DUCATION and intelligence are not good barometers of spirituality (vs. 2). Loving God and loving my neighbor: those are good measuring standards (vs. 3). In truth, regardless of how much we know, there is so much more that we do not know (vs. 2). But concerning love, we can love fully from the moment of our spiritual conception. With love functioning as the gauge of spirituality, every Christian can be a contributing factor in the walk of every other Christian. Love rises above (vs. 13); it transcends.
So, the enlightened Christian (who understands that dietary standards have no eternal significance, or the true nature of the freedom of the saints in other areas) is not more acceptable in God's eyes just because of his or her understanding and practice. And, the supersensitive saint (who lives strictly in every way) is not missing out on anything. Why? Because, He is accepted of God too (vs. 8). Most importantly, both brands of sincere believers are expected to thrive together in Christian love. The confident saint & the nervous saint can each love the other sacrificially & genuinely (1st Corinthians 9, 11 & Romans 14:3-4). Neither type of a Christian should allow the other kind to manipulate them or to foist unmerited guilt upon them (Colossians 2:16). On the other hand, both kinds should voluntarily surrender their own rights for the good of their fellow believer (1st Corinthians 8:13). If (or when) we sin against each other by offending one another knowingly, we are guilty of sinning against Christ Himself (vs. 12).