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Summary: This passage before us teaches us that a display of spiritual maturity is not always a display of love towards someone else, but a display of love towards someone else is always a display of spiritual maturity. So lets look at marks of strength and how a

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THE MARKS OF STRENGTH

Romans 15:1-13

INTRODUCTION: When one speaks of liberty in Christ, it is normal to think of all the things that are ours to do, because we are free in Christ. Yet, it is important to note that Liberty does not exist to satisfy our do’s and don’ts, but as a conduit for God to receive glory. This passage before us teaches us that a display of spiritual maturity is not always a display of love towards someone else, but a display of love towards someone else is always a display of spiritual maturity.

So lets look at marks of strength and how a strong Christian life is to give glory to God.

I The First Mark Of A Strong Christian Life Is Our Ability To Bear The Weaknesses Of The Weak (V.1-3).

A The meaning of “bearing”

1 Not bearing with

2 Bearing along – support and sustain, ultimately removing the hardship -- Matthew 8:17 This was to fulfill what was spoken through he prophet Isaiah: "He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases."

B The Weaknesses

1 Judgment and criticism – 14:2-3,10,13

2 Legalistic Behavior – 14:1,14-15

3 Disobeying God Word by going beyond its commands – 14:10-12,16-23

C The remedy for this weakness

1 Seek to please our neighbor

2 Follow the example of Christ – did not please Himself, but others

II The Second Mark Of A Strong Christian Life Is To Study The Scriptures (V.4-5).

A The Scriptures were given for our instruction

B The Scriptures were given for our endurance – an anchor when times got rough

C The Scriptures were given for our encouragement

D The Scriptures were given for our hope

E It is God who gives these things through the Scripture

III The Third Mark Of A Strong Christian Life Is Our Work For Harmony (V.5-6).

A Goal is a uniting for the glory of God

B Only achieved as God gives us a unity – a same mindedness

1 God always intended salvation for the Gentiles

2 God achieved harmony and unity though the church

IV The Fourth Mark Of A Strong Christian Life Is Our Acceptance One Another Without Discrimination (V.7-12).

A Acceptance means to receive and treat as a friend

B Christ is the supreme example of acceptance – he accepted us

V The Fifth Mark Of A Strong Christian Life Is Our Hope (V.13)

A Hope based in God

1 An inner gladness

2 A deep seated pleasure

B Hope in God fills me with an anticipation in seeing what I hope for fulfilled

C Hope in God produces the assurance that God will fulfill what we hope for.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the LORD with all your heart

and lean not on your own understanding;

6in all your ways acknowledge him,

and he will make your paths straight.


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