1 & 2 Corinthians: Day 3

The Role of God’s Servants

by

Today's Text: 1 Corinthians 3:1-23, John 5:24, Romans 5:1

Scripture Readings: 1 Corinthians 3:1-23, John 5:24, Romans 5:1

My first year of high school, I was placed on the junior varsity cheerleading squad. This shouldn’t have been such a big deal. I was a freshman, after all. But most of friends had made it to the varsity squad, where the girls were clad in glittery uniforms, while the JV team only had t-shirts with iron-on decals.

At the first JV football game of the season, I tumbled across the track, throwing my back handsprings like a circus performer. I wanted to make sure the varsity cheerleaders knew a mistake had been made: clearly, they should have given me a spot on their coveted squad. When I got home that night, exhausted yet satisfied that I’d done the job, my mother let it slip that she’d “enjoyed the Claire show.” Her words stung, but I got the message. I was being prideful, and she’d seen right through my charade.

When I think about pride, I often think about myself at that JV game. I was so convinced I deserved a position on the varsity squad that I spent the night showing off, rather than actually paying attention to the football game. After all, football was the whole reason we were there. The cheering was secondary.

Paul calls out the Corinthians on this same kind of sophomoric pride. He calls out their useless squabbling over their allegiance to a teacher—as if by following Paul, they were more righteous than their friends who followed Apollos. Whether they knew it or not, the Corinthians had lost sight of the most important point of all—that is, Jesus—and had turned their focus completely on themselves.

That’s what pride does. It turns all of our attention inward.

For adult-me, self-pity is the most common form of pride. When I feel left out by a group of friends, the sadness that creeps up isn’t just sadness at the rejection; it’s also a prideful entitlement, which shouts, I should have been invited! Pride can hide in our allegiances—to particular brands, particular books, particular ways of eating, thinking, or voting. Rigid loyalty to anything other than Christ should alert us to destructive pride hiding beneath the surface.

Paul criticizes the Corinthians for falling victim to that distraction, and he doesn’t mince words. He calls them babies! He says they’re acting like typical, worldly people. And I wonder, Am I really all that different from them?

Perhaps my cheerleading story is a silly example, but I think it applies. When it comes to Christianity, what am I holding onto that is secondary to the gospel of Christ? Do I take pride that I’m a part of a certain Bible study, small group, or online devotion series? Do I feel hurt to be left off of a specific worship team? Do I have allegiance to a certain writer, church community, or social-justice mission?

Those things are all well and good. As Paul says, they might be part of the house we’re building, but they will never be the foundation. The gospel is never Jesus and—it’s only Jesus. When it comes to our faith, Paul calls us to let go of everything that’s not Him.

We are not typical; we are temples. The Spirit of God lives in us (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). And as such, we need no ornaments. We need no special brands. No special invitations. No special groups or labels. No allegiances to a specific preacher. The foundation is Jesus. Anything else can stay or go; only our pride tells us otherwise.

SRT-Corinthians-Shareimage-Day3

Claire Gibson is a writer whose work has been featured in publications including The Washington Post and Entrepreneur Magazine among many others. An Army kid who grew up at West Point, New York, Claire is currently growing roots in Nashville, Tennessee, with her husband, Patrick, their son, Sam, and their dog, Winnie. Her debut novel, Beyond the Point, will be published next year.

  • Heather McSmith

    Oh, how I needed this today as I’m feeling left out and like I need to prove something! What am I really clinging to?

  • So blessed to have found this particular lesson. It coincides with our Sunday school teachings and gives deeper insight into the Word and also my own shortcomings and pride. Praying for more revealing and growth that I will become more and more like the Lord and the world will continue to ever grow more and more dim.

  • Rachel Keefer

    What a great message!

  • Mary BradleyPazdan

    What a way to start off the day!

  • Claire, this was amazing! Thank you so much for this. Going to check out your website for sure!

  • As I read this today.. it hits me hard as for a long time I have desired to be a part of something BIG and that means something. I’ll admit I desired to be part of the physical SRT team because of the BIG purpose and wanting to reach out to others, design something amazing (yet I have no experience I’m only an emergency nurse), plus I live in Detroit (so I’m not even local). Maybe it was because I wanted to be proud of something for GOD. While at work I feel out whether a patient has faith before I ask, to be careful to not talk to the wrong person about it then have them complain and I get in trouble.. when I find something with faith the conversation is always that of encouragement and I place the little cards in the back of the SRT books on the back of my badge to maybe spark a conversation about God and his love for us. I desire more.. I just need to desire Jesus more and he will walk me where I should be and he will open doors that are meant for me instead of me trying to walk through a sealed door. This walk is about faith not desire.

