“Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters.” – Romans 14:2
I am not a vegetarian.
Now I don’t say this as a point of contention; that is, it doesn’t bother me if other people are vegetarian; or vegan; or only eat organic farm-fresh pesticide-free non-genetically modified turnips. I don’t even mind if they’re a little vocal about it. We have enough division in our society without separating people on the basis of caloric preference. If people choose to eat only plant life, then I hope that they will be blessed and I thank them for living more of the pork chops for me.
I would just like to point out, in all humbleness and gratitude the Creator of Charcoal, the Bible says that people barbecuing is a sign of deep spiritual commitment.
Oh, I know people will challenge me on this. “Nay, good sir, for ye will find the elements of the Daniel Fast clearly in scripture, wherefore meat is clearly reserved for the wicked and veggies alone for the Holy Ones of God.” (for some reason, I always read vegetarian literature with a wealthy-brit accent. Maybe it’s just me).
But I’m afraid the facts are against you , my healthy friend. Romans 14:2 – “One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables.“ Clearly, the more meat one eats is an outward manifestation of their inward faithfulness. This is why crockpot roasts and slushburgers are so popular at church potlucks; that’s holiness right there.
PASSION OF THE CHRIST..IANS
Now watch this graceful transition into an actual point.
We love to find issues in our society. As the great Gordon A Eadie once said “if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” It is virtually a guarantee that you will be passionate about something in your life. It may be getting a spouse, running a business, education, a sports team, racism, healthy eating, politics, or good ole fashioned greenbacks, or just about anything, but you will become passionate. It’s who we are; we can’t help but live that way.
For Christians, it should be an easy choice; we should be passionate about Christ, to become as close to him as we possibly can in this life. But it is all too easy in the church to lose sight of that, and put our passion into something else, even good somethings else. Like ministry. Like the poor. Like social change. Like a healthy lifestyle. Like worship music. Like children.
These are all good things, but if we start to focus on them, we will lose our passion for Christ in the busyness of tending to our activities. We will start to equate our “position” with “God’s truth.” Therefore our vegetarianism is the only way to truly honor God; our style of music is the only one that is really in tune with God’s heart; our preaching method is the one that Jesus intended; our stance on alcohol is how God determines holiness, and so on. We may even quarrel with people who think differently than us, after all, if they really had “discernment,” they would agree with us.
FOR LOVE IS OF GOD
Our love for others needs to flow from our intimacy with Christ. Our generosity to the poor needs to come from our understanding that all finances belong to God. Our push for social justice needs to be because under Christ there is no male or female, no slave or free. If our focus is lost, eventually our passion belongs to something other than Christ, and there can be none before Him for his people.
So study to teach the Word; practice to lead worship; buy a puppet or two to teach those children. But remember that they, and your spouse, and your children, and your job, and your ministry, are all second to Jesus. He alone can fulfill your passion. You will find it much easier to accept other believers and their multitudinous foibles (look it up) if we are in love with Christ first.
That’s all for today.
Time to go increase my faith with some smoked ribs.