God Is Central

by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

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Paul’s Epistle to the Romans is the foundation book of Christian theology. It brings us face to face with facts we ought to know and must know to be saved.

In the 16th and 17th verses of the first chapter, the apostle declares that he is proud of the gospel because therein the “righteousness”, or rightness of God is revealed.

God had to deal righteously with sin before He could offer salvation to sinners. Sin is not merely an affliction; it is moral wrong and kindles the wrath of a just and holy God.

The wrath of God is too little discussed by modern evangelists and preachers. They like to talk about the love and mercy of God, as though He were a Grand Old Man with a tolerant attitude toward sin. But they never fully appreciate His love and mercy because they do not understand His infinite wrath against sin.

Much evangelism today has become sort of a “try God” gimmick. The pleasures of the world don’t satisfy? Try God. You can’t shake off some terrible bondage? Try God. When all else fails, Try God!

But this humanistic approach is foreign to Scripture. God, His holiness, His wrath against sin and His love in providing salvation — these are central in Scripture, not man and his condition and his needs.

We are not to look upon God as our servant, who will help us in time of need, but as the Holy One whose justice we have offended but who, in infinite grace, paid for our sins Himself so that we might be redeemed. This is why the Epistle to the Romans begins its mighty argument with almost three chapters on the subject of sin. Then follows the Good News of God’s grace in settling the sin question so that we might be “justified freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Rom.3:24).

And thus the same inspired writer declares in Ephesians 2:2-4 that we were “the children of disobedience” and therefore “the children of wrath”, but then goes on to show “God, who is rich in mercy” and “great” in “love”, saves believers by grace, giving them eternal life in Christ, who died for our sins.

To the Reader:

Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:

"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."

To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.

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