“The gospel that is presented to unbelievers has eternal ramifications. If it is the true gospel, it can direct men and women into the everlasting kingdom. If it is a corrupted message, it can give unsaved people false hope, while consigning them to eternal damnation. This is not merely a matter for theologians to discuss and debate and speculate about. This is an issue that every single pastor and lay person must understand in order that the gospel may be rightly proclaimed to all the nations. We understand that here at Southside Tabernacle Baptist Church and dedicate this site to God, praying that He allows us to use it as a tool to enrich the lives of the elect, and evangelize the lost.” ~Southside Tabernacle Baptist Church, St. Peterburg, Florida

Many people have been led to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ when presented with the gospel through an evangelistic technique known as “The Roman’s Road”, a reference to select Scriptures extracted from Paul’s Epistle to the Romans.

In the presentation of the Romans Road, an individual is told, “You are a sinner.”  The Bible says, “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one” (Rom. 3:10). The Bible says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). Because you have sinned, there is a price to pay for transgressing the Law of God.

Romans 6:23 states that the penalty for sin is death. “For the wages of sin is death.” There is a physical death to pay for sinning against God, but there is also an eternal spiritual death to be extracted in a place called Hell.

That, of course is not good news, it is bad news. However, there is good news for the second part of Romans 6:23 says that “the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Eternal life is yours for the asking, and yours for the receiving, because Godloves sinners, and Christ has died for the same. The Bible says that “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).

However, to personally know the love, grace, and forgiveness of God, a person must call upon the name of the Lord in order to be saved. The Bible says “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Rom. 10:9, 10).

If you realize you are a sinner and are in need of salvation, if you would like to call upon the name of the Lord but are not sure how, here is a suggested prayer to pray.

“Heavenly Father, I understand that I have sinned. I acknowledge I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I confess, Heavenly Father, that with my sinful ways I have earned the wages of death, not only physical death, but eternal death and separation from You. But Lord, I do want to be saved. I ask for Your gift of eternal life through Your Son, Jesus Christ, the Lord. I now confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. I do believe in Jesus, and desire to receive Him as my personal Savior. Father God, I ask You to forgive me of all my sins, and save me in this very hour. I receive Your gifts of salvation and eternal life. By faith, I confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. I thank you for Your matchless grace and mercy. Father, enable me to live for You all the days of my life. In Jesus’ name I now pray. Amen.”

Any evangelistic Christian who wishes to remember the Romans Road might want to link one verse to the next in a chain reference beginning with Romans 3:10. Write next to Romans 3:10, in the margin of your Bible, Romans 3:23. After turning to that passage and commenting upon it, write in the margin, Romans 6:23. Then, by Romans 6:23 write Romans 5:8. By Romans 5:8, write Romans 10:9-10.

What the Christian witness must not forget in presenting the “simple” gospel is that salvation is of the Lord. This means that if a person being witnessed to feels the weight of their sin, is convicted of the same by the Holy Spirit, is truly repentant and longs to be fundamentally and forever different, it is because God has already birthed them. Regeneration precedes faith.

1 John 5:1 explains.

“Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him”. The Bible says that everyone who sincerely calls upon the name of the Lord does so because that individual has been, past tense, born of God.

From a Biblical perspective, the person who prays “The Sinners Prayer”, in sincerity, will do so because they have been born from above, according to Jesus.

One night Jesus spoke to a man named Nicodemus, a religious man and ruler of the Jews.

“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3).

The phrase “born again” (Gk. anothen) means to be born “from above.” This is a vital concept for the evangelistic Christian to understand when presenting the gospel, for the truth of the matter is that salvation is not as plain and simple as some might think.

It might be thought that “all” a person needs to do, or say, in order to be saved, is found in Romans 10:9, as if nothing else matters in Scripture. It is so simple. End of discussion. Nothing else matters. No other information is important.

But there is much else that does matter prior to a good gospel presentation and confession of Christ. Jesus said that before a person can properly believe they must be convicted by the Holy Spirit of sin, righteousness, and judgment. “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” (John 16:8).

