February 17 - Romans 14:5-11

Monday, February 17, 2014

Romans 14:5-11 – Live for the Lord

One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. 

You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.  It is written:  “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’” 

Not only were there disagreements about the foods people were eating, but feast days as well. Paul used these two examples to remind his readers about the importance of doing things for the Lord and not for anyone else.

A weak Christian might go along with the crowd, ignoring the importance of special days of their own. This isn't what God wants from us. He wants each person to be fully convinced of the importance of things, without being overly influenced by others. If God calls us to celebrate one day and not another, that is what we are to do. If God calls us to eat certain things and not eat others, it is not another Christian's place to stop us.

Our lives are to be lived for the Lord. We belong to him. Since he is Lord of both the dead and the living (Romans 14:9), surely eating or not eating, celebrating a feast day or not celebrating a feast day, also belong to him. Our lives are to be lived for God … down to the minutest of details.

So then why do we judge each other? The person who judges those who eat meat without being concerned whether it came from a sacrifice to an idol is out of line. The person who judges those who celebrate every feast day they can is out of line. And so it is on the other side of each issue. Why do we treat each other with contempt?

We all stand before God's judgment seat. Our sins are equal before him. Our thoughts and desires are equal in his sight. We are to live our lives fully for the Lord, not according to someone else's set of rules and regulations.

In the end. We bow before God and acknowledge Him as worthy of our worship. In the end, none of this will matter, except to God.

Live your lives for the Lord.