THE KINGDOM OF GOD
Today’s Reading: Romans 14
Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).
GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.
Key Verse: Romans 14:17
…For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
What a contrast! …the kingdom of man (Rome pictured above) and the Kingdom of God. Man is impressed by great buildings, pomp and circumstance. God is impressed by humble people who pray, read His Word and worship Him consistently wherever they happen to be.
The emphasis in today’s reading is about food in Rome. Almost all the meat and vegetables sold in the markets had been presented to the gods as a sacrifice. This offended the consciences of those striving to be pure before God, particularly the Jewish believers (remember the dietary laws we read about in Leviticus). Many new believers in Jesus who started off in peace and joy have had their freedom withered away by legalism. Paul deals with this issue in several of his letters, notably Galatians. Here in Romans he raises the same issue and warns believers against being bound up in rules about appropriate food and drink. While the legalist may strive for righteousness, he or she will never achieve it. This matter caused Paul to take a stand against Peter (read Galatians 2:11-21). Paul declared that Christ died in vain if righteousness comes through the Law.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, I’m learning that holy living comes through Your Holy Spirit living within me, not from keeping religious rules and regulations, not eating certain foods, etc. Please fill me up more and more with peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. By faith, I am truly free to be a faithful follower of Jesus in Your Kingdom! In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I don’t believe that when Peter and Paul disagreed they considered forming a separate religious denomination. As a teenager, I saw the once mighty soul-winning “Holiness Movement” almost destroyed by legalism (e.g. a certain way of dressing, etc.). Perhaps the “Old Order Mennonites” would be a modern example of outward religious dress codes. The main body of these precious people have moved away from these restrictions and are a great example of “peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” The “holier than thou” attitude produced by my own efforts is a huge turn-off for those people with whom I want to share Jesus. Every morning I open my heart to a new infilling of God’s Word and His Spirit. Then I just live life to the full. What peace! What joy! Early in my Christian life, I felt that I was dragging myself around by the scruff of my neck, trying to live as I should. One day, when I was 20 years old, I said to God, “I can’t live this way anymore!” I heard that inner voice of the Lord say to me, “Good, now relax and let Me live in you and through you.” What a wonderful freedom! I began to experience “peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”
Yours for being filled, as much as our capacities will allow, with the Word of God and with the Holy Spirit. Lord Jesus, please grow my capacity. Amen!
P.S. Over the past few days I placed a link here to some videos. I’ve been asked by some of my blog readers to continue this. So I’ve asked our Crossroads team for a list of video clips that have been digitized for online purposes (like for our website crossroads360.com). Perhaps we’ll succeed in enhancing the blog this way more often in the future through video clips dealing with topics from our blog readings. For example, here is a video regarding legalism by my son, Rev. Ron Mainse (click here). Enjoy!
Thanks, David–wonderful words, this morning. So happy to read more links will be shared, regularly.
I am troubled by jailed Egyptian-Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy. Let us bring him up to our all powerful and mighty Lord and pray for his freedom, release from prison and return to Canada. We know You can break the chains of those imprisoned, God–you did it with Paul! We ask that you do it now, with Mohamed Fahmy, and resurrect him, Lord!
We have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer us who live, but Christ lives in us; and the life which we now live in the flesh we live by faith in the Son of God, who loved us and gave Himself for us (2:20). Blessings dear saints! Amen!
Many years ago it dawned on me, reading Oswald Chambers, that I live not by the faith I have IN Jesus Christ but I live by the faith OF Jesus Christ who lives in me. It made all the difference. The self effort started to fall away. It depends which translation you read. Darby has it right (and probably many others) but of the few German translations on Biblegate, only Luther has it that way.
Since I became a Christian I preyed to understand this verse experientially. It is 45 years later and I have only very slowly integrated this truth. It seems the 40 yearsinthe desert applies to me too. But there IS still a Sabbath rest for the people of God (Hebrews).
Praying your Prayer for Today Rev. Amen.
So delighted your stories bring peace and joy to me.
Blessings fellow saints.
Enjoyed Ron’s explanation video about rules and regulations. Looking forward to more videos. Thank you all.
I am also pleased to hear that more links pertaining to the daily message will also appear more readily.
Have a blessed day blog friends…
Thank you Pastor David for the fresh bread this morning. Your words are very uplifting. Blessings to all who read this blog. It is a beautiful sunny morning here not nearly as cold as it has been. Praise God.
If I could be Jesus I wouldn’t need Jesus– and that is the difference between religion and relationship. Religion is about trying to show God how good you are, relationship is about discovering how good God is. So thankful to be living in the freedom of relationship– Amen
a great explanation and I agree totally. God Bless!
Wow! Reynold Mainse…once again, you captured a Great photo!!!
How true your comment Rev. David; “the contrast between..The Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of man…God is impressed by humble of people who pray and read the bible…”
Thank you for the prayer you prayed David…that is my prayer too.
I listened to your son Ron’s video…what truth he is speaking…thank you for that!!!
God’s blessings to all
Well put, Donna!