Romans 10:1-4 / Who’s Righteousness? (Sermon notes and Audio)

Posted on February 28, 2014


This is the fortieth in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of Romans. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the morning of February 23, 2014. This message deals with how men try to depend upon their own righteousness instead of God’s, and the resulting consequences. This post contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes and a study outline. Please note that the sermon notes are not a full transcript.

AUDIO – Listen Now:


Rom 10_1-4


Rom 10_1-4 Outline


Romans 10:1-4

It was clear that Paul wanted his countrymen saved, but they weren’t interested, they saw no need.

There was a time when Paul would have agreed with his people, for he himself opposed the Gospel and considered Jesus Christ an impostor.

Israel considered the Gentiles in need of salvation, but certainly not the themselves.

The Pharisee and the publican is a prime example of how the self-righteous see no need for their own salvation.

Luke 18:11-14

The salvation that Jesus offered, was simply not the salvation that the Jews were looking for.

Israel would have been happy for political salvation from Rome, but they didn’t feel the need for spiritual salvation from their own sin.

(We have much the same attitude today.)

Ever since Israel returned to their land from Babylonian Captivity, the nation had been cured of the blatant idolatry of the Old Testament.

In the temple and the local synagogues, only the true God was worshiped and served, and God’s Law was taught.

The idolatry may not have been as blatant as in Old Testament times, but it still existed. . . just in a different form.

The law became their god.

So zealous were the Jews that they even “improved” upon God’s Law and added their own traditions.

Those traditions were considered equal to the Law of God.

(Have you seen the same thing in churches today?)

Paul himself had been zealous for the Law and the traditions.

Acts 26:9–11

Galatians 1:13–14

When Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman in John 4:22, He said “You worship what you do not know…”

When Jesus said “we know what we worship”, He wasn’t speaking of Jews, but of believers. (V.23)

Just like the Samaritans, the Jews believed in God, but not in Christ. Therefore, they didn’t truly know God.

This is also the state of many churches and many people in the Christian community today.

Many People try to worship Christ without knowing Him.

In many churches worship is based solely on emotion, which can easily lead you astray.

A true encounter with God will be characterized by a changed life, not a moment of emotion.

It is amazing to me how many people who claim to be Christians are ignorant of the Bible, yet it is the Scripture reveals Christ.

John 5:39

Without knowledge of the scriptures, you will not be able to know Christ.

You cannot build a relationship with someone you do not know.

The better you know the scriptures, the better you will know Christ.

The better you know Christ, the deeper and more stable your relationship will be.

Many people have knowledge of Christ. It is important to note that it is not enough just to know that God exists, you must place your faith in Him.

James 2:19

Get to know Christ and trust Him with your life.

Pray and study the Bible daily, and build a deep relationship.

The alternative is either no relationship at all (which means an eternity in Hell) or a very shallow relationship that will crumble under the slightest pressure.

This is why men go to Hell, because they try to depend on their own righteousness rather than God’s.

What; however, does that really mean? There are several things we must consider as we explore this question.

First we must understand that Hell was not prepared for man.

Matthew 25:41

It is not God’s will for man to spend eternity in Hell.

2 Peter 3:9

With that in mind, God has very high standards, and these standards cannot be lowered for any reason.

In the garden of Eden, God gave Adam a command.

Genesis 2:17

In Spite of this command, Adam thought that by eating the fruit he could become like God.

In effect, he would be able to trust in his own righteousness instead of God’s.

God; however, promised the punishment of death for this sin, and Hell is the ultimate fulfillment of that promise.

Romans 6:23

We must remember that God is a righteous and trustworthy God, He always keeps His promises.

This is a good thing for us; otherwise, we could never be sure of our salvation.

So man, by trusting in his own righteousness to get to heaven, has sinned, and will ultimately end up in hell instead.

Man has no righteousness of his own.

Romans 3:10

We must depend on God’s righteousness, and His righteousness is manifested in Jesus Christ.

Romans 10:4

However, they misunderstood their own law.

They refused to understand that Christ was “the end of the law.”

Christ was the end of the law, the result of the law, the purpose of the law, the intent of the law, and the goal of the law.

Christ is the fulfillment of the law:

Matthew 5:17

Christ is love, and love is the fulfillment of the law.

Romans 13:10

Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to all who believe.

We have a loving path to fulfilling the law, in Jesus Christ.

Christ IS the path to righteousness, not the law.

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