Principles of Conscience
1Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not to have quarrels over opinions. 2One person has faith that he may eat all things, but the one who is weak eats only vegetables. 3The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. 4Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
1Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. 2For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs. 3Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. 4Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.
The Lord alone has the authority to make final judgments on people. In this sermon from Romans 14:1–4 titled “Saved for Eternity,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones reminds the listener of this important truth and how they can follow this while still exercising discernment regarding the people they are around and the activities in which they participate. When the Christian makes ultimate judgments about people, they are usurping the authority of the Lord and putting themselves in His place. This is a very dangerous place. What are they to do about the activities of the world that in and of themselves are not wrong? Dr. Lloyd-Jones provides helpful guidelines to consider as one works through this. He proposes that it all comes back to the theme of Christian liberty and that on issues not clearly portrayed in Scripture as sinful, it is a matter of conscience between each person and God. Paul says that one is not to judge or be jealous of those who are using their Christian liberty because ultimately, the Lord is powerful and strong enough to help them stand up. Dr. Lloyd-Jones ties this into the doctrine of the final perseverance of the saints, providing supporting examples from Scripture. Listen as he instructs on being discerning about things one should avoid and the effects that freedom in Christ has on such choices.
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.