Romans 14:6
He that regards the day, regards it to the Lord; and he that regards not the day, to the Lord he does not regard it. He that eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks; and he that eats not, to the Lord he eats not, and gives God thanks.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(6) Regardeth.—Much as we might say, “he who minds the day,” or directs his thoughts and feelings to it.

He that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it.—This clause is omitted by the best MSS. and editors.

For he giveth God thanks.—By the saying of grace at meat, the meal, whatever it may be, is consecrated to God, and he who partakes of it shows that he does so in no irreverent spirit.

14:1-6 Differences of opinion prevailed even among the immediate followers of Christ and their disciples. Nor did St. Paul attempt to end them. Compelled assent to any doctrine, or conformity to outward observances without being convinced, would be hypocritical and of no avail. Attempts for producing absolute oneness of mind among Christians would be useless. Let not Christian fellowship be disturbed with strifes of words. It will be good for us to ask ourselves, when tempted to disdain and blame our brethren; Has not God owned them? and if he has, dare I disown them? Let not the Christian who uses his liberty, despise his weak brother as ignorant and superstitious. Let not the scrupulous believer find fault with his brother, for God accepted him, without regarding the distinctions of meats. We usurp the place of God, when we take upon us thus to judge the thoughts and intentions of others, which are out of our view. The case as to the observance of days was much the same. Those who knew that all these things were done away by Christ's coming, took no notice of the festivals of the Jews. But it is not enough that our consciences consent to what we do; it is necessary that it be certified from the word of God. Take heed of acting against a doubting conscience. We are all apt to make our own views the standard of truth, to deem things certain which to others appear doubtful. Thus Christians often despise or condemn each other, about doubtful matters of no moment. A thankful regard to God, the Author and Giver of all our mercies, sanctifies and sweetens them.He that regardeth - Greek, "Thinketh of;" or pays attention to; that is, he that "observes" it as a festival, or as holy time.

The day - Any of the days under discussion; the days that the Jews kept as religious occasions.

Regardeth unto the Lord - Regards it as "holy," or as set apart to the service of God. He believes that he is "required" by God to keep it, that is, that the laws of Moses in regard to such days are binding on him.

He that regardeth not the day - Or who does not observe such distinctions of days as are demanded in the laws of Moses.

To the Lord ... - That is, he does not believe that God "requires" such an observance.

He that eateth - The Gentile Christian, who freely eats all kinds of meat; Romans 14:2.

Eateth to the Lord - Because he believes that God does not forbid it; and because he desires, in doing it, to glorify God; 1 Corinthians 10:31. "To eat to the Lord," in this case, is to do it believing that such is his will. In all other cases, it is to do it feeling that we receive our food from him; rendering thanks for his goodness, and desirous of being strengthened that we may do his commands.

He giveth God thanks - This is an incidental proof that it is our duty to give God thanks at our meals for our food. It shows that it was the "practice" of the early Christians, and has the commendation of the apostle. It was, also, uniformly done by the Jews, and by the Lord Jesus; Matthew 14:19; Matthew 26:26; Mark 6:41; Mark 14:22; Luke 9:16; Luke 24:30.

To the Lord he eateth not - He abstains from eating because he believes that God requires him to do it, and with a desire to obey and honor him.

And giveth God thanks - That is, the Jew thanked God for the Law, and for the favor he had bestowed on him in giving him more light than he had the Gentiles. For this privilege they valued themselves highly, and this feeling, no doubt, the converted Jews would continue to retain; deeming themselves as specially favored in having a "special" acquaintance with the Law of God.

6. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it to the Lord—the Lord Christ, as before.

and he … not, to the Lord he doth not—each doing what he believes to be the Lord's will.

He that earth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks—The one gave thanks to God for the flesh which the other scrupled to use; the other did the same for the herbs to which, for conscience' sake, he restricted himself. From this passage about the observance of days, Alford unhappily infers that such language could not have been used if the sabbath law had been in force under the Gospel in any form. Certainly it could not, if the sabbath were merely one of the Jewish festival days; but it will not do to take this for granted merely because it was observed under the Mosaic economy. And certainly, if the sabbath was more ancient than Judaism; if, even under Judaism, it was enshrined among the eternal sanctities of the Decalogue, uttered, as no other parts of Judaism were, amidst the terrors of Sinai; and if the Lawgiver Himself said of it when on earth, "The Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day" (see Mr 2:28)—it will be hard to show that the apostle must have meant it to be ranked by his readers among those vanished Jewish festival days, which only "weakness" could imagine to be still in force—a weakness which those who had more light ought, out of love, merely to bear with.

