Give Me 100 (Romans with J.D. Walt)

Prayer of Consecration

Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.

Jesus, I belong to you.

I lift up my heart to you.
I set my mind on you.
I fix my eyes on you.
I offer my body as a holy and living sacrifice to you.

Jesus, We belong to you.

Praying in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.


First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you.

I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong—that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith. I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that I planned many times to come to you (but have been prevented from doing so until now) in order that I might have a harvest among you, just as I have had among the other Gentiles.

I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are in Rome.

Romans 1:8–15

Consider This

Can we get our bearings a bit on what is going on here?

Rome, in the first century, was the capital of the world. It was a city of around a million people. The early church in Rome, not to be confused with the modern day Basilica of St. Peter in the Vatican, was a series of house churches likely comprising a total of about one hundred people.

Get this fixed in your mind. We are in the most powerful city in the first century world ruled over by the most powerful (and cruel) man in the world, Lord Caesar (Nero). The threat is a hundred lower-class people scattered across the city (meeting in homes) who are ostensibly being led by a dead man who was reportedly resurrected from the grave and ascended to Heaven and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty, Lord Messiah (Jesus).

It gets better. We are reading a letter written by the apostle Paul around the year 50ish to a tiny church planted by the apostle Peter several years earlier and behold what is unfolding . . .

First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.

The faith of a hundred people is being reported all over the world, and they didn’t even have the internet. By the power of the gospel of Jesus, through the obedience of their faith, one hundred people—bound by love and federated by freedom, would plant the flag of the kingdom of God in such a way that the Roman Empire would ultimately come undone at the seams.

Maybe that’s why John Wesley would write centuries later in the midst of the great British Awakening, “Give me one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not whether they be clergymen or laymen, they alone will shake the gates of Hell and set up the kingdom of Heaven upon Earth.”

This letter to the hundred Christians in the several little Roman house churches is easily the most important letter ever written in the history of the world—not because of what it says to us but what it said to them. For today, my friends, we are them. And Rome is now another name for home. Our ten-year-olds are killing themselves at epidemic rates. Our schools have become slaughter houses. The Democrats and the Republicans and the seductive, toxic politics of outrage will not save the day. Only Jesus can.

That is the message of the letter to the Romans and to us. The gospel of the kingdom of Jesus is the simple yet comprehensive solution for all that is broken in our lives and in the world.

In the first century in a city of a million the faith of a hundred was being reported all over the world. Two months ago, in this the twenty-first century, we witnessed the faith of nineteen college students light the first fires of great awakening in this century so far. And I do not exaggerate when I say their faith is being reported all over the world.

What could happen if we woke up and began to move in the obedience of faith in our time?

Jesus, we belong to you. Yes, Jesus, I belong to you. I am in awe of you and what you can do through the simple obedience of faith. Would you awaken this in me. I confess I think I grasp what it means but I likely have no idea. I offer you my beginner’s mind. Teach me. Train me. Open the eyes of my heart. Enliven the hope of my spirit by your Spirit. We are in need of awakening. We are desperate for you. Praying in Jesus’s name, amen.
Tell me a story of the obedience of faith in your life, a time when you moved by faith in response to some way Jesus was leading you or your family or church. What happened? What is happening?

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