  • Natasha Arevalo

    what an eye opening study today. it really brought my prideful actions to the surface. i have let other things get in the way of what is truly important. jesus. only jesus. not jesus and… but ONLY Him!!! really loved today’s read!!!

  • Amber Anderson

    I’m trying to understand the line- the gospel is never Jesus and it’s always Jesus. I keep reading the whole thing over and over but I’ve missed the meaning here. Anyone have clarification?

    • Brenna Hill

      Hey! I had to read it a couple times too.

      I think she is saying it’s never Jesus AND something else. For exampl, Its never Jesus AND my small group. The gospel Is just Jesus.

      (Glad someone else is reading the same day as me!)

    • Olivia Nix

      I think she was referring to how our identity and our hope should be rooted in Christ alone. We shouldn’t feel that we need to have a certain title or accomplishment to be satisfied but we should be satisfied with our identity as children of God. That way our only boast is Christ and everything else flows from that. Hope that helps!!

  • Very convicting. Can I be content with Christ alone and not need other “things” or people to make me feel secure? Name brands, ways of eating…ouch! I had never thought of those things that way.

  • Heidi MelinJones

    I need to take care how I build on the foundation-being Jesus. Good reminder and convicting to think that I could be building with hay or stubble…I don’t want what I have built to be burned up.

  • Oh boy did this hit home for me! I just had a cry sesh in my car because of self pity. Like “how could these people do this to me” and “don’t they know everything I do for them?!” etc. this opened my eyes to see that’s my pride leaking out!

  • Amy Masaschi

    Wow. This just hit me like a ton of bricks. Ouch. Grateful to be convicted and confess my sin of pride and self-pity. It is so deceptive and hidden in life. Thank you, Claire, for your powerful insight into Paul’s letter.

  • Kimberly Hart

    Wow. Like everyone else here, I never thought of self-pity being a form of pride. Jesus strip me of my self-pity. We are enough, because Christ lives in us.

  • Linda Deighton

    “The gospel is never Jesus and-it’s only Jesus.”

    Jesus strip my prideful loyalty to things and people that aren’t about you.

  • Sharita Zimmerman

    This hit way closer home than I would’ve liked. The part about self pity being a form of pride! I never thought about it like that, but it’s true! I felt left out of a circle of friends, and I would pity myself, and complain to my husband and friends. It made no one feel better and it only made me resent those people. When I let go of it, I no longer feel resentment toward them, and I can be friends with them even if I’m not invited to everything. Just be Jesus to them.

  • Eleshia Mark

    Father open my eyes, to see see your purpose in your

  • Logan Ranhofer

    Very convicted by today’s reading and Claire’s words. I recently have encountered a situation where I was definitely screaming in my head “I should have been invited!” I was so hurt by it that it emotionally buried me for almost a week. It was exactly has Claire put it above, “sadness by rejection [and] prideful entitlement.” I learned through that experience and again through this devotion to LET THINGS GO. How easy it is to write, yet so hard to actually do. I have been asking God daily for His help in this department and I’m grateful He had this devotion already planned to help me.

  • Megan Blew

    When Christ is your foundation you dont need anything else!

  • Renae Pearson

    vs 11 tells me that the foundation is Christ and vs 14-15 tells me I should be building on that foundation. I think so often about whether I’m doing well by serving my family and kids and teaching them and building on that foundation, but it’s easy to forget that the foundation of it all is Christ! The gospel. His life. His word. His love.

  • Sarah LarrisonSchmidt

    Wow! This day is so convicting for me. “Self-pity is a form of pride”. I’ve never thought about it that way, but it’s so true! And it diminishes the beautiful blessings God has already given me.

    • Tiffany Jones

      Sarah, I too feel this. Too often I think “it’s not fair” “I don’t deserve this.” I’ve never before realized that is pride. So true though, in all honesty what I deserve is pain and destruction but God has given me life and love instead. So awesome!

  • Anna Rodriguez

    As usual, God’s timing is perfect! This spoke so powerfully to me today- I didn’t even realize how much I needed a clear word on this topic. It’s amazing how pride sneaks into the different facets of my life, shading my perspective on things. I pray that God’s light will shine right through it, keeping me aware and on bended knee.

