The Book of Romans
The famous series of Friday night sermons on the Letter to the Romans, split into 14 volumes to parallel the books, plus a small collection of 13 individual sermons preached at Westminster Chapel.
Collecting the Evidence (1)
What is the future of the people of Israel? In this sermon on Romans 11:25–27 titled “Collecting the Evidence (1),” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones examines this most important topic of Israel’s future. Paul is concerned that the Gentile believers may be arrogant towards the Israelites. No one must think they are saved because they are smarter or wiser than anyone else. The Gentiles did not believe in the gospel because they were smarter than the Israelites. They believed because God in His grace was pleased to give mercy to the Gentiles through Jesus Christ. While some Israelites rejected the gospel, not all did. Paul gives himself as an example of a faithful Israelite who trusted in the promised Messiah. Furthermore, Paul speaks of the day when many of his fellow Jews will come to worship Jesus and be saved. Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches on the great day of salvation for all Jewish people who come to know the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. God is faithful to His promises and He has provided salvation for all who believe in Him.
Collecting the Evidence (2)
In this sermon on Romans 11:25–32 titled “Collecting the Evidence (2),” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones expounds on Paul’s statement concerning the deliverer that comes out of Zion. He says that Paul, like the other apostles and writers of the New Testament, is not simply retelling the prophecies and teachings of the Old Testament, but revealing new mysteries of God. This is seen in how he uses the Old Testament. According to Dr. Lloyd-Jones, when Paul talks about the deliverer out of Zion, he is not talking about physical places but the heavenly dwelling place of God. This is in accordance with the promise that God will send a savior to redeem Israel. Jesus came in faithfulness to God’s covenant with Israel to restore the people of God. Jesus not only saves individuals, but He comes to redeem the whole world and to make a new people of God that all know Him. The fulfillment of God’s promises to Israel are brought about by Christ Jesus who died on the cross in order that all who believe might be saved and freed from sin. This is the glorious message of the new covenant.
All Israel Shall be Saved
In Romans 11:25–32, the apostle Paul is showing a prophecy from the Old Testament. The nation of Israel has been regarded as enemies of the Lord. Through their fall, salvation has now come to the Gentiles. Now Paul is reminding that Israel will once again be reunited with Christ and points out that the gifts and calling of God should not be regretted. All the people of God have been called with an irresistible call. Just as the Gentiles received mercy as a result of their disobedience, the Jews will one day receive mercy because of their disobedience as well. In this sermon on “All Israel Shall be Saved,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones reminds the listener that the Jews were hardened because the Lord wanted to show mercy on the Gentiles so that all could believe and have salvation. Paul is encouraging his listeners that this period will not last forever. The Lord will once again bring the nation of Israel back into His fold in His timing.
Dependent on God's Mercy
In this sermon on Romans 11:28–32 titled “Dependent on God’s Mercy,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones teaches that faith is not merely an intellectual belief; it is an action and an obedience. Even while God frowns, He still loves. Look at the position of a non-believer – blind and disobedient before God. Rejoice in knowing that salvation is entirely a result of God’s mercy looking down upon humanity with pity. It is no result of a person’s doing. These are God's people. Jews and Gentiles alike are found to be disobedient, yet God pours out His mercy to both. God’s object is to show mercy; the concept of “mercy upon all” is not universalism. There is a great distinction between the saved and the lost. He caused the evangelization of the Gentiles to rapidly grow due to the rejection of the Jews to the very same gospel. God used the belief of the Gentiles to stir the Jews and bring them to salvation. God made foolish the things of this world and natural humanity cannot believe the things of God because He has shut them up in unbelief. God shows that nothing matters except for His mercy.
Future of the Jews
How has God chosen to show mercy to Israel? Some argue that God is done with the nation of Israel and that when Paul says that Israel will be saved, he is speaking of the gathering together of the elect. In this sermon on Romans 11:28–32 titled “Future of the Jews,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones has a different interpretation of this passage. He argues that the apostle Paul is prophesying of the day when God stirs up the hearts of the people of Israel and causes a great revival amongst them. God will fulfill His promises to the patriarchs and save many of their physical descendants. The hardening that has come upon Israel is only temporary and is used by God to send the gospel to the nations of the Gentiles. Did Israel stumble in order that they might fall? Paul says no. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that the church should look forward to the day when God moves and brings a great revival in Israel and brings many to faith in Jesus Christ. This should encourage the church to evangelize the people of Israel, knowing that God has promised to do a great work of salvation among them, bringing many to faith and new life in Christ.
