Dr. DeRouchie recently preached a redemptive-historical sermon on Rom 1:1–7 titled, “For the Sake of His Name: A Mission to Magnify the Majesty of Christ.”
Thesis: In the opening of his letter to the Romans, Paul identifies his apostolic authority and characterizes his apostolic mission, highlighting both its gospel message and Christ-glorifying nature. In short, Paul’s mission is to magnify the majesty of Christ among the Gentiles.
Rom. 1:1–7. Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, 2 which he promised before through his prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3 concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, 4 who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we received grace and apostleship, for obedience of faith among all the nations, for his name’s sake; 6 among whom you are also called to belong to Jesus Christ; 7 to all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I always feel a little apprehension when listening to a preacher for the first time. How serious is he about the Bible? How surrendered is he to its message? Does he savor our Savior, and will he help me do this more. The apostle Paul expected the church in Rome to be asking comparable questions as they received his letter, for neither Paul nor any of his co-workers planted the church there. Yet the apostle was eager for them to support his mission to Spain (Rom 15:24, 28), and he opens his letter by identifying his apostolic authority and by characterizing his apostolic mission. In Romans 1:1–6 he highlights his mission’s gospel message and its Christ-glorifying nature, and then he sets out in the rest of the book to demonstrate the truth and power of the gospel he proclaims. Because I want you not only to trust me as a mouthpiece of God but also to magnify the majesty of the Christ proclaimed throughout all of Scripture, I thought it good to focus our attention this morning on these foundational verses. To that end, let us pray. . . .
Romans is a missionary support letter, and here at the beginning Paul opens in v. 1 by highlighting the mission’s messenger, and then he continues through v. 6 by noting the mission’s makeup. Those are the two main parts of my message: the messenger and makeup of the mission.