The Book of Romans
Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones’s sermon series on the book of Romans were preached to the congregation at Westminster Chapel in the heart of central London on Friday evenings between October 1955 to March 1968. These sermons …
Certainty of Salvation
What is “peace with God” and how does one attain it? In the sermon titled “Certainty of Salvation,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses this as he preaches on Romans 5:1–2. Paul has just finished explaining that righteousness by faith was not only imputed for Abraham, but also for all Christians. The apostle shows the absolute finality and fullness of salvation which comes as a result of faith. The greatest proof of final salvation and assurance is union with Christ. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains three things done by justification by faith: it puts the Christian at peace with God, sets them firmly in a place of all blessings, and enables them to exalt the prospect of future glorification. Before one is even able to obtain blessings or think about future glorification, they need to have access to the Lord. Salvation and all its blessings are only attained through the Lord Jesus Christ. Dr. Lloyd-Jones defines and explains what peace with God is and how Paul will continue on with this theme in the coming verses.
Having Peace with God
Chapter by chapter, Paul’s letter to the Romans has explained that all humanity is under God’s judgement and have hope through justification by faith, and now he is explaining that all can have peace with God. Christians were previously enemies of God but now they can have assurance and a resting faith in their salvation through Jesus Christ. In this sermon from Romans 5:1–2, titled “Having Peace with God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones outlines how Christians know if they have this assurance and peace with God: their mind will be content with the process of justification by faith, they know that Christ loves them despite being sinners, they can answer the accusations of conscience and the devil, and they no longer fear death or judgement. If they were to fail or falter at any of these tests, then they may not have a true peace with God. Sometimes sin makes one question or doubt their justification, but regardless, their salvation is still true. Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds that justification is one declarative act forever and faith always can fight this doubt victoriously. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also explains what the results of justification by faith look like in their lives as well as discussing what a false sense of peace with God is.
Standing in Grace
What does it mean to stand in the grace of God? The apostle Paul writes that all who believe are no longer under the power of sin and death, but are now in God’s grace. In this sermon on Romans 5:1–2 titled “Standing in Grace,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones expounds on this great declaration. He says that to be in God’s grace is to be justified before God. It is to be in the family of God. All whom God saves, He secures and grants perseverance. This is the blessing of justification, peace, and security with God through Christ. And through the Holy Spirit the Christian is sanctified. All of this is a result of the Christian being justified by faith. All believers ought to strive to have a full assurance that they have been redeemed in Christ and are now indwelt by the Holy Spirit. The Christian now boldly approaches God because they are His children and heirs. They do not live in fear of punishment, for they are wholly in Christ Jesus. This sermon on the glories of salvation causes all to ask the question: “do I believe? Have I been transferred out of the kingdom of darkness into the family of God?”
Glory Begun Below
The apostle Paul saw the glory of God when he was on his way to persecute Christ’s church. In this sermon titled “Glory Begun Below,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches this powerful sermon from Romans 5:1–2 which shows that it is the risen Christ who appeared to Paul and changed him from a Pharisee persecuting the church to a follower of Christ. When anyone sees the glory of God, they are transformed and made new, just as the apostle Paul. How does one see this glory? While today’s Christians do not have experiences as the apostles did, God still shows His glory in this life through many of His everyday graces. The glory of God is encountered while experiencing the grace of God at regeneration. But ultimately, the glory of God will be seen on the last day when the Christian’s salvation is brought to completion. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones is emphatic that salvation is a process that ends when the Christian is made like Christ, purged of all sin and made pure by His glory. The question that all must all ask is this: “have we experienced this glory?” If the listener has not, this sermon brings the most important message for this life.
Times of Trial
The Bible tells that Christians will face trials. In light of this truth, how should Christians face them and stand strong in the midst of trials? Listen to this sermon titled “Times of Trial” on Romans 5:3–5 as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones speaks on this topic and points to how Scripture instructs to face them. First, he begins by expressing that trials are a test of our faith; it shows if the faith is true or if it is based only on emotional experience. He goes on to state that Christians with true faith will not face trials with grumblings or with a mindset of simply putting up with it. Rather, they will glory in their tribulations. When a trial is faced this way, it can become a time of growth and can strengthen one’s relationship with God. They can push one toward Him and help them see their need of Him. Trials can also build in patience and can be a time where God refines and teaches things out of His love for His chosen. He concludes this sermon on trials by showing that trials also point to the hope that Christians have and that helps them stand strong in the midst of any storm.
