Wednesday, November 30, 2011

On 1 Corinthians 10.32-33

  VI. The apostle takes occasion from this discourse to lay down a rule for Christians' conduct, and apply it to this particular case (1 Corinthians 10:31,32), namely, that in eating and drinking, and in all we do, we should aim at the glory of God, at pleasing and honouring him. This is the fundamental principle of practical godliness. The great end of all practical religion must direct us where particular and express rules are wanting. Nothing must be done against the glory of God, and the good of our neighbours, connected with it. Nay, the tendency of our behaviour to the common good, and the credit of our holy religion, should give direction to it. And therefore nothing should be done by us to offend any, whether Jew, or Gentile, or the church, 1 Corinthians 10:32. The Jews should not be unnecessarily grieved nor prejudiced, who have such an abhorrence of idols that they reckon every thing offered to them thereby defiled, and that it will pollute and render culpable all who partake of it; nor should heathens be countenanced in their idolatry by any behaviour of ours, which they may construe as homage or honour done to their idols; nor young converts from Gentilism take any encouragement from our conduct to retain any veneration for the heathen gods and worship, which they have renounced: nor should we do any thing that may be a means to pervert any members of the church from their Christian profession or practice. Our own humour and appetite must not determine our practice, but the honour of God and the good and edification of the church. We should not so much consult our own pleasure and interest as the advancement of the kingdom of God among men. Note, A Christian should be a man devoted to God, and of a public spirit.

Enduring Word Commentary by David Guzik
3. (31-33) Concluding principle: Do all to the glory of God.
a. Do all to the glory of God: The purpose of our lives isn’t to see how much we can get away with and still be Christians; rather, it is to glorify God.  If the Corinthian Christian would have kept this principle in mind from the beginning in this issue, how much easier it would have made everything!
b. Give no offense: An offense is an occasion to stumble, of leading someone else into sin.  Paul is saying none of our behavior should encourage another to sin.
        i. Paul is not talking about offending the legalism of others, something he was not shy about doing (Galatians 5:11-12).
c. Paul’s desire regarding men was that they may be saved; more often than we think, low conduct in Christian living is connected to little regard for the lost.  Paul’s concern was not seeking [his] own profit, but that all may be saved.

32. Give none offence--in things indifferent (1Co 8:13; Ro 14:13; 2Co 6:3); for in all essential things affecting Christian doctrine and practice, even in the smallest detail, we must not swerve from principle, whatever offense may be the result (1Co 1:23). Giving offense is unnecessary, if our own spirit cause it; necessary, if it be caused by the truth.

 Be Wise by  Warren Wiersbe  (pub. by David C. Cook.)
Paul anticipated the objections. “Why should I not enjoy food for which I give thanks? Why should my liberty be curtailed because of another person’s weak conscience?” His reply introduced the second responsibility we have: We are responsible to glorify God in all things (1 Cor. 10:31). We cannot glorify God by causing another Christian to stumble. To be sure, our own conscience may be strong enough for us to participate in some activity and not be harmed. But we dare not use our freedom in Christ in any way that will injure a fellow Christian.
But there is a third responsibility that ties in with the first two: We are responsible to seek to win the lost (1 Cor. 10:32–33). We must not make it difficult either for Jews or Gentiles to trust the Lord, or for other members of the church to witness for the Lord. We must not live to seek our own benefit (“profit”), but also the benefit of others, that they might be saved.
When Paul wrote, “I please all men in all things” (1 Cor. 10:33), he was not suggesting that he was a compromiser or a man-pleaser (see Gal. 1:10). He was affirming the fact that his life and ministry were centered on helping others rather than on promoting himself and his own desires.

