STUDY ALERT ON ROMANS CHAPTER FOURTEEN
I am excited about our upcoming study of chapter fourteen in Paul’s letter to the Romans. In this chapter, Paul answers a lot of questions on how believers should deal with each other on an ethical level as well as a spiritual level.
How should you treat a fellow Christian who doesn’t believe like you do? What are you to do when someone criticizes you for doing things they don’t believe a Christian should do? And what do you tell another believer who celebrates certain holidays that you don’t think Christians should pay any attention to? Are you upset when you see a fellow Christian sipping wine at a meal? Do you think less of people who do not practice their religion as you do?
Paul then goes on to address the problem of those who feel they know what is right and wrong, and criticize other believers who have different opinions. Isn’t this a case of one person feeling more sanctified than the other? No matter how many disagreements we may have with our fellow believers, what should our top priority, our number one goal be? After all, each of us must answer to God for our own actions, not those of others. There is nothing wrong with sharing your faith and feelings with other believers and pointing out where you disagree and why. But don’t become judge and jury and suggest that they won’t get to heaven if they keep doing the things they do.
What did the early church scholars think about Paul’s admonitions? And how did the Reformers interprets Paul’s words? What about during John Wesley’s time and then among early American believers? And since this was aimed primarily at the Jewish and Gentile converts in Paul’s day, how does it apply to us today?
I hope you join in the study of these issues when we begin looking at Chapter 14 on Monday, October 29th. You have proven yourself to be a scholar of God’s Word. There are promises in His word that says He will reward those who study to show that they can be trusted as interpreters of His Word. I’m glad you have chosen to be among that number. – Dr. Robert R Seyda