Glory in Tribulation
What is the place of tribulation in the life of the Christian? Often times, people see hardships as nothing more than obstacles to their happiness and joy. They see no deeper purpose in the hardships. But in this sermon titled “Glory in Tribulation” on Romans 5:5, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows how Scripture paints a different picture of what hardships are about. For those that trust in God and who have His Holy Spirit, suffering is a means of becoming more like Jesus Christ. It is a means of deepening and strengthening one’s faith in God and to grow in holiness. As Christians go through these trials, they come to a greater assurance of who they are in Christ. So then, there is great hope for those that suffer as followers of Christ. This sermon holds out a great hope for all who are in the midst of trials and tribulations because it displays how Christ is working in His people in and through life’s hardships. This sermon is a call for all to repent of their sins and come to Jesus. It is a call to return to God the Creator and seek His glory. This is the only life of true and lasting joy.
The Holy Spirit and Assurance
Once saved, always saved. But what happens when one doubts their salvation and how do they regain assurance? The greatest assurance of all is that the love of God has been spread into the hearts of His people. This act is done by the work of the Holy Spirit. In the sermon “The Holy Spirit and Assurance” from Romans 5:5, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones points out that this is the first time the Holy Spirit is referenced in terms of salvation and he makes a few points concerning what this means. The Holy Spirit is given to all Christians without exception and He dwells in their bodies. Some might ask how this is a guarantee of salvation. Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds that any good work that Christ has begun will not go unfinished. The seal of the Holy Spirit is a guarantee that Christians are finally fit to enter the glory He has prepared for them. The second part of the sermon explains how someone would know that the Holy Spirit has been given to them.
Love That Produces Salvation
It is the kindness of God that leads His people to salvation. That kindness and love of God is evident throughout the book of Romans as Dr. Lloyd-Jones continues proclaiming its truth in this sermon on Romans 5:6-8. Christ’s love ensures the finality of salvation. It is easy to point out that most people do not truly understand the riches they have in salvation because of Christ’s love since all are sinful people. In the sermon “Love That Produces Salvation,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones breaks down Romans 5:6–8 and shares just how much Christians have received because of Christ’s love for His people. The first realization of this love is that Christ Himself produced and created salvation before the foundation of the earth was made. A second realization is that Christ not only came to the earth, but He also chose to die and bear God’s wrath in humanity’s place. Finally, the listener needs to consider the type of people that benefit from that salvation. These people are not wonderful, good-natured people; they are full of sin and completely undeserving. They are weak and incapable of doing anything that would warrant salvation, and this alone proves that the Lord loved His own enough to save them Himself.
Grace; So Rich and Free
God’s love for His children is a main theme throughout the Bible. But, how can we be sure of His love? In this sermon on Romans 5:6-11, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones points out several truths which clearly prove God’s love for us. He begins by pointing out that God is the One who gave us our salvation. Not only that, but He sent His one and only Son to come and die on a cross so that we might have salvation. Dr. Lloyd-Jones goes on to point out the truth that we were not given salvation because we had earned it or worked for it. In fact, when Jesus died for us, we were ungodly and enemies of God. We were sinners who had broken the Law and were deserving of eternal death. However, God, in His abundant grace and mercy, saved us while we were still sinners. He sought us even when we were His enemies and called us His own. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages us to find joy in this proof of God’s love in saving us, despite our sinful nature. He encourages us to never forget the amazing gift of salvation that the Lord has so graciously given us, and to find assurance in this proof of His love.
