"Boldly…"

March 31, 2014

“Boldly…”

Blessings folk!

Paul states that he has written boldly to the church at Rome.

Why?

Read and see what the Lord says...

Romans 15:15-16
15 But I have written very boldly to you on some points so as to remind you again, because of the grace that was given me from God,
16 to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles, ministering as a priest the gospel of God, so that my offering of the Gentiles may become acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.


He wrote strongly to remind them.
Remind.
They already had heard.
They already knew.
They simply needed to be reminded.
Reminded of what?
Well, one would have to read through the previous portion of the letter.
Some of the issues addressed were:

  • accepting OneAnother
  • spiritual gifts
  • the Gospel
  • Israel
Many things.

Paul acknowledges that it is the grace of God that enables him to speak these things.
This grace was given so that Paul was a “minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles.”
He literally brought the gospel of God...as a “priest”.
He desired that they would be acceptable in their walk before God.
He desired that they would be sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

The same applies today.
We are an offering to the Most High God.
We are sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
Are you living boldly before the Lord?
Are you speaking boldly?

"Convinced…"

March 30, 2014

“Convinced…”

Blessings folk!

Paul had written some forceful, bold and much needed words to the Body of Christ at Rome.

Read the following verse.
Note what the Spirit says through Paul.
Receive this Word.
It is for us also.

Romans 15:14
14 And concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able also to admonish one another.


Encouragement.
Exhortation.
Pressing On.

They were full of goodness.
They were filled with all knowledge.
They were able to admonish one another.

Not by any ability of the flesh.
Not by any ability of their “nature”.
But, by the Spirit that lived within the true believer.

Such is today.
We can admonish OneAnother in love.

"Abound…"

March 29, 2014

“Abound…”

Blessings folk!

What fills you?
Do you have joy?
Are you consumed with peace?
Are you empowered?

If you are a True Believer, then there are certain things that should be the norm.

Read the point of conclusion that the Lord gives us…

Romans 15:13
13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.


The Spirit had communicated tough Words, such is acknowledged later.
These Words were for the exhortation and building up of the Body of Christ.

We see that it is the God of hope that fills us…

  • with Hope. Do you not have hope? Look upon Him rather than circumstance.
  • with all joy...not just “some”…”all”!
  • with peace. By believing Him.

We are to abound…
  • in hope

How?
  • by the power of the Holy Spirit

A True Believer should continually manifest...
Hope
Joy
Peace
Power of the Holy Spirit

Do we?
If not, why?

"Gentiles. It Was Foretold…"

March 28, 2014

“Gentiles. It Was Foretold…”

Blessings folk!

It was written long ago.
The Jewish leadership knew the Word.
Did they understand?
Would they accept?

From their behavior we would have to say “no”, at least not in the sense that God intended.

In the midst of exhorting us to live among OneAnother in the manner that the Lord modeled, the Spirit led Paul to write about how the Lord had prophesied of a time when the Gentiles would worship Him.

Read the following verses...some of which we have already examined.
Give close attention to the Word from the Old Testament...watch the “quotes” in verses 9-12.

Romans 15:7-12
7 Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God. 8 For I say that Christ has become a servant to the circumcision on behalf of the truth of God to confirm the promises given to the fathers,
9 and for the Gentiles to glorify God for His mercy; as it is written,
“Therefore I will give praise to You among the Gentiles, And I will sing to Your name.”
10 Again he says,
“Rejoice, O Gentiles, with His people.”
11 And again,
“Praise the Lord all you Gentiles, And let all the peoples praise Him.”
12 Again Isaiah says,
“There shall come the root of Jesse, And He who arises to rule over the Gentiles, In Him shall the Gentiles hope.”

It was foretold that the Gentiles would see the praise of the Lord.
It was foretold that the Gentiles would rejoice in the Lord.
It was foretold that the Gentiles would praise the Lord...all the peoples.
It was foretold that the Gentiles would be ruled by the Root of Jesse.
It was foretold that the Gentiles would have hope in Him.

The Gentiles among us who have believed unto salvation have been grafted in to the Promises of the Most High.

