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Romans 13:8-14

1. We started by looking at v. 8-10 & unpacking the thesis: Christian love fulfills the law of God.

A: We see in v. 8 that we are to be radically distinct by being indebted to one another in love…which fulfills the law of God! Paul does something in this verse that we rarely see today…he connects love & the law. Why do so many people struggle to see this connection between love & law? 

B: Pastor Nate unpacked what it meant to “love God” by going to Luke 14:25-27,33. It was said that to love God is to treasure God above all things to the degree that everything & everyone else appears to be despised. Who are examples of loving God, either in the past or present, that come to mind when you hear “loving God” explained in these terms?

C: Based off 1 John 4:19, our love of God is caused by God’s love, which is demonstrated through the person & work of Jesus Christ (1 John 4:10). How does understanding that even our love of God is in light of God help us realize the greatness of God?

D: We then saw in v. 9 that the definition of love is connected to the commands of the Lord. It was said that love never disobeys the commands of God. How is this statement helpful for us as we live in a world where the word, “love”, is so casually & constantly used?

E: From v. 10, it is clear that love is also leading one another to do what’s Biblical. So what are some ways that you can love others as reflected in Scripture right now?

2. We then looked at v. 11-14 & the thesis: be ready for the return of Christ.

A: In v. 11, Paul gives a charge to WAKE UP! They were in a position of spiritual drowsiness, rather than of spiritual vibrancy. What are marks of a spiritually drowsy person?

B: Then in v. 12, 2 requirements are given to be ready for the return of the Lord: 1) repentance, 2) putting on the armor of light. Take time to look at Ephesians 6:10-18 & discuss what it means for Christians to be ready to engage in the world for the sake of Christ.

C: Paul gets specific with his audience in v. 13 about what is preventing them from being ready for the return of Christ: drunkenness, sexual impurity, & disunity are the broad categories. Are these categories of sin still relevant today? If so, in what ways? What are other categories of sin that Christians must be vigilant over in order to be ready for the return of Christ?

D: There is a reaffirmation in v. 14 of what has been said in v. 12. Christians are to put on Christlikeness rather than worldliness…especially when it comes to sin. How should a Christians view of sin & response to sin make them distinct from the rest of the world?

3. We ended with a few questions that lead to application.

A: First we looked at Hebrews 10:23-25 to see the importance of corporate worship in the life of Christians. It was said that many Christians throughout history & even today realize the necessity of gathering with the saints…that corporate worship is worth dying for! How can we make corporate worship, fellowship with the saints at MBC, a more significant part of our lives, our families?

B: We were also asked if we were ready for the return of Christ…if there was sin that needed to be repented of & fought. What are practical steps to addressing & fighting the sin that so easily entangles?