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July 30, 2022 1:00 am
Rights or else the members imprisoned here and talk a little bit more about Paul and about looking up the book of Romans here in the room on you before you actually receive the book of acts welcome then they all were celebrate and recognizing they think will be is not the end of the city. How were they aware of all, they were aware of and this epistle of this letter that will leave now in the book of Romans will close the bridge senior pastor of the bridge near Winston-Salem, North Carolina. What's going hesitated in the service as he continues in the book of Romans chapter 6 coming to you actually from Rome the day to be talking about the book of Romans, a life-changing experience has been change in life for 2000 years, and it could change her to grab your Bible sit down and listen close to the book of Romans together with me to the book of Romans will be in chapter 6 and again coming to you from Rome and and what to do is talk a little bit about the Scriptures and also talk a little bit about the historical setting, because in the background. What you see is the arch of Constantine, L arch of Constantine is pretty famous because of Constantine, who was a Caesar.
Caesar was a Caesar who was at this battle called the battle of Melvia's bridge and he was a good politician. Now there's some debate on whether he was actually a Christian talk about that second but that this battle Melvia's bridge.
He was fighting and somebody else in my pagan idolatry. There were some people who persecuted Christians some who did not and Constantine what he said as he saw a sign in the heavens and and in this sign conquer so he was able to enlist the aid of all the Christians and so they have this battle and Constantine one and he became Emperor, so this arch behind us, records that Victor and some other victory got interesting. There's a mix of some idolatry some Christian symbolism only arch with listening is an and people say what was your Christian well with.
Actually we don't know were not sure some people say was never baptized but there was kind of the belief of the day that when you were baptized you are forgiven of your sins washed clean so he waited till his death bed to be baptized because you know he didn't want any sins between his point of death, and the baptism so that's part of it, but he was a very good politician now under this under his rule.
You know Christianity now enjoyed this endorsement at the will of the Roman government and so everything kinda changed out. Constantine did not make it the official religion of the state I was done years later by this man. Theodosius when he made it the official religion of the state you could actually be martyr for not being a Christian. Other words everybody had to go to church now, although some of you might want to try this new system. I think it would work in and here's the thing that's interesting about the Roman culture 300 A.D. you could be killed for being a Christian, 400 A.D. you could be killed, not being a Christian and said the church is all said and repopulated for people who didn't care anything about the Bible were not saved were not born again, and this indoctrination of all these pagan elements became mixed into the Christian church. At that point, some of it to be honest continues until this day to this arch of Constantine reminds us of the rule of Constantine, and you know it is amazing because when Constantine did this. It is reported that up to 50% of the Roman Empire was actually believers out the height of the Roman Empire that the man was leaving 50 million people all around the Mediterranean actually name the Mediterranean Lake audit marrow Nordstrom, meaning RC this is RC we own everything around it and so they actually had so much territory and so many people in this was the way the Christianity influenced God new in the timing because all these things happened in the course you know it in the building of Rome by the 500 BC.
They built the septic system in here quick as Maximus and and it still works today 300. They built started building the aqueducts built the roads this via Appia that alongside me now was used, to export Christianity from the center all around the world and to be honest everything in Christian forever changes from that point forward were on part of the via Appia or the Appian Way and understand built about 300 BC. We take roads for granted.
But these roads were built a long time ago and until the Romans built roads. There wasn't anything like roads or ruts. There were muddy trails past, but they lay this out with excellence again. Remember the Romans were great engineers so there's layers upon layers in these roads still exist. This is 2300 years later to go out on a limb here and say Jesus doesn't come back. I don't think our highway system. United States is to be there. 2300 years from now. Still in this kind of condition and this again was significant because it built the way.
This not only travel could happen, but the gospel could be spread so we talked a little bit about the Coliseum and the fact that was built about the space in started about 72 A.D. finish and 80. He died a natural death in 79 and 80 Titus KMan Titus actually was the one who completed it for this patient built this over Nero's golden palace and so were going to talk a little bit about Nero, but in order to do that was go to the member team prison right now were right at the entrance of member team prison. And speaking of entrances.
This is the grand and glorious entrance to the dungeon below. This is probably place the Paul and Peter were incarcerated and have gave you when they simply drop you down in their truck food and whatnot days were good to you.
