In which Paul talks about eat meat sacrificed to idols. Basically, he’s saying that it’s technically “okay” to do this, since we know idols are not God, and therefore nothing evil/godly is in the meat. However, he wants us to respect those who are not as “enlightened” as us. Those in a different step on their journey through Christianity. If they are still uneducated about the meaninglessness of idol-meat (god-kabobs?), then we shouldn’t do anything to make them stumble, such as eating the meat.
I’ve heard this used to teach against cursing, seeing “R” movies, drinking, etc. Let’s take cursing for example. If you strip it down, those words only have the power we give them. And beyond that, they are merely words, and saying them does not diminish our salvation, just as refraining from them does not improve our salvation. It’s when we choose to think of those words as evil or as having power over us, that they do. Therefore I do not think that cursing is a sin, but the feeling in our hearts when we speak them is. When you curse in anger/hatred, Jesus has already told us that is like murder in your heart.
When it comes to refraining from it in front of others, lest they stumble, there might be a certain validity. I can understand someone just coming into the faith, and the societal pressures and expectations of having a “clean mouth”, and how new believers might feel that is on the list of “rules” they need to follow.
In a perfect world, however, I would hope that the first thing new believers feel is the freedom in Christ FROM those societal pressures. Whether they choose to continue cursing/drinking/smoking/dressing immodestly/having premarital sex, it does not diminish their salvation.
Of course, there are reasons why God asks us to refrain from all those things, but it is not to ensure our salvation, it’s to give us a better, healthier life here on Earth. Maybe I’ll talk about that later.
For now, remember that your salvation is through Grace, and not by anything you have or will do, but by God’s choice to be with you forever. All you need do it believe that.