Romans 14:14-23

The Law of Love

14 I know and am convinced by the Lord Jesus that there is nothing unclean of itself; but to him who considers anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean. 15 Yet if your brother is grieved because of your food, you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your food the one for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let your good be spoken of as evil; 17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 For he who serves Christ in these things is acceptable to God and approved by men.
19 Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All things indeed are pure, but it is evil for the man who eats with offense. 21 It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak. 22 Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. 23 But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin.

Continuing from yesterday, some people hold certain foods to be rejected based on preconceived ideas from their religious upbringing. This just expands on this premise showing that the most important thing you can do is to treat your fellow Christians with love above all else. If there is a Christian in your fellowship who is struggling with alcoholism (or who was saved out of a life surrounded with alcoholism), don’t drink in front of them, even if you don’t struggle with that issue. At the very worst you’re only going to inconvenience yourself and your friend will not think that they are able to do that when God may not have finished preparing them for that step. The key to this is to focus first on pleasing God, then your friend, then yourself. Some people I greatly respect put it to the letters JOY – Jesus, Others, Yourself. I can’t see anything wrong with that and it reflects exactly how we should keep our minds focused on the needs of our brothers and sisters in Christ when we are with them.