32. Be not occasions of stumbling to any This is the second point, which it becomes us to have an eye to — the rule of love. A desire, then, for the glory of God, holds the first place; a regard to our neighbor holds the second He makes mention of Jews and Gentiles, not merely because the Church of God consisted of those two classes, but to teach us that we are debtors to all, even to strangers, that we may, if possible, gain them. (1 Corinthians 9:20, 21.)
33. Even as I please all men in all this As he speaks in a general way, and without exception, some extend it by mistake to things that are unlawful, and at variance with the word of the Lord — as if it were allowable, for the sake of our neighbor, to venture farther than the Lord permits us. It is, however, more than certain, that Paul accommodated himself to men only in things indifferent, and in things lawful in themselves. Farther, the end must be carefully observed — that they may be saved Hence what is opposed to their salvation ought not to be conceded to them, 607
607 "I1 ne leur faut pas accorder, et s’accommoder a eux en cela;” — “It is not proper to concede to them, and to accommodate ourselves to them in that.” but we must use prudence, and that of a spiritual kind.
608 - The view here given by Calvin of the spirit by which Paul was actuated in this part of his conduct, is most successfully brought out, at greater length, by the Reverend Andrew Fuller, when comparing 1 Corinthians 10:33, with Galatians 1:10. — “Though both these kinds of action are expressed by one term — to pleaseyet they are exceedingly diverse; no less so than a conduct which has the glory of God and the good of mankind for its object, and one that originates and terminates in self. The former of these passages should be read in connection with what precedes and follows it, (1 Corinthians 10:31-33.) Hence it appears plain, that the things in which the Apostle pleased all, men, require to be restricted to such things as tend to their ‘profit, that they may be saved.’ Whereas the things in which, according to the latter passage, he could not please men, and yet be the servant of Christ, were of a contrary tendency. Such were the objects pursued by the false teachers whom he opposed, and who desired to ‘make a fair show in the flesh, lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.’ (1 Corinthians 6:12.) The former is that sweet inoffensiveness of spirit which teaches us to lay aside all selfwill and self-importance, that charity which ‘seeketh not her own,’ and ‘is not easily provoked;’ it is that spirit, in short, which the same writer elsewhere recommends from the example of Christ himself: ‘We, then, who are strong, ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbor, for his good to edification: for even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.’ But the latter spirit referred to is that sordid compliance with the corruptions of human nature, of which flatterers and deceivers have always availed themselves, not for the glory of God or the good of men, but for the promotion of their own selfish designs.” — Fullers Works, volume 3. — Ed.

10:31-11:1. The principle which summarized Paul’s response to the question of eating food offered as a pagan sacrifice was an application of the command to love God and neighbors. Christian behavior should be for the glory of God. Also it should build up the church of God by leading some to new birth (v. 33b) and others to maturity in the process of salvation (justification, sanctification, glorification; cf. 1:30). Christians should avoid behavior that would cause others—whether Jews (cf. 9:20), Greeks (cf. 9:21), or the church of God … to stumble (lit., “fall”; cf. 10:12). (Interestingly this reference to Jews separate from the church shows that the NT church did not replace the Jewish nation. This argues strongly for premillennialism.)
The One who perfectly exemplified love for God and others was Christ (cf. Rom. 15:3; Phil. 2:5-8). Displaying the same spirit in his ministry, Paul urged the Corinthians to follow his example in this matter of food from a pagan sacrifice. They should allow their freedom to be regulated by love.  ---David K. Lowery

The whole discussion is concluded in 10:31–11:1 giving the broad parameters within which Christians should operate in society. 31 First, whatever a Christian does, whether it is eating, drinking or any other action, it must be done to God’s glory. 32 Secondly, neither Jews nor Greeks, i.e. those inside or outside the church, must be caused to stumble by the actions of any Christian. 33 Again Paul can draw attention to his own actions in support of this, for he seeks to please all, never looking for his own advancement, but the good of many, so that they may be saved. 11:1 He concludes with the command that the Corinthians must follow his example outlined in the discussion, which is an example drawn from Christ. The priority of others in terms of their need of the gospel and the concerns of the weaker brother must determine the actions of a Christian. -------Bruce Winter 

Deut 22-24

22.1-3  you shall surely bring them back to your brother...  So much for the whole finders keepers philosophy.
22.6  This is an interesting verse on several levels.  I am wondering whether the concern is for the mother or the babies.
22.15  then the father and mother...   The idea of dad and mom still being an advocate and defender of their married daughter seems slightly out of alignment with our current western culture.  It does give some good food for thought.
22.21  you shall put away the evil from Israel...  I am thinking about the reasoning behind the list of crimes that were called evil that should be put away from Israel.  Is this an intentional list or are there other things that would be comparable?
22.24 This appears to teach a responsibility to resist evil.
22.29   "The last case: if a virgin was not betrothed, and a man seized her and lay with her, and they were found, i.e., discovered or convicted of their deed, the man was to pay the father of the girl fifty shekels of silver, for the reproach brought upon him and his house, and to marry the girl whom he had humbled, without ever being able to divorce her. This case is similar to the one mentioned in Exo 22:15-16. The omission to mention the possibility of the father refusing to give him his daughter for a wife, makes no essential difference. It is assumed as self-evident here, that such a right was possessed by the father."    --Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
 23.5  because the LORD your God loves you...
24.14  or one of the aliens...  This is not about illegal immigration, but does give us an important principle for our attitudes about the issue.
24.19-21  This is an interesting principle of how the "haves" should help the "have nots" and how the "have nots" should go about providing for themselves. 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Duet 19-20

