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I.BACKGROUND A. Ed Harrell, Christianity Magazine, 17 articles on “The Bounds of Christian Unity” A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? 1. “Neither.

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Presentation on theme: "I.BACKGROUND A. Ed Harrell, Christianity Magazine, 17 articles on “The Bounds of Christian Unity” A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? 1. “Neither."— Presentation transcript:

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2 I.BACKGROUND A. Ed Harrell, Christianity Magazine, 17 articles on “The Bounds of Christian Unity” A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? 1. “Neither can one argue that the passage simply proves that we can disagree about indifferent matters. Common sense tells me that without the need of revelation.” (CM Art 3, April 89, p. 6) 2. “The issue addressed in Romans 14” includes “matters of considerable moral and doctrinal import” (CM Art. 4, May 89 p. 6)

3 I.BACKGROUND A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? c. “Romans 14” discusses the right to “tolerate contradictory teachings and practices on important moral and doctrinal questions.” (CM Art. 16, May 90, p. 6) A. Ed Harrell, Christianity Magazine… d. Christians and local churches “make judgments about the clarity of New Testament instruction. Our assessment about the clarity of a passage becomes the basis for all our decisions about the bounds of Christian unity.” (CM Art 7, Aug 89, p. 6 and Art 16, May 90, p. 6)

4 I.BACKGROUND B. Ed Harrell CHANGED His Views! A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? “I believe in a literal and narrow interpretation of the Bible as the Word of God. My aim is the exact restoration of the ancient order…the Bible should be, can be, and is literally understandable and… it should lead men to the same conclusions. Any man whobelieves that he can find literal truth in the Scriptures must also believe that those who do not find the same truth are wrong. What follows is that such people are sinful. The nextlogical conclusion is that they will go to hell.” (Edwin Harrell, Discipline And The Church Universal, p34-35 via TM Nov p. 4).

5 I.BACKGROUND C. WHY Change? (“Homer Hailey: False Teacher?” CM Nov 88 p. 6) A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? 1. Responding to ”personal attacks on Hailey”. 2. “My personal defense of Homer Hailey as a man who has earned the respect and esteem of the Christians of our time. Or, more accurately, it is my explanation ofwhy Hailey has won wide esteem among Christians in spite of his views on the subject of divorce and remarriage.” This was the article BEFORE the 16 on Romans 14! (Matt. 10:37-39; Col. 3:25; Jas. 2:1, 9; Jude 16).

6 II.THE TEXT OF ROMANS 14 A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? A. “Weak in faith” (14:1)? 1. He is “in the faith” & “received” (14:1; 15:7). 2. Neither is to despise the other (14:3, 10). (To hold in contempt, despise, least esteem, set at nought - Strong) (To distinguish, decide; by implication, to try, condemn, punish… damn, determine, call in question, sentence to, think - Strong) 3. Neither is to judge the other (14:3, 4, 10, 13). IS THIS SAYING WE CAN DIFFER OVER SIN?

7 II.THE TEXT OF ROMANS 14 A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? B. “Doubtful Disputations” (14:1 KJV)? (ASV) not for decision of scruples. (NKJV) not to disputes over doubtful things. (RSV) not for disputes over opinions. (NAS) judgment on his opinions. (Vine p. 322) “Denotes, primarily, an inward reasoning, an opinion…” (WEB) not for disputes over opinions. (WNT) not for the purpose of deciding mere matters of opinion.

8 II.THE TEXT OF ROMANS 14 A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? C. “Meats” and “days” (14:2-3, 5-6). 1. Can eat or not… BOTH received (14:3b). 2. Can esteem a day or not… BOTH can be fully assured (14:5b). 3. God makes BOTH stand (14:4). Where Do Diff. Doctrines & Morals Fit (Ro.16:17ff)? 4. Meat specifically described as “clean” (14:14, 20). 5. Meat spoken of as “good” (14:16). 6. Eating or not does not in itself affect one’s righteousness… (14:17).

9 III.WHAT FITS IN ROMANS 14? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? A. Murder? Robbery? Homosexuality? Adultery? Fornication (1 Tim. 1:8-11)? 1. Receive one who murders as one who does not (14:3b)? 2. Can be fully assured whether robber or not (14:5b)? 3. Shall God make the homosexual stand just like the straight (14:4)? 4. Is adultery EVER categorized as “clean” (14:14, 20)? 5. Is fornication “good” (14:16)? 6. Do these affect one’s righteousness (14:17)?

10 III.WHAT FITS IN ROMANS 14? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? B. If you can fit ONE SIN into Romans 14… why not any others? 1. Denominations use it for all manner is doctrinal error (Unity in Diversity). 2. Brethren use it for girly magazines, Homer Hailey issue (MDR), Days of Creation issue, etc. 3. If these, then why not everything? Baptism, work, worship, organization of the church…? Give Satan an inch, he will take a mile (1 Cor. 5:6)!

11 III.WHAT FITS IN ROMANS 14? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? C. What About Circumcision (Acts 15:1, 5)? 1. When taught as Truth (Acts 15:1, 5): a. No small dissension (Acts 15:2, 7). b. Would “burden” the disciples (15:10). c. Would “trouble them” (15:19). d. Would “subvert souls” (15:24). e. Would “burden” the disciples (15:10) f. Refused to circumcise Titus (Gal.2:3). g. Those that promote were called “false brethren” (Gal.2:4). h. Did not give them any place for the TRUTH’s sake (Gal. 2:5).

12 III.WHAT FITS IN ROMANS 14? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? C. What About Circumcision (Acts 15:1, 5)? 2. Why was Timothy circumcised (Acts 16:3)? a. Circumcision is not sinful in itself (Gal. 6:15; 1 Cor. 7:19). b. It becomes sinful when made into a religious principle (Ax 15:1, Gal. 2:3). c. Those that teach it are false teachers and are anathema (Gal. 1:6-9). d. Those that receive their doctrine are: - Removed from grace (Gal. 1:6-7).- In bondage (Gal. 2:4). - Severed from Christ (Gal. 5:2- 4).

13 III.WHAT FITS IN ROMANS 14? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? D. What About… ? 1. Carnal Warfare (Rom. 13:1-4; Acts 16:27, 36; Acts 10:1, 11:14; Lk. 3:4-5, 8, 14; 16:16). 2. The Veil (1 Cor. 11:15). 1. Did God fail to reveal them clearly (as Ed Harrell says) (2 Tim. 3:16-17)? 3. Lord’s Supper Sunday PM (1 Cor. 11:20, Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 11:24-25, 29-30; v. 33). 2. Or have we just not studied diligently & honestly enough (2 Pet. 3:16-18)? E. There may be some things we are not yet clear on… BUT WHY?

14 IV.SUMMARY OF ROMANS 14 A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? B. Within the boundaries of God’s Word some things are left to our personal opinion. Romans 14 teaches us how to receive our faithful brethren whose personal conscience differs from ours in an area of liberty. C. Romans 14 does NOT teach us how to tolerate sin in teaching or practice. A. Recognize that revealed truth is the standard (1 Cor. 4:6; 2 Jn 9-11; 2 Pet. 3:16ff; 2 Tim. 1:13)

15 CONCLUSION: Can We Fellowship Sin? A Safe Haven For Doctrinal & Moral Differences? 1. Brethren are using Rom. 14 to allow fellowship with those who teach or practice sin! 2. Some have publicly admitted their goal is to preserve earthly relationships (Respect of Persons)! Where Will YOU Stand? With men or with God? 3. How much sin will it take to wake us up?

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