God’s Saving Word: Spiritual Renewal
Romans 14:1-12: Some of the followers in Rome believed that it was wrong to eat meat, and others were saying that certain foods should only be eaten on certain days. Paul says that there will be differences among God’s people, but all the believers need to be accepting of one another and not judge each other.
Do Not Judge Others
14 Welcome those who are weak in faith, but do not argue with them about their personal opinions. 2 Some people’s faith allows them to eat anything, but the person who is weak in the faith eats only vegetables. 3 The person who will eat anything is not to despise the one who doesn’t; while the one who eats only vegetables is not to pass judgment on the one who will eat anything; for God has accepted that person. 4 Who are you to judge the servants of someone else? It is their own Master who will decide whether they succeed or fail. And they will succeed, because the Lord is able to make them succeed.
5 Some people think that a certain day is more important than other days, while others think that all days are the same. We each should firmly make up our own minds. 6 Those who think highly of a certain day do so in honor of the Lord; those who will eat anything do so in honor of the Lord, because they give thanks to God for the food. Those who refuse to eat certain things do so in honor of the Lord, and they give thanks to God. 7 We do not live for ourselves only, and we do not die for ourselves only. 8 If we live, it is for the Lord that we live, and if we die, it is for the Lord that we die. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For Christ died and rose to life in order to be the Lord of the living and of the dead. 10 You then, who eat only vegetables—why do you pass judgment on others? And you who eat anything—why do you despise other believers? All of us will stand before God to be judged by him. 11 For the scripture says,
“As surely as I am the living God, says the Lord,
everyone will kneel before me,
and everyone will confess that I am God.”
12 Every one of us, then, will have to give an account to God.
Today’s Key Verse: Romans 14:8
If we live, it is for the Lord that we live, and if we die, it is for the Lord that we die. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.
Paul instructsthe believers to respect each other’s customs and to stop disagreements about food that seem to be causing division among them. Within your community of faith, are there times when conflicts occur over various customs and traditions that people hold dear? How are such conflicts resolved? Reread verses 7 and 8. What does it mean to you to “belong to the Lord” and how does such belonging impact the way you live?
Loving God, knowing I belong to you fills me with joy. Help me not to be quick to judge others, and teach me to treat with respect those whose opinions differ from mine. Guide my words and actions this day so that all I say and do is pleasing in your sight and gives glory and honor to you. Amen.
Romans 14:13-23: The apostle Paul admonishes the believers not to act in ways that may cause others to fall into sin.