Justified by God
Paul states that the greatest proof of the love of God is His plan of salvation. The one assurance beyond that is the direct witness of the Holy Spirit Himself. The Holy Spirit bears witness that Christians are indeed children of God. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones notes in this sermon on Romans 5:9-10 that after Paul discusses being justified by God, he uses the phrase “how much more then.” Christ has already died, which meant that His people no longer have to face God’s wrath. Also much more, Christ gave the gift of the Holy Spirit as well. Dr. Lloyd- Jones then discusses justification and how the cross procures this justification on the Christian’s behalf. It is not human works, faith, or self- sanctification that justifies; it is purely the work of Christ on the cross. This act guarantees final salvation, when Christ comes to receive His church and His people are with Him in glory for eternity.
Security in Christ
Unconfessed sin will make a Christian doubt their salvation and security in Jesus Christ. It is most important in times like this that they look to Scripture for the promises of God. Paul explains in this sermon on Romans 5:10 that God’s children are eternally safe and secure in Christ Jesus because of the work that He did on the cross. In the sermon titled “Security in Christ,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses this assurance by focusing on this one verse in Romans. First, God sacrificed His Son on the cross to be the propitiation for sin. That act removed the enmity between God and saved humanity who were previously enemies with God. God chose not to impute their trespasses on them. Instead, He imputed the trespasses on Himself and imputed to His people His righteousness. If God did such an act as this to show His love, how much more would He continue that good work in His people? This new relationship with Christ means that His people are grafted into Christ and nothing can change that status.
Glorying in God
Is the Christian finding glory in God? Is He their delight? In this sermon on Romans 5:10–11, Paul has already confirmed that salvation is assured in Christ Jesus and so this means the Christian should have joy in Christ Jesus and what He has done. Christians should glory both in their salvation and in God as the giver of salvation. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones goes as far as to say that true Christian faith always leads to glorying in God. He states that things such as trusting in oneself rather than God, failure to mediate on the things of God, and not reasoning with Scripture could all be causes for a failure to properly glory in God. Not glorying in God is a sign of unbelief and a sin and unbelief is the chief of all sins. A Christian should be in constant examination of themselves to ensure that they are always glorying in Christ. All self-examination should lead to rejoicing.
The Mechanics of Interpretation
How can one be sure of the meaning of Scripture? In this sermon from Romans 5:12 “The Mechanics of Interpretation”, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones begins this message by giving a few tips on how to read and study the Bible. Since Paul began this verse with the word “therefore,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones draws attention back to the previous messages and shows how Paul is going to tie things together. In the chapters leading up to this passage, Paul emphasized that all fall under the wrath of God because all have sinned. Why is this? It is because all are united as one in Adam. Because of what happened in the Garden of Eden, all are guilty of sin and born into sin. In the same exact manner, because of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, Christians are not only saved by Christ but also saved in Christ. There have been two great heads to the human race: Adam and Jesus Christ. In Adam, all sinned, and in Christ, all can be saved. Christians should be so thankful that they have not only been saved from the impending wrath but are also engrafted into Christ’s body. While they were once enemies, they are now safe and secure in Christ.
As in Adam; so in Christ
Sin destroys everything. It ruins relationships, perverts what is pure, and undoes the underpinnings of society. In this passage, the apostle Paul explains the effect of sin on the world and the salvation that Christ has brought from sin. Because of Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden, all have sinned because all are descendants of Adam. That guilt and condemnation is on all people. However, just as all are related to Adam, all who are saved are related to Jesus Christ! In the sermon on Romans 5:12–21, “As in Adam, So in Christ,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that Romans 5:12 is one of the most important verses in the whole Bible in terms of theology. This verse confronts with two facts: the universality of sin and the universality of death. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains the biblical and non-biblical view of this passage. It would be easy to create excuses for sin or to become angry that all are guilty because Adam is guilty, but the passage clearly points out that sin is active and so now there is death by sin. Instead of condemning the sin that Adam passed on, the Christian should be rejoicing that Christ’s work on the cross has also passed on.
