Do you cause fellow believers to stumble by your eating? Many have used this passage to establish unbiblical precedents. Shaul/Paul is not doing away with the dietary instructions, but rather establishes standards of building a community and whats causes harm to that community. We are command to exhibit faithfulness with our approach to our food, so not as to condemn ourselves with what we allow.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective
– Chapter 14 –
Romans 14:1 Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations..
Romans 14:2 For one believes that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eats only vegetables.
Romans 14:3 Let not him that eats (esthiō) (‘meat’ is not in the text. if a translation has it here it’s a translator making their own value judgement) despise him that eats not (me esthio) (‘meat)’; and let not him who does not eat (‘meat’) judge him that eats (‘meat’): for vuvh has received kol Yisrael.
The status quo interpretation is one where the weak in faith – the Jews, are eating kosher and keeping sacred days like the seventh day sabbath. These archaic practices are fine, but not binding or necessary for modern believers – Jewish or gentile.
Romans 14:4 Who are you that judges another man’s eved? To his own Master vuvh he stands, or falls. Yes, he shall be held too: for vuvh is able to make him stand.
Romans 14:5 One man esteems one day above another: another esteems every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.
Romans 3:31 Do we then nullify the Torah through faithfulness? May it never be! On the contrary, we uphold the Torah.
The context is ‘opinions,’ V.1, held by human individuals, not commandments given by the One True Living Elohim!
The context supports Paul addressing a controversy that had erupted during mealtimes due to the fallout from the Edict of Claudius and how it had affected the availability and accessibility of meat for the Jewish community and the believing community at large….
Jew’s couldn’t procure meat and wine from their own sources, Jewish butchers and slaughter markets were no longer readily accessible.
The few Jewish butchers that had returned as the Edict was lifted would have been unwilling to sell meat to Jewish followers of Yahusha! (I know, I’ve had many an uncomfortable experience in an Orthodox Jewish butchers and restaurants.
1 Samuel 14:32 Then the people rushed greedily upon the plunder, took sheep, oxen and calves, butchered them on the ground, and the people ate them with the blood. 33Then they reported to Saul saying, “Behold, the people are sinning against Adonai by eating with the blood.”
Be aware of a change of status: A clean animal once slaughtered changes status from animal to meat and meat can be designated clean or unclean even if from a clean animal, and the act of consuming it can thereby be sin or not all depending upon the method of slaughter/the origin of the meat.
There’s an Oneg in a “strong” persons house ( a seasoned gentile/Ephramite believes house) and the Jewish neophyte will eat only the vegetables; and is abused by the ‘strong’ for doing so!
Judean Jews were highly skeptical of the kosher adherence of diaspora Jews.
‘Weak’ is akin to a ‘seared’ or ‘sensitive’ in conscience!
Additionally we know that the early Nazarenes and the Ebionites only ate vegetables as recorded in the early Christian Epiphanius writing’s!
Vegetarianism easily eliminated the threat of idol contamination or association.
What works to build a community and what does harm to a community is what this section of the letter is about….not abrogating Torah!
Acts 15:20 sets a precedent: “abstain from the contamination of idols, and from sexual immorality, and from what is strangled, and from blood. For Moses from ancient generations has had in every city those who proclaim him, since he is read in all the synagogues every Shabbat.”Click here to Read More
This is NOT an abstract statement, the ‘all things’ are NOT unqualified! Paul is writing in line with the Apostolic decree of Acts 15, so this is a qualified statement!
Paul already designated the meat clean in V. 20 anyway; Gk. ‘katharos’, Heb. Lev 14: tahor, châṭâ’.
But just because it’s clean according to Lev 14 doesn’t guarantee that it’s not ‘koinos’ ‘common.’(V. 14) from Roman instead of Jewish sources.
The stricter people who eat only vegetables are most probably the same ones who fast and don’t eat on extra calendar fast days like the Ninth of Av, regular Jewish Mon. & Thurs. fast etc.
Sacred days is not referring to the Shabbat or biblical feasts, but Jewish traditional fast days – ‘Sabbaton’ is glaringly absent from our text!
Romans 14:6 He that regards the day of eating, regards it to vuvh; and he that regards not the day, to vuvh he does not regard it. (this is a positive action, not a negative action, meaning it’s applied to extra curricular Jewish fast days, not pagan love fest’s) He that eats, eats to vuvh, for he gives hodu; (the Bracha/food blessing) and he that eats not, before vuvh he eats not, and neither gives vuvh hodu.
Romans 14:7 For no Yisraelite man lives for himself, and no Yisraelite man dies for himself.
Romans 14:8 For whether we live, we live for vuvh; and whether we die, we die for vuvh: whether we live, or whether we die, we belong to and for vuvh.
Romans 14:9 For this purpose Moshiach both died, and rose, and was revived, so that He might be the Master vuvh both of the dead and the living.
Romans 14:10 But why do you judge your Yisraelite brother? Or, why do you despise your Yisraelite brother over these secondary issues? For we shall all stand before the bema seat of our Moshiach.
Romans 14:11 For it is written,(Isa. 45.23) ‘As I live, says the Master vuvh, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to the Master vuvh.’
