Monday 7 April 2014

My Journey to the Reformed Faith (part 4 and the Book of Romans)

It is with fond memories that I write this particular blog post. I had figured out in my reformed pilgrimage, that if I wanted to understand the gospel, that I needed to understand the Book of Romans. Having become familiar with Martyn Lloyd-Jones already, I had discovered that his magnum opus was his Romans series. So, I decided to read his whole series on Romans, books which are on my book shelves now, just an arms length from my computer as I type. This was a series of expositions on Romans that he delivered in Westminster Chapel in London from 1955-1968. The books comprise 14 volumes, covering from Romans 1:1-14:17.

As I began to grasp the gospel doctrines in Romans, my world view changed, with that my understanding of salvation. However, what I remember as I write this blog post is that I was thrilled with knowledge of the gospel, as I learned about the righteousness of God, the wrath of God, propitiation, justification by faith, adoption, the perseverance of the saints, imputed righteousness, and God's sovereignty in Romans chapter 9. The words of holy Scripture acted like a "plough in my soul" breaking up wrong thinking, but it was the thrill of the discovery of these doctrines that I remember so vividly. I perhaps read these volumes over more than a year and I began to preach on the book of Romans at that time at every opportunity I had.

It would be fair to say that the Book of Romans was my "meat and drink" for around five years, When we served in overseas missions as a family, I was asked to lead a voluntary Bible study and we decided to study Romans. Many young people were similarly gripped with the Book of Romans as I was, as we studied this book for around a year. The Reformed faith is nothing less than a thrilling discovery of the doctrines of the Bible.

This leaves us to ask some searching questions. Are you thrilled with the gospel? Do you understand all the doctrines that are connected to the gospel? Do you desire to grow in your knowledge of the Book of Romans? The reformed faith is the sixteenth century recovery of doctrines which go back to the time of the apostles', the same historic truths which fallen man tries to bury in every generation. Psalm 100:5 stands true: "For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations" (NASB).

(This series by Martyn Lloyd-Jones on Romans is published by the Banner of Truth)

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