Sunday 13 October, 2013

Romans 14:1-12

14 Accept those whose faith is weak. Don’t judge them where you have differences of opinion. 2 The faith of some people allows them to eat anything. But others eat only vegetables because their faith is weak. 3 People who eat everything must not look down on those who do not. And people who don’t eat everything must not judge those who do. God has accepted them. 4 Who are you to judge someone else’s servants? Whether they are faithful or not is their own master’s concern. They will be faithful, because the Lord has the power to make them faithful. 5 Some people consider one day to be more holy than another. Others think all days are the same. Each person should be absolutely sure in his own mind. 6 Those who think one day is special do it to honor the Lord. Those who eat meat do it to honor the Lord. They give thanks to God. Those who don’t eat meat do it to honor the Lord. They also give thanks to God. 7 We don’t live for ourselves alone. And we don’t die all by ourselves. 8 If we live, we live to honor the Lord. If we die, we die to honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 Christ died and came back to life. He did this to become the Lord of both the dead and the living. 10 Now then, who are you to judge your brother or sister? Why do you look down on them? We will all stand in God’s courtroom to be judged. 11 It is written, “‘You can be sure that I live,’ says the Lord. ‘And you can be just as sure that every knee will bow down in front of me. Every tongue will tell the truth to God.’” 12 So we will all have to explain to God the things we have done.

Who are the weak – who are the strong – what makes them so?  These questions come straight to mind as I read this passage.  Does weak mean potential to fall away from faith in Jesus?  As far as I can tell from this passage the weak are those with more stringent disciplines around their world.  They are people for whom the external discipline is still being applied more than the internal fruit of the spirit of self discipline.

What I eat doesn’t matter to God and is not essential to my faith in Jesus.  What holy-days I observe do not matter to God, it is that I worship Him that matters!

Paul reminds us we need to be fully convinced – and what a great test that is.  I dare not be half hearted in matters of the faith and so I choose to follow Christ.

Father help me to live fully convinced – with the conviction of faith around every element of my life and so live to please you!
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Written by Ps. Richard Botta

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