  • Aimee Woolverton

    “We are not typical – we are temples”. I see myself all over this devotional. I have fought against pride and now I see an even deeper level I never realized was there. Forgive me Lord for my foolishness and help me walk in humility.

  • Kasandra Damirkasan Thaves

    .

  • Mandy Sites

    As embarrassing as it is I totally confess to still struggling with this as the “adult-me”. Lord please forgive me!

    • Aimee Woolverton

      Me too! I sometimes think this “adult-me” struggles even more with pride because it hides itself in places I don’t see. This was an eye opening devotion for me!

  • Wow. Pride, seen in a different light today for me. Pride that’s wrapped up in what has been built but only through Jesus, only as Him being the foundation. None of it could be without Him. I know where I was without Him, I owe it all to Jesus. Lord, forgive me for getting in the way of your glory. Forgive me for getting wrapped up in followers and influence – for thinking more of myself because of temporary things instead of being grounded in humility and grace because of what you’ve done! I am nothing without the one who makes it grow. Thankful for this study and reminder today.

  • Heather Ward

    Honestly, I don’t know how many times I’ve read Corinthians – it’s just a common book to study if you grow up in the church. But, this time is different. God is doing something new in me and I can feel it every time I read the scripture and the devo. This is my first time to buy the study book and I’m afraid it’s beautiful pages are going to be tear stained by the time I finish. The insights on pride today have cut straight through to the heart of what God has been teaching me.

  • Anna Main

    “They might be part of the house we’re building, but they will never be the foundation” !!! This. Needed this!

  • Can someone please explain, “We are not typical; we are temples” to me please

    • Alice

      In 1 Corinthians 3:16, Paul writes that we are God’s temple because the Holy Spirit lives in us. In the Old Testament, God’s Spirit dwelled in the tabernacle, then later the temple. When Jesus came to Earth, the new covenant he brought with him did away with the practice of only being able to go meet with God in the temple. Now that Christians have the Holy Spirit living inside them, they (we) can meet with God always and anywhere because Christ, the Holy Spirit, lives in us. We are now his temple. Of course we still meet with God in church, but we can meet him anywhere, too. So we aren’t typical humans, but as Christians, special, chosen, and separate. We are temples of the living God.

  • Karri PachaMart

    This hit me right where I needed it this morning!

  • Today’s reading was very convicting for me, but also gives me hope. Identifying the hidden (suppressed? ignored?) sins in my heart means that that God is already working, and I can be renewed. I am that infant-like Christian, I knew it the moment I read the words, and it hurts. How could I have allowed myself to become this person who walks around looking like me and talking like me, bearing my name but denying my true identity? Like a lot of you, I have never thought of self-pity as pride either, and that got me to thinking about the subject. What else have I been blind to? I found an article on desiringgod.com about hidden signs of pride in our lives–and talk about conviction. (https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/seven-subtle-symptoms-of-pride) But, like I said, while ashamed and horrified, I don’t want to dwell on the person I have been living as. I want to return to my savior, my foundation. Please pray for me. You all mean so much more than you know.

    • Beth AnneYoung

      Praying Kayla ❤️ thank you for sharing. Thank you for emphasizing how pride can be masked as self pity. I needed that point driven home.

    • Renee Gagnon

      Thank you for sharing that article! What a great read and so much to consider.

  • Madison Veitch

    THIS. I don’t typically consider myself prideful, but I realized after this reading that I TOTALLY am. I tend to find it comes to light at work, for me. Whether I wasn’t recognized for a job well done or credit was accidentally shifted to someone else, or an idea was taken and someone else was praised or a raise or a promotion that I thought I deserved. That sounds extremely entitled, and to some degree it is, but I am good at my job and it’s not like those things wouldn’t be well deserved, HOWEVER, I need to be focused on the greater good. Instead of turning it back inside myself, I need to think about my team, the business, my community, my church and the world! Is it all for the greater good? Then yes, it’s God’s plan. Yes, it’s for God’s glory. Too much “looking inward” at myself. This was super motivating. Thank you!

    • Lovena Carrillo

      I agree! I was thinking the same thing. I always took from this the “let him become a fool so that he may become wise” sometimes I become consumed with fixing people’s problems but it’s never really fixing the bottom line. I took this as, sometimes we need to let the ones we love fail, in order for them to learn and grow.

    • Becky Klaff

      I too never considered myself prideful, but He has been putting things in my path recently that are reminding me that I need to choose purpose over pride and making sure I can see where I am not doing so.

