Sunday, December 10, 2006,12:17 PM
stumbling blocks....
I missed church this morning....but I have done some thinking. I was talking to my friend Andy last night and I realized I placed a stumbling block in front of him. I at times do not feel a terrible conviction about recreational cursing. Among friends who curse or in humourous situations, or privately I sometimes curse. I have felt convicted about it from time to time. I realize it does not advance the kingdom any and probably causes people to look at me twice sometimes. So why do I do it? Well, It probably happened that another Christian that I looked up to started to curse and it was funny so I thought it was funny and so I did it too.

We have more influence than we really think sometimes. So I was thinking about all of this and I've found a few scriptures that speak to this issue.

Matthew 18:6, Mark 9:42 and Luke 17:2. I'm going to quote the Luke passage.

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Things that cause people to sin are bound to come, but woe to that person through whom they come. It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. So watch yourselves.....

In 1st Corinthians 8, Paul writes:

So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that an idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but one. For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords"), yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.

But not everyone knows this. Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat such food they think of it as having been sacrificed to an idol, and since their conscience is weak, it is defiled. But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.

Be careful, however, that the exercise of your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak. For if anyone with a weak conscience sees you who have this knowledge eating in an idol's temple, won't he be emboldened to eat what has been sacrificed to idols? So this weak brother, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. When you sin against your brothers in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause him to fall.

WHOA...Paul dropped the hammer in that passage.

Okay, to the point. We have enough trouble trying to live out a life pleasing to God without other Christian's doing things that confuse ones who aren't too sure about things or people like me that have a great deal of respect for people and when I see someone I respect do something, may be influenced by that. I don't think we are all weak, but I fully believe in peer influence and the influence of character on other people. If you saw someone you cared about and respected do something, that was not necessarily bad, but was in that gray question area, would you not feel more open to doing it? I think we are influenced by people more than we like to think or admit.

My conclusion is that if something causes another brother or sister to fall or stumble then you better knock it off. I don't care if its drinking, smoking, cussing, gossip, the list could go on and on but the point is the same.....if you choose to do something and through your choice cause someone to stumble or even waver in their convictions about something you have sinned by placing a stumbling block in their life.

There are some things I cannot knowingly do now because they can cause someone else to stumble and if I did do them then I would be willing sinning against God.

I'm honestly just tired of cheap grace and hollow holiness.

Am I wrong? I think I've formed an valid arguement here, If I need to elaborate I will.....but If you disagree with me lets discuss it.
posted by Jason
Permalink ¤