Rejoice!


"Just As Christ…to the Glory of God"

March 27, 2014

“Just As Christ...to the Glory of God”

Blessings folk!

Jesus is the Example for all that we have seen to this point in Romans 14-15.
Read and note…

Romans 15:7-9
7 Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God. 8 For I say that Christ has become a servant to the circumcision on behalf of the truth of God to confirm the promises given to the fathers,
9 and for the Gentiles to glorify God for His mercy; as it is written,
“Therefore I will give praise to You among the Gentiles, And I will sing to Your name.”

“Therefore”…

  • in light of the previous information

Therefore, accept OneAnother.

We are to accept OneAnother in the same way that Christ accepted us...to the glory of God.

Jesus became a servant.
Did you notice to whom?

He became a servant to the “circumcision”...the Jews...on behalf of the truth of God.
Why?
To confirm the promises given the father.
Several Old Testament passages are then quoted (we will see them&hellipWinking.

But, Jesus was not only a servant to the Jews.
Verse 9 shows us that He came for the Gentiles also...to glorify God for His mercy.

Jesus...to the glory of God.
Jesus...to the Jews...on behalf of the truth of God.
Jesus...to the Gentiles...to glorify God for His mercy...“Therefore I will give praise to You among the Gentiles, And I will sing to Your name.” Ps. 18:49

We as Believers indwelled by the Most High should also accept/welcome/receive OneAnother to the glory of God.

Not the glory of self.
Not the glory of man.
The glory of God.


"One..."

March 26, 2014

“One…”

Blessings folk!

The Lord created the Body of Christ to be One.
It is inherit within our structure as the Bride of Christ that we are One.

Then why the faction?
Then why the division?
Then why the fracture?

It is because we do not live the way that He designed.
We have seen this repeatedly in recent days in the Scripture that we have examined.

Take a moment and reread what we have seen the past couple of days…

Romans 15:1-4
1 Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.
2 Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification.
3 For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.”
4 For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.

Now, read the next verses.
This is convicting.

Romans 15:5-6
5 Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus,
6 so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.


God gives perseverance.
God gives encouragement, especially in the Scripture.
God grants to us to be of the same mind with OneAnother according to Christ Jesus.

It is in Christ Jesus that we are of OneMind.
Not in agreement of carpet color.
Not in style preferences of music.
In Christ.

It is in this unity of Christ that we are of OneAccord.
It is in this unity that we glorify God and the Lord Jesus Christ with OneVoice.

Anything else is the false religion of man.
Anything else is a strategy of the evil one to deceive us.

Determine today to walk in…

  • perseverance
  • encouragement
  • edification of your neighbor
  • OneMind
  • OneAccord
  • OneVoice
  • glorifying God

...to the praise of the glory of His grace...


"Earlier Writings…"

March 25, 2014

“Earlier Writings…”

Blessings folk!

We are looking at one verse today.
It might be familiar.
I suspect that the context will catch us by surprise.

Remember, we have seen in Romans 14, 15 that we are to accept OneAnother.
The debate was over the freedom/liberty to eat/drink and to “celebrate/not celebrate” a particular day.

We saw yesterday that we are to live in a manner that is edifying to our neighbors.
Jesus Christ is our Example.

Read the following...verses 1-3 are familiar...pay close attention to verse 4.

Romans 15:1-4
15 Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.
2 Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification.
3 For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.”
4 For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.


“Whatever was written in earlier times…”?
This is speaking of the what we refer to as the Old Testament.
This is the reason that we study the Old Testament.
It was written for our instruction.
It brings encouragement.
It gives us hope.
When we persevere in life and in the Word the Hope of God is manifest in us.

These truths are in the context of bearing the weakness of OneAnother…
Of edifying OneAnother…
Of not pleasing ourselves, rather OneAnother…
Of living as Jesus did.

Read/study all the Word.
Too many view themselves as “new testament” Christians. This is a subtle deception of the evil one.
Seek the Lord in all His Word.
You will be amazed.



"Please…to His Edification"

March 24, 2014

“Please...to His Edification”

Blessings folk!

