Paul begins in chapter 13 by telling them that they should submit to the authority of the rulers. This tends to bring up a discussion of dealing with tyranny that is really beyond the scope of our discussion of the chapter. It can be noted, however, that Paul does say that “rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad.” So clearly he is speaking, there at least, about just rulers rather than those who are unjust. Christians also are to pay their taxes — and more. In verse 7, he says:
Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.
In chapter 14, he speaks of how Christians are to deal with one another. We are not to pass judgment on one another, but respect the differences that we may have without quarreling or hurting someone else’s pride. Above all, we are not to cause others to stumble. The example of not eating meat if it offends one’s brother may not seem relevant to us. But it means that we should not do or say things in the presence of our brothers that may make them believe that we are willfully doing wrong, as that would be a stumbling block to them.
If someone can show us that our behavior is wrong by way of the Bible, we should, of course, change that behavior. But if it is merely a matter of their passionate stance on a matter, we should still altar our behavior in their presence, so as not to offend or cause them to stumble. Being a Christian means realizing that it really isn’t “all about me.”
Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click links below to read or listen to audio of one of this week’s chapters in Colossians and Luke
Romans 10, Romans 11, Romans 12, Romans 13, Romans 14
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All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.