I once heard the phrase “Professional Christian”; I take that to mean people in vocational ministry. I’m not sure how I feel about the whole thing. On one side, there are the expectations that my devotional life and spiritual disciplines are top notch. On the other, more realistic side, is the notion that I struggle a ton with those same disciplines.
I’m on day 10 of my 31 day journey. I have consistently read scripture and responded to it for 10 days in a row. I’ve even managed to memorize 5 verses (references, however, are another thing entirely). I am embarrassed to say this, but I don’t know when the last time that I’ve intentionally memorized scripture.
Today’s reading is 1 Corinthians 10:23- “‘Everything is permissible’, but not everything is beneficial. ‘Everything is permissible’, but not everything is constructive.'”
Translation: Just because I can do something…does not mean I can. Some shout, “Freedom in Christ” and participate in all forms of worldliness and ungodly behavior. Others play the “holy huddle” card, and cloister together, seeing Satan behind every cigarette advertisement. This verse is in the midst of chapter 10 which begins with a history lesson for God’s people. In it, Paul talks of how the Israelites constantly compromised God’s standards. He then “crosses the principlizing bridge” by talking about the differences between feasts offerd to pagan gods and the Lord’s Supper. Finally, we have verse 23. “Just because we can eat meat offered to idols, does not mean the we should”, Paul essentially writes. but just when the legalists think they’ve won, Paul writes, “If some unbeliever invites you to a meal, and you want to go, eat (or drink??) whatever is put before you without raising questions of conscience…For why should my freedom be judged by another man’s conscience?…So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
So…where does this leave us? Do the actions bring glory to God? If so, do it.But, not just for the sake of freedom, but because you make glorify God in it.