ROMANS 10:9 (2)
(from a manuscript of a sermon preached on 4/24/11 at Sovereign Redeemer Assembly)
Please turn in your Bibles to Romans 10, and let’s read verses 4 through 13:
Romans 10: (4) For Christ [is] the end of Law for righteousness to everyone that believes. (5) For Moses writes [of] the righteousness [which is] of the Law: The man doing these things shall live by them. (6) But the righteousness of faith says this: Do not say in your heart, Who will go up into Heaven? (that is, to bring down Christ); (7) or, Who will go down into the abyss? (that is, to bring Christ up from [the] dead.) (8) But what does it say? The Word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart (that is, the Word of faith which we proclaim). (9) Because if you confess [the] Lord Jesus with your mouth, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from [the] dead, you will be saved. (10) For with [the] heart [one] believes unto righteousness, and with [the] mouth [on]e confesses unto salvation. (11) For the Scripture says, Everyone believing on Him will not be put to shame. (12) For there is no difference both of Jew and of Greek, for the same Lord of all is rich toward all the ones calling on Him. (13) For everyone, whoever may call on the name of [the] Lord will be saved.
The last time we were here, we went over the ACTION of confession and belief in verse 9. Today, the Lord willing, we will begin to go into the CONTENT of confession and belief. Let’s read verse 9 again:
Romans 10: (9) Because if you confess [the] Lord Jesus with your mouth, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from [the] dead, you will be saved.
So what is being confessed and believed? The first thing is simply, “the Lord Jesus.” The second thing is “God raised Him from the dead.” Over the next two sermons, the Lord willing, we will take these two things and go into what they mean.
The first is “the Lord Jesus.” The Greek is KOO-ree-on ee-ay-SOON. LORD JESUS. Does this mean that a person can just say the words “Lord Jesus” or the phrase “Jesus is Lord” to himself and others, having no idea what it means, or having some false, twisted view of what it means? How many times have we heard things like, “They just need to believe in the Lord Jesus, not some doctrine.” Really? So belief in the Lord Jesus and belief of doctrine are mutually exclusive, according to them. To them, the phrase “Lord Jesus” is a phrase devoid of doctrine. Well, if it’s devoid of doctrine, then what is it? It’s just a meaningless phrase. And if we start to define it, some of these self-righteous religionists will immediately cry foul and say we’re adding requirements to the gospel or some such slanderous nonsense. But we know that WORDS MEAN THINGS. “Lord Jesus” isn’t some mystical phrase that, when chanted, gives some sort of ecstatic experience. LORD means something, and JESUS means something. Let’s turn over to 1 Corinthians 12:3:
1 Corinthians 12: (3) Because of this I make known to you that no one speaking by [the] Spirit of God says, Jesus [is] a curse. And no one is able to say Jesus [is] Lord, except by [the] Holy Spirit.
Does this mean that no one can literally utter the words “Jesus is Lord” without the Holy Spirit? Does it mean that everyone who literally utters the words “Jesus is Lord” is saved, no matter what else they believe or say or do? Of course not. Jesus Himself said in Matthew 7:21, “Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but the ones who do the will of My Father in Heaven.” He then went on to talk about the people on their way to hell who called Jesus Lord, and Jesus said he never knew them. In Luke 6:46, Jesus Christ said, “And why do you call Me Lord, Lord, and do not do what I say?” He then went on to contrast people who hear His words and do them to people who hear His words and do not do them. So it’s not just telling yourself or others that Jesus is Lord. You must TRULY KNOW and BELIEVE that JESUS IS LORD. 1 Corinthians 12:3 means that no one can TRULY CONFESS his belief that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit. Belief that Jesus is Lord is an immediate and inevitable fruit of regeneration. So let’s get into what it means.
