Dave Williams continuing through 1st Corinthians. He reminded us from last week that we are set apart from God and that he wants us to love him in return. This week he focused on three main points; how the Bible is about Christ, the importance of diversity, and that we belong to God. Ultimately asking us how we are reflecting Christ to others.
- Two things I want to make sure that we remember from last week: You have been set apart by God and he wants you to love Him in return. If God bought me with a price, I am nobody else’s but his. If I’m his, people will know it; they will see my life reflect Christ, even when I fail.
1 Corinthians 1:10-17
10 For I appeal to you, brothers, 1 by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11 For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I follow Paul,” or “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Cephas,” or “I follow Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one may say that you were baptized in my name. 16 (I did baptize also the household of Stephanas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
The Name of Christ
- Now here is something to point out that I think is worth noting. I asked you last week to start reading this book. Just read it over and over again, immerse yourself in it, because the more you do the more you will understand it. If you were to do that, you’d find something pretty cool. In the first 10 verses of this text we see that Paul referenced Christ 10 times. He is referenced 53 times in this book alone.
- That offers an important truth for us today: This really is His book.
- This Word, The Bible is about Christ. The name Christ is mentioned 529 times in the New Testament. The word Christian: 3. This book is about Him. I have said it before at it bears repeated: when we reduce this book down to an application book we lose a lot of what the intent of the Bible really is. This book is God’s book. It’s about Christ. It’s not about us.
- We have to remember who we were made for, what our lives should be about. It stares you in the face in the book of 1 Corinthians: Jesus mentioned 53 times. It should be 529 to 3; more about Christ, much less about us.
- Think even about your prayer life. How often are your prayers more about you and your needs? How many times do we go to church because we’re mandated to go, instead of going to glorify the name of Christ? The book says it over and over and over again. It’s about Christ.
- When people leave your life and move places, or when you lose loved ones, Christ is still your all. We can’t put more stock in people than we do in Christ. Our purpose is to glorify Jesus Christ. It’s all about him. If it’s not about Christ, you’ll make it all about you and you’ll critique everything about the church. But guess what? Christ’s name is still mentioned 529 times, and yours 3.
- For someone who is in Christ, they have died to themselves. They aren’t concerned with themselves, but are concerned with the things of Christ because they know it’s about him, not themselves.
Vs 10 Division vs. Diverse
- Paul did not want there to be any division amongst the Church.
- Division means to separate. Mankind has been all about separation. We separate over trivial things such as sport teams, economic barriers, political lines are drawn, ethnicity can cause separation. At the core of humanity we find sin and sins desire is to cause division.
- Division is the opposite of unity. It’s taking the Body apart and splitting it. The world is all about division. Our flesh loves division. If you don’t believe me, just go to a Duck game. I’ve never seen people so mad about another team, so divided against another group of people that they rejoice when they lose.
- However, we need to be careful with the word unity. An ungodly perspective of that word is unity shown as uniformity. Sometimes in our efforts to create unity, we trade it for uniformity. Paul is trying to unpack the difference between being divided and being diverse, of being unified over being uniform.
- That is not what God is looking for here. The idea that we all look, think, and act the same. That is not unity, that is uniformity. That means we are hiding who we truly are..
- See all uniformity is, is hidden separation.
- Instead of sharing who we really are and where we really at we hide it which means that even though we may look unified we really aren’t.
- Paul’s antidote to this is to be in the same mind and judgement.
- Well what is that? We have to remember what Paul told us in verse 2. “We are sanctified in Christ.” So that same mind and judgement is imbedded in that truth that we are in Christ.
- Now, knowing that we have to look at what having that same mind and judgment really is.
- The definitions of both those words and judgement mean to have resolution and a settled state of mind.
- Of what though? That you are set-apart, sanctified in Christ.
- He loves you, he is molding and shaping you.
- If you believe that then what we are is not divided but diverse.
- We become this tapestry interwoven in Christ. Each of us uniquely embedding into His masterpiece!
- Diversity brings us together for the intent of glorifying Christ. Division tears us apart for the intent of glorifying ourselves.
We Belong to Christ
- Let’s look at verse 11. 11 For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I follow Paul,” or “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Cephas,” or “I follow Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
- Look what happens when we forget whose we are. When you forget whose you are, your world becomes about you and everything gets messed up.
- The key word in this text is the word “follow” It has two meaning. The first is to mimic. What they are saying is that they are becoming like Paul or like Peter. That is contrary to being set-apart.
- Paul was pointed here. He is saying, you aren’t existing for Christ. You are following someone or something else. Your existence isn’t around a person, or around your gifts and abilities. You exist for Christ.
- Look at vs 13.
- What is Paul saying: The Deity of Christ is not divided—it is in perfect harmony. Sure there is diversity in the Trinity but complete unity. This should also be true for us in our relationship with Him.
- He is also saying that your pursuit after people or things will not bring you the peace that he spoke of in verse: 3.
- This is what our purpose is. It is found in vs 17.
- Paul is saying Christ didn’t send me to do things for people—which is baptism—but to show them Christ. And not by being the best speaker or the wisest person so that people would look at him instead of Christ and His ultimate sacrifice!
- What do we do when we catch ourselves putting other things in front of the gospel? We thank God for the gospel he is still offering to us. We get on our knees and pray. We wake up and remind ourselves of these truths, that Christ died for us so we could know him and be reconciled to God.
- Yes, we should serve each other, no question, but how are we reflecting and pointing others to Christ?
- This comes through our diversity. It comes by showing you that my life can only work with Jesus in it. It comes through revealing my sin to you so you don’t think for a second that I am your solution.
- Mankind can seem impressive and it can persuade the mind but the simplicity and the humility of the Gospel when impacted by God’s spirit can change a heart. That is what we need to be united around.
- So in order to do that we must be diverse—bringing who we are to the table. We must be cognizant of the fact it is God who is doing the work through us. We must remind ourselves daily of whose we are.