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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Bible Study- How Do We Live in the World and Not Be of the World?


I recently shared this in a bible study group and thought to share it with my beloved readers too :)
1 Corinthians 2:6-end

Pointers

1) What does it mean to be in the world and not be of the world?

2) What are the biblical and practical applications of this?

3) How do we do this without alienating ourselves from the dying world we are called to share the gospel with?
If we truly do know and believe in the power we carry within us, would the possibility of being in the world and not be of the world become more real to us?
In this bible passage, Paul exposes us to the reality of the life we live as Christians. We are Spiritual beings encapsulated in the flesh.How does this influence our lives? Do we walk about like people who carry powerful light within us or as feeble souls easily tossed by the wind of the world.
The Christian community has become so affiliated with the things of the world that we are starting to lose track of the fact that we have been set aside for a purpose.

In the words of Martin Luther King: "The church has now become a thermometer rather than a thermostat to the world" In other words, we have taken on the temperature of the world around us when we ought to regulate it. We have brought down the gospel to the world's standard rather than raise it up to God's standard
What sets us apart as children of God is the Spirit of God within us (Romans 8:9). The world will never understand some things revealed to us by the spirit and we ought not to take the fact that we carry the Spirit of the Most high God within us for granted.

Questions to ask ourselves

How do we treat our spirit being?
Do we treat our spirit being with the respect that it deserves ?
What do we feed the spirit ?
The way we talk, interact with people, deal with problems, what we watch,where we choose to fellowship..does it align with what we claim to believe in ?

Psalm 1

This is an instruction inspired by God to David
From ESV commentary: 
"The truly happy person guides his life by God's instruction rather than the advice of those who reject Him"
Verse 1
"Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;"
This is not to say that we are not sinners or we are Holier than thou. No, not at all, but the bible says we have been justified through faith (Romans 3:21-24), therefore we ought to live as such.
"We ought to live a life of active resistance to sin and an active obedience to the word of God"
We simply cannot act the same way we used to before we met Christ because that does not correlate with the new life we are being transformed into

Verse 2
"but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night."
It is what we watch with interest that steadily becomes our delight. For example, have you ever been so engrossed in a TV show that it starts to feel like you are a part of the cast? That's exactly how our spirit works as well, if you take too much interest in the things of the world, it becomes your delight and the same thing happens when the things of the spirit is your priority. Our minds are like magnets, what we allow get in sticks, which is why we need to be very sensitive to the Holy Spirit

Verse 3
"He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither."
So how do we know we are not of the world?

-We bare the fruits of the spirit as people who have the spirit within them (Galatians 5:22). It is not enough that we verbally identify with Christ, we must identify with Him in our deeds and actions as well
I like how John Piper put it (Paraphrased:" The life of a Christian is not that of a laborer picking fruit, it is that of a tree bearing fruit")
And for a tree to start bearing fruit, there is a process to it... a long one.

- Meditating on the word day and night: This is not just an obvious redundancy in the Bible, it is the cornerstone of the Christian walk. We should treat our spirit like a precious gem stone or a perfectly white outfit, be careful what you allow get into it. The necessity of feeding the Spirit with the word cannot be overemphasized.

- Our lives should be a continuous reflection of God's glory. Everything we do should always point back to God..we are representing something bigger than us, bigger than the world, we can't afford to treat that with levity. We can't take for granted the fact that God does not condone sin and even though the "morally acceptable" things of the world have evolved over time, God's laws remain the same. Time and season should never be a factor on how we obey God and represent Him to others.

So how do we do this and not alienate ourselves from the dying world ? - John 17:14
- Ask for wisdom to share the gospel without compromising your own salvation.
- We should be prepared to be hated, spat upon, disagreed with but we should never let this shake our foundation as we share the truth in Love.
After all Paul said he became many things to many people but this does not mean he watered down or compromised the gospel, he simply empathized with his audience (1 Corinthians 9:22). So there is always wisdom applied.

This is a quote from an article I read from desirringgod.com
"Jesus’s true followers have not only been crucified to the world, but also raised to new life and sent back in to free others. We’ve been rescued from the darkness and given the Light not merely to flee the darkness, but to guide our steps as we go back in to rescue others."
In your every day life, how do you represent Christ ?

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