Romans 14

As for those whose faith is weak, always receive them as friends, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on their scruples. One person’s faith permits of their eating food of all kinds, while another whose faith is weak eats only vegetable food. The person who eats meat must not despise the person who abstains from it; nor must the person who abstains from eating meat pass judgment on the one who eats it, for God himself has received them. Who are you, that you should pass judgment on the servant of another? Their standing or falling concerns their own master. And stand they will, for their Master can enable them to stand. Again, one person considers some days to be more sacred than others, while another considers all days to be alike. Everyone ought to be fully convinced in their own mind. The person who observes a day, observes it to the Master’s honour. They, again, who eat meat eat it to the Master’s honour, for they give thanks to God; while the person who abstains from it abstains from it to the Master’s honour, and also gives thanks to God. There is not one of us whose life concerns ourselves alone, and not one of us whose death concerns ourself alone; for, if we live, our life is for the Master, and, if we die, our death is for the Master. Whether, then, we live or die we belong to the Master. The purpose for which Christ died and came back to life was this — that he might be Lord over both the dead and the living. 10 I would ask the one ‘Why do you judge other followers of the Lord?’ And I would ask the other ‘Why do you despise them?’ For we will all stand before the court of God. 11 For scripture says — ‘“As surely as I live,” says the Lord, “every knee will bend before me; and every tongue will make acknowledgment to God.”’ 12 So, then, each one of us will have to render account of himself to God. 13  Let us, then, cease to judge one another. Rather let this be your resolve — never to place a stumbling-block or an obstacle in the way of a fellow follower of the Lord. 14 Through my union with the Lord Jesus, I know and am persuaded that nothing is ‘defiling in itself.’ A thing is ‘defiling’ only to the person who holds it to be so. 15 If, for the sake of what you eat, you wound your fellow follower’s feelings, your life has ceased to be ruled by love. Do not, by what you eat, ruin someone for whom Christ died! 16 Do not let what is right for you become a matter of reproach. 17 For the kingdom of God does not consist of eating and drinking, but of righteousness and peace and gladness through the presence of the Holy Spirit. 18 The person who serves the Christ in this way pleases God, and wins the approval of their fellows. 19 Therefore our efforts should be directed towards all that makes for peace and the mutual building up of character. 20 Do not undo God’s work for the sake of what you eat. Though everything is ‘clean,’ yet, if a person eats so as to put a stumbling-block in the way of others, they do wrong. 21 The right course is to abstain from meat or wine or, indeed, anything that is a stumbling-block to your fellow follower of the Lord. 22 As for yourself — keep this faith of yours to yourself, as in the presence of God. Happy the person who never has to condemn themselves in regard to something they think right! The person, however, who has misgivings stands condemned if they still eat, because their doing so is not the result of faith. And anything not done as the result of faith is a sin.


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