14 Welcome someone who is weak in faith, but not in order to have disputes on difficult points. 2 One person believes it is all right to eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats should not despise the one who does not, and the one who does not should not condemn the one who does – because God has welcomed them.
4 Who do you think you are to judge someone else’s servants? They stand or fall before their own master. And stand they will, because the master can make them stand.
5 One person reckons one day more important than another. Someone else regards all days as equally important. Each person must make up their own mind. 6 The one who celebrates the day does so in honour of the Lord. The one who eats, does so in honour of the Lord, and gives thanks to God; the one who does not eat abstains in honour of the Lord, and gives thanks to God.
The Final Judgment Is the Only One that Counts
7 None of us lives to ourselves; none of us dies to ourselves. 8 If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, then, whether we live or whether we die, we belong to the Lord. 9 That is why the Messiah died and came back to life, so that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.
10 You, then: why do you condemn your fellow Christian? Or you: why do you despise a fellow Christian? We must all appear before the judgment seat of God, 11 as the Bible says:
As I live, says the Lord, to me every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall give praise to God.
12 So then, we must each give an account of ourselves to God.
The Way of Love and Peace
13 Do not, then, pass judgment on one another any longer. If you want to exercise your judgment, do so on this question: how to avoid placing obstacles or stumbling blocks in front of a fellow family member.
14 I know, and am persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself, except that some things do become unclean for the person who regards them as such. 15 For if your brother or sister is being harmed by what you eat, you are no longer behaving in accordance with love. Don’t let your food destroy someone for whom the Messiah died!
16 So don’t let something that is good for you make other people blaspheme. 17 God’s kingdom, you see, isn’t about food and drink, but about justice, peace, and joy in the holy spirit. 18 Anyone who serves the Messiah like this pleases God and deserves respect from other people. 19 So, then, let’s find and follow the way of peace, and discover how to build each other up. 20 Don’t pull down God’s work on account of food. Everything is pure, but it becomes evil for anyone who causes offence when they eat. 21 It is good not to eat meat, or drink wine, or anything else which makes your fellow Christian stumble.
22 Hold firmly to the faith which you have as a matter between yourself and God. When you’ve thought something through, and can go ahead without passing judgment on yourself, God’s blessing on you! 23 But anyone who doubts is condemned even in the act of eating, because it doesn’t spring from faith. Whatever is not of faith is sin.
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