  • “The gospel is never Jesus and- it’s only Jesus.”
    Amen.

    • Autumn

      Could someone please explain this to me? Not fully getting this.

      • Heather Ward

        I think sometimes we get so passionate about good things that we almost make them part of the gospel. Jesus and social justice. Jesus and worship music. Jesus and children’s ministry. Paul points out that those are all fantastic things, but they are not the gospel. Not the foundation. Not requirements for being part of the Church or for being a Christ follower. It’s only Jesus. Everything else is secondary.

      • Shannon Davison

        It means it not Jesus and…. like it’s not Jesus AND my good works, not Jesus AND my amazing ability to sing, etc. It’s simply JUST Jesus.

      • Natalie H

        I think she just means the gospel is only Jesus. Not Jesus AND something or someone else. Just Jesus. But yes the wording is a little confusing!

      • Bethany Cooler

        I think many times we try to over complicate the gospel. We add disclaimers and requirements that are not biblical because we can’t wrap our minds around the idea that He is enough. This was a powerful reminder that HE is all sufficient and needs the addition of nothing.

  • Melissa Waterson

    Wow! That devotional along with the scripture readying was so, so good!!! Yes Lord, May you be the only thing I cling to. May everything else be stripped away!!!

  • Caroline Dean

    That last paragraph hit home for me. I allow myself to be affected by silly things that hurt my pride and make me feel insignificant. Thankful for God’s unending love.

  • Suzanne Gordan

    I enjoyed today’s supplementary reading on self-pity as a form of pride. I’m discipling a young woman and this summarized what I have been hearing from her week after week. — I also needed the reminder that I am not a mere mortal. I forget that God dwells in me and have a tendency to neglect my body and my spirit when life gets busy. I was convicted that I need to keep Him as my priority from day to day.

  • Brianna Foshie

    I feel like pride is almost a dominant trait among people now and this leads to the issue we talked about on day one. Pride of knowledge or letting pride divide people and affects the work we are doing in Jesus name.

  • This was very eye-opening and shed light on pride I didn’t even know I had!

  • LeighAnn McLean

    I struggle with pride from time to time, mainly when it comes to my relationships and feeling left out

    • Michele Nickerson-Swanson

      LeighAnn, I’m 43 and I still I struggle with the feeling of not wanting to be left out, or the wondering what I’m missing out on type of thing. For me, I think it still stems from when I was younger. I have Cerebral Palsy and use a wheelchair. When I was in elementary school it seemed as though I was never invited to things. I thought it was “because of the chair”. Maybe it was, maybe not. Now, a lot of people call me “an out-going person. For the most part, I guess I am (sort of). However, I still have a lot of insecurities too. I try my best to let them go, but they always seems to creep back in.

  • Monica Davis

    Amen

  • nina rose

    is it ok to read on, I get so interested that I don’t want to stop. (have the book for study)

  • Julie Waldvogel

    Just struggled with pride this past week – wasn’t invited to a wedding that I thought I should have been invited to; the last few years me and the bride had become friends and my brother was invited w/o me. I knew it was wrong to feel that way, but it wasn’t till I heard how simple and small it was overall that I confessed my sin to God.

  • “The gospel is never Jesus and—it’s only Jesus.”
    ??????????????????????
    I’m sorry but that sounds so confusing and a bad choice of wording. I relate to John 1:1-5. Great message she had, but bad choice of words in that sentence I feel. How confusing to someone who doesn’t know the truth.

    • LJ

      I read it as it’s never Jesus AND (anything/anyone else), it’s only Jesus (period). As in, our whole focus/allegiance should be to Jesus and nothing else. I hope that makes more sense, i could see how it could be easily confusing!

      • Elaine

        thankyou! I was kinda stuck on this too but I think you understood it right.

      • Amber Witt

        Oh! I get it now! That confused me too.

    • Jennifer Steinriede

      Hey there!! I know it can all be so confusing, and ironically, that is exactly what this message is about. First, to help clarify, the gospel( the first four books of the New Testament) are written by 4 different authors and their stories are all about Jesus: his birth, his life and ministry, his death at the cross to pay for our sins so that we may no longer be separated from God by Sin. He was the sacrifice once and for all so that we are not bound by the works and rules of the Old Testament! Then follows his burial, and resurrection proving he was our Savior!! So in essence , the writer is saying what Paul is trying to tell the church at Corinth: stop debating with each other about what teacher is better to follow ( in our world: what church, what denomination, what preacher ) but instead, agree to fix your eyes on Jesus as your foundation , for Paul did not save us of our sins, my preacher did not save us , etc. they are human and Jesus was enough!! The gospel is The essence of Christianity and Jesus’s the cross is the foundation and the one to learn from in Gods word. People make it so complicated and argue still to this day about religions and preachers and rules and this and that , so much that the lose sight of the simplicity of it all and what makes the diversified church form in unity and that is Jesus!! If we focus on human teaching and arguing and pride more, we lose sight and focus inward. Does any of that make sense?