The Lord is our Model/Example in all things.
In how we relate to OneAnother He is the Standard.

Read…

Romans 15:2-3
2 Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification.
3 For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.”



We are to seek the good of our neighbor.
This is what “agape” love is. Seeking what is best for the other person.
We do so to their edification.
Edification?
Yes.
What builds them up in the Lord?
What encourages them?
It may not always be what “they like or want”.

Christ did not please Himself.
Then this is written…”but as it is written”...we will see more about the “written” tomorrow...interesting...but for now…

The reproaches of the very ones who reproached the Lord fell upon Him.

If the Lord did this for us…
Should we not humble ourselves for our neighbors?
Especially those of the Body of Christ?

Yes.
We should.

Yet, many do not.
Why?
Some are ignorant.
Now we know.
Repent and move forward.

Some are unsaved.
They are religious, but their attitudes and tongues reveal that they have not had a true conversion experience.
Repent.
Confess.
Today is the day of salvation.
Then, live as the Lord instructs.

"Strong: Bear the Weaknesses..."

March 23, 2014

“Strong: Bear the Weaknesses…”

Blessings folk!

You have seen the commercials.

“But, wait. There is more!!”

Happy Happy

The same occurs in Paul’s letter to the Romans.

The Spirit communicating through Paul desired for the Body to love OneAnother and to walk in humility before each other.

Read…

Romans 15:1
Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.
NASB

We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves.
ESV

The strong have the obligation.
Now, remember who the strong are.
They know their freedom in the Lord.
They know their liberty.
The specific context has been the freedom/liberty to eat/drink and to consider/not consider particular days.

The weak limited themselves as to food/drink.

Here the strong are called to bear the weaknesses of those without strength, to bear with the failings of the weak.
We set aside ourselves and the freedom that we have.

How different the Body of Christ would be if we would do so.
Walk in humility before each other.






"Whatever Is Not From Faith Is Sin"

March 22, 2014

“Whatever Is Not From Faith Is Sin”

Blessings folk!

The Spirit now leads Paul to wrap up the discussion of the matter of Romans 14.

Remember…
  • believers have freedom and liberty to eat/drink what they desired. Let each be convinced by the Lord.
  • there will be some that think that certain items should not be consumed. These are referred to as the “weak”.
  • the “strong”, those that understand their freedom/liberty, should not cause anyone to stumble by the exercising of liberty.
  • the “weak” should not judge the “strong”...if someone is convinced that they may eat/drink, then the “weak” should not hold this against them.
  • the same type of discussion was occurring related to “keeping of days”.
  • each one will give an account before God
  • the Kingdom of God is not eating/drinking, but righteousness, peace, joy in the Holy Spirit

Let each be convinced by God in their mind.
Let each accept OneAnother.
Let each walk in humility before OneAnother.

Read:

Romans 14:22-23
22 The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.
23 But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and whatever is not from faith is sin.


Have the faith you have as conviction before God.
I cannot be convinced of man to live in freedom/liberty. Only through the Lord.
Happy...blessed...is the one who trust in the Lord and does not compromise himself.
I can not live by another’s conviction.

An example is given.
If one doubts when he eats...he questions whether he should be eating but is doing so because of the freedom/liberty expressed by another...then he is not eating of faith.

Whatever is not from faith is sin.

This does not give us freedom to break other instructions/commands of the Lord.

We are not to partake in excess.

We know we are not to partake of drink in excess...drunkenness.
But, we often ignore the partaking of food in excess...gluttony.

Both are condemned by the Lord.

So, examine yourself (oh how the mirror does not lie…”mirror” of the Spirit, mirror on the wall) to see if you are a picture of excess.

If so, repent.
The Lord will bring forth change.

"Neither Meat Nor Wine"

March 21, 2014

“Neither Meat Nor Wine”

Blessings folk!

Romans 14:21
21 It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles.


Simple truth of the Lord.
It is not good to do anything that causes a brother to stumble.
The context is the eating and drinking of meat and wine.

Remember, we humble our liberty/freedom to keep a brother from stumbling.

May we do so.

