‘An end-of-year text for the year ahead’ (Romans 11:33-36)

In this great doxology from the pen of the Apostle Paul in Romans 11:33-36, we find how Paul gave glory and praise to God because of certain aspects of His character, namely His wisdom and knowledge. As we come to the end of the year and with uncertainty ahead of us, it’s good to be reminded that God knows more than we do and is able to be trusted in all that He has promised.

‘Prayer: For Saints, Servants and Souls’ (Phil 1:9-11, Rom 15:30-33, Col 4:2-6)

Guest preacher, Rev Stuart Withers (Rochester Presbyterian), preached from three main texts in his message on the importance of prayer (Philippians 1:9-11, Romans 15:30-33 and Colossians 4:2-6.). Just as Paul exhorted us to make ‘all kinds of prayers for all the saints’ (Ephesians 6:18), so also in these texts we are reminded that prayer is the key for the encouragement of God’s people, the strengthening of His gospel workers and the means by which unbelievers are brought into the Kingdom of God. Great things happen when God’s people pray!

‘More than Conquerors’ (Romans 8:18-39)

Rev Ian Brown preached from Romans 8:18-39, where we are encouraged to see beyond our suffering to our hope which comes through Jesus’ death and the life that comes in his resurrection. Our salvation is not based on our own goodness or anything else but Jesus. We groan under the weight of sin and long to see Jesus face-to-face. Yet we already have this inheritance and it shapes our prayers and our life now.

‘Jesus, Adam and Us’ (Romans 5:12-21)

Ryan Smith spoke from Romans 5:12-21 about Jesus, Adam and us. Adam’s ‘one small step’ in the garden had giant consequences for all mankind falling into sin. Jesus is a man like Adam, but where Adam fell, Jesus is righteous and his death pays for all mankind. So while all are sinners by Adam (and by choice), we are righteous by faith in Christ.

‘The New Man – The New Life’ (Romans 6:1-14)

Rory Weightman spoke on Romans 6:1-14. After chapter 5 tells us that God’s grace is greater than our sin, chapter 6 starts with the question, “are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?” The answer is no: we died to sin through Jesus’ death; we are freed from sin; we are alive in Christ and so we should not continue in sin! Rather than be mastered by sin, we trust in Jesus as our master.