19.6  while his anger is hot...  A good reminder to make decisions after we have cooled off some.
19.10  lest guilt of bloodshed be upon you...  This seems to imply some kind of community responsibility for what everything that happens and is not handled well.  Not sure about how / if that transfers to gentiles in the NT.  It is an interesting thing to think about.
19.13  you shall put away the guilt of innocent blood from Israel...  This seems to say that when blood is shed unjustly, it is bad on the community.  Properly punished crime has a cleansing affect. 
19.20  and those who hear...  So just and public punishment can be a deterent.
20.5  Then the officers shall speak...  But what they are to say is both surprising and thought provoking.  If you are going to be thinking about something else or afraid, go home.  More is not always better.
20.19  you shall not cut...  It seems that this is not coming from an enviromentalist, but someone who does have much as not wanting to starve the enemies.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Deut 18

18.3  the cheeks and the stomach...  Ok, the stomach doesn't sound to good to me.
18.9 abominations of those nations...  Well, witchcraft, mediums, etc. are all in our country.  Pretty ominous.
18.18  the Prophet...  Well known messianic prophecy.

1 Peter 2.11-17 11127PM@TBC

A. Segway

B. Book Review
Theme: “Standing in the True Grace”
1. Theology: Our Great Salvation  1.1-2.10
2. Application: Holy Among Unbelievers 2.11-5.14
a) In Submission 2-3
b) In Suffering  3-4
c)  In Church 5

C. Big Idea
Pilgrims glorify God.

D. Pray and Read Text (1 Peter 2.11-17)
11 Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, 12 having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.
13 Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake, whether to the king as supreme, 14 or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. 15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men-- 16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.
17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

I. Acting out of this world  (11-12)
·        beg   parakaleō   lit. "to call to one's side,"
·        abstain  (middle voice)   apechomai  hold one's self off, refrain, abstain
·        honorable  anastrophē  manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment
·        day of visitation  episkopē   investigation, inspection, visitation

A. Who you are—sojourners and pilgrims
sojourners προικος   paroikos   in the NT, a stranger, a foreigner, one who lives in a place without the right of citizenship
also in 1.17 “And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every mans work, pass the time of your sojourning [here] in fear:”   —Geneva Bible
ylt, kjvstrangers; nasb, niv, wet—aliens;
nkjv, esv—sojourners; nlt—temporary residents
pilgrims  παρεπδημος parepidēmos   one who comes from a foreign country into a city or land to reside there by the side of the natives
ylt—sojourners; kjv, nkjv—pilgrims;
nasb, niv—strangers; nlt—foreigners
·        The context here (fleshly lusts which war against the soul) (among the gentiles) would indicate that “sojourners and pilgrims” is probably a spiritual, not a political, designation.  It indicates a mindset that motivates our thinking about things.
·        Abraham was a political foreigner.
Gen 23.4
3 Then Abraham stood up from before his dead, and spoke to the sons of Heth, saying, 4 "I am a foreigner and a visitor among you. Give me property for a burial place among you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight."
·        The patriarchs identified as spiritual foreigners in Hebrews and we are encouraged to think the same way about ourselves
Hebrews 11
8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; 10 for he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 14 For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. 15 And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.

What does it mean that we are sojourners and pilgrims?
1) ...he is not a permanent resident upon earth. —WB
2)  … He is not a member, does not belong.  Not part of—
3)  He is a citizen of Heaven.
4) He is “...a stranger in the world, he cannot accept the world’s law and the world’s ways and the world’s standards.”  —WB

B. Who you are not—fleshly
Fleshly” is a spiritual designation in that it does not refer to the physical body. 
Our physical bodies are not inherently sinful, but can be used to honor or dishonor God.
abstain  “be constantly holding yourselves back from”  —w.e.t.

What are fleshly passions or desires?
Galatians 5.19-21
16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are:
·        adultery,
·        fornication,
·        uncleanness,
·        lewdness,
·        20 idolatry,
·        sorcery,
·        hatred,
·        contentions,
·        jealousies,
·        outbursts of wrath,
·        selfish ambitions,
·        dissensions,
·        heresies,
·        21 envy,
·        murders,
·        drunkenness,
·        revelries,
·        and the like;
of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
It is interesting to notice that there are 18 works of the flesh (when you include and the like) and 9 fruits of the spirit.