Before Paul reached the great gospel crescendo of Romans 10:9, 10, he spent considerable time developing that passage in a detailed and logical order. That prelude must not be diminished, neglected, or dismissed.

Many Christians are impatient with studying the framework and context of any given passage in Scripture, despite the command of God to do exactly that. “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little” (Isaiah 28:10).

Because there is a popular misconception that the gospel is simple, and salvation is easy, and belief is something natural to the unconverted, there is an impatience with those who try to share there is more to the moment of salvation than might be imagined. There is a divine perspective to be understood, and there is a false confession and calling upon the Lord to be concerned about.

Jesus taught that salvation is not easy, but is rare and difficult. Jesus said, “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat” (Matt. 7:13).

Neither is the gospel as easy to understand as many have been led to believe. When the Ethiopian was asked by Philip if he understood the Scriptures he was reading, the reply was, “How can I, except some man should guide me?” (Acts 8:30).

The same is true in every generation. It is true today. There is a reason why it is true.

The Bible says the unconverted, the Natural Man, cannot understand the Bible, no matter how simply the language might appear to be, or how plainly it seems to be written. Why? The author of the Book to the Romans explains in his Epistle to the Corinthians. “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor. 2:14).

Because all of this is true, the exhortation comes to the concerned Christian doing the work of an evangelist to be sure to “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15). You will need to know the gospel, not only as it is encapsulated in Romans 10:9, 10, but as it is defined in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4.

“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures”.

The Christian doing the work of an evangelist must not assume that the unbeliever wants to be saved, and all they need to hear is John 3:16, or Romans 10:9, 10. No, the Bible says, “There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God” (Rom. 3:11).

The Christian doing the work of an evangelist must understand the danger in the popular doctrine and impatient presentation of Easy Believism, and Reduction Theology, whereby salvation is present in four points and a prayer. The German theologian and martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffers warned against easy believism in his book, The Cost of Discipleship.

One main reason so many people talk about being saved when they were young, can be traced to the doctrine of easy believism. It is not difficult to extract a confession of faith and baptize a person, especially when they are young, when the gospel is not truly understood.

Many people get the idea that the rest of Christian theology does not matter to much. It has no bearing on salvation.

As a result, millions live outside the Church with a false sense of security based on a distorted understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Individuals live without any love for Christ or submission to His Lordship. They exist week by week, month after month, year after year without any Christian consciousness or standards.

A lifestyle of selfish and sensual indulgence, without sorrow, shame, or repentance is embraced. When the matter of salvation is spoken of, these same individuals foolishly believe they are saved and will go to heaven when they die. So many are encouraged to believe this. They remember they once prayed a prayer, and were baptized. And they believe John 3:16, Acts 16:31, and Romans 10:9, 10. Just like the Devil believes.

The biblical command for every maturing spiritual confessing Christian is to examine themselves to see if they are truly in the sphere of saving grace.

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” (2 Cor. 13:5).

Why is this not done?

Why are people allowed to drift from the Church without warning them of having a false faith?

One reason for the lack of indifference by Christians who should know better can be traced to the evangelistic impatience in getting a decision, a confession, or a Sinner’s Prayer, out of someone who proves in time to be hostile to God, indifferent to the Church, and neglectful of the great salvation that can be found in Christ based on true repentance of sin.

Jesus said, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matt. 16:24).

The truth of the matter is that the gospel is more than four points and a prayer. The gospel is more than a meaningless affirmation of faith. James said, “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone” (James 2:17).

For the Christian doing the work of an evangelist, there is this exhortation. Do not mistake a summary of a gospel truth in a favorite verse for the full gospel. The gospel in all of its fulness is what people need to hear and understand in order to have authentic faith. Beware of that impatient evangelism which leads to easy believism, and a spurious confession of nominal faith.

Herein is the Word of the Lord.

“For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.”


(Acts 20:27)

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