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The Book of Romans

Series Summary

The famous series of Friday night sermons on the Letter to the Romans, split into 14 volumes to parallel the books, plus a small collection of 13 individual sermons preached at Westminster Chapel.

Chapter

Sermons


A Sense of Balance (1)

Volume 14 Romans 14:17

Lopsided Christianity is an unappealing religion. Divisions and fracturing over minutia have severely harmed evangelism and the church’s witness to the world. The apostle Paul’s battle cry in Romans 14:17 is that the kingdom of God is not about minutia such as meat and drink. Following Paul’s teaching in this sermon on Romans 14:17 titled “A Sense of Balance (1),” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones applies this point to the contemporary church. Today’s Christians are just as guilty of making the kingdom of God about minutia – subsidiary doctrines, church government, particular church leaders. It is vitally important, says Dr. Lloyd-Jones, to preserve a sense of balance in all areas of the Christian life. While not advocating unity at all cost, Dr. Lloyd-Jones does challenge the contemporary church over unnecessary denominational divisions. He is not merely concerned in this message of affirming church unity, but seeks a diagnosis of church division instead. Beyond denominations, Dr. Lloyd-Jones scrutinizes the usefulness of “movements” within evangelical Christianity which isolate a particular part of the faith (i.e. evangelism) from the whole. This can equally lead Christians to lose their sense of balance. Finally, Dr. Lloyd-Jones remarks about the nature and character of theological education and the propensity of institutions to isolate the study of Scripture away from its intended context of worship. In all this, trouble arises when Christians forget what the kingdom of God is about.

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The Kingdom of God

Volume 14 Romans 14:17

The church at Rome was guilty of making the kingdom of God small. Walking into their church, one would have thought the kingdom was about eating and drinking. The apostle Paul forcefully corrects this misunderstanding. But if the kingdom is not of meat and drink, what is it about? In this sermon on Romans 14:17 titled “The Kingdom of God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones enters into a great debate among commentators on this passage. While some preeminent theologians say righteousness refers to the righteousness written about earlier in Romans 1–3, others suggest Paul has changed the meaning to an ethical righteousness. Dr. Lloyd-Jones seeks to adjudicate the alternative positions and ultimately comes to a mediating position. He follows the immediate context, noting Paul’s deliberate challenge to the Romans preoccupation with minutiae and attitudes towards conduct. Paul’s argument, says Dr. Lloyd-Jones, has been that the kingdom of God is much bigger than moral conduct. Righteousness is clearly much more than ethics in Romans. It refers to our standing before God. Dr. Lloyd-Jones argues that Paul is interested in holiness, not morality. Holiness affects the whole person as they are declared righteous by faith. The truly righteous person is no longer preoccupied with minutiae as the Romans were, but is far more concerned with a life pleasing to God. Follow Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones as he wrestles through this passage in Paul’s letter to the Romans.

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