In this verse you have a reason why Christians should not censure one another, upon an account of different opinions and practices, because they have all the same end and scope, which is the pleasing and glorifying of God. It is with regard to him that they eat, or eat not; that they observe those festival days, or observe them not; and so far they are on both sides to be commended; for that indeed should be our end, in all our actions, to glorify and please the Lord: see 1 Corinthians 10:31 Colossians 3:17.

He giveth God thanks; i.e. he is thankful unto God for the bountiful and free use of his creatures. Some would ground that laudable practice of giving thanks at meals upon this text, but it hath a clearer warrant from Matthew 14:19 15:36 26:26 Acts 27:35.

He eateth not, and giveth God thanks; because he hath meat enough besides, which he is not forbidden, 1 Corinthians 10:28. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it to the Lord,.... The apostle strengthens the above advice with this reason, because what is done both by one and the other, is done unto the Lord. The weak brother that esteems one day above another, and regards the passover, pentecost, and feast of tabernacles, a new moon, or a seventh day sabbath, does it in obedience to the commands of the Lord, which he thinks are still binding, not knowing that they are disannulled by Christ; and the worship performed by him on any of those days is done in the name and strength of the Lord, with a view to his glory, and as believing it was pleasing in his sight; and whether he is right or wrong, it is to the Lord he does it, and to his own master he stands or falls. The following clause is omitted in the Alexandrian copy and some others, and in the Vulgate Latin and Ethiopic versions, but is in most Greek copies, and retained in the Syriac and Arabic versions.

And he that regardeth not the day, the Lord he doth not regard it; believing it is the will of the Lord, that all distinction of days should cease; and that the law of commandments contained in ordinances, respecting such Jewish days, is abolished by the Lord Jesus Christ; and that it is to the honour the Lord not to observe them: for to regard the days of the feast of tabernacles, is tacitly to say, that the Word has not tabernacled among us; and to observe he days of the passover, is virtually to deny that our passover is sacrificed for us; and to keep the day of Pentecost, is all one as to affirm, that the firstfruits of the Spirit have not been given; and to regard a new moon, is in effect to say, that the church has not received evangelical light from Christ, the sun of righteousness; and to keep a seventh day sabbath, is a strong insinuation, as if Christ the true sabbath, in whom we have our spiritual and eternal rest, is not come; however, it is to the Lord that the stronger brother and more confirmed believer disregards any of those days; and it is to his own master he stands or falls, nor is he to be judged of man's judgment: and the same is the case of the eater, or non-eater of meats forbidden by the law:

he that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks. The man that is strong in faith, and is fully persuaded by the Lord Jesus that all distinction of meats, as of days, is ceased, eats any thing, and every sort of food, that comes in his way, without making any difference; and when he eats or drinks at any time, it is all to the glory of God; which is a clear case, by his giving God thanks, as becomes him, for the food he eats: he acknowledges that these are the creatures of God, and his gifts to him; he gives him thanks for the right he has given him to eat of them, and for taking away the distinction of meats, and giving him the free use of his creatures; and the more thankful he is when he considers how unworthy he is of the least of these mercies: and

he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth, or, and giveth God thanks. The man that is weak in faith, that eateth not food forbidden by the law, abstains from such food, purely on account of the Lord, in obedience to his will, and with a view to his glory, supposing such a law to be in full force; and is thankful to God for the herbs he allows him to eat, or for other food not forbidden by the law: and therefore since each party shows such a religious concern for the glory of the Lord, the apostle argues they ought to be easy one with another. The Alexandrian copy reads, "and giveth the Lord thanks".

{8} He that {e} regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the {f} Lord he doth not regard it. He that {g} eateth, eateth to the Lord, {9} for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth {h} not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.

