How should you relate to other Christians when your consciences disagree about disputable matters?

In this unique and horrible election year, when Christians and conservatives are at odds with each other about whether to vote and for whom, we need biblical wisdom about how to disagree on disputable matters. Andy Neselli, Assistant Professor of New Testament and Theology at Bethlehem College & Seminary and author of Conscience: What It Is, How to Train It, and Loving Those Who Differdelivered an excellent sermon at Bethlehem Baptist Church on Romans 14:1-15:7.

12 Principles for Disagreeing with Other Christians

  1. Welcome those who disagree with you (Rom. 14:1-2).
  2. Those who have freedom of conscience must not look down on those who don’t (Rom. 14:3-4).
  3. Those whose conscience restricts them must not be judgmental toward those who have freedom (Rom. 14:3-4).
  4. Each believer must be fully convinced of their position in their own conscience (Rom. 14:4).
  5. Assume that others are partaking or refraining for the glory of God (Rom. 14:6-9).
  6. Do not judge each other in these matters because we will all someday stand before the judgment seat of God (Rom. 14:10-12).
  7. Your freedom to eat meat is correct, but don’t let your freedom destroy the faith of a weak brother (Rom. 14:13-15).
  8. Disagreements about eating and drinking are not important in the kingdom of God; building each other up in righteousness, peace, and joy is the important thing (Rom. 14:16-21).
  9. If you have freedom, don’t flaunt it; if you are strict, don’t expect others to be strict like you (Rom. 14:22a).
  10. A person who lives according to their conscience is blessed (Rom. 14:22b-23).
  11. We must follow the example of Christ, who put others first (Rom. 15:1-6).
  12. We bring glory to God when we welcome one another as Christ has welcomed us (Rom. 15:7).



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