"Destroy Not for Meat"

March 20, 2014

“Destroy Not for Meat”

Blessings folk!

We have seen the truth repeated.
We have liberty.
We have freedom.
But, we are not to cause harm with our liberty/freedom.

Romans 14:20
20 Do not tear down the work of God for the sake of food. All things indeed are clean, but they are evil for the man who eats and gives offense.


I like the KJV translation - “For meat destroy not the work of God.”

The Word is clear.
All things are clean.

The Word is clear.
Do not give offense.

Should the “offended brother” not be offended?
Of course.
They should not judge the one functioning in liberty/freedom.
Yet, they do.
That is why the Word calls them “weak”.

Do no evil.
Seek the unity that is the Body of Christ in OneAnother.

"Acceptable Service"

March 19, 2014

“Acceptable Service”

Blessings folk!

Keeping in mind all that we have seen in recent days about accepting OneAnother and the liberty/freedom we have in Christ...read...

Romans 14:18-19
18 For he who in this way serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men. 19 So then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.


We are acceptable to God when we serve Christ “in this way”.
What is “this way”?

Not causing a brother to stumble.

Not being an obstacle to a brother.

Not using the liberty/freedom we have to cause a weaker brother to be distracted.

To remember that the Kingdom of God is not about eating and drinking and the liberty we have. Rather, the Kingdom is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Accepting OneAnother...whether strong or weak.

The strong are to walk in humility before the weak.

The weak are not to judge the strong.

Note that the Word tells us that this will meet with the approval of man.

We see a term of conclusion…”so then”…

We pursue the things:

  1. which make for peace
  2. which make for the building up of OneAnother.

This is the Body of Christ functioning as the Lord designed.
Humility before OneAnother.
Love of OneAnother.
Respect for OneAnother.
The building up of OneAnother.

Are you building?
Or, are you tearing down?
Are you serving the Lord in how you relate to OneAnother?

Do you desire to be acceptable to God in your deeds?
Then live as instructed.

"Kingdom…"

March 18, 2014

“Kingdom…”

Blessings folk!

Your life will be totally transformed if you will live in this truth.

We have seen that we are called to accept the diversity of the Body of Christ.
Some eat and drink.
Some do not.
Some exalt one day above another.
Others do not.
Let each one be convinced in their own heart.

We have also seen that we are not to be a stumbling block.
We are not be an obstacle in our brother’s path.

Yes.
We have liberty.
We have freedom.
We can eat/drink anything.

1 Timothy 4:4-5
4 For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude;
5 for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.


The word of God and prayer sanctifies.

Think on this.

What are we to proclaim to the world?
The gospel, no?

What is the gospel?
The truth of the life, death, burial, resurrection of Jesus Christ and that He is the Savior of man.

What did Jesus preach?


He did not preach the gospel - Good News - of His death, burial, etc.
He preached the Kingdom.

Read, giving close heed to what we learn of the Kingdom.

Romans 14:16-17
16 Therefore do not let what is for you a good thing be spoken of as evil;
17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.


We are told to let not our liberty/freedom be spoken of as evil.
Why?

Because, the Kingdom of God…

  • is not eating and drinking
  • is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

This is the Kingdom in which we live.
It is not a Kingdom of satisfying the desires of the flesh...eating, drinking, etc.

It is a Kingdom of Righteousness.
It is a Kingdom of Peace.
It is a Kingdom of Joy.
All in the Holy Spirit.

In which Kingdom do you live?
The Kingdom of God.
Or, the Kingdom of the World...of the Flesh…?

"Do Not Destroy…"

March 17, 2014

“Do Not Destroy…”

Blessings folk!

Now, we are getting down to where we began. Happy

Read the following:

Romans 14:13-15
13 Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this—not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.
14 I know and am convinced in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself; but to him who thinks anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.
15 For if because of food your brother is hurt, you are no longer walking according to love. Do not destroy with your food him for whom Christ died.


Yes.
We have liberty to eat and drink what we desire.

Yes.
We are to accept those who are weaker...those who refrain from eating certain things.

Yes.
We are to not judge OneAnother, but to be convinced in the Lord.

