4. Don’t Concern Yourself with What Others Think...Just Be You
Biblical Truth: Don’t let your freedom in Christ become a stumbling block to others.
In Christ, we are all one body. What I do affects you and what you do affects me. More importantly, the way we live is painting a picture of what Jesus is like. After all, we are his ambassadors on earth. Notice what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 8:9-13:
Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak. For if someone with a weak conscience sees you, with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols? So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. When you sin against them in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall.
While it is true that we have freedom in Christ, that freedom comes with responsibility. Like it or not we are our brother’s keeper.
If you carry the name of Christ you can’t just “do you” and not be concerned about how it impacts other people. This doesn’t mean you lose your identity. It does mean you may choose to sacrifice part of your freedom for the sake of your brother or sister in Christ.
Paul said if my eating meat (this is someone forming an opinion of what Paul is doing) causes my brother to sin, then I won’t do it. Not because I can’t, but because I care more about my brother’s development.
I am not saying this is always easy but we must acknowledge that people are watching and we have a responsibility to those people. Not for your sake, but for theirs.
Be True to Yourself…Maybe Not
Be true to yourself may look good on the surface but as you can see it can have some potentially dangerous consequences. Let’s remember that God saved us and put us together as his body.
We are one body and one family. As one body when one part rejoices we all rejoice. When one part suffers we all suffer. We are all knit together and more than anything else—let’s be true to Christ and true to each other.
Lord, help me to remember that I am part of your body and I am your ambassador. What I do matters and has influence and will impact those around me. Help me to never forget that. Amen.
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