  • I think that verses 1-4 of 1 Corinthians 3 really stuck out to me when I was reading this morning because we so often feel like we’re stuck in a spiritual rut and we’re just like “why isn’t God working through me?” or “why do I feel like I’m not increasing in my wisdom anymore?”. God does not waste anything, including His wisdom. He will not give knowledge to anyone that it will be wasted upon. When we cloud up our lives with things that are superfluous to our walk with Him, like the church’s bickering over what teacher they belonged to, we are showing God that we are still prioritizing worldly things over His purpose for us or our desire to learn more about Him. He will not waste His gifts on someone who isn’t making themselves ready to receive them. If we want to fulfill God’s purpose for our lives, we have to be conscious about how we are preparing ourselves to receive His blessings and wisdom, as well as what else we are holding as a priority that is preventing us from growing in our faith. Just some thoughts I had this morning! :)

    • Bianca

      This has truly blessed me. I have been in a sort of “spiritual rut” and wasn’t really connecting with the study. I’m glad I kept pressing forward and that I got to see this comment today. Thank you for your thoughts

      • Stephanie

        Wow, this has been a convicting comment that I needed to hear. Thank you.

  • Amanda Grosh

    this was something convicting for me this morning! and a little ouchy too. pride and vanity are two big struggles for me, i think a lot about looks and brands and labels and pricetags. i fall into the trap of thinking these things make better somehow, and ironically my pride comes from a place of insecurity. thank you for the reminder that i am God’s temple, and my identity should come from Jesus Christ alone. “man looks at the outward appearance, but God sees the heart”

    • Michele Nickerson-Swanson

      I can somewhat relate Amanda. As I was just telling someone else, I have Cerebral Palsy and I use a wheelchair. For several reasons I still struggle with a lot of insecurities and self-esteem issues. I can’t wear shoes, and most “high-end” dresses or some of the ‘in styles’ don’t look right on me because I’m sitting all of the time. My go-to fashion is purses. I’m laughing as I write this because, how is one more high-end, well-known brand purse going to help me in the long run? It’s not! Yikes! As I am typing this, I got a “Holy Spirit poke in the arm! Spend less time thinking about your collection of purses and the new designs the could be at the outlet mall. Spend more time with Him so that He can put His designs within you!

  • Jennifer Martin

    Today’s reading really hit home for me. I never realized that self-pity is a form of pride, and I am so ashamed of how often I have given into self-pity in the past few years. Thank you SRT for the reminder. God, please help me to focus on You and Your Word instead of the world.

  • Hello, friends! This is kind of unrelated but I have a prayer request and I would really appreciate anyone praying for me to have wisdom during this time. I recently graduated college, and my best friend really wants me to go out to a club with her and her friends. No matter what you think about drinking, I feel very uncomfortable with it. Not only that, but I would “have” to lie to my parents because we would stay the night in a hotel with her friends. I know they would talk me into going bar hopping and that they would stay out very late based on the stories that I heard from her. I told her “no,” but I do not want to damage our friendship. She has wanted to do this for a long time and I really am not comfortable with it. I will never tell her “yes,” but I don’t want to lose her as a friend. I know this is probably trivial, but I would really appreciate your prayers.

    • Krystle

      Faith,

      I admire your conviction in this matter! It’s not an easy mindset to have, especially at your age. Let your friend know how you feel, and if she’s really your best friend, she shouldn’t pressure you to do anything that would make you uncomfortable. I’ll be praying for wisdom and strength to do what God wants you to do. ❤️

    • Susan

      Oh Faith, such pressure. I’m sorry that you’re struggling with it. I’ll be praying that you remain true to your convictions and that you continue to follow that still small voice within. Peace and Hope !

    • Katelyn

      Faith, I’m praying for your friendship!

  • Loved this. Thank you!

  • The gospel is never Jesus and-it’s only Jesus! Thank you for pointing this out I loved it!

  • Robyn Yates

    Thanks for that!