No.
I am not at liberty and freedom to cause a brother to stumble.

If a weaker brother is offended by that which I eat/drink, then I will limit my freedom/liberty for the sake of the brother.

I will not partake in the presence of the brother.
I will partake in the presence of a stronger brother.

This is not compromise.
This is love.

Paul knew and was convinced that there is nothing that is unclean of itself.
But, he also knew that if someone thought that such was unclean, then it was unclean.

We are not to hurt a brother for the sake of freedom/liberty in food/drink.
To do so is to no longer walk in love.

We are not to destroy OneAnother for the sake of food.



"Obstacle"

March 16, 2014

“Obstacle”

Blessings folk!

We reach a “therefore”.

We have seen that the Lord has told us not to judge OneAnother in relationship to food or days.

Now…

Romans 14:13
13 Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this—not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.


The Lord refines our understanding.
We are not to judge OneAnother.
We have liberty.
We have freedom.
But,
We are not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.

We must determine to not use our freedom and liberty for an obstacle, a stumbling block.

We will see more detail tomorrow.
For now,
Judge not.
Be not a stumbling block.
Be not a obstacle.

"Judgment Seat of God"

March 15, 2014

“Judgment Seat of God”

Blessings folk!

In recent days we have been learning what “judge OneAnother” really means.

We continue…

Romans 14:10-12
10 But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.
11 For it is written,
“As I live, says the Lord,every knee shall bow to Me, And every tongue shall give praise to God.”
12 So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God.

Remember, they were judging OneAnother over the food which they ate/or did not eat.
They were judging OneAnother over whether a particular day was held in esteem or not.
The Lord had told then to not do so.
They were to accept OneAnother.
He told them that each person needed to be convinced in his own mind that what he was doing was of the Lord.

Now the Lord “brings it home.”
As we so often experience in the Word, we see a greater picture than the issue of the moment.

God tells us that we all will stand before the judgment seat of God.
Every knee will bow before the Lord.
Every tongue will give praise to God.
Everyone will give an account of himself to God.

An account for what?
All we have done.
All we have said.
All we have thought.

Including how we treat OneAnother.

Really now?
Is the food/drink issue that important?
Is the superiority of day important?

Never forget what the Lord told us.
The world will know we are His disciples by our love for OneAnother.

"We Are Unto the Lord…"

March 14, 2014

“We Are Unto the Lord…”

Blessings folk!

Read...

Romans 14:5-9
5 One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind.
6 He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God.
7 For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself;
8 for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.
9 For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

The Lord continues to give us insight into what He meant when He told us to “accept/welcome” the weak.

We have seen that the “weak” refers to those who are limiting the liberty they have in eating certain foods.

The Lord now adds another example.

“One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike.”
It is unstated as to which is the “weaker” position...I think the one who regards one day above another...but, it matters not.

What is important is that each person must be fully convinced in his own mind.

Personally, I am a “every-day-alike” guy.

I do so unto the Lord.

That is what is important.
Whether we eat or not…
Whether we consider one day more important or not…
We do so for the Lord.
We give thanks to the Lord.

We as believers do no live for ourselves, but for the Lord.
We do not die for ourselves, but for the Lord.

We are the Lord’s.
Jesus died and lived again for this reason.

Rejoice.
Accept.
Love.
Live fully convinced in your mind in what the Lord leads you to do.

"Master's Servants"

March 13, 2014

“Master’s Servants”

Blessings folk!

So, there was debate over what one should eat...and by extension we can add drink.

The weak are defined as those who want to limit themselves...really from fear.
The “strong” are those who know they have liberty and freedom.
Not liberty/freedom to be a glutton. More later.
Not liberty/freedom to be a drunkard. More later.
Not liberty/freedom to cause a brother to stumble. More later.

Read the following...verses 1-3 have been examined.
What do we learn from verses 4?

Romans 14:1-4
1 Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.
2 One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only.
3 The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. 4 Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.

We are to accept the decision of OneAnother.
The decision to not eat (weak).
The decision to eat.

We are not to regard OneAnother with contempt.
We are not to judge OneAnother related to this subject.

