Saying goodbye can be trying, especially if you've been with someone you really care for. Closing a large correspondence is no different. In these last few verses of Romans 15, the Apostle Paul has already given the benediction. But then there was one last warning he wanted to give to the believers in Rome and, of course, his co-workers wanted to be remembered to them as well. Paul finally ends Romans with a great doxology in praise to God. This message was presented by Craig Miller, senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, Ohio Sunday, October 15, 2017.
The church at Rome is not entirely a stranger to the Apostle Paul. If you read the Book of Acts and the rest of Paul's epistles, he names quite a few believers of Jewish descent come from Rome because of the edict of Claudius. These believers have apparently returned to Rome at the time of the writing of Romans and Paul sends his greetings. How he describes them gives us clues as to how important these laypeople were in his ministry. This message was presented by Craig Miller, senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, Ohio Sunday, October 8, 2017.
How do you live your life? Do you just take each day as it comes with no specific goals? Or, with God's precepts in mind, do you live each day intentionally? Granted, things unplanned happen in this fallen world over which you have no control and your godly response is what counts. When the Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Rome, he communicated some heavy theological teaching on them, knowing they would respond correctly. He now finishes his teaching and turns to logistical concerns. Paul wanted to see them to fellowship with them. But now he had a plan to take the gospel to Spain, a part of the Roman Empire where the gospel had still not yet reached. He expected the church at Rome to become a new sending base for him. This message was presented by Craig Miller, senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, Ohio Sunday, October 1, 2017.
After telling the strong Believer not to judge the weak Believer nor the weak to judge the strong, Paul tells the strong that they ought to bear the weak without pleasing themselves. Why? Because Jesus came not to please Himself but to bear the sin burden of all. He came to fulfill all righteousness and give us right standing before God so that the Gentiles might have hope as well. This message was presented by Craig Miller, senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, Ohio Sunday September 24, 2017.
Believers through the years have been confronted with issues of all kinds. The essentials of the faith have required a stand that has meant death for some. The distinctives differentiate one group of believers (denominations) from another but are based on issues where believers have been willing to "agree to disagree" but are not salvation-threatening. Issues over Practices, those things we do or not do based on personal conviction, have sometimes caused heated debates to the point of splitting whole congregations. In this passage in Romans 14, Paul deals with points of contention and explains what should be our response when these things come up. This message was presented by Craig Miller, senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, OH Sunday, September 17, 2017.