Let’s first look at the word “JESUS.” In the Greek, it’s Ee-ay-SOOS, which is a transliteration of the Hebrew Yeh-HOSH-u-a and in later Hebrew Yeh-SHU-ah, meaning “Jehovah is salvation.” It is the name given to the second person of the Trinity, God the Son, when he became flesh upon being conceived in the womb of the virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit. Let’s turn to Matthew 1 and read verses 18 through 25:
Matthew 1: (18) And the birth of Jesus Christ was this way (for His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph) before the coming together of them, she was found having [babe] in womb by [the] Holy Spirit. (19) But her husband [to be], Joseph, being just, and not willing to make her a public example, he purposed to put her away secretly. (20) And [as] he [wa]s thinking about these things, behold, an angel of [the] Lord was seen by him in a dream, saying, Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary [as] your wife. For that in her is generated by [the] Holy Spirit. (21) And she will bear a son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins. (22) And all this happened so that might be fulfilled that [which was] spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, (23) Behold! The virgin will conceive in [her] womb and will bear a son, and they will call His name Emmanuel (which translated is, God with us). (24) And being aroused from sleep, Joseph did as the angel of [the] Lord commanded him, and took his wife, (25) and did not know her until she bore her son, the First-born. And he called His name Jesus.
Now let’s turn to Luke 1 and read verses 26 through 35:
Luke 1: (26) And in the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, (27) to a virgin who had been betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of [the] house of David; and the virgin's name [was] Mary. (28) And entering, the angel said to her, Hail, [one] having received grace! The Lord [is] with you. You [are] blessed among women! (29) And seeing [this], she was disturbed at his word, and considered what kind of greeting this might be. (30) And the angel said to her, Do not fear, Mary, for you have found favor from God. (31) And behold! You will conceive in [your] womb and bear a Son, and you will call His name Jesus. (32) This One will be great and will be called Son of [the] Most High. And the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. (33) And He will reign over the house of Jacob to the ages, and of His kingdom there will be no end. (34) But Mary said to the angel, How will this be since I do not know a man? (35) And answering, the angel said to her, The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and [the] power of [the] Most High will overshadow you, and for this reason that Holy [One] being born of you will be called Son of God.
So Joseph and Mary named the child Jesus in obedience to God’s command, for He was to save His people from their sins, and He was to be “God with us” in fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah, and He was to be called the Son of God. Now let’s turn to the passage where Jesus was born, which is in Luke 2, verses 6 through 21:
Luke 2: (6) And it happened as they were there, the days were fulfilled [for] her to bear. (7) And she bore her son, the First-born. And she wrapped Him and laid Him in the manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. (8) And shepherds were in the same country living in the fields and keeping guard over their flock [by] night. (9) And, behold, an angel of [the] Lord came on them. And [the] glory of [the] Lord shone around them. And they feared with a great fear. (10) And the angel said to them, Do not fear. For, behold, I proclaim good news to you, a great joy, which will be to all people, (11) because today a Savior, who is Christ [the] Lord, was born to you in [the] city of David. (12) And this [is] a sign to you: You will find a babe having been wrapped, lying in the manger. (13) And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of [the] heavenly host, praising God and saying, (14) Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth, good will among men. (15) And it happened as the angels departed from them into the heaven, even the men, the shepherds, said to one another, Indeed, let us go over to Bethlehem, and let us see this thing occurring, which the Lord made known to us. (16) And hurrying, they came and sought out both Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger. (17) And seeing, they publicly told about the word spoken to them about this Child. (18) And all those hearing marveled about the things spoken to them by the shepherds. (19) And Mary kept all these words, meditating in her heart. (20) And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all things which they heard and saw, even as was spoken to them. (21) And when eight days were fulfilled to circumcise the child His name was called Jesus, [the name] called by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
So this is the Jesus that is being talked about in Romans 10:9. He was conceived in the womb by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He was in the line of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and David. He was a real human being with real flesh and blood who came into the world as a baby and grew up to be a man, which is recorded in the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. He walked the earth and taught and did miracles. He got hungry, felt pain, and experienced sadness and anger. Yet, unlike all other human beings, he never sinned. Let’s turn to Hebrews 4:15:
Hebrews 4: (15) For we do not have a high priest not being able to sympathize with our weaknesses but [One] having been tried in all respects according to [our] likeness, apart from sin.
