VIDEO RECORDING OF THIS SERMON
In Acts 28:30-31, when Paul dwelt in his own hired house in Rome, he was “Preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him.” How is it, as a prisoner in Rome, under house arrest, for preaching the gospel of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, Paul was able to preach and teach with all confidence. Paul’s confidence was:
Not in gold – Job 31:24-28 – Job said, “If I have made gold my hope, or have said to the fine gold, Thou art my confidence… I should have denied the God that is above.” When Paul was in Caesarea, Felix “hoped also that money should have been given him of Paul,” Acts 24:26. You can persuade people with money. But Paul never had confidence in what money could do for him. Paul had none. Like Jesus had none; every possession he had he used for the ministry.
Not in man or princes – Ps 118:8-9 – he had no political connections to increase his confidence. When the door opened before men in authority, he used the opportunity to preach the gospel to them; not to gain favors.
Not in a friend or a guide – Mic 7:5 – “Trust not in a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide…”. Men are confident when they have other men standing with them. But the hymn says, “Stand up, stand up for Jesus, Stand in his strength alone; The arm of flesh will fail you, You dare not trust your own.” Paul said, “At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me,” 2 Tim 4:16.
Not in the flesh – Phil 3:3 – “we… have no confidence in the flesh.” Paul did not have confidence in his personality, his status, his oratorical skills, or any other aspect of his flesh. He relied upon the Lord. His confidence was in the LordProv 3:26. “For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.”
Paul had confidence in:
The fear of the Lord – Prov 14:26 – “In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence.” Let me explain the difference between the spirit of fear and the fear of the Lord. The Lord hath not given us the spirit of fear, 2 Tim 1:7. When I was 10 years old, I shot a BB at a window and chipped it. When my father inquired about the BB hole, I was afraid. So, I lied, I denied that I did it, I didn’t want to be punished. That’s the spirit of fear. Had I had the fear of the Lord, I would also have had wisdom. With wisdom, I wouldn’t have shot the window in the first place. If, however, I had shot the window, I wouldn’t have waited for Dad to ask me about it. I would have gone to him and confessed it. And I would have never pulled that foolish stunt again. That’s the the fear of God. When you fear God and do right you, don’t fear being accused of or punished for doing wrong. Paul knew he was right where he was supposed to be. The angel of God said, “Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar,” Acts 27:24.
The faith of Christ – Eph 3:8-13 – Eph 3:12 says, “in whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him (Christ Jesus our Lord). In Acts 4:29-31, the disciples prayed for boldness and God granted it to them in a mighty way. By believing God and trusting the Lord Jesus Christ, Paul knew that people in Rome would be saved if he continued to preach the gospel. And they were, Phil 1:12-14; Phil 4:22.
The indwelling love of God – 1 Jn 3:13-24 – 1 Jn 3:21 says, “For if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.” That confidence comes from believing Jesus and loving one another. You have to love them knowing that they are going to hurt you. Paul said, “the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved,” 1 Cor 12:15. He asked the Galatians, “Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth,” Gal 4:16? He was, like Christ, willing to lay down his life for others, Rom 9:3-4.
The provisions of God – 1 Jn 5:14-15 – Confidence in him, “that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us… we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.” Heb 4:16 tells us to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Paul said, “I labored more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me,” 1 Cor 15:10. You can have confidence in the grace of God.
Conclusion: And these are where our confidence comes from. But if you’re not saved 1 Jn 3:23 says we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ. Have you believed? If you have, 1 Jn 2:28 says, “abide in him; that when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.” You will be ashamed if you don’t trust Christ to save you.