Church Renewal Fuel

Monday, December 8, 2008

It happened to Martin Luther.  It happened to Karl Barth.  When they began to study and proclaim the message of Paul’s epistle the Romans, they were transformed.  Their previous assumptions about God’s mercy and righteousness were shaken to the foundations, and, more than that, God did a new thing through them to renew his church.

In fact, any time the church has experienced the fire of renewal, Romans has usually been there in the mix, adding fuel to the flames.  Its message clearly outlines the gospel of Jesus Christ that is at the heart of the church.  And yet, it is a dangerous message; because when believers come casually to “study” Romans and pick it apart, oftentimes they are the ones studied, picked apart, and transformed into a new creation.

Earlier this fall, I had made up my mind to preach through Romans in 2009 as a way of leading my church through the basics of the faith.  I was astonished to discover that several others who also belong to an e-mail group had arrived at the same conclusion independently.  I knew it was a Holy Spirit moment–God working to renew his church, one congregation at a time, one sermon at a time, using Romans as fuel for the fire…again.

And so I am issuing an invitation–a challenge, really–to all of you out there: If you are a preacher, please join God’s Spirit in leading his people through Romans next year.  And if you are a church member, show this to your pastor and encourage him/her to take up the challenge.  Let us invite the Lord to renew his church!

Here is a sermon series through Romans by Dr. James Goodloe IV, former pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church in Richmond, Virginia, and current director of the Foundation for Reformed Theology.  This might stimulate some thinking about Paul’s message.

I am including a schedule (below) for preaching through Romans for 2009, also from Dr. Goodloe (the Old Testament lessons are listed on the sermon series, above).  He blacks out Lent and Advent, but I am planning on pausing only for the major feast days (e.g, Palm Sunday, Easter, Pentecost, etc.) and vacation.

Blessings on your journey through Romans!  Soli Deo Gloria.

2009 Sunday

James Goodloe’s Suggested Reading

Old Testament Lesson

January 4

Romans 1:1-13″The Gospel of God”


Jan. 11

Romans 1:14-23″The Power of God”


Jan. 18

Romans 1:24-32″The Truth of God”


Jan. 23

Romans 2:1-16″The Judgment of God”


February 1

Romans 2:17-29″The Honor of God”


Feb. 8

Romans 3:1-8″The Faithfulness of God”


Feb. 15

Romans 3:9-20″The Fear of God”


Feb. 22

(Feb. 25 is Ash Wednesday)

Romans 3:21-30″The Righteousness of God”


March 1

(Lent 1)



March 8

(Lent 2)



March 15

(Lent 3)



March 22

(Lent 4)



March 29

(Lent 5)



April 5




April 12




April 19

Romans 3:31–4:12″The Blessing of God”


April 26

Romans 4:13-22″The Promise of God”


May 3

Romans 4:23–5:11″The Peace of God”


May 10

Romans 5:12-21″The Grace of God”


May 17

Romans 6:1-14″The Glory of God”


May 31




June 7

Romans 6:15-23″The Free Gift of God”


June 14

Romans 7:1-6″The New Life of God”


June 21

Romans 7:7-25″The Law of God”


June 28

Romans 8:1-11″The Spirit of God”


July 5

Romans 8:12-17″The Children of God”


July 12

Romans 8:18-30″The Will of God”


July 19

Romans 8:31-39″The Love of God”


July 26

Romans 9:1-13″The Word of God”


August 2

Romans 9:14-29″The Mercy of God”


August 9

Romans 9:30–10:13″The Righteousness of God”


August 16

Romans 10:14-21″The Good News of God”


August 23

Romans 11:1-12″The Elect of God”


August 30

Romans 11:13-24″The Kindness of God”


September 6

Romans 11:25-36″The Calling of God”


September 13

Romans 12:1-2″The Mercies of God”


September 20

Romans 12:3-13″The Gifts of God”


September 27

Romans 12:14-21″The Wrath of God”


October 4

Romans 13:1-7″The Servant of God”


October 11

Romans 13:8-10″The Love of God”


October 18

Romans 13:11-14″The Christ of God”


October 25

Romans 14:1-12″The Judgment Seat of God”


November 1

Romans 14:13-23″The Kingdom of God”


November 8

Romans 15:1-13″The Glory of God”


November 15

Romans 15:14-33″The Spirit of God”


November 22

Romans 16:1-27″The Command of God”


November 29

(Advent 1)



December 6

(Advent 2)



December 13

(Advent 3)



December 20

(Advent 4)



December 27

(Christmas 1)






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