Wednesday 15 March 2017

Bible Book:
1 Corinthians

“What do you have that you did not receive? And if you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift?” (v. 7)

1 Corinthians 4:6-17 Wednesday 15 March 2017

Psalm: Psalm 119:129-144


Paul has been in conversation with the Corinthian churchdescribing the nature of Christian leadership, bringing out thetrue meaning of what lay in Scripture on this subject. When Paulrefers to what is written, he means Scripture.

He was at pains to show that being a servant of Christ, and asteward of the mysteries of God (hallmarks of Christian leadership)were gifts that were received from God through the preaching of thegospel. They were part of God's initiative and power, and notgrounds for personal human boasting.

Paul would have liked the Corinthians to wake up to the wealthof their divine inheritance. They were like kings (verse 8). AndPaul wished they had, in fact, become kings (irony) because they,the apostles, were at the bottom of the social heap and could haveused some royal treatment.

Instead it was as if they were fools for the sake of Christ:poorly clothed, beaten and homeless.

Nevertheless, the apostles found inner strength to bless whenreviled; endure when persecuted; speak kindly when slandered(verses 12-13).

To Ponder

  • What gift do you have from God, which gives you a sense ofGod's pleasure as you use it? In the film,Chariots of FireEricLiddell had the sense of God's pleasure in the speed of hisrunning. For Eric, it honoured God. How do you stop becoming overlyproud and precious about your talent?
  • What examples do you have about successfully confronting pridein yourself or someone else? (Often gentleness can work better thanbeing confrontational.)
  • Who is a father or mother figure to you? It may be someone fromthe past whose books you read, a spiritual director, or a prayerpartner. What do they give you and how do you get that rightbalance of encouragement but challenge?
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