No Puffiness, Please

Here’s a quick fill-in-the-blank statement:

Now about ______________________: We know that we all possess knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. (1 Corinthians 8:1)

Fill in this blank with something you consider (as Dr. Charles Ryrie calls them) a “morally indifferent” practice. In other words, something that is not a black-in-white, do-it-and-you’re-sinning issue. What goes in your blank?

  • …skipping church?
  • …drinking alcohol?
  • …smoking a cigar?
  • …dancing?

We all have knowledge about such things, but where’s the love?

Love builds up. Knowledge only benefits me; love benefits all. The Amplified Bible says it this way, “love edifies and builds up and encourages one to grow to his full stature.

The Greek word for builds up means “to promote growth in Christian wisdom, affection, grace, virtue, holiness, blessedness; to grow in wisdom and piety.”

The question, “Does this fill-in-the-blank item hinder a weaker brother?” is too puffy. The better question is, “Does this help my weaker brother grow?”

That’s the question love asks.

Love avoids the negative-growth items and even the neutral-growth items. Love seeks only those things which promote positive growth.

It’s too puffy to ask, “Does this hurt someone.”

It’s too puffy to say, “This is no big deal!”

We need to ask, “Does this help everyone?” If we can’t answer “yes,” leave it alone!

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