5 May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, 6 so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. 7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
Have you ever been at a place where you didn’t feel accepted? One of the most miserable memories of my teen years was going to a forestry camp for 4-H where I didn’t know anyone. It was a camp for boys and it was a situation where boys will be boys and talk like boys. Their conversations were not things I wanted to talk about, and they didn’t care. I felt like that was one of the longest weeks of my entire life.
Paul instructs these Roman brothers to accept one another just like Christ accepted them. If we look back at Romans 3, we see that all of us are sinners, but it is God’s grace that justifies us. What a source of praise to God when we as sinners are accepted by God as we turn to Him, and then in turn we accept others just like Christ accepted us. When we can live out that kind of relationship with our imperfect brothers and sisters in Christ, people can see that Christianity does make a difference in our lives, and many of them will be influenced to praise Him and turn to Him. That unity and love between believers makes an impact for good. When we try to teach others, but we are not getting along with our Christian brothers and sisters, our message is about as believable as the financial advice we might get from a beggar on the street corner.