Freedom’s Principle of Influence
June 26, 2024

Today’s Devotional: “Freedom’s Principle of Influence”

There are legitimate reasons to limit our freedoms so that we don’t hurt someone else.

In the Corinthian church a debate that was raging over what a person could and couldn’t eat, specifically meat that was on sale because had been offered as a sacrifice to the different gods of that city.

Some Christians saw this as too good of a deal to pass up while others felt that buying and eating this meat was just another way of partaking of false religion.

So, a fierce debate ensued.

Paul had to deal with this problem, and in the process gave this principle of influence.

“But food does not commend us to God; for neither if we eat are we the better, nor if we do not eat are we the worse. But beware lest somehow this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to those who are weak.” (1 Corinthians 8:8-9)

Paul is saying to watch how we use our freedom, and that there are times we need to limit our freedom because of how it negatively influences others. Paul also goes on to say that when we knowingly cause others to stumble in their faith, then we are in sin. (1 Corinthians 8:10-12)

Paul calls this putting a stumbling block in their path.

A stumbling block is any action or word that causes another Christian to fall back into a former sinful lifestyle. It has nothing to do with whether they agree or disagree with something we say or do. It all has to do with whether it’s causing someone to sin.

We have freedom to do what we want, but if that freedom causes another to stumble and fall into a sinful lifestyle then were to limit it. That’s true freedom, because if we’re not free to limit our freedom, then we aren’t really free.

The principle of influence is to enjoy the freedom we have in Christ, but not to flaunt it whereby another may fall.

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