Standing Firm: Walking through Romans – Chapter 14 part 3

My big idea for today is that like siblings, God has called us to work together for the greater good of the individual and the entire body of Christ. My prayer for us today is that we would be found as one in each other and also in Jesus Christ as He is one with the Father. If you have your Bibles today you can join me as we turn to, you guessed it Romans Chapter 14 starting at verse 10.

Romans 14:10-12-You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. 11 It is written: “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’” 12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. {pray}

Romans 14:10-12

In order to help me share with you today, I have separated my thoughts into 2 sections or points. Let’s take a look at my first point.

All That We Do In Christ Belongs To God.

You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.

Romans 14:10

In the earlier passages Paul points out their issues. He says some of you condemn your brother or sister, while some look down on others. Remember he’s talking about those who are weak vs. those who are strong. Those who essentially follow the Jewish holidays and dietary restrictions and those who are free in Christ. Paul is reiterating his prior comments. We see repetition and parallelism. Which we know means what? It means emphasis. This is there to remind us that its important. We should not just skip over it. This is meant to point us to unity in the body of Christ. Love each other and come together on what you share and give grace where we differ but nevertheless, be unified in Christ Jesus.

My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

John 17:20-23

There’s a purpose here, Jesus didn’t just pray for the disciples He also prayed for those who would come later. (Did you ever realize the Jesus prayed for you?) For the first Christians and for us that have believed since then.Remember Jesus stated the object of His intention-

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message,

John 17:20

Now He states His divine purpose; that we would all be one in the son and in the father. The body would be one. Alright Church let’s catch this here, are you ready? “And also, so the world may believe that you sent me. And that they would know that you love them.”

Here is why this is really important for us to get this today.  Our ability/willingness to find unity with other believers directly correlates to the effectiveness of our witness and our attempts to share the Gospel of Christ. Church there is division in the body of Christ. If all of our activities in Christ belong to God, then who are we to condemn look down on any servant of God. This is about helping the world to see Christ and to know the love of the Father.

Let’s move to my final point.

We Are All Accountable To God

It is written: “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’” 12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.

Romans 14:11-12

I really like Paul, sometimes, he likes to kick it Old Testament style. If you have a Jewish wife sometimes you get to kick it Old Testament style too. Amen? He gets right to it, “It is written!” Remember this is the Lord speaking through the Prophet Isaiah. Every knee, not everyone will kneel. Every person with every knee, total submission. Every tongue will acknowledge God. And each will give an account for our lives and actions. We are all accountable to God!

No one is higher. No one is better. We all must face the Lord the same. The only difference is this…

The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life but will acknowledge that name before my Father and his angels.

Revelation 3:5

There will be those who are recorded in the lamb’s book of life. And there will be those who have rejected Christ and are not. Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!

When I was young & with siblings. Like every other family we would quarrel and bicker. Without fail there would be one of us that would say, “you are not doing what you’re supposed to do.” Oh you’re gonna get in trouble! Every kid does this at some point, it’s like this instinct to lord over each other. But when my Dad came around it was solely his decision. It was Dad’s wisdom that decided, and it was always tempered through his measure of love and grace. I remember, If we were too annoying about tattling, sometimes that would trigger an even punishment. And my Dad would say you guys should love each other and look out for each other, because some day all you will have is each other. I feel like God is saying the same kind of thing. Love each other. Look out for each other. And be there for each other to lean on. We are all accountable to God and we ought to be found in unity with Christ and with each other.

Here’s my closing thought. If we are not unified in each other, we are not unified in Christ. If we are not in Christ, then what are we doing? Friends, there is an entire world out there and there are 2 types of people waiting for you. Those who need Christian fellowship. Brothers and sisters in the Lord. They need us. And the other is those who need to see that we are really unified in Christ and in the truth. These are the one Jesus spoke about; those who will believe that God had sent Him. And by this they will also know the love of God.

Will you be open today in discovering a new way of unity?  Would you join me as the Holy Spirit moves on us to be unified in the spirit of Christ? This is truly the work of God. Remember the devil seeks only to kill steal and destroy. Steal your freedom, kill your joy, and destroy your destiny for hope and love. But God has a plan!

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

Jesus, He’s the Son of the living God, and we can receive from Him today His Righteousness, His purpose and His calling. Will you call on him today? Your salvation/forgiveness is just one prayer away. Will you trust in his ability to do what He said He would do? Will you believe today? Many of you need a fresh touch from God today. Is there some form of unbelief or a fracture of trust as it relates to God in your life today?  God wants to redeem and restore those areas of your life. He wants to restore Joy and hope for you today.

You’re hearing this now and the Holy Spirit has brought someone or something to mind. He wants to speak life into this today. He wants to bring healing in this area today.  There are areas of deep regret when it comes to your relationship with God and you have rejected Christ as your savior. It’s not too late.

It’s not too late to humble yourself before him today, hold out your arms and open your hands to receive from him today. Will you say yes to Jesus, today? Will you bow your heads with me? Some of you already know the Lord, but maybe he’s put something on your heart that you need to deal with, you need to ask his forgiveness today. If that’s you will you just acknowledge that to him today. This is just you and God here.

Now someone here may not have that relationship with Jesus and today you’ve felt him tugging at your heart, you’ve been hurt, and you’re guarded, I know. Jesus is here and wants set things right in your life. If you’ll say Pastor, I want Jesus to be my Lord and savior. Remember, it’s just you and God here. Will you pray with me today, We’ll pray here as a family and you can repeat after me.

Jesus, I know that I’m a sinner. I ask you today for your forgiveness. I believe that you died for my sins and on that 3rd day, you rose from the dead. I ask you to come into my heart today. I trust and follow you as my Lord and savior. Guide me and help me to do your will. In Jesus’ name Amen.

 “‘“The Lord bless you
and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”’

Numbers 6:24-26