Once you are in the holy word. This was a tough way to be with Peter and Paul in their last day for probably screwed down to culture and team prison historical fact that Peter and Paul fairly sure historians are for sure.
For many prisons here done something illegal usually executed swooshing places shaped like a sister but was used as a prison and so we believe that both Peter and Paul would have been incarcerated here right before they were executed.
Paul would not have been under house arrest. As you remember the book back. She was imprisoned in Rome under house arrest, was able to go on, it was a place of this will not been this the second imprisonment he speaks about talk on the Creek so what we believe happened was present under house arrest here is released for fear that under the more intense persecution under Nero 20 was brought in as Roman citizen, he would have been strangled would've been crucified, he would've been beheaded so you look over here. This is Peter. This is a sound that they say miraculously spring up in here so that he could baptized a person, this is Paul. This is a way that people pray for blessings promisingly raise my hand like this is Paul with his hands raised Peter beside it and this is where the spring they say came up and also you see the upside down cross when Peter was executed they were going to crucified and he said he was not worthy to die the same death is Jesus Christ. So he was executed upside down history record walked back outside and have some more time together, but also notice the whole. This would've been the entrance once I dropped you know you were kind of like present-day jails and prisons right sewer outside the member team prison here and talk a little bit more about Paul and about room were looking at the book of Romans here in Rome I remind you that Paul wrote the book of Romans before it actually been to the city we see in the book of acts.
Paul comes in.
They all were celebrate in recognizing the think will be is not been of the city. How were they aware of Paul while they were aware of them.
This epistle of this letter that read now in the book of Romans. So Paul wrote this to the church of Rome into the believers in room again Paul was in prison the first time under house arrest and we see that in the book of acts next 28. We don't see him released. But we know that Paul was in Crete he speaks about the ministry in Crete in the book of Titus and Max doesn't record him being in Crete so we think that these things happen actually post the book of acts that he was released and what happened was after his release when their persecution intensified under Nero after the fire and 64 that he was rounded up again and this time he would not be free.
You are listening to David McGee on cross the bridge will be back with so much more in just a moment. Let's face it, some of us just don't want to open our Bibles. Why, because when we know what the Bible has to say. Then we know how we should live your letting God transform you is how you can honor him and experience his blessing. That's why Pastor David McGee's devoted an entire three CD series to it called transformed living out the change within which we like to give you as a way of saying thanks for your donation of support to this cross the bridge broadcast so call today. Our number is 877-458-5508. That's 877-458-5508 or visit us email@example.com. Now let's return to David McGee as he continues his walk through the book of Romans were looking in Romans chapter 6. We kind of went through 789.
The course will get less less versus covered, fitness historical context here.
Let's read verse 10 says for the death that he died he died to sin once for all, but the life that he lives, he lives to God.
So these are the words of Paul and there are of special significance here because when he talks about the death that he died. Notice the H were speaking about Jesus. It says that the life that he lives, he lives to God speaking again about Jesus but these words also were deeply meaningful to Paul, Paul, who was incarcerated in. We believe that the place behind me.
The member team prison we think about our life and think about the life of this this man. Paul now Paul who was this Jewish rabbi from Tarsus and and yet he got radically save met Jesus on the road to Damascus, and on that road. It says that Jesus told him he was can have to suffer for his namesake to get the word out Paul throughout his life was just the spiritual energizer bunny just Going just kept going. He suffered beatings, whippings.
He was in jail he was mobbed he was in a ship wreck. He was snake bit. All these things, and yet he kept going because it Paul wasn't interested in avoiding pain. A lot of times we want to avoid pain at all costs but always interesting really get the pain out. Paul is interested in getting the word out and he lived a life that was really sacrificed before the Lord live in for the Lord in this town. The city of Rome still bears the marks of the ministry of Paul and of Peter that were speaking of possible, specifically today. The whole world bears the mark of what Paul did for the Lord and it's amazing because a lot of times we think will cannot really make a difference.
I mean really change anything about if I ever get on the sparkle team will really change if I pray for the pastor for the missions or missionaries in.
