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The Conscience of the Believer - part ii

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Title: The Conscience of the Believer (part ii)
1. The command that you don't want to miss. (14:1)

(1) The command is needed because of belief differences (14:2)

It appears that this is needed because there are some who are "weak in faith" and some who are "strong in faith." This means that there are some who do not condemn themselves in dietary practices or behaviors and some who do condemn themselves in those practices.

(2) The command is needed because an important oversight (14:3)

Because of these differences, some have begun to hold contempt or judgment for each other.
(i) These attitudes are rooted in a self-righteous thought that their own judgment is higher than God's. This appears to be some sort of a God complex.
(ii) This relational aspect is also inconsiderate of who the real Master is, and who the individual is serving.
(iii) Lastly, as part of this, they overlook the ability that God has within the relationship with the individual. This only stands to reason because they have a subtle faith in their own freedom or lack thereof.
2. The command that is rooted in the gospel.

(1) the gospel and insurmountable differences

First, the gospel points out the insurmountable differences between God (as Creator) and Man as Sinner.
(i) It shows that our faith was not in God but in the works of the flesh to accomplish for us what we thought would bring ultimate pleasure. (ii) Second, it shows faith in the righteousness of the law ()
(i) It shows that our faith was not in God but in the works of the flesh to accomplish for us what we thought would bring ultimate pleasure ().
(ii) Second, it shows faith in the righteousness of the law ()

(2) the gospel and relational controversy ()

Second, the gospel points out that our relationship with God was one of eternal judgment because of our accountability to Him. See also , .

(3) the gospel and relational possibility ()

Through the substitution of Jesus Christ, we now have the possibility of being received by God in Christ. This was accomplished on the part of the stronger for the sake of the weaker.

(4) the gospel and relational actuality ()

Those who have accepted the way of salvation are are “in the Spirit” - have:
(i) Ceased from their works in the flesh, attempting to be righteous before God by works
(ii) Changed status from rejected by God to accepted by God (the just and highest Judge of all)
It is this truth upon which Paul is building in . Note when Paul says, “God hath received him” (v. 3) and “God is able” (v. 4), Paul is referring back to the believer’s standing with God and all that made this possible.
3. The command that should be seen in our current context.

(1) gospel acceptance (14:1)

Some obstacles to this:
Used by the Weaker Conscienced Believers - There are “catchall” verses that have become cliche’s to lump all those who don’t have the same convictions. These “catchall verses” are scriptures that are used to prove a certain self-righteous judgment. Catch yourself when you use these scriptures: Abstain from all appearance of evil.
Used by the Strong Conscienced Believers - (8:12) These are another kind of “catchall verses used to flaunt liberty and lead to destructive work against the work of Christ.
There are non-negotiables. For example: Salvation by grace through faith is a non-negotiable. The trinity is a non-negotiable. The deity of Jesus Christ is a non-negotiable.
Then, there are issues that the scripture is not explicit about: Is it ok to go out to eat on Sundays, should a believer attend a movie house…etc
(i) Bring your thoughts of judgment and contempt under the gospel -
Ask yourself, “How big of a dispute did God have with me?”
“Why has God received me?”
“Why has God received them?”
"Is their offence towards me greater than their offense towards God?”
(2) gospel continuance

(2) gospel continuance (14:4)

Believe that if God is great enough to save them, He is great enough to sustain them.
See , ,
Repent of the sin of self-righteousness
Repent of the sin of self-centeredness
Receive each other as God has received you
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