A Zeal for the Lost
Topic: AM Service Passage: Romans 9:1–9:5
How does believing in the Lord Jesus Christ change someone? The immediate answer is that the believer passes from death into life, is transported out from under the wrath of God into the family of God, and is forgiven of all sins. But there is more to change in the believer than that. Faith in Christ not only has its effect on the believer as an individual; faith also changes the way that the believer looks at others. Once you come to know Jesus, you know that it is not all about you. The believer begins to look around and sees not just a crowd of people, but instead lost souls who are under the wrath of God and who can only be freed by the work of Jesus. The believer experiences great anguish for the lost and longs for them to know Christ and experience forgiveness. This is captured well in Paul’s longing for the conversion and salvation of the Jews around him – the same Jews who opposed him and his gospel. Why did Paul care about his opponents? Why not just let them get what they deserved for their opposition? Because Paul knew that he did not get what he deserved. He received grace, and he wanted others to know that grace. Christian, are you prepared to imitate Paul, who had “A Zeal for the Lost” (Romans 9:1-5).
I. A Heart for the Lost
A. The Importance of a Heart for the Lost
B. The Depth of a Heart for the Lost
II. Knowledge of God’s Mercy
A. Mercy Begets Mercy
B. Mercy is Necessary
III. No Presumption
A. Upon Privileges
B. Upon the Gospel
Questions for consideration: (1) Do you think about those who do not know Jesus? How does that affect the way that you live and interact with people? (2) Why is it so important for those who have received mercy to bring God’s mercy to others, even those who are hostile? (3) What things are you tempted to rest in other than Christ? What privileges can become a crutch you lean on?