Bear one another;s burdens

Romans 14 and the first half of chapter 15 deal with how we, as fellow Christians, relate to each other in matter of faith. Paul addresses issues such as what we eat (vv. 2-4) and observance of special days(vv. 5-6). He emphasises the point that we should not judge each other on issues that are not fundamental to the Christian faith. Weak and strong Christians alike shall all stand, not at each other’s judgement seats, but before the judgement seat of Christ.

Paul goes on to explain that mature Christians should not, deliberately, put hinderers in the path of weak Christians; the Law of Love should prevail. Although we have liberty in Christ, we are to consider one another at all times. The key verse for this month therefore is Romans 15:1, “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.”. The Greek word for infirmities is asthenema ̄ , which literally means‘a scruple of conscience’ and only occurs once in the entire Bible. The dictionary defines scruple thus, “noun (often plural) a doubt or hesitation as to what is morally right in a certain situation.” (Collins, 6th Edition 2003).

Christ is our model in relationships between weak and strong Christians. His example demands mutual forbearance and love, and if followed will result in a unity of harmonious praise to God, “That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 15:6KJV

Pastor Bernard Morris

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