The Driving Motivation
To glorify God is the objective. Not to win the argument but to win the person.
Alright, thank you very much and hello again, radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing all right? Oh, I’m fine. Praise the Lord. No complaints today to bring at the complaints desk of heaven. All praise and thanks and honor and glory to our blessed Lord. I’m just so glad to be with you to look once again into the Word of God. We’re looking at Romans chapter 15. And Paul says, “Now,” this is verse 5, “Now, may the God of patience and consolation”, – we’ll use the word comfort- it’s our word “comfort,” same thing. “May the God of patience and comfort grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus. That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.”
That’s quite a mouthful. Now you see what he’s arguing for. Chapter 14 said, “Him that is weak in the faith receive ye.” Take him in, love him, don’t argue with him. Then in verse 1 of chapter 15, “We that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak.” If you’ve going to receive a person, you’re going to make yourself vulnerable to his burdens and help to bear them. But the main thrust of his argument comes up again then in chapter 15 verse 7, “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.”
Now what about all of this? What about all this? Likeminded in your Greek New Testament actually is “the same mind,” “to give you the same mind to each other according,” and that word “according” is the little word “kata” which means “right down along the same line.” “Right down along the same line of the Lord Jesus Christ that you might with one heart and one spirit glorify God and the father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” And then he says, “Wherefore” – I’m just translating freely from my Greek New Testament – “wherefore reach out and take each other in,” “reach out,” “reach across and take each other in even as Christ has taken us in to the glory of God.”
That’s just about what it says there in your original Greek New Testament. Now, let’s talk about that for a minute, shall we? “May God, the God of patience and comfort,” now, where does that come from? From getting into the Scriptures, what was written was written for our learning patience, comfort, and hope, okay? Get into the Scriptures if you want to learn something, get into the Scriptures if you want God’s control over your tendency to give up or blow up. Get into the Bible if you want real comfort for the hurts in your heart, and get into the Bible if you want to have a perspective for the future that has real hope in it.
That is the thrust of Romans 15:4. “Now,” he says, “as a result, He’s the God of patience and He’s the God of comfort, now may he grant you to be likeminded,” in other words having the same mindset. Do we all have to agree on everything? I have a little Cook-ism I use sometimes. If you find a man who always agrees with you, you have to watch him because he’s apt to lie about other things, too. So far as I know, it’s impossible for two human beings to agree absolutely on everything.
When you’re first in love, you young people, you think that that’s so but by and by you realize that you have differing points of view because you are two different personalities and you need to learn to live; supposing that he proposes and you say yes and you take him to the preacher and the preacher says “Wilt thou” and he wilts and so on, and you set up your home together, then you need to learn to live together as two different personalities with two different points of view but with one objective and that is to share your life together. There is a mindset of oneness, right?
Now, that’s the same thing with believers. Of course there are points of disagreement. There are bound to be so but there is one mind when it comes to the lordship of Christ according to Christ Jesus, down along the line of Christ Jesus. There is one mind when it comes to the lordship of Jesus Christ and there is one mind when it comes to glorifying God. You want to say and do things that glorify God, verse 6. And there is one mind and one heart in terms of your attitude toward other people, verse 7. You receive them. You reach out and take them in.
It’s a beautiful concept, isn’t it? You see, the Bible doesn’t make automatons of us. It doesn’t make robots of us. To follow the Lord Jesus Christ does not take any of your initiative away; it simply makes it possible for you with your initiative and with the uniqueness of your own personality to glorify God while interacting helpfully with other people who want to do the same thing. In an automobile assembly plant, there are many different functions. And as the line proceeds, the chassis is laid down, assuming that this is an automobile that does have a chassis, a lot of them don’t any more, but the chassis is laid down and the running gear and the motor is placed into its proper cradle and bolted in and other things are added and then the body shell is put on and bolted on.
And then the various components are put on and each of these operations is performed by a different person so that the person who is taking care of getting the chassis and motor and the running gear along that part of the line, those persons are not doing the same kind of work as the people who put the body shell on and install the glass and the upholstery or this or that, you see? The work is different but the objective is the same. Do you follow me? The objective is to produce an automobile – brand new, shining, sparkling with that new smell that delights you.
The objective is to produce a perfect, in so far as possible, a perfect new car. Somebody does one thing, somebody else does another thing, we have different points of view, we have different tasks in life, but we have one objective: we want to produce that new car in a way that it will work well and last. Now, the same thing is true in Christian work. God has made us unique individuals. Each person is different. Those of you who’ve raised your own children, you know that each child is different.
One is outgoing, the other is shy. One is stubborn and the other is flexible. One is outwardly and quickly and responsibly affectionate, the other person is apt to be a little withdrawn and sometimes even appear sullen. Different, different, different. And you can’t make them all alike. So you learn to deal with each individual on the basis of his uniqueness. So that’s true of all of us. God doesn’t take away your uniqueness. He does, however, make it possible for you to agree thoroughly with other people on what really counts and that is – let me go back and do it again – likeminded, having the same mind one toward another according to – right down along the line of that means – the Lordship of Christ and that you have the same mind in the desire to glorify God with one mind and one mouth, glorify God.
You have the same mindset toward the Father in heaven. Glorify God even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Together with another person who also has a unique personality who may differ with you in his or her outlook on life, you kneel and say, “Abba Father,” “Our Father which art in heaven,” and all of a sudden you are together in your heart and together in your words in a God given unity that goes beyond human differences. Hallelujah for that. Aren’t you glad that’s so?
Now, this works in home situations. Husband and wife, parent and child — when you get down and really seek the Lord together, you’ll find that oneness of heart takes over even though there may be disagreements on individual details. It certainly works in churches and other organizations. When we get down and really seek the Lord, the individual differences tend to be diminished and to find their own proper place while the overriding unity of real faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as Lord and real affection for the heavenly Father as our Father take over.
And as a result, you find it possible to reach out and take into your heart somebody with whom you may differ on what color to paint the boiler room. But, oh, there is that overriding and undergirding sense of oneness with the Lord Jesus Christ and oneness with the heavenly Father toward whom you look up and say “Abba Father,” “Papa God,” “Our Father which art in heaven. And because of that sense of belonging, because of the comfort you get from the Word of God, because of your desire to honor and to glorify our God, it brings you together with other people. Does that make sense to you today? I hope it does.
One other thought before we’re finished here, he said, “With one mind and one mouth, glorify God.” The supreme test of the fitness of any reaction to other people is this: does it honor the Lord and does it glorify God? If you’ll ask that question before you open your mouth, you’ll have less apologizing to do afterwards. If you’ll ask that question before you pass the motion, you’ll have less rescinding, so to speak, to do afterwards. If you’ll ask that question, “Does it honor the Lord Jesus and glorify God,” if you’ll ask that before you make a decision, you’ll have less backtracking to do afterwards.
To glorify God is the objective. Not to win the argument but to win the person. Not to take a religious position but to honor the God who has raised you into the heavenlies and made you sit together in the heavenlies with Jesus our blessed Lord. Amen? That’s good truth, isn’t it? Well, it blesses me and I hope it had the same effect upon your own heart, my dear friend.
Dear Father, help us to glorify Thee today, in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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