(8) A reason taken from the nature of indifferent things, which a man may do with good conscience, and omit: for seeing that the difference of days and meats was appointed by God, how could those who as yet did not understand the abrogation of the law, and yet otherwise acknowledge Christ as their Saviour, with good conscience neglect that which they knew was commanded by God? And on the other hand, those who knew the benefit of Christ in this behalf, did with good conscience neither observe days nor meats: therefore, says the apostle in verse ten, Let not the strong condemn the weak for these things, seeing that the weak brethren are brethren nonetheless. Ro 14:10 Now if any man would apply this doctrine to our times and ages, let him know that the apostle speaks of indifferent things, and that those who thought them not to be indifferent, had a basis in the law, and were deceived by simple ignorance, and not from malice (for to such the apostle does not yield, no not for a moment) nor superstition, but by a religious fear of God.

(e) Precisely observes.

(f) God will judge whether he does well or not: and therefore you should rather strive about this, how every one of you will be considered by God, than to think upon other men's doings.

(g) He that makes no difference between meats.

(9) So the apostle shows that he speaks of the faithful, both strong and weak: but what if we have to deal with the unfaithful? Then we must take heed of two things, as also is declared in the epistle to the Corinthians. The first is that we do not consider their superstition as something indifferent, as they did who sat down to eat meat in idol's temples: the second is that then also when the matter is indifferent (as to buy a thing offered to idols, in the butcher's store, and to eat it at home or at a private meal) we do not wound the conscience of our weak brother.

(h) He that does not touch meats which he considers to be unclean by the law.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Romans 14:6. The right point of view, according to which each must have his own full persuasion, expressed not imperatively, but indicatively, as the Christian axiom in these matters, which conditions and regulates that πληροφορία.

ὁ φρονῶν τὴν ἡμέραν κ.τ.λ.] he who directs his carefulness to the day, exercises this carefulness in his interest for the Lord, namely, in order thereby to respond to his relation of belonging to the Lord. Τὴν ἡμέρ. with the article denotes textually the day concerned, that which comes into consideration conformably to the κρίνειν ἡμέραν παρʼ ἡμέραν, not the day as it happens (Hofmann). By κύριος most understand God, others (as Estius, Rückert, Köllner, Fritzsche, Philippi) Christ. The former appears to be correct, on account of εὐχαρ. γὰρ τ. Θεῷ; but the latter is correct, on account of Romans 14:9. The absence of the article is not at variance with this. See Winer, de sensu vocum κύριος et ὁ κύρ., Erl. 1828; Gramm. p. 118 [E. T. p. 154]; Fritzsche, ad Marc. p. 573.

κυρίῳ ἐσθίει] using his Christian freedom in regard to the use of flesh in the interest of the Lord, which definite ethical direction of his ἐσθίειν he attests by his εὐχαριστεῖν τῷ Θεῷ therein. This refers to the prayer at table, and, as is also the case with the subsequent εὐχ. τ. Θ., not to that offered after the meal (Hofmann), but to that before it; comp. Matthew 15:36; Matthew 26:26; Acts 27:35; 1 Corinthians 10:30; 1 Corinthians 11:24; 1 Timothy 4:4. The thanksgiving to God consecrating the partaking of food presupposes the conviction that one does the ἐσθίειν in the capacity of belonging to Christ, and conformably to this specific relation; for anything that is opposed to Christ the Christian cannot thank the Father of Christ.

καὶ ὁ μὴ ἐσθ. κ.τ.λ.] The opposite of the preceding point (the observance of days) Paul has not added (see critical notes), because he has not at the beginning of Romans 14:6 planned his language antithetically; and it is only on the mention of the second more important point that the conception of the opposite occurs to him, and he takes it up also. To append the antithesis also to the first clause of the verse, was indeed not necessary (Philippi); but neither would it have been confusing (Hofmann), especially as the selecting of days and its opposite, as well as the eating and not-eating, were for those respectively concerned equally matters of conscience.

κυρίῳ οὐκ ἐσθίει] for the Lord he refrains from the eating (of flesh), persuaded that this abstinence tends to serve the interest of Christ.

