S232-072708 Ro 12c
Alêtheia Christian Fellowship ~ 072708 ~ Romans 12c
1- Volitionally offer yourself as a sacrifice to God.
2- Actively allow the Holy Spirit to renew your mind.
3- Use your grace-gift now by allowing God to serve others through you.
4- Humbly excel in Christian love and affection making the local body better.
Today- Wear well, i.e. be agreeable by working hard to get along with others.
What makes people agreeable? To them stuff isn’t worth fussing over – peace is more important than having their own way.
Romans 12:14-17 ~ 14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation. 17Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.
How could you sum that up? Be agreeable – get along with other people. Here are some particulars…
Bless is to call down God’s grace (salvation) upon a person.
Curse is to call down God’s judgment (damnation) upon a person.
How do you surrender to Christ? Bless your enemies
This is nothing new – the O.T., Jesus, and N.T.
Rejoice is the verb cai>rw, the noun form is cara>, the 2nd element of the fruit (reference James 5 Sewage)
Weep is to mourn, i.e. deep emotion (don’t correct, just join them)
Stay engaged in life exuding God’s grace
Verse 16Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.
- \\ Proposition: Be the same with one another in your opinions & agendas
Negatively: Do not be high minded
Positively: Be humbly minded together
Command: Stop being opinionated (you’re not as wise as you think)!
Aesop’s story of the 4 bulls and the lion.
Verse 17Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.
Paying evil for evil only makes you evil too! In a few verses you will see we are to overcome evil with good.
Never is mhdei>v, literally not one and so it is to no one and nothing, i.e. never – it doesn’t get more certain! Bad is kako>v.
Gandhi, “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” The Bible is speaking about justice enabling civilization, but as individuals we turn the other cheek.
Therefore respect what is reasonable – obey all the laws and customs of the CHURCH and the land as long as they don’t violate a higher order.
We can think highly of our opinions and be divisive – the outcome for us will be the same as that of Aesop’s bulls.
Peter said, “The devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Pe 5:8).
Romans 12:18 ~ If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.
If possible does not mean if you can
It means as well as others allow – so the peace ball is in their court – keep hitting it back to them – peace is their choice.
This is impossible without Holy Spirit humility
Romans 12:19-21 ~ 19Never take your own revenge, (Pr 20 &24) beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. (Dt 32 & Ps 94) 20“But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; (2Ki 6 & Pr 25) for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Once again Paul quotes from several Old Covenant passages.
Never take your own revenge… = don’t you try to make things right because you’ll get in the way of God’s Holy Wrath!
Of course this is trust, isn’t it?
Crime against your family member
Criminal is punished
Easier to be graceful?
Proof that trust is the central issue in extending grace to those who wrong us
Verse 20 is a direct quote from Proverbs 25, it finishes with: “And the Lord will reward you”.
It’s not about heaping burning coals on your enemy – that’s the net effect unless they repent and become a friend – that would be vindictive.
It’s about trust!!! That is the only reward-able thing you can do!
2 Kings 6, Elisha asked God to blind the huge army of the Arameans and when they were sitting ducks the king of Israel asked Elisha, shall I kill them? Elisha said give them food and water and send them home. Afterward the Arameans did come back to Israel.
Paul started this section in verse 9 ~ Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.
Now he finishes with verse 21 ~ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Conquer is nika>w the verb of nikh~, bad is kako>v and good is ajgaqo>v.
Air Force: Mess with me and I’ll get mad
Army: Mess with me and I’ll get even
Marines: Mess with me and I’ll get ahead
Scott: Mess with me and I’ll end it.
Claire Bothe Luce: “No good deed goes unpunished.”
How much am I going to make God suffer?
Christians sometimes attempt to sanctify their anger calling it righteous indignation but it’s just human wrath.
1- Preemption, Revenge, Justice, Leniency, Grace.
Do not become evil in response to evil
2- Do not become focused on your problem to the exclusion of extending yourself to others.
Lack of concern for others because you’re so concerned with yourself
Do not disengage from life around you.
3- By nature evil is unjust! Don’t allow yourself to feel superior to your persecutor or you may one day reverse roles.
Japanese soldiers during WWII
Grace is given to those who need grace and from the world’s view, it may be our superiors.
Hate is sin.
4- Don’t give in
Tehran, Iran – signed anti-Christian document, put up Islam propaganda at store & vowed to divorce wife in exchange for bail.
Let us apologize to God for our lapses of:
Lack of faith
We are commanded to abhor evil – pray that you are filled with the Holy Spirit and be perfect as your Father in Heaven is perfect.
Tracy’s Dad (Passing)
Michele’s Brother (Prostate)