If you’ve been saved for any length of time and have been a part of Baptist churches, you have no doubt discovered that there are many different opinions out there on any number of topics. Just to name a few: style of music in church, eternal security, proper length of a woman’s skirt, proper length of a man’s hair, which version of the Bible is best, the doctrine of election, open/close/closed communion, clothing attire for church, pre or post-tribulation rapture, and on and on the list could go. There really are a lot of areas with which we can agree or disagree with other Baptists!
In Romans 14 we read how Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, tells us we should deal with such differences. In context, there was a difference of opinion among the believers on whether or not it was proper to eat certain food, probably food that had once been offered to idols. Some thought it would be wrong to eat that food while others had no problem eating it. It’s interesting Paul doesn’t come out with a clear “black and white” answer as to who was right or wrong, but instead focuses on how believers should deal with these differences of opinion in a proper way. In verse 10 he writes, “But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. He then writes in verse 13, ” Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way.”
Paul writes that the proper response is to not improperly judge or proudly accuse a brother of being in the wrong but humbly remember that we will all stand before the judgement seat of Christ. In other words, what others do is between them and God and what I do is between me and God. I should strive not to be a stumblingblock to another believer and should make sure my attitude and spirit is good and proper towards those with whom I disagree. We need to remember we all have “spiritual blindspots” and more than likely will change our position on certain topics as time goes on. May we treat all others with grace and focus more on own hearts and lives rather than on what others are doing.