Romans 14: Another Look
Text: Romans 14:1-23
Notes and outline developed by Bob Young
What this lesson is about--what are normal expectations in a study of Romans 14? What expectations are appropriate?
1. We must consider what we shall say, what we shall not say
2. Purpose is not to determine what Bible says on host of subjects
3. Want to be practical
I. All doctrine (teaching) is not of equal weight or importance
Level playing field is wrong approach to Scripture.
"Fluff" is equally wrong. One preacher said, "There is God, there is Christ. All else is fluff." What about the Holy Spirit? Church? Resurrection? What about 1 Cor 8-10; 2 Jno 9; 1 Cor 15?
II. What kinds of teachings (doctrine) are in view here?
A. This is ethnic, cultural, religious, derived from other sources.
What if Christian wants to dedicate an infant? Or observe a spiritual birthday?
B. This is external, eating, observing days.
C. This is things about which God has not spoken.
1. But some thought he had spoken.
2. Opinion, but more, these matters are seen as more than opinions by disputants.
3. Thus hermeneutics, human interpretation enters in
III. The situation and the principles laid down
B. Relationships between brothers, vv. 1-12
- weak in the faith is the one bound, temptation is to judge, condemn
- "strong" refers to free, liberty, temptation is to despise, reject
1. All stand/fall before God--no right to judge the service of another, v. 4
2. God is able to make us stand, v. 4 (grace)
3. Weak not judge/condemn freedom and liberty, vv. 3,10
4. Strong not despise bound conscience of weak, vv. 3,10
5. Each must be fully convinced in own mind, v. 5
6. All stand before God to give account, v.10
7. Practice all you do for the Lord--life, death, vv. 7-9
8. All going to be "there" together, vv. 11-12
9. Here is proper judgment: fo not "offend," v. 13
10. Exercising freedom in such matters not what is important in kingdom
11. Internal presence of Holy Spirit is of primary importance
IV. How shall we handle this?
- Consider ethic, action which arises.
- We have freedom in Christ, nothing unclean in itself, 14,20
- Christian not violate own conscience, 14,23
- Christian not destroy brother, 15,20, but build, 19
- Christian not cause brother to stumble, 13,21 (offend)
"It is good not to...."
- Not let good become evil, 16,20,22
- Because Christ died for all, so walk in love
- Because Christians pursue peace, build others up, 19
ConclusionLiberty has responsibility....
to fulfill, acceptance by God and by men, 18
Responsibilities restated in chapter 15.
Is unity passage, act to enhance unity, stay together, have spirit of unity, peace (14:17, cf. 15:13).
- Bear with weak, 1
- Please neighbor more than self, 2 (as Christ did, 3)
- Build neighbor up, 2
- Bring praise to God through acceptance of persons, 7 (as Christ did)
Much that is being pushed today under the authority of Romans 14 ignores the text. We should worry about self more than about others. Focus on your own responsibility before God. Where are you?
Last updated July 14, 2012