Now to 1 Peter 2:21-22:
1 Peter 2: (21) For you were called to this, for even Christ suffered on our behalf, leaving behind an example for us, that you should follow His steps; (22) who did not sin, nor was guile found in His mouth;
So when we talk about the Jesus of the Bible, this is who we’re talking about. Now if you’ve noticed, I haven’t talked about His death up to this point, which I plan to go over in more detail in another sermon, the Lord willing. Suffice it to say for now that Jesus, as a human being, actually died when he was killed by certain people. So what I want you to get from looking into the word “Jesus” is that He was really and truly and fully a man, born of a woman, born under the law, as Galatians 4:4 says, meaning that He was subject to the law, and He perfectly, sinlessly kept the law. So he was a sinless human being. These two doctrines – that Jesus was truly man and that Jesus was truly sinless – are essential gospel doctrines. Without Jesus being truly man, He could not have been the representative and substitute of men, the mediator between God and man. Without Jesus being truly sinless, He would not have been the perfect sacrifice, and there would be no imputation of perfect righteousness to His people. So these are doctrines that you can’t do without. No one who denies the humanity of Jesus is saved, and no one who denies the sinlessness of Jesus is saved. Every true believer believes in Jesus as sinless man.
Now let’s look at the word “LORD.” The Greek word is KOO-ree-os. This comes from the word KOO-ros, meaning power, supremacy, and control. So a “lord” is one who has power, supremacy, and control. Now when we talk about earthly “lords,” we acknowledge that they have a degree of power, supremacy, and control. But what about THE Lord? Let’s turn to Matthew 4. This is the account of Jesus being tested by Satan. I want us to read two of Jesus Christ’s responses to Satan. Let’s read verses 7 and 10:
Matthew 4: (7) Jesus said to him, Again it has been written: You shall not tempt [the] Lord your God. … (10) Then Jesus said to him, Go, Satan! For it has been written: You shall worship [the] Lord your God, and you shall serve Him only.
The Greek word for “Lord” in these two verses is KOO-ree-os. But we can see that Jesus is quoting from the Old Testament – specifically, the book of Deuteronomy. So what we can do is look up the Old Testament passage to find out what the Hebrew equivalent of the Greek word KOO-ree-os is. And what do you think we’ll find? It’s what is called the “tetragammon” – four Hebrew letters: Yood Hey Wo Hey – Y H W H. It’s sometimes pronounced Yah-Weh, and it’s sometimes pronounced Ye-ho-VAH. In English, it’s Jehovah. Let’s look at passage from Deuteronomy that Jesus quotes: Deuteronomy 6:13-19:
Deuteronomy 6: (13) You shall fear Jehovah your God, and you shall serve Him, and you shall swear by His name. (14) You shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the peoples who [are] around you, (15) for Jehovah your God [is] a jealous God in your midst, lest the anger of Jehovah your God burn against you, and He destroy you from off the face of the earth. (16) You shall not test Jehovah your God as you tested [Him] in Massah. (17) Keeping you shall keep the commands of Jehovah your God, and His testimonies, and His statutes which He has commanded you. (18) And you shall do the right thing and the good thing in the eyes of Jehovah, so that it may be well with you, and that you may go in and possess the good land which Jehovah has sworn to your fathers, (19) to cast out all your enemies from before you, as Jehovah has spoken.
THAT’S what “Lord” is when we’re talking about Jesus! We’re talking about JESUS as JEHOVAH! There are other passages in the New Testament that quote from the Old Testament and use KOO-ree-os, and when you look back in the Old Testament, it is Jehovah. We can also get a good idea when we look at the Septuagint, which is the Greek translation of the Old Testament. So when we look for the Greek word KOO-ree-os in the Septuagint to see what its equivalent is in the Hebrew, what do you think we find? Ye-ho-VAH. Now what kind of power, supremacy, and control does JEHOVAH have according to the Old Testament? Well, there are way too many passages referencing Jehovah in the Old Testament for us to go through them, but it’s a good study. Be sure to use a Hebrew concordance rather than Strong’s, because the KJV translates it as “Lord” rather than “Jehovah” in all but four instances. Jehovah is the supreme, sovereign creator, sustainer, and controller of the universe. He is no less than God Himself.
