A Sense of Balance (1)
A Sermon on Romans 14:17
17for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
17For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
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.
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.