For His Glory!
Dealing With a Difficult Church
In a study about the Corinthians it is difficult to imagine the depth of the problems the troubled saints had at Corinth. Paul had his hands full trying to keep abreast of the issues. Even though we have only two recorded letters, by reading them we understand there were at least four letters written by the Apostle Paul to this church.
I encourage our readers to look up the history of this famed port city. This sin filled city was known throughout the known world for all its immorality and idolatry. Corinth was destroyed by the Romans in 149 BC and rebuilt in 49 BC, again by the Romans. Even the most hardened of sinners had a tough time coping with the wicked life style in this city of debauchery.
Paul, on his second missionary journey, found no place for a congregation in Athens, so he departed for Corinth (see Acts 18). He would have left there also after struggling with the Jews because there was little fruit being born for all his effort. However YHVH had other plans: Acts 18: 9 Then the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision, Be not afraid, but speak and be not silent. 10 For I am with you and no man can harm you; and I have many people in this city.
As a result of this vision Paul stayed 18 months (a long time for him) and a congregation was formed. It must have been a sizeable one because of all the divisions referred to by Paul in 1Corinthians.
After a study of the city and the wicked influence these people brought into the church I read Corinthians as if Paul needed to strongly denounce each of them for their un-godly behavior. Not until reading a study by Robert L. Deffinbaugh did I realize the great love and compassion Paul had for this congregation; about his confidence and faith in the grace of YHVH toward these saints at Corinth and everywhere.
Read carefully (emphasis mine):
1Corinthians 1: 1 Paul, called as an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,
When Paul says "God" he is speaking of the Father of Yeshua and the saints (v-3).
Paul was not praising these immature Corinthians for their problems, he was thanking Elohim (God the Father v-3) for all the grace He poured upon them. He was not just addressing the church at Corinth but the whole body of Messiah (Christ v-2), he was calling them saints (v-2). Why?
Paul was thanking the Father (v-4) because He had given these saints everything they needed (v-7) to become mature saints; to have victory over their godless nature through Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ). Read it again: that in everything you were enriched in Him, in all speech and all knowledge, even as the testimony concerning Christ was confirmed in you, so that you are not lacking in any gift, awaiting eagerly the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ, (the Kingdom of God).
Paul knew that the witness of Messiah was confirmed in them; they had the very power of the Son in them (grace v-4) so they could be victorious over sin; because Yeshua is faithful (v-9).
Praise YHVH! He is faithful, He will supply our every need, He will empower us to resist the devil; He will enrich us in all that is needed to be faithful to Him. If we are abiding in and having fellowship with His Son, we can and will glorify His name; (v-8) who will also confirm you to the end, blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Go on to read how the wisdom given Paul to deal with this unruly group applies to our lives, our families, our church today. Let us examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith, for by His Spirit we can live in His righteousness, faithfully, to the end.
Remember Your Status In Messiah:
1Corinthians 6:9-11 …the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
We must encourage others (or ourselves) that are not living up to the standard set by Yeshua; for if we are in Him we have His grace, that is His power, to live and walk as He did. Do not trust in your way; trust Him, that in everything you were enriched in Him.
Blessed be YHVH.
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding.
Proverbs 22:19 So that your trust may be in the LORD, I have taught you today, even you.
"Don’t argue for other people’s weaknesses. Don’t argue for your own. When you make a mistake, admit it, correct it, and learn from it- immediately. " Stephen R. Covey
Paul was not condemning the saints at Corinth; he was encouraging them to see the foolishness of their way. He was proclaiming the power of Messiah in their lives, helping them to see the error of their way and to change.
In our pursuit of humility:
"Humility, as it is the mark of Christ, will be the one standard of glory …the lowliest is the nearest to God." Andrew Murray
The saints at Corinth were anything but humble in their attitude toward one another in the beginning. They may have had an excuse in the physical because they lived amongst the most corrupt citizenship in the world. But they had no excuse in Christ Jesus (Yeshua the Messiah). Why did they have no excuse to express the humility of the Savior?