Why?

We are not to judge the servant (individual) of Another (God).
We will stand in judgment for our actions before God. More later.

Another example is given. We will examine it tomorrow.

We see that each person must be convinced in his own mind.
It is not a “right/wrong” issue.
It is an issue of what we feel the Lord is revealing/leading.

This will change the way we relate to OneAnother if we learn and live the Truth.

Do so.

"Weak Eat'n…"

March 12, 2014

“Weak Eat’n…”

Blessings folk!

We saw yesterday that we are to accept/welcome the weak in faith.

Now, let us look at the “rest of the story” and the context.
This is interesting.

Read the following…

Romans 14:1-3
1 Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.
2 One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only.
3 The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him.


Happy
Did you see what the immediate issue was?
There was difference of opinions over what to eat!

Such occurs today.

Some people have faith to eat all things.
In other words, there was no fear that something might have been sacrificed to a pagan idol. They understand that we as believers are free to eat (and drink...as we shall see) whatever we desire.

Not all believers live in this freedom and liberty.
Some felt/feel that they could only eat vegetables.
They were/are fearful of eating something that they thought they should not have.
They are called “weak”.
This is not a derogatory expression.
It is simply the reality of how God views it.

Freedom and liberty in Faith is viewed as strength.
Lack of freedom/liberty/faith in a matter is viewed as weakness

We experience the opposite today.

Often, those who eat only vegetables are viewed as stronger, superior.
If they do so from fear, the Lord describes them as weak.

We clearly see that the Lord tells us not to pass judgment.
Not to act arrogant and haughtily.
We are to accept the decision of each one.
We will see more in the next few days.

For now, realized that much of what passes as “strength in the faith” related to eating/drinking is really weakness.

More...

"Accept"

March 11, 2014

“Accept”

Blessings folk!

We looked at this verse yesterday…

Romans 14:13
13 Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this—not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.


Now, let us go back and see that the “therefore” is there for”.

We receive instructions.
Here is the first.
Several translations are provided.

Romans 14:1

King James Version (KJV)
14:1 Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.

New American Standard Bible (NASB)
14:1 Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.

English Standard Version (ESV)
14:1 As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions.

Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
14:1 Accept anyone who is weak in faith, but don’t argue about doubtful issues.

We are to accept/welcome those who are weak in the faith.

The word “weak” here means without strength, powerless, in need, poor, feeble, sick.
We are to welcome such.

I believe there is also an understanding of weakness in the understanding and maturity of faith. I believe this because of the last part of the verse. We will see more in the next few verses about those “weak in the faith”.

We are not to argue over “doubtful issues”, “doubtful disputations”, “opinions” and “disputations”.

We are to accept/welcome as we instruct in the truth.


"Judge Not, Be Not An Obstacle"

March 10, 2014

“Judge Not, Be Not An Obstacle”

Blessings folk!

The past few weeks...now months...we have been examining what the Word says about OneAnother.

So much!

When the Word states something we must check out the context to get the full meaning.

Such is the case with the following verse.

For today, read the verse.
What crosses your mind?
What does the verse mean?

Then, we will see more later.

Romans 14:13
13 Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this—not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.


There are two instructions/commands in this verse specifically related to OneAnother.

  1. Do not judge one another anymore. Folk jump on this quickly. How many times do we hear that we “are not to judge OneAnother”? Context is important as we shall see. We are to judge, but, we are to judge in the manner the Lord instructs.

  1. We are not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in the way of OneAnother. Believers also refer to this often. We shall see what it means.

The first word of the verse is revealing and important - “Therefore…”

Therefore…
In light of…

I suspect that we are about to see some interesting things about judging.
I suspect that we are about to learn some things about OneAnother.

Are you ready to bring your thinking and understanding in alignment with the Most High?

"The Ten…"

March 9, 2014

“The Ten…”

Blessings folk!

So, love is the fulfillment of the Law.
We are to love our neighbor as ourself.

Read the passage again.

Romans 13:8-10
8 Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.
9 For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.


Did you notice anything else?
Did you see anything familiar...biblically speaking.

