A Sense of Balance (2)
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.
Christians are part of the kingdom of God and it is big. However, sometimes Christians can give the opposite impression. They can be guilty of emphasizing an aspect of the kingdom at the expense of the whole, making the kingdom seem small and negative. The church at Rome had given the impression that the kingdom was about eating and drinking. They had made the kingdom tiny and petty. In this message on Romans 14:17 titled “A Sense of Balance (2),” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones asks the contemporary church what impression they give the world about the kingdom. What do they say is essential to Christianity? Is Christianity merely about being moral? Is it about abstaining from certain things? Dr. Lloyd-Jones suggests that Christians become trapped into making the kingdom of God about small matters because they do not know how to think in terms of the kingdom. Since the kingdom of God is completely different than anything humans have experienced, they must learn a new way of thinking. Christians are tempted to think in earthly terms rather than the kingdom controlling our thoughts. People are looking for something big, not small. Learn from Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones about faithfully witnessing to the kingdom of God in one’s daily life.
- The kingdom of God is the central theme and controlling thought for Christians. It refers to God's rule and reign.
- As citizens of God's kingdom, we are no longer our own. We belong to God and are subject to His laws and rule.
- The kingdom of God is unlike any earthly kingdom. It is not about power, authority or selfish ambition. Even the King came to serve.
- We must learn to think in a new, Christian way as citizens of God's kingdom. Our old way of thinking is useless.
- In God's kingdom, truth and righteousness matter more than our opinions, rights or votes. We are called to unity, not division.
- We must never reduce God's kingdom to any one thing like eating/drinking, good works, doctrines or denominations. It is far greater.
- We must consider the impression we are giving others about God's kingdom. Is it small, contemptible and negative or great and glorious?
- The masses remain outside the church because Christians have portrayed God's kingdom as small, petty and unimportant. We must change this.
The Book of Romans
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.