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Romans 14:21: It Is Good Not To Eat Meat Or Drink Wine Or Do Anything That Causes Your Brother To Stumble.


Romans 14:21
[21] It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble. (ESV)

There are people who claim that the Bible is full of confusing philosophy that is too difficult to understand. While it may be true that some portions of Scripture require more of our attention to detail and responsible research than other, it is also true that there are some portions that are very direct, and require some basic common sense to be understood.

This verse of Scripture fits into the category of needing some basic common sense. We ought not do anything that causes our brother to stumble in their walk of faith in Jesus Christ. There were a lot of arguments in the Church concerning whether or not it was right to eat certain kinds of meat or whether or not it was right to drink wine.

Paul has made clear in the previous verses that we have the freedom in Christ Jesus to eat whatever we like, as well as the freedom to drink wine. With that freedom comes a responsibility to show compassion to our brother who might stumble in their faith if they see us using our freedom. Therefore, we should put our freedom aside if it means keeping our brother from stumbling.

Do you enjoy a nice glass of wine? You may have the freedom in Christ to do so. However, if you know someone who loves Jesus who is either an alcoholic or would be offended by you exercising your freedom you should know what to do. Put the wine away. Drink something else. The most important choice that you should make in this situation is to put your brother in Christ first.

In what ways have you sacrificed your freedom for others? In what ways have you been the recipient of compassion in areas where you could have been offended by another using their freedom? How can you be more sensitive to others?

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