19 Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.
and the things by which one may edify another.
“Edify” means to build up, to erect an edifice. The mature Christian should be in the business of strengthening weak believers. The word “edify” is literally to build a house, to erect a construction of some kind. Metaphorically, it means to edify the character of believers by teaching or example. The goal is to make them a strong spiritual building. This word implies progress in developing an edification construct of strength in other Christians.
The Greek is literally the things of edification. The definite article “the” indicates that the individual believer is in view here. Anything that makes for building an edification construct is important for every believer in the church.
1 Co 14: 26 How is it then, brethren? Whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification.
The issue of spiritual maturity is far more important than other areas where Christians may place their values.
Ro 15: 2 Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification.
1 Th 5: 11 Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.
Edification is what establishes a person in the faith. If you wish to do more detailed study on this, first read my short article, “Living by the Book”: http://versebyversecommentary.com/articles/living-by-the-book/
Then study the “Edification Construct Study Guide”: http://versebyversecommentary.com/articles/the-edification-construct-discussion-guide/. The latter study will take some time. You might want to take several days to study it.
The edification construct process is crucial for building a strong church.
Christians need to erect a solid structure for Christian living. We do not build a big building overnight. Spiritual growth is progressive. It takes almost two decades to raise a sibling from a child to an adult. To edify is to build a structure. Individual Christians need to grow in grace (2 Pe 3:18). There is no shortcut to spiritual maturity. The structure of the soul must be built brick-by-brick, until the strong building of maturity is evident. The grace way of life will build strong Christians.
Acts 20: 32 “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.”
Since a life of grace and liberty is to live on a higher plane, we pursue things that pertain to maturity and edification. These dynamics will move us progressively to higher stages of maturity.
1 Co 10: 23 All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify.
Maturity comes by applying a maximum number of principles of Scripture to experience. There will come a point where the believer will develop an edification construct, a level of spiritual maturity that stands strong in God’s sight.
The mature Christian in chapter 14 can take the higher road and make adjustments to the weaker believer. It would be very difficult for the weak Christian to make adjustments to the stronger.
The stronger blesses the weaker by association and fellowship. It takes significant growth on the part of the weaker Christian to understand and live on the higher plane of liberty and accepting grace from God. When the grace principle has become a large structure in the weaker brother’s soul, he has passed from immaturity to maturity of soul.