  • Diane Haller

    Pride turns all of our attention inward…ouch! So true! Oh that I would turn my eyes to the one Who created me instead of focusing on me…what I need, what I deserve, what my goals are…God is so good to keep wooing us back to Him, from our moment by moment choices which can lead us down a road of focusing on side issues instead of the Author and Perfecter of our faith. ❤️

  • WOW! I am a 2 on they ennagram=Helper. Pride is something the Helpers fall towards when not feeling good about one’s self. This is the funny part-I never who of thought of my self as prideful. Realizing this really made me understand how prideful I can be when I am uncomfortable around others(feeling inadequate). When I am being prideful it keeps me from facing my vulnerabilities, such as fear of worthlessness, loneliness and neediness. This behaviour is not pleasing to God. When I realize these behaviours, it is necessary for me to humble myself before God. I continue to work on allowing God to fill me up and knowing he loves me deeply. God’s love is enough.

    • Heidi V

      Oh yes. I know this too. I’m a 2 also and have come to know my helping is my work and I get so much of my confidence and identity from that work. When the work doesn’t produce the result I wanted I see my pride come out in all the same ways you mentioned -my worship of “my way” comes into play. But God is faithful to keep weeding it out of me.
      Thanks for sharing.

      • Annie

        I completely relate, as a type 2 also! I continue to realize when I am helping in order to feel good about myself, rather than out of God’s love in my heart.

  • The sentence above which says, “pride can hide in our allegiances….”and mentions “a particular way of eating” along with other things just will not leave my brain. I think I am wrestling to understand it? Eating is such a sore subject for me as someone with disordered eating. How can pride play a part in how or what we choose to eat? Can someone shed some light on that? This study is so good already and it is only day 3!!

    • Angela

      Debi, I have struggled with disordered eating too and am on the other side. I see a lot of pridefulness in some of the conversations people have about avoiding certain foods, or only eating “clean,” which can manifest as a sort of “I’m eating the right way, the better way than all these other people.” To those of us who do not avoid foods, it can have the sting of being made to feel less-than.

    • Lizzieb85

      I was thinking of particular diets people strictly adhere to & tout as the best way to eat (clean, paleo, etc…). I think the point is that nothing in our lives should take precedence over Christ. There is nothing we should boast about more than Christ’s work in our lives. Nothing to consume our thoughts more than Christ. I mean no disrespect or lack of empathy for those who deal with eating disorders or addictions, but those are things (along with ministry, jobs, parenting) that can take first spot in our lives over Christ. The “pride” comes in where we put ourselves first with regards to these things. Anything we try to do, or not do, on our own is prideful because we are relying on self. We are not putting Christ first or letting Him have control over that area of our lives. (There is nothing wrong in eating a certain way, or parenting a certain way, as long as one continues to submit to Christ in that area, & does not judge others about it.)

      In a few chapters, Paul will discuss food specifically with regards to this.

    • Nathalie Yanna

      I can relate to how tight knit pride and diet/ body image are. When I feel I’m eating better, and looking lighter, pride can shine its ugly glow in me !! I have to really go back to “I am a temple,” how do I care for this temple. ?.Just like my brick house, some days it gets messy and some days it looks really good. Remember to give God the credit for when it looks good. And do not accept the devil condemnation when your temple looks less than perfect !

  • Appreciated the post and comments today. I have some work to do in my heart. Pride is a sneaky thing. Also have a prayer request for a friend and her husband. they have recently suffered 2 miscarriages and now her husband( who was raised in a Christian home and gave his life to the Lord in his teens) is struggling to believe that a loving God would allow this to happen. Please pray for him and his family as they walk this valley, that he could be led back to the Lord.

  • Kat Wilton

    I am God’s temple because, through the grace of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit lives in me. When I do and think unholy things, do I not profane the Temple? Lord, please help me in my weakness! I am unable to do anything to Your glory without Your power and mercy. Help me truly be the branch on Your vine, taking my strength and desires from You alone. Help me abide in You every moment of my life.

  • As I read today’s Scripture, I was once again taken back in time to Paul’s experience and I marveled. What must it have been like to be constantly laboring to bring the Word to a world in which there were hundreds of cults, temples, shrines to animals, war gods, goddesses of love and death and everything in between ? It is a wonder to me and yet, he keeps that simple message of being centered on Christ the Savior and turns the ideas of temples and shrines on end by stressing that God is in us, Jesus is with each individual and not in any Earthly brick and mortar temple ! Each person who comes to Christ is not to place Paul or Apollos or Cephus or any other disciple on a pedestal. Paul pushes this idea away as one more vestige of the polytheistic concept that has been behind the pagan cults and one more temptation (pride and egotistic indulgence) for the evangelists and disciples to shun and for believers to move on from. Instead, he urges all believers to not bicker but to acknowledge that God has inspired the disciples to bring the Word and is in charge of building on that Word by bringing believers together as the body of the new covenant. I love the simplicity of the words in 3:18. We are the temple. God is in us and God’s spirit speaks to us. Amen !