1Corinthians 6:11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
1Co 1:9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
What we learn with pleasure we never forget.
I'd rather be failure at something I enjoy than a success at something I hate.
Speak not against anyone whose burden you have not weighed yourself.
Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones.
A baby is born with a need to be loved--and never outgrows it.
Things should be as simple as possible but not any simpler.
One Sunday in a Midwest city, a young child was "acting up" during the morning worship hour. The parents did their best to maintain some sense of order in the pew but were losing the battle. Finally, the father picked the little fellow up and walked sternly up the aisle on his way out. Just before reaching the safety of the foyer, the little one called loudly to the congregation, "Pray for me! Pray for me!"
A Sunday school teacher asked her little children, as they were on the way to the church service, "And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?"
One bright little girl replied, "Because people are sleeping,"
Six-year old Angie and her four-year old brother Joel were sitting together in church. Joel giggled, sang and talked out loud. Finally, his big sister had had enough. "You're not supposed to talk out loud in church." "Why? Who's going to stop me?" Joel asked. Angie pointed to the back of the church and said, "See those two men standing by the door?
A mother was preparing pancakes for her sons, Kevin, 5, Ryan, 3. The boys began to argue over who would get the first pancake. Their mother saw the opportunity for a moral lesson. "If Jesus were sitting here, He would say 'Let my brother have the first pancake, I can wait.' Kevin turned to his younger brother and said, "Ryan, you be Jesus!"
After the church service a little boy told the pastor, "When I grow up, I'm going to give you some money." "Well, thank you," the pastor replied, "but why?" "Because my daddy says you're one of the poorest preachers we've ever had."
At Sunday School they were teaching how God created everything, including human beings. Little Johnny, a child in the kindergarten class, seemed especially intent when they told him how Eve was created out of one of Adam's ribs. Later in the week his mother noticed him lying as though he was ill, and said.
"Johnny what is the matter?"
Little Johnny responded, "I have a pain in my side. I think I'm going to have a wife!"
Lord, Thou knowest that I am growing old!
Keep me from becoming talkative and possessed with the idea that I must express myself on every subject.
Release me from the craving to straighten out everyone’s affairs.
Keep my mind free from the recital of endless detail…give me wings to get to the point!
Seal my lips when I am inclined to tell of my aches and pains; they are increasing with the years and my love to speak of them grows sweeter as time goes by.
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong.
Keep me thoughtful but not nosy; helpful but not bossy!
With my vast store of wisdom and experience, it does seem a pity not to use it all!
But Thou knowest, Lord , that I want a few friends left at the end. Amen.
-Ann Chellman Conifer, Colorado - entry in Reminisce magazine.
THIS IS SO TRUE
The $20.00 Bill
MY Outlook of Life.........
A well-known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill. In the room of 200, he asked, Who would like this $20 bill?
Hands started going up. He said, I am going to give this to one of you, but first, let me do this.
He proceeded to crumple the bill up. He then asked, who still wants it?
Still the hands were up in the air.
Well, he replied what if I do this?
He dropped it on the ground, and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty. Now, who still wants it? Still hands went into the air.
My friends, you all have learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it, because, it did not decrease in value. It was still worth 20 dollars. Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel that we are worthless, but, no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value, dirty or clean, crumpled or finely creased, you are still priceless to those who love you.
The worth of our lives comes not in what we do, or whom we know, but by who we are.
You are special, don't ever forget it!
Always count your blessings, not your problems
WHY IS THERE NO REVIVAL?
1. He was presented to the Eternal in the temple, according to the Law. - Luke 2:22-39
2. The rainbow - Genesis 9:12-16
3. Jerusalem - Nehemiah 2;17
4. Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah (Christ) - Romans 2:16
5. Decalogue or Mosaic covenant - Exodus 20:1-17
6. Lydia’s - Acts 16:14-15
7. Peter - John 21:16
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