In the New Testament, the phrases “Lord Jesus” and “Lord Jesus Christ” and “Christ Jesus the Lord” are numerous, and we won’t go into them in this sermon. But let’s look in the New Testament to see some other passages in which Jesus is described as Lord:
Acts 2: (17) And it shall be in the last days, God says, I will pour from My Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy; and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; (18) and also I will pour out My Spirit on My slaves and slave women in those days, and they shall prophesy. (19) And I will give wonders in the heaven above, and [miraculous] signs on the earth below, blood and fire and vapor of smoke. (20) The sun will be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and glorious day of [the] Lord. (21) And it shall be [that] everyone who shall call on [the] name of the Lord will be saved. (22) Men, Israelites, hear these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a Man from God, having been approved among you by works of power and wonders and [miraculous] signs, which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know, (23) this One given [to you] by the before-determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, [you] having taken by lawless hands, having crucified [Him], you killed [Him]. (24) [But] God raised [Him] up, loosing the throes of death, because it was not possible for Him to be held by it (25) For David said as to Him, I always foresaw the Lord before Me, because He is at My right [hand], that I not be moved. (26) For this reason My heart rejoiced, and My tongue was glad; and My flesh also will dwell on hope, (27) because You will not leave My soul in Hades, nor will You give Your Holy One to see corruption. (28) You revealed to Me paths of life; You will fill Me with joy with Your face. (29) Men, brothers, it is permitted to say to you with plainness as to the patriarch David, that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is among us until this day. (30) Being a prophet, then, and knowing that God swore with an oath to him that of [the] fruit of his loin, as concerning flesh, to raise the Christ to sit on his throne, (31) foreseeing, he spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that His soul was not left in Hades, nor did His flesh see corruption. (32) This Jesus, God raised up, of which we all are witnesses. (33) Then being exalted to the right of God, and receiving the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, He poured out this which you now see and hear. (34) For David did not ascend into Heaven, but he says, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at My right [hand] (35) until I place [thos]e hostile to You as a footstool for Your feet. (36) Then assuredly, let all [th]e house of Israel acknowledge that God made Him both Lord and Christ, this same Jesus whom you crucified.
Acts 10: (36) The Word which He sent to the sons of Israel, preaching the gospel of peace through Jesus Christ, this One is Lord of all.
1 Corinthians 2: (7) But we speak [the] wisdom of God in a mystery, having been hidden, which God predetermined before the ages for our glory, (8) which none of the rulers of this age has known. For if they had known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory;
1 Corinthians 15: (47) The first man [was] out of earth, earthy. The second Man [was] the Lord out of Heaven.
1 Timothy 6: (13) I charge you before God, He making all things alive, and Christ Jesus, the [One] witnessing the good confession [to] Pontius Pilate, (14) that you keep the commandment spotless, blameless, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, (15) who in His own time will reveal the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords, (16) the only [One] having immortality, living in light that cannot be approached, whom no one of men saw, nor can see; to whom be honor and everlasting might. Amen.
Hebrews 1: (1) In many ways and in various ways of old, God spoke to the fathers in the prophets; (2) in these last days [He] spoke to us in [the] Son, whom He appointed heir of all; through whom He indeed made the ages; (3) who being the shining splendor of [His] glory, and the express image of His essence, and upholding all things by the Word of His power, having made purification of our sins through Himself, [He] sat down on [the] right of the Majesty on high, (4) having become so much better than the angels, He has inherited a name more excellent than they. (5) For to which of the angels did He ever say, You are My Son; today I have begotten You? And again, I will be a Father to Him, and He shall be a Son to Me. (6) And again, when He brought the First-born into the world, He said, And let all [the] angels of God worship Him. (7) And as to the angels, He said, Who makes His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire; (8) but as to the Son, Your throne, [O ]God, [is] forever and ever, A scepter of uprightness [is] the scepter of Your kingdom; (9) You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; because of this God, Your God, has anointed You [with] the oil of gladness beside Your fellows. (10) And, You, Lord, at [the] beginning founded the earth, and the heavens are works of Your hands. (11) They will vanish away, but You will continue; and [they] will all become old, like a garment, (12) and You shall fold them up like a covering, and [they] shall be changed. But You are the same, and Your years shall not fail.