    That being said, the history geek in me sent me looking for academic comment on Paul’s world of Corinth and I found this interesting dissertation. It’s not that dry … and it gives a good picture of what the religious and cultural world of Corinth looked like … if you’re interested. Just copy and paste the link to a new window and then download the entire text once you’re on the page.
    https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1104378https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1104378

    • Susan

      UGH … why don’t links work intuitively ? The name of the article is Flee From the Worship of Idols: Becoming Christian in roman Corinth by Dorvan Byler. Google that and you can find the article. I’m done with ERIC links. LOL!

    • Jennifer

      Can anyone shed some light on vs 14-15? I don’t understand what this means at all: “ If anyone’s work is burned up, he will experience loss, but he himself will be saved, but only as through fire? “.

  • About ten days ago, while mowing the lawn, I noticed a small fern like plant I’d never seen before in a “naturally” landscaped area at our neighbor’s fence. I left it be, not certain it wasn’t there prior and that I just never noticed. Sunday evening this week, I was enjoying time outside with my husband and I turned to see this small fern, now fully grown and flowering at 6 feet. I was stunned, as I walked over to see it I recalled a post shared last summer and I knew immediately what this was …. the dreaded poisonous Hemlock. As I researched how to properly remove this horrible weed, I became so intimidated, this is the weed that killed Socrates, after all. Weird thing is, it is one single stock and we live within city limits, I can see no other Hemlock on our walks, errands, etc, so how the heck did it get here. I went to work contacting yard companies to see if they would assist and I’ve been turned down by all but one and this one has a long list of supplies I need to buy double of AND I am supposed to help her because she has no assistant … honestly, I was hoping I could just pay someone to make it go away, but it seems that I have to face this myself! I was getting discouraged, there is so much going on for me right now and I felt overwhelmed adding this unnerving task to the list, so much so that even after a night of prayer at church on Monday, I was utterly worn thinking about it. But then yesterday, as I continued in constant conversation with God, I encountered THREE license plates on the same errand run (what are the chances) reminding me where my focus should be; God IZ, Worsh1p and I AM HIZ.

    These little love notes were a way to ground me quickly and remind me, this isn’t a big deal and immediately had me sitting up to realize this horrible weed is like pride and sin in our lives. Both are tiny seeds planted right under our noses and then over time, in the right conditions both flourish and before we know we are faced with the giant “weeds” within ourselves and few folks want to be around us or help because it’s not an easy mess to clean up, not to mention it’s our mess and the only way attack sin or pride is to take them apart and remove them at the roots …. ourselves. We have to do the work, no one else can for us. So I have turned it over, thankful that God reminds me there is beauty in it all but that once I tackle this, we can enjoy the yard again, I’ll be free of what is holding us back out there and prayerful that God reveals any areas where my pride may be leading me or where sin may be hiding and festering.

  • Victoria Velez

    I find myself so often focusing on other things rather than focusing on my foundation in Jesus Christ. Thank you for this reminder. I pray that God blesses us all to keep our eyes, thoughts and actions on Him.

  • Julia Hoff

    This is so convicting because I usually think of pride in more of an outward way… but pride can be just in our heads and that sheds the light on the reality that I really struggle with pride much more than I ever have admitted.

    • Angie Klueppel

      Yes, me too. I never really thought of self-pity as a form of pride. I definitely can fall into that trap, thinking I deserve something different or better.

  • Megan Boyers

    Father, thank you for how you grow us mysteriously when we yield to you. Use your word to sprout growth in our lives and produce humility and love towards others. Amen

  • Lord may you point out any prideful way in me. Tenderly show me where to let go. You are so good God, let nothing distract us from you. In Jesus name,amen.

  • Kelly Chataine

    Jesus only! May I become smaller and Jesus larger!

