Denying yourself is essential if you are a Christian. Jesus called upon those who wish to be His followers to reject the natural inclination toward selfishness. This is what Paul is telling us and the Corinthians: we are called to do this so that others won’t stumble, so that we do not hinder the gospel! In order to do that we must crucify the flesh. In Galatians 5:24 we are told, “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
Our time here is limited. We must not let our worldly possessions distract us from serving God and fulfilling our God given purpose! The more possessions you have, the more you are possessed by them. Possessions become distractions that eat up our time, that distract us from serving God, that take our focus away from THE primary purpose! Two houses, two or three cars, a boat, a camper…Add to that family with, sports, lessons, recitals, and school activities… Where in the midst of all that is God and His church?
You are called to serve God where you are until God unmistakably calls you elsewhere. And while it is not wrong to better yourself with a better paying job or a different position, that may not mean a better situation for you. Seek God first. That’s the key to knowing God’s will.
The most common reasons given for divorce today, outside the church, are lack of compatibility, money issues, lack of intimacy, adultery, physical appearance, addictions, getting married at an early age, or married for the wrong reasons… Always in the top five for reasons for divorce, both inside and outside the Church, is the lack of intimacy and, yes, that is part of the “Do Not Deprive” in verse 5 that we talked about a couple of weeks ago. But there is more to intimacy than that, though that is a good part of it.
However, in our culture today many see divorce as a positive solution to a troubled marriage. Harvard sociologist Armand Nicholi III concluded, “Divorce is not a solution, but an exchange of problems.” It is the exchange of one set of problems for another.
What is being asked here is: should Christians have sex? Which I will answer now, Yes! But, let me qualify that, within the covenant of marriage! With all of what Paul could have wrote in the first letter (5:9) about sexual immorality I am sure there were those thought that sex was a necessary evil intended for procreation. But sex is to be enjoyed in the context of the husband/wife relationship. There, specifically, it is a gift from God.
Our culture treats sex way too lightly, tv and movies – the whole of the entertainment industry – make it into something that you just do for fun or sport! Casual sex is promoted and deemed natural with people changing partners like we change clothes! But God created sex to be within the bounds of Holy matrimony! We as His people are not to even look at what does not belong to us…
Humanity as a whole is lost in ignorance, having been deceived by the enemy into believing that “I” am to be first, that “it’s all about me,” that they should have all they want, that they deserve better (Philippians 2, Hebrews 13:5). We are manipulated on a daily basis into believing what we are told, that is easily done if you have no foundation, no knowledge of Truth, or are only hearing one side.
But we cannot judge with an attitude of superiority. Thinking that just because we are saved and sanctified, God’s Children, that His word does not apply to us. When we practice sexual immorality with porn, when we make racial slurs, or judge another just because of their race, that is sin and it must be addressed, dealt with, and removed!
1 Corinthians 5:1-8 Before we get started today we need to take a look at the difference between the ceremonial laws & moral laws God had, and… Read more “Scandal: Sexual Immorality 6-24”
We need to be fools for Christ without the provocation they experienced, we need to be God’s Church, God’s People, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, we need to be Connected, living in Community, building relationships with God and one another; unconcerned for the world’s ways, wisdom, and wants, “The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” So lets be connected in our foolishness.
As a Christ follower, a Christian, a Believer, you are made a part of God’s Church and each of us are given responsibilities in His Church. Your responsibility goes way beyond singing a few songs, prayer, placing some money in a box or plate, and holding down that pew for an hour and a half or so when you are here.