How Beautiful are the Feet

Sunday, February 11, 2007


Today's sermon is based on Romans 10:12-15, focussing on the topic of mission.

Romans 10:12-15 (NASB)
12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED." 14How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? 15How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS!"

Verse 13 comes from Joel 2:32 and v.15 from Isaiah 52:7.

Joel 2:32
"And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the LORD
Will be delivered;
For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem
There will be those who escape,
As the LORD has said,
Even among the survivors whom the LORD calls.

Isaiah 52:7
How lovely on the mountains
Are the feet of him who brings good news,
Who announces peace
And brings good news of happiness,
Who announces salvation,
And says to Zion, "Your God reigns!"

What strikes me are these few questions (which if I am not mistaken are imperatives) in reverse logic found in v.14-15:

1. How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed?
2. How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard?
3. And how will they hear without a preacher?
4. How will they preach unless they are sent?

Someone needs to be sent. Those sent need to preach. So that those who hear will believe and call upon the name of Jesus.

1. How can one be sent? What is meant by being sent? Who is sent?
One is sent when he is commissioned by God. After the resurrection, when Jesus was addressing the eleven, he said, "Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation" (Mar 16:15). The pertinent question that faces us is this: are you a disciple of Christ. If you are, you are sent: go therefore into all the world and proclaim his good news.

2. How can the one sent preach?
Preaching is the act of exhorting, prophesying, reproving, teaching, proclaiming; discoursing, inculcating the Scriptures. The word needs to be explained, sadly something that is very rarely done in the pulpit these days, and I am certain it does not limit just to the pulpit alone. John Gill (1690-1771) put it very clearly as follows: They who preach ought to preach concerning the person of Christ, his offices, grace, righteousness, blood, sacrifice and satisfaction, otherwise men may hear the preacher, and not hear Christ.

Finally, what does it mean by "how beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news"?

According to Clarke, "feet are variously used in Scripture, and sometimes have respect to things internal and spiritual. For as the life of man and the practice of piety are compared to walking, (Psa 1:1), so his feet may signify the principles on which he acts, and the dispositions of his mind. (Ecc 5:1): Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God. Agreeably to this, the feet of the messengers in Isaiah and of the apostles in this verse, may signify the validity of their mission - the authority upon which they acted, and any character or qualifications with which they were invested."

...

I have been procrastinating for too long. I must start on my Romans 12-16 paper tomorrow, albeit a brief one since I do have vocal lessons and choral practice tomorrow, but start I must!

pearlie
Picture by Dani Simmonds

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