The words of Paul to the Corinthians can be applied to the present situation of information overload. The church in Corinth had been established for some years and the believers were being distracted by some who were full of their own importance and were creating problems. We read, “I Paul, myself entreat you, by the meekness and gentleness of Christ” (10:1). This was the Christ-like attitude Paul had toward the genuine believers there, but it was a challenge to have it toward those who envied his popularity and sought to undermine his work for the Lord. We remember how our Lord Jesus responded to those who were envious of his popularity. “Come to me all you who labour and are heavy laden … Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly of heart …” (Matthew 11:28,29). Paul was putting this into practice.
Many in Corinth were not doing this and it is the same today: God’s words get wilfully distorted. Paul writes, “I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough” (11:3,4).
Tragically the ‘Christian’ world has seen many different gospels over the centuries, it is only the regular and prayerful reading of God’s word, so wonderfully preserved, that provides the foundation for us to walk in Christ’s footsteps, and, at the same time, develop the spirit of “meekness and gentleness”. This should apply equally as much when we seek to “destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God” (10:5). May we find that, on at least some occasions, “the soft answer” (Proverbs 15:1) can penetrate the hard hearts we encounter.
Finally, note how this chapter ends; “it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends”. May the Lord commend you on that day for being faithful to His word, and in turning from this world’s distractions to read and meditate daily on His word knowing they provide an essential foundation for all you think and do.
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