Romans 1:7… “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ” (KJV).
WE ARE CALLED TO BE SAINTS (Romans 1:1-7)… The word “called” is used three times by Paul, each time with a slightly different usage. In verse one, the word “called” means “called by a supernatural act of God.” In verse six the word “called” means “an invitation to the unbeliever to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.” In verse seven, the word “called” means “divinely selected to be holy and separated and consecrated for the Lord’s use.” The word “saint” refers to any believer baptized in Christ. The word “saint” also refers to a born-again Christian called to be part of a holy calling, a ministry (2 Timothy 1:9). The words “saint/saints” are used sixty-one times in the New Testament, thus highlighting the importance of our identity as an important truth. One example of the saint’s ministry is described in Galatians 6:1-18. (Please open your Bible as you read.)
Verse 1… A saint is a brother or sister that is responsive to the Spirit for the purpose of restoring hope in those who are having problems. The word “spiritual” in this verse means “responsive to the Spirit.” Many people have serious problems, and they need your help.
Verse 2… A saint is a burden-bearer, one who helps others when their load is too heavy. When you help someone with a burden, you are fulfilling a law of Christ by showing love and compassion and kindness. The love of Christ in you teaches them to bear their own burden. So many folks have no knowledge of how to bear burdens. They need to be taught.
Verses 3-4… A saint is a builder. “But let every man prove his own work” (v. 4, KJV). “Faith, if it hath not works, is dead” (James 2:17). If someone is in trouble, a saint should be there to help them. Too many saints take the attitude “I’ll pray about it” and then do nothing. If you have faith in Christ, witness, testify, build up, and help!
Verse 6… A saint is a communicator. If you are in touch with God and you hear from Him by the Spirit, pass that word to the hurting man or woman. Sow good things into their lives and God will make it grow. No one can live without communication.
Verse 9… A saint is a benefactor. The phrase “well-doing” in this verse means more than doing things well. Paul writes to Titus and says that we are saved to do good works (Titus 2:14, 3:1,8,14). Every day there are necessary things to do, and every day the Holy Spirit will show us what we need to do.
Verse 10… A saint is given opportunities to do good. The Holy Spirit will direct you in your ministry for the day. It doesn’t have to be in the pulpit or in some foreign field. The New Testament teaches that “[Jesus] went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed by the devil” (Acts 10:38, KJV). Praise God for what He has done. You are a new creation, you have a new lifestyle, and you have new goals. But many saints in the Ephesian church returned to their old unredeemed ways (Ephesians 4:17-24). Paul told them, “You didn’t learn that from Christ. If you learned anything from Christ, you learned about separation from the world and about putting on righteousness” (vv. 20-24). The word “walk” means “to walk worthy in doctrine and practice”; that is, if you are a Spirit-filled believer, walk like you are Spirit-filled.
Verse 17… A saint is one who bears the marks of Christ’s sufferings; i.e., the marks of the Lord Jesus will be upon you. To us, Jesus is a joy, but others will not see Him that way. Christ suffered because He did the will of His Father. We are saints. We too will suffer for doing the will of God. The word “marks” as used in this verse can refer to a stigma. A stigma is a token of disgrace, shame, and reproach. Some people will hate you because you love Jesus, whom they hate. Keep lifting up Jesus. Keep shining for Jesus. Keep a joyful spirit. Remember Paul–he served the Lord (Acts 20:19). Serving the Lord faithfully helps you overcome the social stigma of being a believer.
How can you start to practice being a saint? First, though contact. Develop friendships with others around you at home, work, when shopping. Meet people. Second, though caring. Look for an opportunity to show that you care. Don’t preach. People are hurting, and it’s not preaching that they need. It’s your compassion and love and understanding that they need. Third, through your witness. This follows caring. Look for an opportunity to present the gospel message. “Jesus cares about you.” Share how Jesus can help them. Fourth, through equipping them. If you have led them to Christ, now lead them to follow Christ, starting with the milk of the Word and not with the book of Revelation. Encourage them to find a solid church home. Help them to discover their talents and gifts.
There are a lot of damaged people in the society around you. God will hear their cries, and He may send you to help them. God sends saints, the ones responsive to His will. (If God sends you to someone or somewhere, there is a reason and a purpose. If you go when He doesn’t send you, you will run into problems and possibly end up being the problem.) Amazing miracles happen when you “seize the moment” and reach out and touch someone. Churches grow when saints do their ministries. The purpose for this lesson is that you may catch the joy of healing the hurts of others. Ecclesiastes 5:20 says, “God keeps him busy with the joy of his heart” (NKJV).
Pastor George Belobaba
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