Romans 15:14-21/ The Evangelistic Church (Sermon notes and Audio)

Posted on September 18, 2014


This is the fifty-ninth 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 September 14, 2014. This message deals with the rome of evangelism in the church. 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 15_14-21




Romans 15:14-21

After admonishing them to receive one another, we find that Paul actually praises this church.

We all have some attitudes that need to be corrected from time to time, and apparently this church was no different.

Paul goes on to recognize where they have gotten it right, and he encourages them in it.

To say that he is confident, is a very strong statement.

He is sure that they are full of goodness, filled with knowledge, and able to admonish one another.

The first item is goodness. Having just written of the Holy Spirit,

Paul undoubtedly has in mind the moral excellence that is the fruit of the Spirit.

Gal 5:22

This quality is necessary to carry out Paul’s instructions from chapter 14 to this point in the letter.

Desiring to do the right thing for someone else is essential, but it must be coupled with knowledge of what God expects.

Paul notes that they are filled with this knowledge.

Lastly, they were able to admonish one another, as evidently they were doing.

This is in contrast the recipients of the letter to the Hebrews, who had to be told, ‘by this time you ought to be teachers’.

In fact they needed to be taught the basics of the gospel all over again.

Hebrews 5:12

Paul notes his boldness in some of what he has written them, but is clear that it is rooted in grace.

In each point that Paul had to correct and admonish them, his motivation was grace.

He desired nothing more than to see them walking in the truth, and glorifying God in their lives.

This should be the same motivation from which we correct our own brethren.

It’s important, here, to understand that Paul was a freeborn Jew, but God called him to be a minister to the gentiles.

Unless we understand the distinctive ministry of Paul, we will not fully appreciate the message of God’s grace.

When he was Saul of Tarsus, the crusading rabbi, Paul knew little of the grace of God.

He persecuted the church and sought to destroy it.

When Paul met Jesus Christ on the Damascus road (Acts 9), he experienced the grace of God.

It was God’s grace that saved him, and it was God’s grace that called him and made him an apostle.

1 Corinthians 15:8-11

Now, Paul looked on himself as a priest at the altar, offering up to God the Gentiles he had won to Christ.

1 Peter 2:5

Likewise, the people that we win to Christ are an offering, a gift to God.

Yet in all this, Paul refuses to boast in his special ministry to the Gentiles.

Paul never boasted in his own accomplishments.

Galatians 6:14

It was done for God’s glory, and Paul rightly gives the glory to Him.

God used signs and wonders to authenticate the preaching and teaching of the apostles.

Today, God still performs miracles, but his servants do not. Now we have a completed Word of God (Bible), which authenticates our preaching and teaching.

Paul was an evangelist. Some people mistakingly refer to Paul as a pastor, but that would be wrong.

Paul was an evangelist who, among other things, planted churches. He never stayed long-term as a pastor.

His focus; therefore, was to make sure that the Gospel reached those who had not heard it.

This is the primary function of a NT evangelist.

Ephesians 4:11

But for pastor- teachers, building on the foundation laid by such an evangelist is the crucial part of their ministry.

1 Corinthians 3:6

Quoted from Isaiah 52:15

The OT quotation refers primarily to Christ’s second coming, but in its broader application it refers to the process of evangelism that began in Paul’s day and continues throughout church history until Christ returns.

This evangelism is one of the primary functions of the church, as commanded by Christ.

Matthew 28:19-20

My specific job is to build upon that foundation that others have planted. I should “feed the sheep”, thereby equipping us to evangelize our community, and share the Gospel with those who have not heard it.

The saints need continuing education in order to be effective witnesses. This is the beauty of God’s plan, everyone has a part, and it all works together.

God’s church will never grow if we don’t go where the lost are at, and engage them with the Gospel in their own back yards.

Preparation for that is the primary purpose of a church service. It is to help the saved grow in their knowledge and faith. It is meant to feed the sheep.

Posted in: Sermons