By Michael Youssef, Ph D. 07/14/20
Read 1 Corinthians 10:23-11:1.
Christ has given us tremendous freedom that we might follow Him wholeheartedly. For, if we are constantly worried about following a rule to make ourselves acceptable to God, we have nullified the power of grace. God wants us to be people who, because of the grace and love they have received, will follow Him with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, which means we must learn how to live righteously even in situations where there is no clear path of obedience.
Paul’s advice to the Corinthian believers gives us a clear principle to consider as we seek to live out our freedom: “[W]hatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). In first-century Corinth, what you ate and drank communicated quite a bit to the watching world. Unbelievers would have expected Christians to abstain from eating meat that had been sacrificed to idols. Similarly, new converts might be confused by a Christian brother’s freedom to eat such meat (see 8:9-13).
In both cases, the best thing for a believer to do is put down the fork. Paul wants us to be free to exercise our freedom but especially free to not exercise that freedom. We should be able to sacrifice our own desire if it means we will uplift our fellow believer and bring God glory. If we can remember, “No one should seek their own good, but the good of others,” we will honor God and love our neighbor in every area of our lives.
Prayer: Father, thank You that I am free to live righteously before You. Help me to use my freedom to lift up my brothers and sisters in Christ. May the way I live reflect Your supremacy in my life. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).