You know, how can one person make a difference. Cannot really make a difference working in children's ministry and help in the server. Well, the answer is an emphatic yes you can see because what happened really, with the crucifixion of Jesus and the birth of the church in acts chapter 2 and it was time again we timed perfectly. According to the prophetic fulfillment. Jesus died on Passover. Then the birth of the church happened on Pentecost on Pentecost. Interestingly enough, was the only of the seven Jewish feast that included not only unleavened bread but also leavened bread. So we have the mix of the leaven in the unleavened which of course is symbolic of those people who were unclean coming into the church and being cleansed in an I've forgiven of their sins.
So the birth of the church with Pentecost is also significant that the feast of Pentecost was a harvest feast that beginning of the feast of Pentecost was the beginning of the harvest that we still now 2000 years later still enjoy but at some point friend.
The harvest comes to close what we want to do is look back on our lives with cash like vapors like grass that withers and know that we really live for the Lord that not only he was our Savior, but he was really our Lord and that we impacted this world that the world will be different because we passed through and we wanted to be that way days or weeks or years from now we need to live that way now we need to live to make a difference now.
I understand you can play a part.
You can make a difference, but you know the real question is will you will you play apartments in time harvest will you prefer this ministry will you help support this ministry, but also friend. Do you know the Lord is the first change needs to happen is really the biggest thing that is that you accept Jesus as your Savior. Jesus died for our sins that we could be saved that we could be forgiven that we could be set free from that we don't have to live the old life that we can live the new life. That's what Paul is talking about in this epistle.
This letter to these people. Hero is what he was talking about that you don't have to be in shame to the old life is not about seven promises is not about 12 steps. It's about getting say it's about walking in the newness of life in the power of the Holy Spirit. And that's what Paul is speaking of an Romans six and Paul wasn't just presenting some academic enlightenment here is the way he live as the way.this prison. Behind us is a reminder of that life lesson here is that if we live for God and not ourselves. We can change the world we live in it. We live for God and not ourselves. We can change the world we live in. Paul lived his whole life sacrificing for the call live in for the call.
It seems like the older you get when you travel it's it's kind of a, it's kind of a hassle. I guess you know you don't have your your your hairdryer your coffee maker, the bathrooms, always different here in Europe. Gotta figure out how it works because it's completely different things seem such a hassle and you know at the end of this getting back home. It is going to be a joyous thing, seeing friends and walking into the house and and the bathroom in these things that are or are like I'm used to make us travelers hard in this life is hard and Jesus never said you were gonna have any problems with the wasn't going to be any difficulties in unit difficulties are necessarily something to be avoided or something to go through all understood that again the prison stark reminder to the Paul didn't avoid these things he could've avoided a remember even before he went to Jerusalem, the relay prophesied sit here and have some problems in Jerusalem.
Paul said several times I have prayed about how to get to Rome. God answered that prayer in a way probably little bit different than Paul might've envisioned, but he didn't shirk, didn't shrug from that.
He walked into as the mom happened in Jerusalem recorded in the book of acts, and then he went to Syria Mayor team and from there to the different islands and whatnot to Sicily in the now then to hear where again he was released but he was brought back. He was brought back for this final final moments, Juan asked. He talked about you being under house arrest and there was kind of the understanding that there was going to be a release.
There was a an eminent if you will coming expectation of release. We don't see that later on when he wrote to Timothy's words are recorded in second Timothy if you would turn with me there to second Timothy chapter 4 this is the final farewell of you will love of Paul and you know for a life so much suffering so much hardship, you would think that at this point he was going to talk about woe is me and you guys didn't treat me right and I can't believe God did me like this, but we see anything but that. From in chapter 4 of second Timothy, it says I charge you, therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead. It is appearing and his kingdom preach the word be ready in season and out of season invents rebuke and exhort with all long-suffering and teaching for the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers.
I'm not sure even Paul himself could've envisioned how far this city would drift from sound doctrine.
It's interesting because one of the things it will see in the book of Romans and we've already seen is Paul preach against works in justification by our deeds. It's not about a cop completion of our deeds.
It's about an admission of our need for Jesus and yet this whole town. So much of the religious nature of this town is built on man-made works. Paul continues verse four and they will turn their heirs away from the truth and be turned aside the fables we see that in our day as well. Verse five but you will be watchful of all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. Verse six Paul Rick writes from already being poured out as a drink offering in the time of my departure is at hand.
