Highlights In Today's Reading:
Today's reading concerns Christian conduct: Know ye not that ye are the Temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the Temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the Temple of God is holy, which Temple ye are (3:16-17). No divisions among you (1:10-13). Wisdom is of the Holy Spirit as we read His Word (2:4-5,10-16). Correct concept of God's Christian Service (3:2,6-7,15-16,21). Instructions for Christ's servants and their Christian conduct (4:2,4,10).
Paul had met apparent defeat at Athens where he delivered his great sermon on Mars Hill (Acts 17). There is no record of his establishing a church there or of his returning on any later occasion.
Next, he confronted the philosophic Greeks of Corinth. How would the Corinthians respond if he preached the resurrection of a man hanged on a Roman cross as the Savior of the world? Suppose these men, too, would refuse to listen to such foolishness of preaching (I Corinthians 1:21).
To the Church that he established there, Paul later wrote: Unto the Church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the Name of Jesus Christ. . . . That in every thing ye are enriched . . . in all knowledge . . . waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ (1:2,5,7-8).
He presented the message of his Redeemer, unmixed — uncorrupted. To do otherwise, to wreathe the cross with flowers of thought and rhetoric till man could find no cross, no sacrifice, no blood — would be unfaithful to his Savior.
There are two types of men — "natural" and "spiritual." Correspondent to these are two ways of gaining knowledge — one by persuasive "wisdom" of men and the other by demonstration of the power of the Holy Spirit. Likewise, there are in close parallel two ways of preaching the Gospel — in word only or in the Word with power. When the message is received in power it effects a change so radical as to be called a new creation (II Corinthians 5:17). But the same message may be preached without power and multitudes will have a name only and yet remain dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).
Unto the Angel of the Church in Sardis write; These things saith He that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know Thy works, that Thou hast a Name that Thou livest, and art dead (Revelation 3:1).
Thought for Today:
A person cannot effectively preach a Gospel he hasn't experienced.
1:21 the foolishness of preaching =b> foolishness to unbelievers; 2:6 perfect =b> spiritually mature; 3:1 carnal =b> worldly; 4:5 counsels =b> motives; 4:11 naked =b> poorly clothed; buffeted =b> treated with disrespect; 4:16 followers =b> imitators; 4:18 puffed up =b> arrogant, proud.
For I Corinthians 1:19: See Isaiah 29:14. I Corinthians 1:31: See Jeremiah 9:24. I Corinthians 2:16: See Isaiah 40:13. I Corinthians 3:19: See Job 5:13. I Corinthians 3:20: See Psalm 94:11.
Pray for Radio Sri Lanka International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Mrs. Jon Richmond • Staff: Pam Pendergrast • Government Official: Rep. Chet Edwards (TX) • Country: Norway (4.45 million) in northern Europe • Major language: Norwegian • Religious freedom • 87.8% Evangelical Lutheran; 3.8% Other Protestant and Catholic; 3.2% None; 5.2% Other (Orthodox, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Jehovah's Witness) • Prayer Suggestion: Call upon the Lord amidst trouble and He will deliver you (Psa. 91:15).
Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 8:28