August 13

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“Be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble” (1 Corinthians 8:9 NLT).

From: August 13, 2019

OUR FREEDOM TO LIVE IS LIMITED BY OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO LOVE

Our freedom in Christ does not relieve us of our responsibility to consider others, especially new believers. In Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, he was concerned about those who felt free to eat meat offered to idols without consideration of those who would be tempted to sin by doing the same. The city of Corinth was known for its temple to Apollo. The Apollo Temple was the most prominent building in the city. In addition, overlooking the city was an acropolis upon which stood a temple to Aphrodite. Animal sacrifices were offered at both of these temples. The meat was then sold to local butchers in the Corinthian market place, who sold it to their customers. Even though as Paul pointed out, these gods were not real, those who grew up in Corinth might feel disloyal to Christ by eating the meat offered to Apollo or Aphrodite. For this reason, he said, “If it causes your brother to sin, then don’t eat meat” (1 Cor. 8:13).
 
Our freedom to live according to our conscience and knowledge is to be limited by our responsibility to love others. In an age when unlimited personal freedom is celebrated, where are its limits? Shouldn’t parents limit their freedom to provide a safe place for their children? Shouldn’t the strong restrain their freedom to protect the weak, and the mature limit their liberty to love the young? As one someone once observed, we have a Statue of Liberty on the East coast, what we need is a Statue of Responsibility on the West.
 
PRAYER: Father, we thank You for the freedom we have in Christ. But this freedom is marked by Your love. It is freedom from sin, not to sin. It is freedom from sin’s slavery that we might live freely in and for Christ. Empower us this day by Your Spirit to live for Jesus. Let our freedom be guarded by Your love. In Jesus’ name, amen.

“Be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble” (1 Corinthians 8:9 NLT).

From: August 13, 2018

OUR FREEDOM TO LIVE IS LIMITED BY OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO LOVE
Our freedom in Christ does not relieve us of our responsibility to consider others, especially new believers. In Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, he was concerned about those who felt free to eat meat offered to idols without consideration of those who would be tempted to sin by doing the same. The city of Corinth was known for its temple to Apollo. The Apollo Temple was the most prominent building in the city. In addition, overlooking the city was an acropolis upon which stood a temple to Aphrodite. Animal sacrifices were offered at both of these temples. The meat was then sold to local butchers in the Corinthian market place, who sold it to their customers. Even though as Paul pointed out, these gods were not real, those who grew up in Corinth might feel disloyal to Christ by eating the meat offered to Apollo or Aphrodite. For this reason, he said, “If it causes your brother to sin, then don’t eat meat” (1 Cor. 8:13).
 
Our freedom to live according to our conscience and knowledge is to be limited by our responsibility to love others. How might this principle be applied today?

“yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist” (1 Corinthians 8:6 ESV)

From: August 13, 2016

Our existence is “from” and “for” God, the Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ. He made us for Himself. As Augustine said, “Thou hast made us for Thyself, O God, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.” Do you know the One to whom you belong and for whom you exist? Come, and find perfect rest and purpose in Him.

“I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease while I leave it and go down to you?” (Nehemiah 6:3 NKJV)

From: August 13, 2015

A leader learns when to say “Yes” and when to say “No.” In fact, learning when to say “No” may be one of the most important leadership traits, as many leaders struggle with being people-pleasers. Great leaders let their God-given vision determine when to say “Yes” or “No.” This guards them against being stopped or slowed by their detractors, no matter how influential the naysayers may be. Nehemiah knew that he was “doing a great work” that was given to him by God. He didn’t have time for critics who weren’t helping with the work. Especially since he knew that they were against the work itself. Saying “No” to those things that don’t contribute to God’s calling on your life makes room in your life for saying “Yes” to those things that truly matter.

“…while knowledge makes us feel important, it is love that strengthens the church” (1 Corinthians 8:1b NLT)

From: August 13, 2014

What “strengthens” the church? Love. This does not discount the importance of knowledge, nor of good doctrine in the church. But it does clarify their priority. Love is superior. Let love guide and motivate the use of knowledge. As Paul said in Eph. 4:15, “Speak the truth in love.” An old cliché suggests, “People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.” Let others know that they are loved, then perhaps they’ll ask about the reason. Knowledge may win arguments, but love wins hearts.

“Let the whole world fear the Lord, and let everyone stand in awe of him. For when he spoke, the world began! It appeared at his command. (Psalm 33:8-9)

From: August 13, 2012

A generation that believes the universe is self-existent has no need to be in awe of a Creator. They worship human intellect and pour out their passion on natural lusts. Believing they are mere mammals, they prove it to themselves by acting on baser instincts. But what if there is a Creator who spoke us into existence? And what if He speaks again?