Tuesday, July 9, 2013
Unity in Diversity, Part 5 of 33
GUEST: Jeff Manion
TEXT: Romans 14
IDEA: When I am considering an action, I am not “playing it by ear,” but I am playing it by love.
PURPOSE: What should I weigh if I am trying to decide whether an action is right or wrong for me to do?
Incident in Medford, Oregon, in which a young Christian woman was elected homecoming queen in her high school. She was expected to “reign” at the dance, but she had questions about social dancing. Other Christians from other churches had no problems with going to the dance.
Based on Romans 14, what would she have to consider in making her decision?
Does the Bible speak about this explicitly and say that it is sin?
Many people say “the Bible says” when it does not, but often the Bible speaks clearly about a matter.
Am I determined to accept other Christians who might disagree with me?
We cannot allow our decisions in these matters to divide us from other Christians (Romans 14:1-4).
Am I in danger of despising another’s convictions? If you think an activity is wrong for you, you must stand by your convictions, but you cannot judge the one who disagrees. On the other hand, if the activity is no problem to you, you cannot tempt or pressure another Christian whose conscience is against it (Romans 14:3).
Am I trying to act as God in another person’s life? We will all stand before God and give an account to Him for the way we have handled life (Romans 14:4, 10-12).
Am I convinced In my own mind that what I am doing is right (Romans 14:5, 22, 23)?
Is my basic concern that I honor the Lord by my actions (Romans 14:8-9)?
Will my action, as wholesome as it may be, cause another Christian to stumble (Romans 14:15, 20-21)? Love limits liberty.
Am I eager to live at peace with other Christians and, by my actions, build them up (Romans 14:17-19)? We need to keep our eye on the doughnut and not on the hole.