Sunday, October 19, 2014

Paul's Epistles Part 36 – Bearing the Weak

Paul's Epistles
Part 36 – Bearing the Weak
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | www.PS127.org | www.TruthDigest.org

INTRODUCTION

Last week we spoke about Paul's warning of the End Times, and read many scriptures throughout the Bible showing what the End Times would look like.

After reading what the scriptures said, I think we can all agree that the End Times is now, and those things the Bible has warned us about have come to fruition.

Therefore, as Paul tells us in Romans, we need to focus on doing what we are called to do, which is, share the Gospel of Salvation and freedom from the bondage of sin with the lost, no matter where they come from or what they believe, baptize them, and teach them the commands of Christ so that they too may obey Him and call Him Lord.

In chapter 14 of Romans, Paul explains that there are some believers who are of weaker faith. They think they must abstain from certain foods or wine, and that some days are more holy than others.

Paul says, you need to stop making this about you. This isn't about who is right, or "winning" an argument. In fact, Paul is saying that if you argue these points with a believer, you have already lost because you are not acting in love.

Our goal MUST always be in love, or, lifting others up!

We are called by scripture in Romans 14 to love the weaker in faith, as well as the lost.

We need to put them before ourselves...which means, stop trying to prove you are right, stop trying to win arguments, stop trying to attack other believers because they are not cut from the same cookie cutter as you.

Paul tells us today in Romans 15, we, who are strong in faith, must bear with the failings of those who are weak.

To bear does not mean to put up with...it means to carry, bring, transport, move, tote, support, hold up.

This, is our duty to those of weaker faith.
SCRIPTURE REFERENCE Romans 15:1-13
We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 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.” For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.

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.

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God’s truth, so that the promises made to the patriarchs might be confirmed and, moreover, that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written:
“Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles;
    I will sing the praises of your name.”
10 Again, it says,
“Rejoice, you Gentiles, with his people.”
11 And again,
“Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles;
    let all the peoples extol him.”
12 And again, Isaiah says,
“The Root of Jesse will spring up,
    one who will arise to rule over the nations;
    in him the Gentiles will hope.”
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.


                   I.            LIFTING UP THE WEAK, HUMBLY
a.      We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 
                                                                         i.      Sometimes we must carry the weaker.

                                                                      ii.      Sometimes we simply lead them.

                                                                   iii.      Sometimes all we are supposed to do is support or hold them up.


b.     Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. 
                                                                         i.      This must always be done in love though.

                                                                      ii.      For their good, not ours!

                                                                   iii.      Remember I Corinthians 13, Love is NOT proud, and it is NOT self-seeking.


c.       For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
                                                                         i.      The entirety of the life of Christ was to do the Will of the Father.

                                                                      ii.      Christ suffered for our sakes, and surely not to please Himself.

                                                                   iii.      We too, must look upon Christ as our example of a selfless life for the good of others.



               II.            TREAT THEM LIKE CHRIST TREATED YOU
a.      May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had
                                                                         i.       So that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

                                                                      ii.      We too When we give encouragement to those of weaker faith, having the same attitude with others that Christ had with us, we will have one mind and one voice.

1.      In other words, we will be thinking and speaking as Christ did!

                                                                   iii.      In this way, thinking like Christ, and speaking like Christ, we Glorify God the Father!


b.     Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you
                                                                         i.      in order to bring praise to God.

                                                                      ii.      Those who are accepted and loved, will praise the God you represent, instead of cursing Him because you showed hate.
c.      I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God’s truth, so that the promises made to the patriarchs might be confirmed and, moreover, that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy.

                                                                         i.      And Gentiles for generations have glorified God for the mercy shown to us by God, through Christ and other believers.



            III.            GLORIFY GOD FOR HIS MERCY
a.      May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

                                                                         i.      Trust in God, He will give you hope and peace, so much so that it will overflow.


b.     The Keys to overflowing with hope and the power of the Holy Spirit.

                                                                         i.      Trusting in Him.


c.      This is the proper behavior of those who are stronger in faith.
                                                                         i.      Showing love to those who are weaker in faith.
1.      by lifting them up

2.      treating them like Christ treated you


                                                                      ii.      Glorifying God for His mercy.
1.      and receive an attitude of Christ, having one mind and voice.


                                                                   iii.      and trusting in God
1.      so that you will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit





CONCLUSION
When we encounter those who are Christians, but weaker in faith than ourselves, our goal is to strengthen them, encourage them, edify them, lift them up!

Remember the description of "to bear". To carry, bring, transport, move, tote, support, hold up.





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