Though final chapters of Paul’s letters often contain several names and greetings, they are not entirely without lessons that we can learn to help us in our walk with Christ. In the closing words of 1 Corinthians, we see a lesson about pursuing opportunities, preserving unity, and persevering in the faith.
God created human beings special. We are created in His image and God has desired to have communion with us since creation. When we gave up that communion, God put into motion his plan to redeem us, ultimately finding its fulfillment in Christ Jesus.
Before closing the letter, Paul writes a little bit about a collection that was to be taken up by the Corinthians. Why was it needed? How was it to be done? What does it mean for the church today? In tonight’s lesson, we answer these three questions as we consider the collection.
Paul wrote to the Galatians “Through love, serve one another.” This morning we consider the action of service, and the attitude of service as we conclude the month of January and our look at a number of priorities in the life of a Christian.
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is a pivotal moment in human history. And for those of us who are in Christ, who have our hope because He was resurrected, there are many good things that we can know because our Lord is risen from the dead.
Being a Christian is not something we can do on our own. There is a need to be around other Christians, to have fellowship and be encouraged for the life that we live. It is not only necessary that Christians attend worship, but that we prioritize worship in our lives in order to best serve God.
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” It is a question every child hears many times when they are young. I remember, when I was little, thoughts of being an astronaut or a professional baseball player would often fill my dreams. Around the time I entered high school, my thoughts had shifted to the possibility of being an engineer. However, when I realized that I love the Lord and His Word a lot more than I did math and science, it became clear to me that preaching was what I was going to do.
I don’t know about you, but there are a lot of times when I still don’t really feel “grown up.” I suppose that as a Christian, I still have a lot of growing to do, as do all who walk in Christ. We know that we should be striving to grow in Christ every day. Perhaps as Christians, we don’t fully “grow up” until we attain the resurrection from the dead that Paul talks about in Philippians 3:11-12. The Apostle wrote:
that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. (Php 3:11-12 ESV)
With that thought in mind, when I “grow up,” I want to be like the angels in heaven. After all, that is what Jesus says about the resurrection when answering the Sadducees in Matthew 22, stating in verse 30 that “in the resurrection they…are like angels in heaven.” Humans are currently “a little lower than the angels (Heb. 2:6-7), but Christ promises a day coming when we will be like them.
When I “grow up,” I want to be like Christ is. As a Christian I strive to imitate Christ every day, and be like him as much as possible in everything that I do, but there is an even greater sense of being “like Christ” that I aspire to. Again in Philippians 3, Paul wrote in verse 20-21:
But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. (Php 3:20-21 ESV)
Yes, I still have a lot of growing to do. And I know I will not reach my goal until that day when I am raised to be with the Lord forever (1 Thess. 4:17). Meanwhile, I’ll keep doing my best to grow, and be more like Christ in this life, so that one day I may be resurrected to be like him in glory.