Romans Chapter 14
“Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations (disputes, questions, opinions, belief’s).” For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs. Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him.” (Romans 14:1-3).
1. In chapter 14, Paul is dealing with the issue of the “weaker” brother/believer, “in the faith.” And right away, we learn how to deal with each other in the local assembly, the Church, Body of Christ [CBOC], especially the “weaker” brother “in the faith.” It is a test of agape love, valuing and esteeming what God values and esteems. Valuing and esteeming each member as more important than ourselves.
2.“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. So we, being many, are in one body in Christ, everyone members one of another.” (Rom.12:3-5). Our agape love for each member, and our sonship standing, are both on display, in this world and the world to come. “Because of the Angels” and their “desire to look into” the “manifold wisdom of God,” to see Divine order working in us, the new creation. (1 Cor. 11:10; 1 Pet. 1:12; Eph. 3:10).
3. A weaker brother “in the faith,” simply does not have as much doctrine stored up in his inner man as a stronger brother has. Paul cautions the stronger brother to be patient with his weaker brother “in the faith,” and let the edification process that God designed, run its natural course in the weaker brother’s life. Just as it did for you.
4. Saints, we have been ‘transformed by the renewing of our mind’ to value and esteem what God values and esteems, and to display agape love. We have also been granted the privilege of discerning the will of God, on our own, so “that we may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God,” in the details of our lives. That is Sonship. (Rom. 12:1-2).
5. I am reminded of a quote that Jesus made in St. Mark 14:7, “For you will have the poor with you always.” So it is, with the CBOC. Within the assembly, we will have the weaker brother “in the faith” with us always. And that is by God’s design. God is forming the CBOC in this dispensation of Gentile grace now in effect. And “as we have therefore opportunity,” “knowing the time,” and “redeeming the time,” to ”preach the unsearchable riches of Christ; and to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery,” new members (weaker brethren), who are weak “in the faith” (doctrine) will be added to the CBOC to undergo the edification process. (Gal. 6:10; Rom. 13:11-12; Eph. 5:16; 3:8-9).
6. Apostle Paul issues a warning to the stronger brother “in the faith.” We are “ambassadors for Christ,” and we have been committed the “ministry of reconciliation” to go forth and minister to the lost and teach other believers to “rightly divide the word of truth.” However, Paul is saying to the stronger brother “in the faith” (doctrine), to watch your walk, “renew your mind,” you don’t want to be a “stumbling block” through your actions, attitudes, thoughts, words, and cause the weaker brother’s sonship (his spiritual walk) to be destroyed. (2 Cor. 5:18-21; 2 Tim. 2:15; Rom. 12:2; 14:13).
7. Romans Chp. 14, will always be a hallmark chapter for me. Not long ago, I was that weaker brother. Satan almost destroy me. But thank God there was a stronger, spiritual brother on the wall. I swallowed my pride and went to that stronger brother in my brokenness. He invited me into his home where he and his wife received me, prayed with me, and treated me with “agape love,” and counseled with me from chapter 14 of Romans. He did not judge me, criticize me, or destroy my son ship. This stronger brother reminded me that my sonship, my position “in Christ,” was still intact. And I left his home encouraged, and restored, and edified; and here I stand by faith through God’s marvelous grace. Thank God for a stronger brother. And as I left his home, he said to me like Paul, “Go and follow after things that make for peace and things where one me edify another”. To God be the glory! Amen. (Rom. 14:19).
8. It is important to recognize the distinctions that another body member fits into, when dealing with a weaker brother “in the faith.” In 1Thess. 5:14, Paul says, “Now we exhort you brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble minded (foolish, stupid, mentally deficient), support the weak, be patient towards all men.” The “weaker” brother concept Is our study today, in Romans 14. The point is this: we may need to handle each brother differently, paying attention to his “measure of faith,” but still with “agape love,” while always valuing and esteeming their sonship.
9. Paul exhorts us to let brotherly love, agape love, continue. Do not judge your brother. He is “another man’s servant.” “Let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing,” “the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery” (Rom. 14:10; 14:4; Phil. 3:16; Eph, 16:25).
10. Paul says, “we are made a spectacle to the world, and to angels, and to men.” And “what the angels desire to look into,” is the manifold wisdom (the genius of God) working in us, as members of the CBOC. Heaven is watching how we, as “sons,” as “saints,” treat each other. Do we treat “weaker saints in the faith,” with agape love, and value and esteem our collective sonship position? (1 Cor. 4:9).
11. Remember saints, “But why do you judge (criticize) thy brother? Or why do you set at nought (look down on) thy (believing) brother? For we shall all stand (individually) before the judgment seat of Christ (who alone is the Judge).” And the doctrine as a fire will be the perfect standard by which our faith will be evaluated. (14:10).
“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; think soberly, according as God had dealt to every man the measure of faith For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and everyone members one of another.” (Rom.12:3-5).