Bearing The Infirmities Of The Weak Study

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Psa 133:1 <A Song of degrees of David.> Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
Psa 133:2  It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments;
Psa 133:3  As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.


The “ointment” of unity is the anointing that is poured out upon Aaron’s head, and it typifies the spirit which is the Word of God. Unity is not just “good and pleasant”; it is essential for the function of the body of Christ.

Last weekend was mother’s day, and father’s day will be here next month. That will be followed by the Fourth of July, then Labor Day, Halloween and Thanksgiving. Right on the heels of Thanksgiving is Christmas, then New Years, then Valentine’s day, then Easter, then back to mother’s day, and the whole thing begins all over again. All along the way there are, for Sandi and me, 27 birthdays and 5 anniversaries, just within the immediate family. It should be obvious that such revelry could easily become both a spiritual and a financial burden if we participate in them.

I never want to be guilty of not “bearing the infirmities of the weak” or of ever trying to force the strong meat of the Word of God upon a weaker brother who simply cannot yet accept, or spiritually digest, that “strong meat.” I never want to ever even attempt to force anyone to do anything that he does against his own conscience. However, last week many were wishing Sandi and each other a happy mother’s day, and next month I will be receiving happy father’s day greetings. I will always be courteous and say thank you to those who do not even know what the scriptures teach about this subject, but, in the interest of maintaining a healthy, unified body, I want us all to know what the scriptures teach so we can know what we ought to do.

This is not something new to anyone who reads the writings on, but you might think it was new and different when it comes to how many of us seem to think there is nothing at all wrong with observing and participating in the rituals of our day. The one thing we should be able to agree to is that we should all be striving to bring our every action, and “every thought into the obedience of Christ.”

2Co 10:3  For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:
2Co 10:4  (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds😉
2Co 10:5  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

Spiritual “strongholds” are what Ezekiel calls “idols of our hearts” of which we simply do not like what the scriptures say when we inquire of them.

Eze 14:1  Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.
Eze 14:2  And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Eze 14:3  Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them?
Eze 14:4  Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;

If we come to this, or any subject, with our minds made up, God will confirm us in our deception “according to the multitudes of our idols”, and we will be in strong delusion because we do not come to God’s Word with a “love of the truth.”

On the other hand, here is how we should approach God’s Word.

Isa 66:1  Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?
Isa 66:2  For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
Isa 66:3  He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as if he cut off a dog’s neck; he that offereth an oblation, as if he offered swine’s blood; he that burneth incense, as if he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.

Our many good works do not impress our Creator. Don’t say “Lord, Lord,” and ignore His plain and simple words. God wants obedience and not sacrifice. Our Lord continues:

Isa 66:4  I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not.
Isa 66:5  Hear the word of the LORD, ye that tremble at his word; Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my name’s sake, said, Let the LORD be glorified: but he shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed.

Who are the brothers who “hate and cast out” those who tremble at God’s Word?

It is obviously brothers who don’t really “tremble at God’s Word” at all who would cast those who do fear to disobey God. We are told that these brothers “choose their own ways”, the things that delight them without regard to what God clearly calls “their abominations”. Exactly what are those abominations? Are we talking about overt and blatantly outward murder, adultery and theft and fornication? Well, that certainly is included, but the Adversary is far too subtle to start out with things like that. Not even Babylon would openly tolerate such blatant sins. So the Adversary will always attempt to cause division within the body of Christ by persuading us that we really don’t need to be so overtly different from this world. Nothing is as effective at destroying unity than to divide God’s children over an issue and then cause “a root of bitterness to spring up”, born of apparently irreconcilable differences.

Heb 12:14  Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
Heb 12:15  Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

Why would brothers and sisters in Christ ever become bitter toward one another? Don’t we all profess to want nothing more than to please and obey God? Don’t we all profess that we don’t want to be those who say, “Lord, Lord” and do not do the things that our Lord says? Don’t we all want to “tremble at the word of our Lord”? Of course, we all want to do all those things, and yet we are given to understand that there are so many things which will be very symptomatic of a lack of unity in the body of Christ, which cuts off communication between the different parts of that body and makes it subject to many deadly spiritual diseases.

The one which at this particular time is afflicting the body of Christ most prominently is the subject of the observance of day, months, times and years. The scriptures are not the least bit unclear about what should be our attitude toward this subject, but our flesh does not like what God has to say about this subject. My flesh doesn’t like it, and the flesh of many of you does not like what the scriptures say on this particular subject. That is especially true of those who are said by scripture to be “weak in the faith”.

