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Bible Commentaries

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Romans 14

Verses 1-23

Romans 14:1 . Him that is weak in the faith receive ye. The apostolic churches were composed of jews and gentiles. Most of the jews were zealous of the law, and observed the legal distinctions of meats, clean and unclean, while the gentiles would eat whatever was sold in the shambles. Many of the heathen also had conscientious scruples. We gather from Ovid’s Fastorum, that the Greeks and Romans had feasts and customs without number; and some of those after their conversion would not eat of meats which had been offered to an idol. The apostle therefore cautions them against all contests and disputes, which should be overcome by the feelings of charity. But if a man would defend his scruples so tenaciously as to divide the church, they had better not receive him as a member.

Romans 14:6 . He that regardeth the day, regardeth it to the Lord. Such as the sabbath, the new moon, and the day of atonement. As all these variations might exist without sin, the remedy against disputation was brotherly love, following the example of Christ, who lived and died for us.

Romans 14:17 . For the kingdom of God, the reign of grace in the heart, is not meat and drink, but righteousness, the love of God and all mankind, and the peace of God that passes all understanding. All this is accompanied with joy in the Holy Ghost, that God is our Father, that sin is all forgiven, and the earnest of heaven opened in the heart. Proof indisputable that St. Paul understood religion as Moses did, when he resolved the whole law into the love of God and man.

Romans 14:23 . He that doubteth is condemned if he eat, because he does it against his conscience, and against his faith. This must be the true sense, as in the preseding verse. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that which he alloweth.

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Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Romans 14". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. 1835.