Pastor Jerry Locke
Another Sermon Series by Pastor Jerry Locke

4445 Hodgkins Rd. Fort Worth, TX 76135

Webmaster's Note: A Selection of 24 Single, Stand Alone Scripture
Sermons by one of our outstanding Independent Baptist Preachers,
Brother Jerry Locke, of Fort Worth, Texas. Enjoy!
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6 - Single, Stand Alone Scripture Series
"Romans 1:16 --- A Single Stirring, Saving Scripture"

Introduction - Single, Stand Alone Scripture Series
The Bible contains powerful:
Books...Genesis, John, Romans, Revelation
Passages...Genesis 1; Psalm 23; Isaiah 53.
Verses...Too Many to List

Most all Scripture needs a context for correct interpretation. Isolated verses are often the source of misinterpretation and ultimately heresy. The fact is, most Bible verses are not intended to stand alone.

But there are some single scripture that are so powerful, so clear, so complete that they are able to stand alone. There are three things we are intending to do with each of these “single, stand alone” scriptures.

Memorize...Psalm 119:11 “Thy word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against thee.” We will assign the scripture a week in advance to memorize.

Message...Organize and discuss these single scriptures.

Meditate… Psalm 1:2 ”But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”

6 - Single, Stand Alone Scripture Series
"Romans 1:16 --- A Single Stirring, Saving Scripture"

Our single, stand alone Scripture begins with an eyebrow-raising phrase, “I am not ashamed.” President Bill Clinton couldn’t say that --- he lied to his wife and to the American people about his involvement with an intern. Brittany Spears couldn’t say that --- she married a friend one night and divorced him the next day. Dan Rather couldn’t say that --- he peddled a document that was a fake. The inspired writer of this verse, the Apostle Paul, had many things in his life for which he, also, might have been ashamed.

His own past life. When Paul thought of his days of the Pharisee Saul he could not recall it without some sense of regret. “Who before was a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief,” 1 Timothy 1:13.

The Roman world of his day, so much like our days. “God gave them up...God gave them up...God gave them over…” vs. 24, 26, 28.

His own nation, the people of Israel, when they so persistently and unreasonably disowned Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. “Because of unbelief they were broken off,” Romans 11:20.

His own comrades in the church. When John Mark deserted him, he was ashamed of him. When Demas forsook him, he was ashamed of him. When the Corinthian church tolerated gross wickedness in their congregation without any effect of disciple, he again was ashamed.

Paul was quite capable of shame. Nevertheless, here is his own ringing testimony: “I am not ashamed!” What does he mean? What was he thinking about? This single, stand-alone Scripture is crystal-clear.

It all had to do with “the gospel.” Have you ever heard some say, “This is the gospel truth”? What is the “gospel truth”? It is important that we understand certain texts, and also the terms used in the texts. Words mean different things to different people.

A bottleneck means one thing to a glass manufacturer and another thing to someone stuck in traffic.

A ball means one thing to a debutante and another thing to a sports fan.
A drum means one thing to a musician and another thing to a mechanic.

What does the word “gospel” mean? It is the Greek word “evangelion” which means “good news.” We are all acquainted with good news, although we don’t mean enough of it. Good news for… A student at the end of the semester would be, “I passed.”

A soldier involved in a conflict on foreign soil would be, “The war is over. I’m coming home.”

A young married couple would be, “We’re going to have a baby!”

A couple with 5 or 6 children would be, “We’re not going to have a baby.”

An older person who had not been feeling well would be, “The doctor said its not cancer.”

The Christian message has the same note of exhilaration, the same excitement, the same elation.

There is an answer to man’s deepest need.
God does welcome sinners.
Jesus paid it all!
You don’t have to spend eternity in hell!
You can go to heaven free!
That, my friend, is good news.

He was not Ashamed of the Gospel’s Person.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ…”

Paul begins with the satisfaction he found in the gospel. Paul says, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of…” Who? “Christ.” We do not apologize for the fact that our good news is not based on abstract principles, but on an authentic Person. True Christianity is not about a system; it is about a Savior—Jesus Christ.

Any attack on the person and work and ministry of our Savior cannot be tolerated! He is the heart of all we are and all we believe. Take away Christ and you take away Christianity!