1 Peter 2: (1) Then laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil words, (2) as newborn babes desire the pure soul-nourishing milk, that you may grow by it; (3) if indeed you tasted that the Lord is good; (4) to whom having drawn near, a living Stone, indeed having been rejected by men, but chosen by God, precious; (5) you also as living stones are being built a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Revelation 1: (4) John to the seven assemblies in Asia: Grace to you, and peace, from the [One] who is, and who was, and who [is] coming, and from the seven spirits which are before His throne; (5) even from Jesus Christ the Faithful Witness, the First-born out of the dead, and the Ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him loving us and washing us from our sins by His blood, (6) and made us kings and priests to God, even His Father. To Him [is] the glory and the might forever and ever. Amen. (7) Behold, He comes with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, and the ones who pierced Him, and all the tribes of the earth will wail on account of Him. Yes, Amen. (8) I am the Alpha and the Omega, [the] Beginning and [the] Ending, says the Lord, the [One] who is, and who was, and who [is] coming, the Almighty.
Revelation 11: (16) And the twenty four elders sitting before God on their thrones fell on their faces and worshiped God, (17) saying, We thank You, Lord God Almighty, the [One] who is, and who was, and who is coming, because You took Your great power and reigned.
Revelation 17: (14) These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and the ones with Him [are] the called and elect and faithful ones.
Rev 19: (11) And I saw Heaven being opened. And, behold! A white horse, and He sitting on it having been called Faithful and True. And He judges and wars in righteousness. (12) And His eyes [were] as a flame of fire, and on His head many diadems, having a name that had been written, which no one knows except Himself; (13) and having been clothed in a garment which had been dipped in blood. And His name is called The Word of God. (14) And the armies in Heaven followed Him on white horses, being dressed in fine linen, white and pure. (15) And out of His mouth goes forth a sharp sword, that with it He might smite the nations. And He will shepherd them with an iron rod. And He treads the winepress of the wine of the anger and of the wrath of God Almighty. (16) And He has on [His] garment and on His thigh a name having been written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
These are quite powerful passages on Jesus Christ as the LORD, the One who has power, supremacy, and control. The beginning of the book of John says that all things came into being through Jesus Christ. Colossians 1:16-17 says that all things were created in, through, and for Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ is before all things, and all things have subsisted in Him. Colossians 2:9 says that in Jesus Christ dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. There can be no doubt that Jesus Christ is God, the sovereign controller of the universe. He is truly and fully God Almighty. This is an essential gospel doctrine. Without Jesus being truly God, He could not have been mediator between God and man. He could not have been perfect. He could not have furnished a sacrifice of sufficient value to meet the demands of God’s justice. He could not have made an atonement. He could not have made peace between a holy God and sinful man. He could not have endured the equivalent of an eternity in hell for His people. He could not have the power to forgive sins. He could not have destroyed the power of death. He could not have been the Savior. His obedience and death could not have merited everlasting life for everyone whom He represented. This is a doctrine that you can’t do without. No one who denies the deity of Jesus is saved. Every true believer believes in Jesus as God. And, of course, if you have false notions of who God is, you’re going to have false notions of Jesus as God.
So what have we see thus far? We have seen the essential doctrine of the PERSON of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the God-Man Mediator. That’s what “the Lord Jesus” means. Many who come in the name of Christianity would like to stop right there, even though they don’t even have that part right. They want to say that belief in the deity of Christ is the only thing that every believer has in common. But you can’t separate the PERSON of Jesus Christ from the WORK of Jesus Christ. Even the phrase “God-Man Mediator” is meaningless outside of what Jesus Christ DID. And we see in Romans 10:9, Jesus as Lord is only one part of what all believers believe. Now it is not to be minimized; Jesus as Lord is absolutely of primary importance. But Jesus as Lord by itself, without the work of the Lord Jesus, is not the gospel. The second part of Romans 10:9 goes over the WORK of Jesus Christ, and that’s what we’ll be focusing on next time, the Lord willing.
For now, we see the person of Jesus Christ. He existed from eternity past as Jehovah God the Son, through whom the universe was created, and by whom the universe is controlled. In time, He became flesh, was conceived in the womb of the virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit, was born under the law, and perfectly kept the law. He is the only mediator between God and men, for He alone has partaken of both the divine and human natures and is alone able to lay His hand upon both God and Man. He is Christ Jesus the Lord. Amen.