I have fought the good fight, I finished the race have kept the faith. Those three I have in verse seven or so deep and so meaningful fought the good fight, I finished the race of kept the faith and let me simply ask you do you know Jesus as your Savior. I don't mean you think you know and I don't mean you visited a church a couple times that I mean have you personally said to Jesus, Jesus, please forgive me of my sentence. I believe you died for me. I believe you were resurrected so that I could be forgiven unless I confess that I've said and ask you to forgive me of all of my sins give me the power to live for you is not said that today can be your day. You can pray that prayer and everything can change you've probably been thinking that it's hard to some completion of your deeds or something know it's an admission of your need is what it is saying, Jesus, Jesus, I need forgiveness. I've said that prayer. Paul said that prayer Peter said that prayer. Many people in history have said that prayer and quite frankly, history itself is been changed to these people. It starts there and really to certain extended ends there because then your name is written in the Lamb's book of life, your shirt haven't, but you don't have to wait to get to heaven to enjoy God. God speaks in this word that we are to follow him and live for him and even these things that happen in our life. Bad things happen. The Paul bad things happen. The Peter bad things have happened to you but you don't have to give into those things. You can go through those things. You can go through those trials through the tribulation see those temptations and as we sit outside this prison that reminds us of Peter reminds us of Paul in the city. The sacrifices that were made that we could hear these things that we could live according to the newness of life is kind of a sobering thing thought-provoking thing and I would encourage her to sit on the fence any longer get off the fence because the pastoral side of the Lord is awesome. Living for God. There's no adventure like that in the world. And if you're not living that life for God friend. You're getting ripped off.
Who knows my life may end in a place like the member team present. I don't know but I know that one day hopefully many days from now. I look forward to hearing Jesus a well done, thou good and faithful servant friend of you want to hear that on that day today make a decision to follow the Lord to say goodbye to the old life and live for God live the new life.
If you're listening you're not sure if you know the Lord and today can be your day. But if you've also been on the fence with the Lord again. Don't wait another minute that the enemies Artie ripped you off from so many things and so many blessings from following God make the decision right to really begin to live for him and experience the fullness of the joy of the Lord asking you to come to right now. Let's pray Lord thanks thanks for these awesome reminders of the sacrifices that others have made living for you to spread your word to spread the good news, and Lord. The good news is that you died for us that we can be forgiven of our sin or even though we've messed up we can come to you and be forgiven. We have a clean slate and at that point.
Lord we need your help to live for you, but you've offered your help and you've offered your power Lord you've done everything except make the choice for us and Lord that choices are stemming and asked that the people listen right now would make that decision.
First of all to make the decision to ask you to forgive the mother sends and also to be given live in for you to stop living for themselves or materialism, but the live for you, Lord, to the power of your Holy Spirit to the power of your holy Word would ask that you would draw them to yourself that Lord even as you told us in your word, that whosoever will whoever would come to Lord your hands outstretched now outstretched of the century.
Over time to each person listening right now, which ask him to forgive you of your sins completely start live in that new life friend. You know for sure that your sins have been forgiven. You can know right now only Legion a short simple prayer simply telling God you're sorry and asking him to help you to live for him. Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now.
Dear Jesus, I believe you died for me that I could be forgiven and I believe you were raised from the dead that I can have a new life not done wrong things I have sent and I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things.
Please give me the power to live for you. All of my days in Jesus name amen friend of you prayed that prayer according to the Bible you've been forgiven you've been born again. Jesus said he would not turn anybody away who comes to him and he came for those people who knew they needed forgiveness. Those who were sick, not the righteous to congratulations for you just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you if this was your first time praying that prayer with Pastor David we would love to hear from you. You can call us toll-free at 877-458-5508 to receive our first steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ. You can live a transformed life were not.
It's your choice. You can look for God to be changed by your spirits or you can live for yourself and struggle with your flesh in the situations you find yourself, Pastor David McGee feel so strongly about helping you choose to live for God that he wants to send you his three CD series called transformed living out the change within as thanks for your donation to support this cross the bridge broadcast. You can reach us at 877-458-5508. That's 877-458-5508 or go online to cross the bridge. While there, take a moment to sign up for David's free email devotional or browser large library of teaching again. Our website is cross the bridge.com join us next time. On cross the bridge with David McGee as he continues his verse by verse study in the book of Romans will see this