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Summary: Romans 14 and 15 contains God's principals for accepting one another

Text: Romans Chapter 14 and 15

Title: God’s principals for accepting one another

Introduction

Romans Chapter 14 and 15 are both about accepting one another

A.Those who are strong in the faith accepting those who are weak in the faith

B.Those who are weak in the faith accepting those who are strong in the faith

Why address the subject of acceptance? People come to church for many different reasons but stay for only one; Acceptance!

The experience of the Apostle Paul: When Paul first got saved; none of the apostles would accept him. He had a reputation of a troublemaker. It took Barnabas to offer Paul the acceptance he needed.

Irony: The stronger you are in the faith the less accepting we are of those who are weaker in the faith.

Now what does these two chapters say and not say about acceptance?

The context: These two chapters speak of accepting one another when it comes to disputable matters. Nowhere in these two chapters does Paul tell us to be accepting of one in matters of sin.

What are disputable matters?

A.Deeply help personal convictions.- We can judge or accept others based solely on deeply help personal matters

B.What were examples of deeply held personal convictions in Paul’s Day

1.Those who ate meat and those who ate only vegetables (v2-3)

One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them.

2.Those who considered one day more sacred than other days (v5)

One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind.

What are some modern examples of disputable matters/personal preferences?

A.Music styles

B.Dress forms

C.Bible versions

D.Technology

E.Denominations

How should we accept one another when it comes to matters of disputable things/personal preferences?

1.People are more important to God than personal preferences (v4)

Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.

2.If we have to choose between our personal preferences and people; choose people (v19-21)

Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.

Is it therefore wrong to have deep personal preferences? NO!

Paul is showing us that we neither abandon our deep personal preferences or abuse our deep personal preferences; instead we address them to The Lord. (6-9)

“Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. “

But I can say to myself; “I want everyone else to have the same personal preferences as me”

What is wrong here? I am now taking the place of the Lord in that other person’s life.

Instead make it your deep personal conviction to please other believers before yourself (15:1-3)

“We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2 Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.”

This was the deep personal conviction of Jesus himself

If all else fails ask God for help (Romans 15:5-6)

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Pray for God to give you endurance, encouragement and the spirit of unity.

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