In order to do what the Lord says, we need to know what He says about our every action. There is not one move we make in this life which should not be subjected to seeking to know what the will of our Lord is – not even one thought.

2Co 10:3  For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:
2Co 10:4  (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds😉
2Co 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
2Co 10:6  And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.
2Co 10:7  Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? If any man trust to himself that he is Christ’s, let him of himself think this again, that, as he is Christ’s, even so are we Christ’s.

Here we have thoughts which exalt themselves against the knowledge of God, and we are admonished to bring every thought to the obedience of Christ.

Let’s look at why Christ and His own apostles were forsaken by those who once walked with them.

Joh 5:16  And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.
Joh 5:17  But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.
Joh 5:18  Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
2Ti 1:15  This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.
1Co 3:1  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
1Co 3:2  I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
1Co 3:3  For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
1Co 3:4  For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

Is the tendency to follow men the only thing which typifies “carnal babes in Christ”? No, it certainly is not the only thing, but it accompanies another tendency which is common to us all, and that tendency is the desire of all sheep to be united as a flock. It is a desire to love our brothers and to be loved by our brothers in turn. This desire will just naturally supersede our love of an invisible God. It is only one person in a thousand who knows and understands that the love of God is not defined by our love for our brother. The exact opposite is the Truth of the Word of God. “We know we love our brothers in Christ only when we love God and obey Him.”

1Jn 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1Jn 5:3  For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

Now let’s just ask what God says He wants us to do as it relates to the observing of days, months, times and years.

Rom 14:1  Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.

This first verse is directly addressed to those who are not weak in the faith, and it is an instruction concerning how those who are not weak in the faith are to relate to those who are. The one thing that those who are not weak are instructed to avoid is “doubtful disputations”.

Rom 14:2  For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs.
Rom 14:3  Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him.
Rom 14:4 Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.

Brothers who are weak in the faith and who cannot do the hard things of God’s Word are instructed not to judge those who are willing to be rejected and endure the persecutions and tribulations which obedience will inevitably bring upon all who are willing to be persecuted for Christ’s name’s sake.

Mat 13:21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

Now ask yourself the simple question, “Who is most likely to be persecuted – the brother who esteems every day alike, or the brother who esteems one day above another?”

Rom 14:5  One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.

Do the words “be fully persuaded in his own mind” mean that it is just fine for the body of Christ to disagree within itself and say and teach differently concerning the observance of one day above another? Absolutely not! The very next verse assures us that “None of us lives to himself, and no man dies to himself.”

Rom 14:7  For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.

We are a single body with many members. This chapter is simply reminding those who are strong to be patient with those who are not strong. That verse is telling us how to deal with “him that is weak in the faith”. It is not telling us to become “weak in the faith” and esteem one day above another and eat only herbs. It is telling us that we always need to remember that God is always in the process of calling new members who are still “carnal babes in Christ”, who simply cannot yet eat strong spiritual meat. It is a sin against such a brother to expect him to act above the faith he has yet been granted. Likewise, the weaker brother is reminded that it is also a sin against his stronger brother to expect him to renounce the plain Words of God concerning those things which are hard to do in the service of our Lord. It is not at all hard to observe all the days which Babylon observes. It is extremely hard to break the Sabbath when everyone else is keeping it. However, that is the example our Lord has left us to follow in His footsteps.

So let’s come to God’s word and leave our “idols of the heart” back in Babylon, and let’s just inquire what the Word, which is our Lord Jesus Christ, has to say on this subject. The place to begin is in Deuteronomy 12. Here is a very plain warning given to us by Him who is helping us to drive all the giants out of our ‘land’.

Deu 12:29  When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land;
Deu 12:30  Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise.
Deu 12:31  Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.
Deu 12:32  What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

That is exactly what “him that is weak in the faith” does. He esteems one day above another, and “he does it to the Lord” just as the strong brother observes not the day, and he observes not the day unto the Lord. “Let each be fully persuaded” for the moment, but desire “the sincere milk that you may grow thereby.” That is the same as saying ‘desire the sincere herbs, that you may grow thereby’.

Rom 14:6  He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.

1Pe 2:2  As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

Weak brothers who eat only herbs should never aspire to remain such, and strong brothers who can eat all things, certainly should never aspire to go back to eating mere herbs. So what should we do in the meantime while we are all growing on the milk and on the herbs?

