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Thursday, July 5, 2018

2018.07.05 Hopewell @Home ▫ 1Corinthians 3:18-4:5

Questions for Littles: What should someone who seems wise in this age do (v18)? What is worldly wisdom before God (v19)? What does God do to man’s wisdom (v19-20)? In whom must we not boast (v21)? What is serving our glory (v22)? For whose glory are we employed (23a)? For whose glory is Christ employed (23b)? How are preachers to be considered (4:1)? What should they be aiming at (v2)? Who alone can judge our service to the Lord (v3-4)? What amazing thing will come from God for His faithful servants (v5)? 
In this week’s Epistle reading, we learn not to want to look good before others. The Lord flat-out tells us that’s a trap. Oh, how our hearts need to hear that! As soon as we begin to desire the admiration of men, alarms should be going off in our minds, “That’s a trap! That’s a trap!”

God catches the “wise” (fear quotes for humanist wisdom!) in their craftiness. The thoughts of the “wise” are futile—useless.

And look at what such wisdom boasts in—being connected to a celebrity pastor? Really? When every believer has God literally moving all of heaven and earth to bring them to Himself and fit them for glory?!

And what is the point of all of this work to prepare us for glory? That we would be glorious in and of ourselves forever? Of course not! But rather so that we would shine marvelously unto the glory of Christ our Redeemer! And that Christ’s great glory as Redeemer would redound unto the everlasting display of the infinite glory of GOD!!

And we’re going to brag, “I follow so and so”? Or, “I go to such and such church”? How about: “I have all of heaven and earth being bent unto my good and my glory by almighty God”!

What a ridiculous thing celebrity culture is in the church. Now, that doesn’t mean that ministry isn’t important. Indeed—God builds His church by the preaching of the Word. But, what do these preachers do? Amass followings for themselves? No—they are servants sent out in Christ’s name, to whom have been entrusted the mysteries of God: those truths that God has revealed.

And it is their job to proclaim those truths as faithfully as possible. Not to satisfy men. Not even to satisfy themselves (v4!!). We would think it terrifying that the Lord Himself will judge our faithfulness. But then we see that by His grace, and for Christ’s sake, God is actually going to praise His true servants. How merciful and generous is that?!
Whom are you tempted to try to impress? How can you focus on faithfulness instead?
Suggested songs: ARP131 “My Heart Is Not Exalted” or TPH131B “Not Haughty Is My Heart”

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