(Mark 9:38-50)Then John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out demons in Your name, and he does not follow us. So we forbad him, because he does not follow us. But Yeshua said, Do not forbid him. For there is no man which can do a miracle in My name, that can quickly speak evil of Me. For he who is not against us is for our behalf. For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name, because you belong to Messiah, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.
Is our primary concern for our brother, or for proving ourselves through our understanding, traditions or "freedoms"?
Example: Alcohol, Sacred Names
We need to take offending others or "stumbling blocks to their faith" seriously:
And whoever offends one of these little ones who believes in Me, it is better for him that a millstone were hung about his neck, and he was cast into the sea. And if your hand causes you to offend, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, then having two hands to go into gehenna, into the unquenched fire. Where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched. And if your foot causes you to offend, cut it off. It is better for you to enter lame into life, than having two feet to be cast into gehenna, into the unquenched fire. Where their worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched. And if your eye causes you to offend, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into gehenna fire. Where their worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched. For every one will be salted with fire, and every sacrifice will be salted with salt. Salt is good. But if the salt has lost its saltness, with what will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another.
Food Offense Examples:
(Rom 14:1-23)He who is weak in the faith you receive, but not to doubtful judging. For one believes that he may eat all things. Another, who is weak, eats herbs. Do not let him who eats despise him who does not eat; and do not let him who does not eat judge him who eats. For God has received him. Who are you who judge another man's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Yes, he will be held up. For God is able to make him stand. One man judges one day above another. And another judges every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He who regards the day, regards it to the Master; and he who regards not the day, to the Master he does not regard it. He who eats, eats to the Master, for he gives God thanks; and he who does not eat, to the Master he eats not, and gives God thanks.
For none of us lives for himself, and no man dies for himself. For whether we live, we live to the Master; and whether we die, we die to the Master. Whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Master's. For to this end Messiah both died, and rose, and lives again, that he might be Master both of the dead and living. But why do you judge your brother? Or why do you set at nothing your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of Messiah. For it is written, As I live, says YHVH (the Lord), every knee will bow to Me, and every tongue will confess to God. So then every one of us will give account of himself to God. Let us not therefore judge one another anymore. But rather judge this, that no man put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother's way. I know, and am persuaded by the Master Yeshua (Jesus), that there is nothing common of itself. But to him who esteems anything to be common, to him it is common. But if your brother is grieved with your food, you no longer walk charitably. Do not destroy him with your food, for whom Messiah died. Let not then your good be spoken evil of.
For the kingdom of God is not food and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. For he who in these things serves Messiah is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things with which one may edify another. For food does not destroy the work of God. All things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man who eats with offence. It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor anything whereby your brother stumbles, or is offended, or is made weak. Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not judge himself in that thing which he allows. And he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he eats not of faith. For whatever is not of faith is sin.
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