  • God has been repeatedly showing me that my pride comes from focusing on myself. My feelings get hurt easily. I’m so concerned about how I look, or what I do, or what people think of me. I make it all about me and He is gently, and sometimes not so gently, showing me that it isn’t about me at all. It is all about Him.
    Very deliberately now when I realize that I’m concentrating on myself I turn my thoughts to Him and to others. I praise Him and pray for others. Honestly, my feelings don’t automatically change, but it changes my focus and hopefully my heart will follow.
    I’m still a work in progress, but I thank God for being patient with me and giving me eyes to see what He is teaching me.

  • Sandy Forsythe

    1 Cor. 3:16
    Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s spirit lives in you.
    I Cor. 3:23
    … and you are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.

    I love the line in the commentary today: ‘We are not typical, we are temples.’

    The commentary talked about pride eroding our foundation- pride does become our ‘self anchor’ if we build our lives following our stubborn hearts…

    Our temple needs just One strong footing – that goes to the bedrock of truth…we are in Jesus, Jesus is in God – they are one… and we are with them in a miraculous divine incomprehensible way. That is the rock foundation we live on.
    All other things we trust from time to time in our lives – make our temple wobble.

  • Cassie Scoggins

    Such a great post and very convicting. I think it really calls to attention our reasons behind feeling left out or rejected. Typically, it is because we feel like we should have been included (pride) or we worry that it is because no one likes us (vanity). Both aspects of thinking are extremely dangerous and they cause us to shift our focus from Christ to ourselves.

  • Terrisa Stewart

    This was a timely post. And a gentle reminder that some of my thoughts and actions lately have been full of pride.

  • I’m reminded that God resists the proud and pride comes before a fall. He hates a haughty look. Yikes! Please God let me not be prideful, but humble giving You all Glory, Praise, and Honor due. I don’t want You to resist me! In Jesus Name please help me! Amen

  • Churchmouse

    “everything is yours, and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.” This keeps any worldly accolades in check for me. They pale next to this truth. All the trophies and all the awards are nothing in comparison. So what if man acknowledges my accomplishments… or not? I belong to Christ. You can’t top that. You can’t minimize that. I already have the only approval, the only recognition, that matters. Not pride. Just fact.

    • Courtney

      Amen!!

    • PamC

      Amen

    • Rhonda Johnson

      LOVE this, Amen!

    • Deborah Craytor

      Oh, Churchmouse, your words are so timely for me! I have worked very hard for my employer for the past 10 years but have never been selected as “Employee of the Year,” an award that is being given out this week. Every year, I have asked myself why I haven’t received this accolade when everyone tells me that the program I created is “the star in [my employer’s] crown.” But as you say, “So what if man acknowledges my accomplishments… or not? I belong to Christ. You can’t top that. You can’t minimize that. I already have the only approval, the only recognition, that matters. ” Thank you for this perspective!

  • Jocelyn Hammer

    I appreciated some of what was said here but I think that churches can have cliques and in crowds and we need to call that out, and not blame it on ourselves. Also, people who are hurting from rejection need support, instead of being told to swallow pride.

    • Allison

      I thought about your comment for a long time. Yes! Paul definitely calls out cliques even in this passage. But the pride comes in when we blame something on ourselves. As a Christ follower, we can confess any of our wrong doing and then hold our head high with the knowledge that we are fully forgiven and stand righteous before God’s throne. And, if we who call ourselves Christians feel rejected, we are not fully living in God’s promise that we are His fully approved and accepted heirs. Everything (absolutely everything!!!) we need is found in Christ. Salvation, forgiveness, comfort, peace, acceptance, security. If we look for it from humans it will always fall short of what Christ offers. Yes! Support your brothers and sisters who are in Christ and have been rejected by friends, spouses, parents, etc. BUT support them by reminding them who they are in Christ. Always point them back to Him. His grace IS sufficient for us in all circumstances but especially when we are humbled and weak.

      • Terri

        Allison,
        Thank you for this. Your words meant a great deal to me this morning. I copied them into my journal as a reminder.

    • Claire

      HI Jocelyn! I agree with you that people who are hurting from rejection need support and that church “cliques” need to be called out. I think that’s exactly what Paul is doing here. People had grown too firm in their allegiance to him or Apollos — which amounted to a clique. I think this passage is a call to let go of those allegiances as our “ultimate” and to keep our eyes on Jesus, who is the REAL ultimate. There is freedom for people who have been rejected from cliques in this too — because those cliques aren’t real. And they aren’t the ultimate or most important thing. If you are rejected by the world, you are not rejected by the Lord. Much love to you…

  • Beautiful post. Sheds a new light on pride in small ways.

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