Yes, some of the “Ten Commandments” are quoted.
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not murder.
You shall not steal.
You shall not covet.

This gives us insight into the Ten Commandments.
The first six are about us and our relationship to God.
The last four are about us and our relationship with others.
(Yes, the fifth one can “go both ways”...I think it does...honoring parents, but the focus is God)

If we love, we will not commit adultery.
If we love, we will not murder.
If we love, we will not steal.
If we love, we will not covet.

Many within the “professing church” do such.
I know many thieves, adulterers, covetous and even murderers...at least with the tongue.
They are regular church attenders.

Repent.
Confess.
Love.



"Fulfilled!"

March 8, 2014

“Fulfilled!”

Blessings folk!

How do we fulfill the Law?

We know that Jesus is the fulfillment of the Law, but how do we “live that out”?

Simple.

Read the following again…

Romans 13:8-10
8 Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.
9 For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.


We saw yesterday that we are to owe nothing but love to anyone.

Today, we see that loving our neighbor is the fulfillment of the Law.
This can only be done through the Lord.

How do we love?
As we love ourself.

“...for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law”.
“...you shall love your neighbor as yourself”.
“...love is the fulfillment of the law”.

Do it.

"Owe"

March 7, 2014

“Owe”

Blessings folk!

Loving OneAnother consists of deeds.

We will examine the following passage the next few days.

Read.
Meditate.
Seek the Lord.
He will speak.

Romans 13:8-10
8 Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.
9 For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.


One point today.
“Owe nothing…”

This destroys the foundation of economic life in the western world.
Our “money” is a debt instrument.
Such is stated on each Federal Reserve Note.

We are to owe only love.

So many individuals and organizational churches ignore this.

I remember some 35+ years ago hearing a pastor proclaim “a church alive will always be in debt”.
He was talking money.
He was talking building programs.
He was wrong.

Yes, I understand that debt is a financial instrument that can be used wisely.
But, for the most part, debt is not use that way.

Owe nothing to anyone.
Except the debt of love.

"Guard"

March 6, 2014

“Guard”

Blessings folk!

Give heed to the Words that the Most High spoke through Paul to Timothy.

Note the command/instruction given to Timothy.
What specific actions were to be taken?


1 Timothy 6:20-21
20 O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called “knowledge”—
21 which some have professed and thus gone astray from the faith.
Grace be with you.

You saw it?

Timothy was told to guard what was entrusted to him.
What was entrusted to him?

1 Timothy 4:14
14 Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery.

We are to guard the Spirit.
We are to grieve not the Spirit.
We are to protect what the Lord has granted.

How?
Avoid worldly discussions.
Avoid empty chatter.
Avoid the opposing arguments of what is falsely called “knowledge”.

This false knowledge has led some astray from true faith.

Sadly, many believe that such is the Life of the Kingdom.
No.

Live by the Spirit.
Speak by the Spirit.


"Good Works"

March 5, 2014

“Good Works”

Blessings folk!

We saw yesterday that we, the rich (think you are not rich? You are reading this on some electronic marvel...), are to place and keep our hope on God.

Now, may we give heed to the specific reminders, instructions and commandments that the Most High provides.


1 Timothy 6:17-19
17 Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy.
18 Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share,
19 storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.

Notice that Timothy was told to instruct the rich. Often we “back-down” from such.
We should not.

So, heed the Word of the Lord.

Do good.
Be rich in good works.
Be generous.
Be ready to share.

This stores up treasure of a good foundation for the future.
When in the future?
So that we “may take hold of that which is life indeed”.

I believe there is a real-time, corporeal application of this.
Living this way protects us from greed, envy and the like.
We are aware of the true Foundation and Hope that we have.

There is also the understanding of the foundation being laid for the future in glory.
What might that be?
Rewards? Likely.
“Jewels in our crown”? Perhaps.

The important picture here is that the good deeds/works are evidence of a true salvation experience.

So, let us do the good works from the heart that the Lord had transformed and continues to conform to His likeness.

"Hope…Fixed…Upon?"

March 4, 2014

“Hope...Fixed...Upon?”

Blessings folk!

