Highlights In Today's Reading:
Importance of Spiritual gifts (14:1-40). Review the Good News of Jesus and the importance of His resurrection (15:1-11); Be not deceived (15:29-34); Mystery of the resurrection of the body (15:35-53); Ultimate victory over death (15:54-58). Collections and conclusions (Chapter 16).
The grace of God can protect a Joseph from Potiphar's wife in Egypt and can keep an Elijah in a kingdom where Jezebel was queen, but even the most godly Christians need to be on their guard against the worldly deceptions of the Devil. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8).
To the Christian who, of necessity, must spend much of his time with the people of the world, the following text comes as a warning lest his life conforms to their standards. Be not deceived: evil communications (friends, companions) corrupt good manners. Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame (I Corinthians 15:33-34). Influences of worldly associations and the temptations that follow can gradually reduce a believer to the standards of the world around him. That is why God has said: Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them (Ephesians 5:11).
Any exceptions result from the unwillingness to take the Lord and His Word seriously.
Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever (I John 2:15-17).
Nothing could be clearer than the pronouncements of the Scriptures on the Christian's proper relationship to the world. Christianity today is so entangled with the world that millions never realize how radically they have missed the New Testament pattern of godly living. There is compromise everywhere but Scripture leaves no room for doubt or compromise.
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord (I Corinthians 15:57-58). Praise the Lord!
Thought for Today:
The little children's song says it so well: "Be careful little eyes what you see . . . be careful little ears what you hear." Set your affection on things above (Colossians 3:2).
14:10 signification =b> meaning; 14:11 barbarian =b> foreigner; 14:20 in malice be ye children =b> in doing evil, be as harmless as a baby; 14:27 by course =b> in turn; 15:9 meet =b> worthy, fit; 15:20 slept =b> have died; 15:33 evil communications corrupt good manners =b> evil companions or associations ruin or defile good character; 15:40 celestial =b> heavenly; terrestrial =b> earthly; 16:2 gatherings =b> collections; 16:13 stand fast in the faith =b> remain true to the Lord; quit you =b> act, be courageous; 16:15 addicted =b> devoted; 16:22 Anathema =b> accursed; Maranatha =b> our Lord is coming!
For I Corinthians 14:21: See Isaiah 28:11-12. I Corinthians 15:3-4: See Hosea 6:2. I Corinthians 15:25: See Psalm 110:1. I Corinthians 15:27: See Psalm 8:6. I Corinthians 15:32: See Isaiah 22:13. I Corinthians 15:45: See Genesis 2:7. I Corinthians 15:54: See Isaiah 25:8. I Corinthians 15:55: See Hosea 13:14.
Pray for Radio Sri Lanka International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Ruth J. Ness • International Shortwave Broadcasts in memory of Grace Despot • Executive Director of the IBRA in our Washington DC Branch: Reverend Michael Hall • Government Officials: Gov. Benigno Fitial (Northern Mariana Islands) and Gov. Tim Pawlenty (MN) • Country: Panama (3 million) in southern Central America • Major languages: Spanish and English • Limited religious freedom • 78% Roman Catholic; 12% Protestant; 5% Muslim; .1% Eastern Orthodox • Prayer Suggestion: Exalt the Lord, for He is holy (Psa. 99:9).
Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 8:28