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True Happiness Among Kingdom People - Part 1. Series: Where is my Happiness as a Christian?. Romans 4:13-18.

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true happiness among kingdom people part 1

True Happiness Among Kingdom People - Part 1

Series: Where is my Happiness as a Christian?

romans 4 13 18
Romans 4:13-18

13Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil.

romans 4 13 181
Romans 4:13-18

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.

introduction
Introduction
  • Some people are driven
  • Some people are contemplative
  • Some moody
  • Some people are social
i life in the kingdom of god is not about food and drink
I. Life in the Kingdom of God is not about food and drink.

13Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil.

listening to one side of phone
Listening to one side of phone
  • Many early churches had significant number of Jews. Rome was an exception.
    • AD49, edict of Claudius, expulsion of Jews from Rome
    • AD54, death of Claudius, return of Jews to Rome
    • AD57, writing of Romans, 3 years after death of Claudius
    • Gentile dominated community, probably also Gentile leadership
slide7

Gentiles and some Jews. The weak = some Jews

    • Diet issue
    • Probably related to the Agape (love feast), not likely about diet at home
    • Like the issue in Acts 15. About who can eat at table fellowship.
    • The Jews, for reasons unknown to us, adopted a Daniel diet
slide8

The issue

    • Stumbling block (proskomma). Figurative: a stone placed on a path causing someone to strip. Generally: doing something that causes another person to sin. Those who feel guilty about eating meat but do so anyway, thus injuring their conscience.
    • Obstacle (skandalon). “Obstacle” is ok. I prefer the figurative use of it for a “trap.”
    • NOT about offending legalists. Legalists in power impose their legalism. These were believers who are legalistic but are in a weak position and need to treated with gentleness.
slide9

The bottom-line

    • There is no unclean animal
  • The double bottom-line
    • 15If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 
  • Paul’s suggestion: for the sake of the weaker brother, we will not serve meat at the Agape meal.
ii life in the kingdom of god is about a community of righteousness
II. Life in the Kingdom of God is about a community of righteousness

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of (1)righteousness, (2)peace and (3)joy in the Holy Spirit, 18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.

slide11

Righteous by faith

    • Matthew 6:33 “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.”
  • Righteous by action
    • Matt 6:1ff. Acts of righteousness are praying, fasting, and giving to the poor.
    • Matt 25 37Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You?
slide12

Rev. 19 7Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” 8It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints

  • James 2 18Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.
slide13

20You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? 21Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. 24You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

iii life in the kingdom of god is about a community of peace
III. Life in the Kingdom of God is about a community of peace

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of (1)righteousness, (2)peace and (3)joy in the Holy Spirit, 18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.

slide15

Peace with God

  • Peace within the community
  • Peace with the society at large
iv life in the kingdom of god is about a community of joy in the holy spirit
IV. Life in the Kingdom of God is about a community of joy in the Holy Spirit

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of (1)righteousness, (2)peace and (3)joy in the Holy Spirit, 18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.

slide17

The Holy Spirit is the giver of joy

  • Testimony of younger days. Not sanguineous!
ephesians 5
Ephesians 5

15Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.18And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one anotherin psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heartto the Lord; 20always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father; 21and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.

slide19

Urgency to Joy in the Holy Spirit

    • 15Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
  • Time is short – be happy!
slide20

Time is short, the days are evil (physical evil), so make use of every opportunity.

  • Know the Lord’s will. Don’t be foolish How?
  • Concerning spiritual things. Don’t be in the wrong ministry.
  • Don’t be prideful to think you can change entrenched culture
  • Don’t be with false teaching / false teachers, even if they seem to minister to you in some way.
  • We can choose among the right ministries, don’t waste your time in the wrong ministries.
slide21

Especially for older people. Don’t have much time left.

  • Testimony, only about 10 good years. Warning from a fellow minister.
slide22

What is Joy in the Holy Spirit?

  • It is compared to drunkenness.
  • It is like being drunk – it shows in all we do
slide23

Joy comes when we speak to one another in song

  • Joy comes when we make melody in our heart
  • Joy comes through giving thanks for all things
  • Joy comes when we are subject to one another
  • E.g. Romans 14. Giving way to each other
v life in the kingdom of god is about pleasing god and receiving human approval
V. Life in the Kingdom of God is about pleasing God and receiving human approval

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is (1)pleasing to God and (2)receives human approval.

slide26

“This way”

    • Double bottom-line of spiritual reality and sensitivity for the weaker brother
    • E.g. the use of alcoholic wine
  • In righteousness
  • In peace
  • In joy
slide27

The result

  • Pleasing to God (our vertical)
  • Human approval (our horizontal)