It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak—Rom. 14: 21.
It is a very serious crime against the law of love and against the Lord's injunction, to cause one of His brethren to stumble (Matt. 18: 6), but it would also be a crime in His sight for us to stumble others—to hinder them from becoming brethren, and of the household of faith. Hence, it is clear that although knowledge might remove all prohibition of our consciences and all restraints of our liberty, yet love must first come in and approve the liberty before we can exercise it. Love places a firm command upon us, saying, Thou shalt love the Lord with all thine heart, and thy neighbor as thyself. Love, therefore, and not knowledge, not liberty, must finally decide every question.
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The strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak. Cheerfully ought they to surrender their preferences in natural things to the spiritual interests of the weak. The thought of stumbling one for whom Christ died will be a successful deterrent to a faithful follower of Christ from self-indulgence at the expense of a weak brother. Yes, such an one would gladly lay down life to save a weak brother rather than to indulge self to his injury.
Parallel passages: Rom. 14; 1Cor. 8; Rom. 15: 1-3; 1Tim. 4: 3, 4; Col. 2: 16; 1Cor. 9: 10, 22; 10: 23, 24, 31-33; 13: 5; 1Pet. 4: 2; 2Cor. 5: 15; Phil. 2: 4, 5; Matt. 13: 44-46; 16: 24, 25; Acts 20: 22-24.
Questions: What have been this week's experiences in line with this text? How were they met? What helped or hindered therein? In what did they result?
WHAT WOULD JESUS DO?
WHEN the morning paints the skies,
And the birds their songs renew,
Let me from my slumbers rise,
Saying, "What would Jesus do?"
When I ply my daily task,
And the round of toil pursue,
Let me every moment ask,
"What would Jesus do?"
Would the foe my heart beguile,
Whispering thoughts and words untrue?
Let me to his subtlest wile
Answer, "What would Jesus do?"
Countless mercies from above
Day by day my pathway strew,
Father, I would prove my love,
Asking, "What would Jesus do?"
Ever let Thy love, O God,
Fill my spirit through and through,
While I tread where He hath trod,
Whispering, "What would Jesus do?"
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