Romans 14:12 So then each one of us shall give an account of himself to vuvh.
Romans 14:13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but rather be mindful of this that no man put any unnecessary stumbling-block, or an occasion to fall into his Yisraelite brother’s path.
Romans 14:14 I know, and am persuaded by the Savior Yahusha, that there is nothing common (koinos) of itself: but to him that esteems anything to be common, to him it is common.
V.14 if Paul had wanted to abrogate the food laws then here was his opportunity to codify it within the text using the Greek: “there is nothing common (koinos) of itself.”
The Torah designates unclean animals in Lev 14 as ‘tamei’, the LXX translates ‘tamei’ as “Akathartos.” But “Akathartos” does NOT appear here in the text….Nowhere! Paul deliberately uses ‘koinos’ instead.
V.14 is a slam dunk textual proof that Paul isn’t abrogating the food laws!
‘Koinos’ – ‘to lie common or open to all’, ‘common’ or ‘common ownership.’
Why would Paul use a word that doesn’t even appear in the LXX Torah! Unless he wanted to leave absolutely no confusion that HE WASN’T ABROGATING THE FOOD LAWS!
The translation bias’s in V.14 should key you into the deception:
Romans 14:15 But if your Yisraelite brother is grieved with your food (Gk Broma, Heb. אֹכֶל ‘ôkel – Lev 11:34 i.e clean meat, only occurrence in Torah: “Of all meat which may be eaten.”) destroy him with your food choices, for whom Moshiach died.
Romans 14:16 Let not then your tov be evil spoken of:
Romans 14:17 For the malchut of vuvh is not food and drink; but tzedakah, and shalom, and simcha in the Ruach Hakodesh.
Romans 14:18 For he who in these choices serves Moshiach is acceptable to vuvh, and approved of men.
Romans 14:19 Let us therefore follow after the things that make forshalom, and things with which we may edify one another.
Romans 14:20 For food choices will not destroy the work of vuvh. ‘All things indeed are pure’; but it is evil for that man who eats so as to cause stumbling.
Romans 14:21 It is tov neither to eat meat, nor to drink wine, or anything whereby your Yisraelite brother stumbles, or is offended, or is made weak.
Romans 14:22 Have you a certain food emunah? Keep it to yourself before vuvh. Favored is he that condemns not himself in that thing which he allows.
Romans 14:23 And he that doubts and eats violates his own emunah, because he eats not with emunah: for whatever is not of emunah is sin .
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 7
How can an adulteress bride return to her husband? Shaul/Paul uses his intimate knowledge of Torah to help the audience awaken to the reality of redemption through Yahusha. If we interpret the verses without a proper knowledge of Torah, we run the risk of creating a false dichotomy between law and grace.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 9 – Part 1
How should we define biblical Israel? Shaul/Paul draws some distinctions between a physical and spiritual Israel, in order to demonstrate the necessity of an individual to belong to both, to be a fully regenerated Israelite.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 9 – Part 2
Are the concepts of grace and mercy only found in the New Testament? Shaul/Paul ties into the linguistic connection of mercy to corporate Israel and the biblical prophecy made by Hoshea/Hosea. Israel will be regathered and united under a Melchizedek High Priest, Yahusha!
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 8 – Part 3
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 16
What is a woman’s role in the church? Many teach that the Scriptures endorse a silent and subservient while the men lead. As the letter to the Romans closes, Shaul/Paul’s final greetings reveal a marvelous hermeneutic truth: leadership in the home and in the congregation is appointed by Yahuwah and His annointing does not recognize gender preference.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 12 • Part 2
Have you come into the community? Despite current popular doctrines, a walk of faith is not simply “me and Jesus”. Shaul/Paul sides with Yahusha in gathering believers together for corporate unity under Messiah. Division becomes a byproduct of a person being called into the Israel of Elohim.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – “All about the Ruach/Spirit”
The Holy Spirit herself doth testify? We take a pause in our study of Romans to reflect on verses 16 and 17 in the eighth chapter to focus specifically on the Ruach Ha Kodesh/Holy Spirit. Join us as we test the traditional understandings of the nature of the Ruach/Spirit against the whole of Scripture and the truth of the text.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 13 • Part 3
Who is the True Lawgiver, man or Yahuwah? Yahuwah’s government looks nothing like the corrupt government of men. We have responsibilities and requirements for stewarding the life that Yahuwah has blessed us with, and we will be required to answer for our decisions. The only true liberty we can ever find is in walking in Royal Covenant Torah.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 10
Does your zealousness for the Father and His Torah cause you to lose discernment when it comes to the Son? On its own, Torah will not lead us to total righteousness. Only covenant relationship through Yahusha will allow us to enter into forensic righteousness before Yahuwah.
Romans from a Torah Covenant Perspective – Chapter 11 – Part 2
Do you bear the Root, or is the Root bearing you? What Yahuwah planted one Israel that became two nations through division and eventually both nations were laid bare before all the nations, as branches both natural and unnatural or cultivated and uncultivated were cut off. Regardless of what type of branch we are, if we are not connected to the root of that tree which is Messiah, we wither and die.