For All Sinned
The Bible tells that all humans are guilty of sin. In this sermon on Romans 5:12–21 “For All Sinned”, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones dives deeper into this truth to discover the magnitude of what this actually means. He begins by showing through Scripture that sin goes all the way back to the first sin of Adam. Death, the punishment of sin, was passed to all generations through the first act of sin by Adam. He points out how this means sin and its consequences were evident even before the law was given. Adam’s sin was imputed to all humanity from the very beginning, causing all to be guilty of sin. However, Dr. Lloyd-Jones does not stop there and instead goes on to show the parallel between the relationship with Adam and the relationship with Jesus. The same way that Adam imputed sin to humanity through his actions, Jesus likewise imputed His righteousness to them. Just as one offense brought death to all humanity, so also Jesus’s one act of obedience put all offenses aside in forgiveness. He concludes by showing the beauty of the justification Jesus brought in light of this parallel.
Made Alive in Christ
In the previous sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addressed that all humanity sinned when Adam sinned. But how is it that all sin in Adam? In this sermon on Romans 5:12 titled “Made Alive in Christ,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones dives into this topic by looking into several different views. The first view is the realistic view, which states that the whole of humanity resided in Adam. Because of this, when Adam sinned, all humanity sinned. Second is the representation view. This view states that Adam’s sin was passed to all because God had appointed him as the representative for all humanity. Dr. Lloyd-Jones states that his view of Scripture shows a mixture of these two views. He looks at the parallel between Adam and Christ. He shows how both Adam and Christ were appointed by God and represented all humanity. Adam represented all in his sin and Jesus represented all in His obedience. Dr. Lloyd-Jones ends his sermon by pointing out the important truth that Jesus is the last Adam. There will be no one to come after Him who will again represent all of humanity. Christians can rejoice in that fact, knowing that they can forever rest in the work of Jesus Christ.
The Gift of Righteousness
In his previous sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones pointed out the similarities of humanity’s relationship to Adam and its relationship to Christ. In this sermon on Romans 5:16–17 titled “The Gift of Righteousness,” he shows that while there are several similarities, the most striking thing are the differences between these two relationships. He begins by pointing out that Adam’s sin and disobedience led to judgment and condemnation. These both came through the act of one sin. In contrast, Jesus’s one act of obedience led to the covering of all sins. This is the beauty of the gospel. How then should humanity react to this free gift of Jesus Christ? Despite the many sins, the Christian has now been justified, which means He blots out all sins and calls the Christian righteous. He goes on to point out that it was by one man’s offense that death came and reigned in the world. But it was the one act of Jesus that defeated death and brought life. The Christian is given the righteousness of Christ when they believe in Him. No longer does death reign over them, but those who believe shall now find life in Christ. They have lost the fear of death and will reign with Christ for eternity.
The Obedience of Christ
In this sermon on Romans 5:18–19 titled “The Obedience of Christ,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones continues speaking on the topic of humanity’s relationship with Adam and its relationship with Christ. He focuses again on the striking contrast between these two relationships and the different ways humanity has been affected by each one. He begins by pointing out the whole reason for looking into this topic: to show the completeness of justification by faith. Christians are not saved by their own doing because from the moment they are born, they are sinners. He then dives in deeper to how the one sin of Adam has affected all of humanity. It was through Adam’s disobedience that all were made sinners. On the other hand, it was through Christ’s one act of obedience that all can have salvation. Dr. Lloyd-Jones takes the time to point out in this exposition of Romans 5:18-19 that Christ was obedient in both an active and passive manner. It was because of His full obedience that sinners have been justified and God has pronounced the Christian righteous. However, this gift is nothing that was earned. It has been given freely because of the obedience of Christ. Praise the Lord for His goodness.
The Law Came In
What is the purpose of the law and why did God give it to Moses? Listen to this sermon on Romans 5:20–21 titled “The Law Came In” as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones uses Scripture to explain the main function of the law. He begins by explaining that the law was not made to justify or condemn, as some might believe. Before moving to the real purpose of the law, Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out three ways that the law impacts. First, it increases knowledge of sin by defining it. Second, it increases conviction of sin by opening eyes to it. And lastly, the law actually increases sin. The law shed light on sin and made it evident in the lives of people. Based on these three truths, Dr. Lloyd-Jones then reveals the purpose of the law: to bring people to Christ and help them see their utter need of Him and His salvation. The law is what opens eyes to who they are as sinners and shows the inability to save themselves from it. This is where one experiences the fullness of the grace Christ has to offer. Christians can find hope in knowing that where sin abounds, His grace abounds more.