Rom 15:1  We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.
Rom 15:2  Let every one of us please his neighbour for [his] good to edification.
Rom 15:3  For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.
Rom 15:4  For whatsoever things were written aforetime [Deu 12:29-32] were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.
Rom 15:5  Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:
Rom 15:6  That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

What did Christ do?

Here is what He did about observing days.

Mat 12:1  At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat.
Mat 12:2  But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.

This is Christ’s example for us to follow concerning the observing of any day. He “broke the weekly sabbath”.

Joh 5:16  And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.
Joh 5:17  But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.
Joh 5:18  Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.

What example did He leave us to follow concerning the observance of annual days?

Joh 7:8  Go ye up unto this feast [of tabernacles]: I go not up yet unto this feast; for my time is not yet full come.

This is completely contrary to the commandment of Christ to Moses which said:

Lev 23:35 On the first day [of the feast of tabernacles] shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.

What does the spirit warn us through the apostle Paul? That warning is crystal clear to those who “tremble at the Words of God”. Those who receive them are not grieved by them because “His commandments are not grievous.” Here are the words which put Romans 14 in its proper perspective and which make the doctrine of unity in God’s word and “speaking with one mind and one mouth” according to the word of the Lord, words of unity and comfort.

Gal 4:1  Now I say, [that] the heir, as long as he is a child [Greek: nepios – baby, toddler], differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;
Gal 4:2  But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
Gal 4:3  Even so we, when we were children [nepios], were in bondage under the elements of the world:
Gal 4:4  But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
Gal 4:5  To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons [Greek: uihos – adult son].
Gal 4:6  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
Gal 4:7  Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son [uihos]; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
Gal 4:8  Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.
Gal 4:9  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?

What are “weak and beggarly elements” which keep us in bondage? Do we tremble at these words, or are they simply too strong for us to receive?

Gal 4:10  Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years.
Gal 4:11  I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
Gal 4:12  Brethren, I beseech you, be as I am; for I am as ye are: ye have not injured me at all.

Here is verse 12 in the ISV.

Gal 4:12  I beg you, brothers, to become like me, since I became like you. You did not do anything wrong to me.

We were all weak nepios, who had to have milk and then herbs before we could become as Paul. But Paul reminds us that he, too, was once a nepios.

Christ’s Warning to Us

Luk 21:34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life and so that day come upon you unawares.
Luk 21:35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
Luk 21:36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
1Pe 4:4  Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:

Those who do not tremble at God’s word do not receive the love of the truth and are given strong delusion. I know because I have been there and was in that very state for many years before I was simply given the faith to “tremble at God’s Word” more than I trembled before men and before this world.

2Th 2:10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
2Th 2:11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:


It is not the intent of this discussion to divide the body of Christ. That is what the Adversary who withstands God’s Word was charged to do, and he is a very worthy Adversary. But the word of God is much greater than the Adversary and cannot be denied. Christ set us an example to follow. It is only obedience to God’s word and following Christ’s example, that will keep us as a united and healthy spiritual body. Ignoring God’s Words will divide us, as it has all of Babylon.

1Pe 2:21  For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

“You [and I] should follow His steps.” We should not aspire to be those who are “weak in the faith and can only eat herbs.” We are commanded to “be strong in the Lord.”

1Co 16:13  Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.

Eph 6:10  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

2Ti 2:1  Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

We know that the grace that is in Christ chastens us to “forsake ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live godly lives” that never deny our Lord just to preserve a friendship with a friend who is of this world.

Jas 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be friend of the world is the enemy of God.

So husbands should be leading wives, and wives should be submitting to their husbands’ leadership “as unto Christ” when the husband is obeying God and following the example of Christ. Wives should be leading their children instead of offering them up in the fires of Babylon as “an observer of times.”

Deu 18:10  There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,

When we fail to teach our wives and our children what the scriptures teach and to lead them and to show them by our example, the example Christ left us to follow, and to teach them to “tremble at God’s Word”, we are failing our wives and our children, and above all we are failing our Lord and His Father, Who commands us to judge our love of our brothers by our obedience to Him and our willingness to follow in His steps.

I have the same hope of you that the apostle Paul had of the Corinthians who did follow in Christ’s steps and listened to the Words of God by the apostle Paul.

2Co 1:5  For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
2Co 1:6  And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.
2Co 1:7  And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.

There is a definite relationship throughout scripture between suffering with Christ and being consoled by Him and ruling with Him.

2Co 10:6  And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.
2Co 10:7  Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? If any man trust to himself that he is Christ’s, let him of himself think this again, that, as he is Christ’s, even so are we Christ’s.

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