καὶ εὐχαρ. τῷ Θεῷ] That which was previously conceived as the reason (γάρ) is here conceived as the consequence (καί); and so he utters his thanksgiving table-prayer to God, namely, for the other, vegetable food, which forms the meal to be enjoyed by him. He is enabled to do so by the conviction that his οὐκ ἐσθίειν has its holy ethical reference to the Lord.Romans 14:6. The indifference of the questions at issue, from the religious point of view, is shown by the fact that both parties, by the line of action they choose, have the same end in view—viz., the interest of the Lord. ὁ φρονῶν τὴν ἡμέραν cf. Colossians 3:2. The setting of the mind upon the day implies of course some distinction between it and others. The clause καὶ ὁ μὴ φρονῶνοὐ φρονεῖ is omitted by most editors, but its absence from most MSS. might still be due to homœoteleuton. εὐχαριστεῖ: thanksgiving to God consecrates every meal, whether it be the ascetic one of him who abstains from wine and flesh (ὁ μὴ ἐσθίων), or the more generous one of him who uses both (ὁ ἐσθίων): cf. Acts 27:35, 1 Corinthians 10:30, 1 Timothy 4:3-5. The thanksgiving shows that in either case the Christian is acting εἰς δόξαν θεοῦ (1 Corinthians 10:31), and therefore that the Lord’s interest is safe.6. regardeth] Lit. thinketh, mindeth. Same word as e. g. Romans 8:5.

unto the Lord] i.e. the Lord Christ, “the Lord of the dead and living” (Romans 14:9). The word thus used is a good implicit proof of St Paul’s view of the supreme dignity of Messiah; especially when we find him just below writing, in the same connexion, “he giveth God thanks.” It would indeed be unsafe to say that in that clause “God” means specially or exclusively “Christ.” But the two words are so used that no such gulf as that between Creator and Creature can possibly divide them.—“Unto the Lord:”—i.e., as one who not only is responsible to Him, but owns that he is. This seems to be required by the use made of the fact of thanksgiving just below.

and he that regardeth not—not regard it] Documentary evidence appears to exclude this part of the verse. But as an explanatory gloss it is just and valuable.

He that eateth] Probably read And before this clause.

for he giveth God thanks] And so evidences his sense of subjection and responsibility.

and giveth God thanks] Here again, the inward sense of responsibility to “the Lord” is evidenced by the outward act of thanksgiving to “God.”—The thanks given is, of course, for the food (vegetable, or “clean” meat), which he does eat.Romans 14:6. Εὐχαριστεῖ γὰρκαὶ εὐχαριστεῖ, for he gives thanks—and gives thanks) Thanksgiving sanctifies all actions, however outwardly different, which do not weaken it, 1 Corinthians 10:30; Colossians 2:7; Colossians 3:17; 1 Timothy 4:4. The, For, however, has greater force than and, as thanksgiving is more connected with eating, than with abstinence from eating; and in him, who eats, there are both the fruits and the criterion, and in some respects the ground of faith, even of that faith, of which we have an account at Romans 14:22, and of an assured conscience; with respect to him who does not eat, that faith, of which we read at Romans 14:22, is no doubt defective as to its fruits, criterion, and the ground on which it rests, but yet the man retains all the three as regards a conscience void of offence [not violated].—καὶ εὐχαριστεῖ, and gives thanks) for herbs, Romans 14:2.Verse 6. - He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord (omit, as ill-supported, as well as unnecessary, and he that regardeth not, etc.); he that eateth, eateth unto the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks. Both parties are supposed to be equally desirous of serving God. The eater of whatsoever is set before him is so, as is shown by his thanking God for it - observe "for he giveth," etc. - and no creature of God can be polluting "if received with thanksgiving" (1 Timothy 4:5); the abstainer gives thanks too; and so his dinner of herbs is also hallowed to him. (Though it is not necessary to confine the thought to the practice of saying grace before meat, this is doubtless in view as expressing the asserted thankfulness. For proof of the custom, cf. Matthew 15:36; Acts 27:35; 1 Corinthians 10:30; 1 Corinthians 11:24; 1 Timothy 4:4, 5.) The general principle on which, in eating and drinking, as in all beside, Christians are of necessity supposed to act, and which both parties are to be credited with desiring to carry out, is set forth in vers. 7, 8, 9, which follow. He that regardeth not - doth not regard it

Omit.

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