Category: 1st and 2nd Corinthians

Remembering Jesus!

Scripture reading for July 19th:  Psalm 30-33, 1st Corinthians 11

Key Scriptures: 1st Corinthians 11:23-26 “For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when He was betrayed took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it, and said, “This is My body which is for you.  Do this in remembrance of Me.”  In the Same way also He took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the New Covenant in My blood.  Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”  For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.”

Paul passed on the sacrament of the Lord’s supper to the Corinthian believers.  He had gotten this from the Lord Jesus, Himself.  Jesus had shared the meaning of the elements of the bread and cup of grape juice with His disciples at His last meal with them on earth before the crucifixion.  The bread represented His body, broken for them, their true sustenance.  The cup of wine represented His shed blood that granted them forgiveness of sins.  The sacrament was to be taken as often as they desired in remembrance of Jesus, proclaiming His sacrificial death until He returned for them.

Psalm 32:1-2 “Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.  Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your body and blood, broken and poured out for my sins.  I receive Your promise of covering and the blessing of eternal life with You.  Amen!

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Grace is not a sin license!

Scripture reading for July 18th:  Psalm 27-29, 1st Corinthians 10

Key Scriptures:  1st Corinthians 10:8-11 “We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day.  We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.  Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.”  

Paul reminded the Corinthians that God had clearly judged His people for their past sins.  This included sexual immorality, testing or tempting God, and grumbling against God and His appointed leaders.  Their history was recorded in God’s Word as examples for us living in the last days under the New Covenant in Jesus Christ.  Grace is not a license to sin.  Christ is coming soon for a holy Bride!

Psalm 29:1-2 “Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.  Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His Name; worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.” 

 

Prayer:  Lord, keep me from besetting sins of flesh and spirit.  Thank You for the examples written down for me and all who love You.  We want to worship You in the splendor of holiness.  Amen.

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Mission focus!

Scripture reading for July 17th:  Psalm 23-26, 1st Corinthians 9

Key Scriptures: 1st Corinthians 9:22-24  “To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak.  I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.  I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.  Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize?  So run that you may obtain it.”  

Paul explained his mission in life now that he had become a follower of Christ.  He tried to relate to whoever Christ placed in his path.  He wanted to share the gospel with them and see them saved and enjoying the blessings of becoming a child of God.  Paul compared life in Christ to a great race.  All believers in the race should run to obtain the prize.  Eternal life is the prize to be shared with the world.

Psalm 24:9-10 “Lift up your head, O gates!  And lift them up, O ancient doors, that the King of Glory may come in.  Who is this King of Glory?  The Lord of Hosts, He is the King of Glory.”  

Prayer:  Lord, help me today to focus on Your mission of reaching lost people with the blessing of the Gospel.  I glorify You as the King of Glory!  May all open the door of their hearts to You!  Amen.

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The God who Hears!

Scripture reading for July 16th:  Psalm 20-22, 1st Corinthians 8

Key Scriptures: Psalm 20:1-2,4-5  “May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble!  May the Name of the God of Jacob protect you!  May He send you help from the sanctuary and give you support from Zion!”. . .”May He grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans!  May we shout for joy over your salvation, and in the name of our God set up our banners!  May the Lord fulfill all your petitions.”  

David made holy petitions as he prayed for those he loved and lead.  David knew that the ultimate protector was the Lord of Heaven.  David understood that each person had access to God’s throne and could find help and salvation there.  His prayer was that God would grant heart’s desires and answer each petition.  Amen!

1st Corinthians 8:2-3  “If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know.  But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.”  

Prayer:  Lord, Thank You for hearing and answering prayers of Your people.  Help me to know You and love You more each day.  Amen.

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Pleasure and fullness of Joy

Scripture reading for July 13th:  Psalm 16-19, 1st Corinthians 7

Key Scriptures:  Psalm 16:5-8,11 “The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; You hold my lot.  The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.  I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me.  I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.”  . . “You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.””  

David chose the Lord as his portion and lot in life.  By divine revelation, David understood that God was better than land, fortune, or fame.  God had revealed to David that his security and the path to everlasting life lay in placing Him first.  David chose this by faith.  Faith in God brings the ultimate pleasure and joy, and an eternal inheritance in God’s family.  This amazing choice is available to all.

1st Corinthians 7:17 “Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him.”

Prayer:  Lord, I choose You as my inheritance and portion now and for eternity.  What a joy it is to be in Your family and live under Your rule!  Amen.

