Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Sermon Notes from Romans 14:7-8

Rom 14:7  For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.  Rom 14:8  For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's.
The idea of dying unto the Lord here is not just about being a good testimony when you die but that in death you must give an account before the Lord.  This in turn shows why living for the Lord is a very serious pursuit.  But first let’s admit that we do have a responsibility to die as a Christian.  We all would like to die quickly but the fact remains that this won’t always happen and we must not make excuses for “losing our religion” when such things happen.  God is in control of not only our lives but how we die and when we die so no amount of pain, whether it is physical or emotional, can justify not dying as unto the Lord.
Are we then to consider untimely deaths as a cosmic mistake?  Not if God is sovereign; the timing and the manner are his to determine.  Calvin put it like this, “Thus too we are taught the rule by which to live and die, so that if he lengthens out life in the midst of continual sorrow and weariness, we are not to seek to depart before our time.  but if he should suddenly recall us in the prime of our life, we must always be ready for our departure.”   And if you study up on the last ten years of his life you will find that he knew whereof he spoke; he suffered horrible physical afflictions those last several years.
Part of our duty as Christians in living for the Lord is preparing for trials and thinking about and preparing for our departure so that we can say with Paul that we have fought the good fight and will do so until the end. 

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