Conversion of the Jews
In this sermon on Romans 11:28–32 titled “Conversion of the Jews,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones provides insightful teaching regarding Israel and how to interpret certain genres of Scripture, such as prophecy. The true Israel, he says, is a spiritual Israel. While this true Israel has sometimes been a remnant, there will come a time when this will no longer be the case, as Paul writes in this section in Romans. But when will this be? How is one to analyze passages of Scripture that have a prophetic aspect to them? First, one cannot read prophecy and expect to be provided with incredible detail every time. Jesus told this in Acts about the future date of His second coming, saying that it was not for the disciples to concern themselves with figuring out the precise timing of His arrival. Sometimes just a general prophecy is provided and the specific details are not given. Secondly, Dr. Lloyd-Jones warns that the greatest danger is reading things into the text that simply are not there. Those in Christian circles have probably seen examples of this as some claim that certain prophecies are being fulfilled when, in fact, the passage doesn’t address that. Dr. Lloyd-Jones concludes by reminding of the ultimate message and purpose behind this section of Paul’s writing and what it was not intended to communicate.
God in Control
What is the status of the Jewish people now that Christ has come? In this sermon on Romans 11:28–32 titled “God in Control,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones speaks on this vital question with which the apostle Paul wrestles. Paul says that there is a current hardening of the Jewish people by God in order that the gospel would go to the Gentiles. All throughout Scripture, sin and evil are unable to change God’s good work. Paul makes clear that God has not finally rejected His people, for the hardening that has come upon the Jewish people is only temporary and there will be a day when a great revival comes upon the nation of Israel. What is the church’s response to this teaching? The church and Christians everywhere must not be arrogant towards the people of Israel, for all salvation is a gift from God. The church must also seek to bring the gospel to the people of Israel and the glorious truth that Jesus has come and died for sinners. All who believe, whether Jew or Gentile, will be saved and made inheritors with Jesus Christ in the age to come. Jesus is the only way of salvation for all, whether Jew or Gentile.
The Great Doxology
In this sermon on Romans 11:33–36 titled “The Great Doxology,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shares his belief that this passage is the best doxology in Scripture. He warns not to take this passage out of context since Paul is praising God after expounding wondrous truths for much of the letter. One cannot fully appreciate Paul’s doxology without understanding the parts that make up the whole. Paul spoke about justification by faith, God’s mercy on the Jews as well as the Gentiles, and other magnificent truths. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that many have sought to explain this passage by claiming that Paul has stopped seeking to understand God’s truths and instead broken out into praise. While this is well-meaning, it does not capture the truth of the passage. Paul is worshipping God indeed, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says, but only during His learning of God’s wondrous doctrines. This is not a mindless doxology, but rather is a very mindful one. Along the same lines, it is not just the depth of the riches that Paul is referring to – it is the depth of the riches of God. How wonderfully kind of God to give eternal life to all those who would call upon His name.
The Only Hope
In this sermon on Romans 11:33–36 titled “The Only Hope,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones talks about something that no amount of words can adequately explain. God’s ways are so immense that they cannot be traced out. There is a great divide of Christianity; not in regard to particular details, but rather “our whole approach to the gospel.” Is the Christian called to proclamation or to dialogue? When one looks at the apostolic method and message, do the apostles start with modern humanity to make their declarations for the gospel? People must be born again of water and spirit to enter the kingdom of God. The natural person constantly misunderstands the whole of God’s way. God is absolute, infinite, and holy in every respect. The listener is encouraged to look of humanity’s limited nature in a way that may have never been considered. The gospel is hid to those who are lost and in their natural state; all humans are sinners and ignorant of who God truly is. Look upon the grace of God and stand in awe. His ways are far beyond finding out, but it is here that one gains assurance for salvation.
All of God
God’s judgements and actions are something entirely incomprehensible to people. In this sermon on Romans 11:33–36 titled “All of God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones dissects the tendency for humans to proclaim their independence. Salvation comes in and through God and there is nothing else people can do. Learn how humanity’s essential problem is their ignorance. People are always ready to give advice, but who can advise God? If one considers their state, they will realize that they are in sin and a hopeless debtor. “The whole of the cosmos is going to display... the glory of God.” From justification to glorification, it is all absolutely a work of God, void of any work of humanity. God is the Creator and Sustainer of all; salvation and the whole of life is for the glory of God. Look at creation and see how the world overflows with the glory of God. The listener is encouraged to contemplate their condition, confess that they are nothing, gladly acknowledge that they are what they are “solely by the grace of God,” and rejoice.