Romans 14 and 15 are important for church leaders to constantly be focused. A problem we have today in the American church is that many people think that if you disagree with them about anything, then there needs to be a church split and that we cannot worship God together because of a disagreement. Church leaders desperately need to instill the knowledge of Romans 14-15 in the minds of the congregants.
A true follower of Christ is willing to admit that since we are flawed, sinful, finite creatures, we might be wrong from time to time in what we believe. We must be willing to look past our insignificant disagreements to focus on what we all know for sure; that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died for us to save us from eternal separation from the Father, and that by grace through faith we can receive forgiveness of our sins if we confess and repent.
We must always keep in perspective that glorifying God, making the name of Jesus look beautiful to those around us, and spreading the Gospel is the primary focus we must have. But so many people tend to focus on their personal preferences about insignificant things and force them onto others to please themselves. That is not God-centered; that is self-centered. We are not the focus and we are not who needs to be ultimately pleased.
Jesus calls us to serve others, to love others, and to accept one another. He set an example for us even though he is the King and the Savior. He humbled himself to serve us, to seek and save the lost, and to suffer on our behalf so that we can experience him in heaven for eternity. In obedience, we should try to mirror the way he lived in the way we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ, and also the lost souls to whom we are called to spread the Gospel.
We should even go as far as to help others around us to avoid sin by keeping an eye on our own actions. In Romans 14:13, Paul said, “Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” Our actions should not only be an attempt to avoid sin, but we should be conscientious of those around us so that we do not cause them to stumble as well.
Church leaders have great responsibility in leading churches to be more Christ-like. They will be accountable to God for the way they lead his people. Paul tells us in Romans 14-15 that we should not pass judgment on each other, we should not cause each other to stumble, and we should follow the example that Christ gave the church. Focusing on what food is okay to eat, what days are more significant than others, or what music we should play at church are not things worth fighting about or worth splitting churches over.