Sunday, July 5, 2015

Paul's Epistles - 1 Corinthians Part 31 – IN A FLASH

Paul's Epistles - 1 Corinthians
Part 31 – IN A FLASH
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | |

Paul, having received word in the form of a letter from the church in Corinth, is responding to that letter, as well as to information he has received from trusted sources about the condition of the Corinthian church. Adultery, members suing each other, married couples abstaining from physical relations in order to gain a more "spiritual" relationship with God, as well as the misuse, or abuse in the realm of Spiritual Gifts.

Paul addresses these issues in his letter to the Corinthian church and urges them not to go beyond what is written.

He warns them about their sexual immorality, as well as not becoming a stumbling block to those who are weaker in faith. He explains for those who think some foods are not permissible, or that they are not allowed to drink wine, or one day is holier than another, if they believe this for God's sake, then let it go, do not fight amongst yourselves. 

Paul tells them to be self-disciplined, and warns that when the Israelites sinned against God and did not repent, they did not receive forgiveness, and never made it to the Promised Land. Look at them as examples. There MUST be repentance if there is to be forgiveness. Paul then warned the church that communion was to be taken together as a body, not for eating and getting drunk. The congregation must be one, looking out for each other.

The last few weeks we have been looking at Paul explain certain Spiritual Gifts. This points to the notion, since only a few are mentioned, that these may have been the gifts which they were abusing, or exploiting.

Paul explains that all parts are important, no matter the size or number of gifts. He explains that it is OK to desire and even pray for certain gifts, but there was a way greater than the gifts for bringing people to Christ, rather than use the gifts like parlor tricks, Paul says use I Corinthians 13. Love is the greater way. Then in Chapter 14, Paul explains prophecy, tongues and the importance of intelligible words being greater than tongues.

Over the last couple weeks we have looked at the Resurrection of Christ and of the dead, and today, the resurrection body.

SCRIPTURE REFERENCE I Corinthians 15:50-58

I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed— 52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
55 “Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?”
56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
a.      Nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable

b.     Listen, I will tell you a mystery (The Rapture)
                                                                         i.      We will not all sleep (die)
1.      At the time of the Rapture, Christians will still be alive

                                                                      ii.      But we will all (Followers of Christ) be changed

c.      When? At the last Trumpet
                                                                         i.      Meaning, the end of the "Church Age"

                                                                      ii.      This is the Trumpet of God
1.      I Thessalonians 4:16, 17 "For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever."

a.      When is the last Trumpet?

b.     What will take place then?
                                                                         i.      Those who have died will be raised imperishable
                                                                      ii.      And the mortal with immortality
                                                                   iii.      THEN, the saying will be true

c.      Death has been swallowed up in victory
                                                                         i.      When death is swallowed up in victory, it is then that we receive the full benefits of the cross, of which we only have the firstfruits of.

1.      Romans 8:23 "...we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies."

                                                                      ii.      Thanks be to God He gives us Victory through our Lord Jesus Christ

a.      Therefore my dear Brothers and Sisters
                                                                         i.      He is speaking to the church in Corinth
                                                                      ii.      Followers of Christ

b.     Stand firm and let nothing move you.
                                                                         i.      Do not change because of outward circumstance
                                                                      ii.      Do not let the world get you down
                                                                   iii.      Do not give up on your belief
                                                                     iv.      Do not get discouraged

c.      Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord
                                                                         i.      Because, you know that your labor in the Lord is NOT in vain

Where O death is your victory?

Death has been swallowed up in Victory; Because God gives us Victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

To obtain this victory, we simply need to stand firm, and do not let anything move you.

The Corinthian church was influenced negatively by the world around them, and began behaving like the world, to the point they were worse than the Pagans.

We simply need to ignore the world, continue to move as Christ has instructed us, and we will obtain the Victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

To the victors go the spoils, and the spoils are this, when the last trumpet blasts, we will be changed in the blink of an eye and become imperishable, immortal and therefore be able to receive the inheritance promised to us by God.

So though the world may try to discourage us, and it may look like our labors are for nothing, everything we do in the name of the Lord counts, and none of it is in vain!

So I say again, stand firm and let nothing move you.

1 Corinthians 1:18 "For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God."

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