have only a small part to play in the process. Yes, we must do what He tells us, but it’s not up to us to win God’s battles. He is the One who wins hearts. We are merely His helpers. In fact, during the process He has to carry us even while He’s reaching out to the person for whom we are praying.
Resting in God
Resting in this truth is easier said than done. Our love for someone who resists can make the waiting seem intolerable. We wrestle with feelings of anger, betrayal, fear and loneliness. Over time doubt may grow. We may question whether God has heard us or is at work because we see no change. We may even feel a growing anger at God wondering why He doesn’t do something dramatic to shock the person into believing. We may even fear we’ll die without knowing for sure. So praying for unbelievers requires a lot of praying for myself, learning to rest in God, trusting Him to keep His promises long after my own strength has run dry. Imagine this: a thousand years from now if Jesus hasn’t returned, He will still be honoring the promises He made to you.
Adopted from “C. Stevens Schell, Preaching through the Book of Romans, (Federal Way, WA: Northwest Church, 2016), 184–185.”