Beyond the Gospels: Romans 14:13-15:7

Today’s Scripture: Romans 14:13-15:7
[Read today’s verses in your own Bible or click the reference to read online.]

May the God of endurance and encouragement
grant you to live in such harmony with one another,
in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with
one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 15:5-6 ESV
These verses sum up my heart for the church, that together with one voice we would glorify God: Father, Son, Spirit.
God inspired Paul to use the word harmony. 

harmony noun… a pleasing combination or arrangement of different things

—www.Merriam-Webster.com

Musical harmony makes a beautiful rich sound. Spiritual harmony in the church does, too, bringing together many with a variety of differences for one purpose: God’s glory.

What disrupts harmony? Judgment.

Judgment of others’ gifts, the way they use them to serve God, and the way they appeal to our own tastes are stumbling blocks to the church when it comes to experiencing harmony (Romans 4:13).

We’ve seen judgment disrupt the unity of the church universal over hundreds of years, transforming Jesus’s one true Church into a disjointed mass of denominations.

We’ve experienced local congregations thrown into discord over judgment of external matters such as style, time, and order of worship.

The majority of these judgments have to do with personal taste or differing levels of spiritual maturity and understanding, which cause us to focus on the externals rather than the motive of the offering or an individual’s personal relationship with God. Paul tells us this is not what church is about — externals.

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking
but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Romans 14:17 ESV


Do you find yourself unable to worship, serve, fellowship in harmony with other Believers? Perhaps you should consider what judgments you are making, either consciously or unconsciously.

As Believers, we need to remember the focus of our faith community is not about pleasing self, but about glorifying God with all our diverse gifts coming together as one beautiful community of love, grace, and peace for His glory.

Father God, reveal any judgmental attitudes in my heart when I find myself
annoyed by others in the church or being critical of their gifts and service.
I long to worship, serve, and fellowship in harmony with all Believers for Your glory.
Only by the grace and power of the Holy Spirit is this possible.
Work in my heart for Your glory!

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