Upon what is your hope fixed?

Believers are often distracted by such.

We place our hope in circumstances…
We place our hope in the deeds we can do…
We place our hope in the blessings that the Lord has granted…

But, we know our hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ and the Most High God.

We receive some additional insight into this here…

1 Timothy 6:17
17 Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy.


Now wait…
I know what some are saying…”this Word is not for me. I’m not rich”.
Yes, the Word is for you.
Yes, you are rich.
I can say with all confidence that all of us are richer than the vast majority of mankind throughout history.
We are rich in this present world.

Hear the warning of the Lord.
Be not conceited due to the blessing of material provision and riches.
Do not fix your hope on the uncertainty of riches. Note…”the uncertainty.”

Fix your hope on God.
God supplies us with all the things we need.
We are to enjoy!

Are you satisfied with what God has richly supplied?
Are you living in joy…”enjoy”?
Or, are you fixated upon the things of the world?

Fix your hope upon the Lord.

"When?"

March 3, 2014

“When?”

Blessings folk!

When will the Lord return?

The Lord tells us that we will not know the day nor the hour, but we will know the season.

Matthew 24:31-33
31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.

So, we watch.
We live in the manner that the Lord has instructed...especially that which we have read of late in 1 Timothy.

Why does God not give us the exact day/hour/minute?

Read what we learn about God in the next few verses of 1 Timothy 6…

1 Timothy 6:15-16
15 God will bring this about in His own time.
He is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings, and the Lord of lords,
16 the only One who has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light; no one has seen or can see Him, to Him be honor and eternal might. Amen.

God brings about what He desires in His time.

Look at what we learn about God.
He is:

  • Blessed
  • Only Sovereign
  • King of Kings
  • Lord of Lords
  • The One Immortal
  • Dwelling in Unapproachable Light
  • Unseen
  • to be Honored
  • the Source of Eternal Might

This is the Most High God.
He dwells within each True Believer.
It is He that empowers us to live life in the manner that He has designed.
We have a simple decision.
Will we abide in Him and the Life that He empowers?
Or, will we step outside of the abiding Presence of the Lord to live in the flesh?

It is that simple.

Choose today.
Blessings=Abiding.
Curses=Not Abiding.










"Charged and Commanded"

March 2, 2014

“Charged and Commanded”

Blessings folk!

The Lord, through His Spirit writing through Paul, gives direct commands to Timothy...and to us…

1 Timothy 6:13-14
13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate,
14 that you keep the commandment without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ,



We are charged

    • in the Presence of God
      • who gives life to all things. Think on that. God gives life to all. Good or evil. The source of all life is the Most High God. This truth should guide how we treat life.
    • in the Presence of Christ Jesus
      • Who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate
      • Jesus was faithful in His testimony

We are commanded...
    • keep the commandment
      • without stain
      • without reproach
      • until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ

(I knew that middle school diagramming stuff would come in handy&hellipWinking

The charge from the Most High is to keep the commandment.
We are to keep it without stain and reproach.
We are to keep it until the appearing of the Lord.

So, what is the commandment?





"Good Fight!"

March 1, 2014

“Good Fight!”

Blessings folk!!

How did the pursuit go yesterday?

Did you pursue:
  • righteousness
  • Godliness
  • faith
  • love
  • perseverance
  • gentleness
?

Flee the evil.
Pursue the righteous.
But, there is more.

Fight!

We usually do not associate the word “fight” with something good...but, read…

1 Timothy 6:12
12 Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.


We are to fight...the good fight of faith.
Faith is not just a passive force of existence.
It is life manifested.
We fight...not against flesh and blood...but against principalities within the heavenly realms.

We are to also “take hold”.

Notice the intensity of the words…”fight”, “take hold”.

Of what are we to “take hold”?
Eternal life.
Believers were called to eternal life.
We are to take hold of it.
Live it.
Rejoice in it.

Paul reminds Timothy that Timothy had made the “good confession”, the proclamation of faith, in the presence of many witnesses.

Therefore, take hold.
Therefore, fight the good fight of faith.
Therefore, remember the calling.

We should do likewise.