Devotions

Does My Freedom Look Out for the Interest of Others?

When seeking to do “all things” in expressing our Christian freedoms, it is very important that whatever it is that we are doing does not cause us to sin in any way and at the same time creates spiritual growth and advancement of the Gospel in our own lives. The next standard that Paul writes of is found in verses 24-30, “Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. Eat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the ground of conscience. For “the earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof.” If one of the unbelievers invites you to dinner and you are disposed to go, eat whatever is set before you without raising any question on the ground of conscience. But if someone says to you, ‘This has been offered in sacrifice,’ then do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for the sake of conscience— I do not mean your conscience, but his. For why should my liberty be determined by someone else’s conscience?  If I partake with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of that for which I give thanks?”  Does what you are doing affect those around you?

Does an unbeliever turn even more away from God and want nothing to do with it because of something that you said, did, or even allowed to happen? Have you offended an unbeliever or even another believer with your Christian “freedoms?”

When you are acting upon your Christian freedoms, does it cause your brothers or sisters in Christ to sin? Does it make them uncomfortable in the slightest? If so, then we should not act upon those certain freedoms. There should be no excuse or loopholes that we try to work our way through and around. “Well it’s their fault they were looking at me and has nothing to do with what I’m wearing” or “they’re the one who should be putting up safeguards for themselves, I shouldn’t have to for them.” If you find yourself saying or thinking that sort of thing, then you are without a doubt not being edifying or God honoring with your Christian freedom.

The Bible says in Philippians 2:3-4, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” It is important to make sure we do not lead others into sin, but what we do and say should also cause them to grow! Often our problem is not that we are unaware of right from wrong or beneficial from hurtful, but the problem is selfishness from selflessness. We know when we should or should not do something; instead, we often do what we want no matter what because that is all we care about! I will end with this, 1 Corinthians 10:33, “not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved.” Are you looking out for your own good or the good of others with your freedom?

 

Matt Hatton
Student Ministries Director



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