Lent Reading Challenge: Romans 14

The Challenge for the rest of Lent:

– Read. One chapter in the Bible each day until Easter.  We started with Mark, and now are reading Romans.
– Pray. 10 minutes, twice a day.  No distractions, not multitasking.  Just spend time with God.
– Give. A full tithe (10% of your income) each Sunday through Easter.
 
Don’t do this religiously, do it relationally.  Scripture says in James 4:8, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.”  Engage this challenge prayerfully and openly, asking God to reveal Himself throughout these coming days.  Be aware and alert to the things God may be showing you.  They may be thoughts that just pop up, experiences that you have, or even just impulses that you may sense.  Also be aware that Satan, the enemy, will seek to throw you off.  Scripture calls us to put on the Full Armor of God, that we can stand against the schemes of the devil.
 
The book of Romans is somewhat of a different genre of biblical writing.  Mark is one of four Gospels, books that specifically tell the narrative of the life of Jesus Christ.  Romans, however, is a letter and is more theological in nature.  This means that, rather than introducing you to Jesus the person, it is seeking to explain the mission of Jesus and the impact of His life; what it means to believe in Him.
 
Romans one of the longest letters that Paul wrote and is, essentially, a summary of the plan of salvation.  It’s structure, which is commonly referred to as “sin, salvation, sanctification” or  “guilt, grace, gratitude,” has become the precedent for many contemporary writings and the general presentation of the Gospel as well.  The book covers the need for a Savior (chapters 1-3), the impact of The Savior (chapters 4-11), and the call of the Savior to a renewed life (chapters 12-16).

 Read Romans 14

Questions for Reflection:
1. Weakness is something that is not desirable in our culture yet Scripture has a great deal to say about it.  What do you think it is that makes a person’s faith weak according to Romans 14?  How are we called to act around them?  What does Paul say the Lord will do for them?
2. Verses 7-9 contain a remarkable assurance about our position with the Lord, how does this impact you in your day to day life?  What assurance does it give?
3. Are we a body of believers who are making “every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification?”  What does this mean to you?  How would we see this happening at Hopkins Community Church (or your home church)?

Prayer

Pray for yourself, that your faith would be strengthed and your assurance in Christ be renewed again this week.
Pray for Hopkins Community Church, that we would be a place where peace reigns and where we are looking to build each other up in all things.
Pray for the Hopkins Community, that any stumbling blocks that have been placed, whether intentionally or unintentionally, by the church would be removed and the way made straight for people to come to know the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Be sure to spend time listening too; prayer is a conversation.  “Be still and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46:10

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