Saturday 3 August, 2013

1 Corinthians 4:6-13

6 Brothers and sisters, I have used myself and Apollos as examples to help you. You can learn from us the meaning of the saying, “Don’t go beyond what is written.” Then you won’t be proud that you follow one person instead of another. 7 Who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you brag as though you did not? 8 You already have everything you want, don’t you? Have you already become rich? Have you begun to rule as kings? And did you do that without us? I wish that you really had begun to rule. Then we could rule with you! 9 It seems to me that God has put us apostles on display at the end of a parade. We are like men sentenced to die in front of a crowd. We have been made a show for the whole creation to see. Angels and people are staring at us. 10 We are fools for Christ. But you are so wise in Christ! We are weak. But you are so strong! You are honored. But we are looked down on! 11 Up to this very hour we are hungry and thirsty. We are dressed in rags. We are being treated badly. We have no homes. 12 We work hard with our own hands. When others call down a curse on us, we bless them. When we are attacked, we put up with it. 13 When others say bad things about us, we answer kindly. Up to this moment we have become the world’s garbage. We are everybody’s trash.

The Corinthians had received the gospel, but after Paul left, they had taken liberties and were not willing to be corrected. It appeared they thought they did not feel the need to receive any further teaching or advice.

It’s really important for us to not go ‘beyond what is written” and ‘unnecessary pride”. We cannot afford to place our personal opinion above the Gospel or add anything further to it. The Gospel is Jesus Christ and the transforming power of His life and death.

The Corinthians believed they were complete and had all the riches of this world. They thought they had all they needed as Christians; they didn’t need any help or advice from others. We cannot afford to assume absolute authority in anything; we must always point to Jesus in all things. Some Christians work in countries where they live with hunger, rough treatment, are cursed and persecuted just the same as Paul. Remember, when we are cursed, we bless, when persecuted, we endure, when slandered, we beg to be heard – this is the practical working of “turning the other cheek”, and it can be costly.

Am I doing the best I can to live up to the teachings of Jesus, believing in God, trusting in Him at all times, holding onto Him in the middle of all circumstances, turning the other cheek and much more? Do I yield everything to Jesus, or do I depend on myself and the way I feel to deal with how I live life?

Lord Jesus, I give my thoughts and feelings to You. Help me to make sense of everything in my life, and give me a Godly perspective on myself, my home, family, and my work. Lord Jesus, help me live in the light of Your guidance. AMEN

Written by Cath Croft

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