And that is exactly what is happening today. Too much of what is taught and preached in pulpits today is not “theology,” that is, a study of God, but “me-ology.” Preachers have become experts in everything but the main thing. They study demographics, and surveys, and methodology and opinion polls, but are either shallow or silent when it comes to knowing Christ and making Him known. “Self” is the main menu of the modern preacher—self-love, self-esteem, self-improvement, self-forgiveness, self-realization, self-indulgence.

Our gospel is about a Person, not simply an idea. Think about a sentiment as universal as love. Poets may rhapsodize about it. Scientists may analyse it. Psychiatrists may explain it. But for love to really can only be fully understood and experienced in a person. That’s why God came in Christ. “And thre Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth,” John 1:14.

We are not ashamed of Christ’s . . . Virgin birth. I am not ashamed Jesus came to the earth in such a lowly, yet stupendous way. Virtuous life. I am not ashamed of the life Jesus lived on this earth for 33 1/2 years. Vicarious death. I am not ashamed Jesus died on an old rugged cross.
Victorious resurrection.
Visible return.

2. He was not Ashamed of the Gospel’s Power.
“...for it is the power of God unto salvation...”

The gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation. This speaks to the sufficiency of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

“Power” is the password of our day –-- horse power, electric power, nuclear power, military power, mind power, people power. The word “power” here is the Greek word “dunamis.” We get our words “dynamite, dynamic, and dynamo” from it.

The gospel of Christ does what other powers cannot do —-- it has the power to save a soul. “Unto salvation…” The gospel is needs-based. Before people are brought “unto salvation” they are in a prior condition. We are “in sin” before we are brought “unto salvation.” That is one of the problems of our day, getting people to open their eyes and see that they are “in sin” and need “salvation.”

I love what John Phillips says about this phrase. He said, “The world does not need a better system of education, more social reform, new ideas in religion. It needs the gospel. The gospel message grips the mind, stabs the conscience, warms the heart, saves the soul and sanctifies the life. It can make drunken men sober, crooked men straight and profligate women pure. It is a message sufficient to transform the life of any who believe,” (Exploring Romans, p. 20).

He was not Ashamed of the Gospel’s Plan.
“ everyone that believeth: to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”

Notice, the simplicity of the gospel. “To everyone that believeth…” The gospel has but one obligation, one requirement—you must believe it. People are never saved apart from believing.

It is the obligation Jesus mentioned to Nicodemus in John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

It is the obligation Paul mentioned to the Philippian jailer in Acts 16:31, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”

Believing the gospel is more than processing information. “Jesus died.” Yeah. “Jesus was buried.” Got it. “Jesus rose again.” Okay. Believing the gospel is placing ones trust and confidence in who Jesus Christ is and what Jesus Christ did for the saving of our souls from eternal punishment and the securing our place in heaven. The gospel call is to simply trust in Jesus Christ, God’s Son, as personal Savior and Lord.

Then, look at the scope of the gospel. “To the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” The gospel had a focus group. This is not a statement of preference, but of precedence. The gospel came first to whom? The Jews. The gospel originated in the Holy Land, but is to be universally shared. According to Romans 1:5 Paul understood his was to share the gospel with “all nations.” Not everyone can go to college, drive a new car, live in a nice house, eat good food—but everyone can be saved! When Paul listed “the Jew” and “the Greek” he was including all people—those who were God’s national people and those who were not.

Jesus Christ’s death is sufficient for all, but efficient only for those who hear and believe.

“For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, specially of those that believe,” 1 Timothy 4:10.

The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ will benefit only those who trust in Christ.

Get this picture in your mind. Imagine that is a man enjoying a day in a row-boat. The weather is so nice, the sun so bright that he decides to take a short nap. After several hours of sleep, he is awaken out of his sleep to discover he has drifted miles down river and he hear the sound of a waterfall just ahead. His immediate reaction is to start to row, but he is losing the battle. The current is too strong for him. But then he notices some people on the bank shouting, “It’s too late; he’ll be gone,” but just then a life rope is thrown from the shore and it falls at his side. How would be respond? Would the people on shore call for him to row harder to try once more to stem the current? No. Their shouts are simple and clear, “Drop your oars! Take hold of the rope! We’ll do the rest!”

Saving faith is taking hold of God’s Lifeline —-- Jesus Christ. It is God’s forgiveness in place of my self-excusing and self-justification. It is God’s please instead of my struggle and strain. It is God’s strength and guidance in place of my faltering and floundering.