C. What people should see—honorable conduct
Two words in Greek  for “good.”
1) agathos, which simply means good in quality  —WB
2) kalos, which means not only good, but also lovely, fine, attractive, winsome.  —WB
·        The translations try to capture this idea with words like honest (kjv), excellent (nasb), honorable (nkjv, esv), beautiful (wet)
·        “The Christian must make his whole way of life so lovely and so fair and so good to look upon that the slanders of his heathen enemies many be undeniably demonstrated to be false.”  —WB
Transitional Statement: “The doctrine of the life to come can be perverted into a reason for neglecting life in this world.”  —WB

II. Acting in this world  (13-16)
put to silence  phimoō  lit. to close the mouth with a muzzle, to muzzle metaph. to stop the mouth, make speechless
bondservants doulos   metaph., one who gives himself up to another's will those whose service is used by Christ

A. Submit  2.13, 18; 3.1, 5, 22; 5.5
Break into small groups to look at the way Peter uses this Greek word.  Your translation may use a word like subject instead of submit.     1 Peter 2.13, 18; 3.1, 5, 22; 5.5
submit  hypotassō   to arrange under, to subordinate
hupo  under
tassō  to place in a certain order; to appoint 
32 times in NT  more in Peter than any other book
·        The words “submit yourselves” are the translation of a Greek military term meaning “to arrange in military fashion under the command of a leader.”  —Wuest
·        Not a strict synonym for obedience, but a heart attitude that usually involves obedience. (exception in Acts 4.18-20)
Submit to every ordinance of man
κτσις ktisis : establish, found, create
ylt—creation; kjv, nkjv—ordinance;
nasb, esv—institution; wet—human regulation;
niv—authority instituted; nlt—authority
·        The phrase to every human institution gives the verse the broader application than just to civil government.  In fact Peter goes on to explain this general statement by applying it to not only to civil government (vv. 13b-14),
but also to encourage servants to be subject to their masters (2:18),
and wives to their husbands (3:1).   —Grudem
·        God has established such patterns of authority for the orderly functioning of human life, and it both pleases and honours him when we subject ourselves to them.   —Grudem
·        Notice the pattern of a general statement followed by specific examples is also used by the Apostle Paul in Ephesians five and six.
            5.21— ...submitting to one another
            5.22— Wives, submit to your own husbands
6.1— Children, obey your parents
6.5— Servants be obedient to …

for the Lord’s sake
·        Our motive to submit is not just pragmatic, not out of fear for the authority, not in hopes of personal gain, but spiritual in nature. 

B. Do Good
Accusations against the early church
·        cannibals (eat children) — Christians took in unwanted children and cared for them.
·        gross immorality at love feasts —
·        disrupt the economy —
·        break up families — 
·        primarily working class, uneducated, poor —
·        think you are so righteous —
·        atheists —  (Did not worship the Roman gods.)
·        unpatriotic — (Would not worship the emperor.)
The Trial and Testimony of the Early Church, #3

put to silence  φιμω phimoō  lit. to close the mouth with a muzzle, to muzzle metaph. to stop the mouth, make speechless
·        “When Plato was told that a certain man had been making certain slanderous charges against him, his answer was: “I will live in such a way that no one will believe what he says.”  —WB

C. Use Liberty
16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.
·        Our Christian freedom is not freedom to sin, but a freedom from the world’s system to serve God.
·        Matthew 17.24  Jesus paid the tax that he did not rightfully owe.  Reference Jim Johnston’s sermon “Down from the Mountain” on Matthew 17.14-27
·        “A Christian man is the most free lord of all,
and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one.”7
7 Martin Luther, On Christian Freedom, trans. H. Wace and C.A. Buckheim, in First Principles of the Reformation (Philadelphia, 1885). 

17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
·        There are some interesting thoughts on how to sort these four commands. 
·        One it to see the “honor all” (People is supplied by the translators.) which is aorist in contrast the the present tense of the other three as a general summary of the three parts below.
·        Another view is that the first two and last two are pares that contrast the duty to the spiritual family with duty to the gentiles.
·        A last few to see the whole thing as a summary with allustions to four diffents spheres of our relations.

“The best argument for Christianity is a real Christian.” —WB

What do people see when they see you?