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Marked by Holy Living

Scripture reading for July 12th:  Psalm 13-15, 1st Corinthians 6

Key Scriptures:  1st Corinthians 6:9-11  “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived; neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you.  But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

Paul clearly tells the Corinthian believers that those living in known sin will not have a part in the inheritance of the kingdom.  Practicing sin is not compatible with those who have been washed and sanctified by Jesus Christ.  The Spirit of God leads believers in repentance and a new life.  Practicing sinners will not be given an eternal inheritance in God’s family.

Psalm 15:1-2  “O Lord, who shall sojourn in Your tent?  Who shall dwell on Your holy hill?  He who walks blamelessly and does what is right and speaks truth in his heart; . . .”

Prayer:  Lord, I want to dwell with You for eternity.  May my profession of faith be backed up with holy living.  Fill me with Your Holy Spirit. Amen.

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Holy separation

Scripture reading for July 11th:  Psalm 9-12, 1st Corinthians 5

Key Scriptures:  1st Corinthians 5:11-13 “But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler–not even to eat with such a one.  For what have I to do with judging outsiders?  Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?  God judges those outside.  “Purge the evil person from among you.””

Although all judgment concerning eternal destiny belongs to God, Paul urged those in leadership in Christ’s church to discipline those in the church who called themselves a Christian.  If there was known and flagrant sin, there must be holy separation.  Those living in known sin must be made aware of the danger that they may be cut off from Christ.  All church discipline should be done with love and prayer for restoration, recognizing the Lord as the ultimate judge of all.

Psalm 11:4  “The Lord is in His holy temple; and the Lord’s throne is in heaven;  His eyes see, His eyelids test the children of man.” 

Prayer:  Lord, it is comforting to know that You see all mankind and know the heart.  Help those in church leadership to discipline those needing correction in Your church as You direct .  Amen.

Christ, our Judge

Scripture reading for July 10th:  Psalm 6-8, 1st Corinthians 4

Key Scriptures:  1st Corinthians 4:4-5  “For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted.  It is the Lord who judges me.  Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart.  Then each one will receive his commendation from God.”  

Paul was writing to the Corinthian church, who were divided by factions around various leaders.  They were judging each person and the leaders as well.  Paul encouraged them not to live with a judgmental spirit.   Paul admitted he could not even fairly judge himself.  God is the only fair and impartial judge.  He will bring hidden things to light in the proper time, at Christ’s return.  Each person should humbly search their own hearts.

Psalm 7:8  “The Lord judges the peoples; judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness and according to the integrity that is in me.” 

Prayer:  Oh Lord, the Righteous Judge, help me to be free from a critical and judgmental spirit.  Judge me according to Christ’s righteousness, on which I depend.  Amen.

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Test yourselves!

Scripture reading for August 15th:  2nd Corinthians 13

Key Scriptures for over-comers:  2nd Corinthians 13:2-5  “I already gave you a warning when I was with you the second time.  I now repeat it while absent:  On my return I will not spare those who sinned earlier or any of the others, since you are demanding proof that Christ is speaking through me.  He is not weak in dealing with you, but is powerful among you.  For to be sure, He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by God’s power.  Likewise, we are weak in Him, yet by God’s power we will live with Him to serve you.  Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test.”

Pastor Paul was concerned about those in the church that were still living in sin.  He had warned the church that this was dangerous and repeated the warning that these people should be dealt with.  He would come in Christ’s authority and power to deal with these people if necessary. But a better way was for them to do a healthy self-examination.  Each member must test themselves to see whether they were truly in the faith through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and the indwelling Holy Spirit.  When we have Christ in us, we have the power to repent and live free from sin.

Observations for over-comers:  Regular self-examinations concerning Christ in us is a healthy form of discipline. “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid.”  (Proverbs 12:1)

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Danger in failure to repent!

Scripture reading for August 12th:  2nd Corinthians 12

Key scriptures for over-comers:  2nd Corinthians 12:19-21  “We have been speaking in the sight of God as those in Christ; and everything we do, dear friends, is for your strengthening.  For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be.  I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.  I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged.”  

The pastor’s heart of the Apostle Paul was concerned about the spiritual state of the members of the church at Corinth.  He earnestly desired their strengthening in Christ and spiritual health so he wrote to them concerning sins that he knew were still prevalent there.  This list could still fit many or most church families today!  The sins he listed caused division and strife and would ultimately bring God’s judgment if not repented of!  The only way to deal with any sin is to turn from it, confessing responsibility for the sin and asking Christ for mercy through faith in His sacrifice.  Without repentance sinners will perish!  (Luke 13:3,5)

Observations for over-comers:  Self-examination and regular repentance when the Holy Spirit convicts us keeps our souls healthy and strong!  “Therefore this is what the Lord says: “If you repent, I will restore you that you may serve Me; if you utter worthy, not worthless words, you will be My spokesman. . . .”” (Jeremiah 15:19)

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