Bible and Theology
Freedom Not to Sin
Michael Youssef, Ph.D.
Jul 9, 2019

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Read Romans 14:13-23.

While we have liberty in Christ, the apostle Paul is quick to add that stronger Christians have a responsibility to ensure their freedom isn't causing weaker believers to stumble. Paul calls this type of humble and selfless behavior beautiful—the mark of a mature believer.

Our goal is to emulate Jesus, the one who unites us.

Christ ransomed us from the bondage of our fleshly nature not so that we could live any way we want, but so that we could make every decision with careful consideration to what brings Christ the most glory. This gives us the ultimate freedom—freedom not to sin. If any of our actions cause someone else to stumble, we don't do it. That's serving our brothers and sisters in Christ well. That's true liberty.

Our goal is to emulate Jesus, the one who unites us. The one who, though fully God, gave up His splendor, glory, and freedom to become a humble servant and do His Father's will.
So, when you are tempted to say, "I am tired of serving my family, my church, my neighbor," look at Jesus. Focusing on Jesus means you are willing to lay down your life for your friend. It means you're willing and free to sacrifice your comfort, preferences, and pleasures—because that is what He did for us.

Prayer: Lord, open my eyes by Your Spirit to ways in which I may be causing a fellow believer to stumble. Grant me humility and freedom to sacrifice my preferences to build them up and love them well. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

"Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister" (Romans 14:13).