Article: Do It All for the Glory of God | Jacob Varghese
You have a decision to make; it is important to you!
1 Corinthians 10:23-24 “I have the right to do anything,” you say — but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.”
In this passage, Paul is answering a question from the Corinthians about eating food that had been sacrificed to idols. At the time of Paul’s writing, people regularly ate the sacrificial meals of various deities as a way to honor and sanction the divinity of the deity. Eating together was important to network within the community and build friendships. There were enormous social pressures to conform to these norms. Those that avoided the meals from public sacrifices were viewed as outcasts by society. Paul tells us that not all Christians were fully convinced that idols were false and that there is only one true God. For those weak Christians, though it was legal to eat the food offered to the idols, those Christians could have abstained to show they rejected the authenticity of the idols.
Life changes when we receive Jesus as our Savior. When we surrender our lives to Jesus, we receive forgiveness, eternal life, and freedom from the confines of Old Testament laws. Jesus fulfilled all of God’s demands and made a way for us to have a relationship with Him. But, all of this freedom in Christ comes with responsibilities. Jesus, while He has given us freedom, has called us to a mission on His behalf. We are His representatives on earth, and that changes the way we live — from the photos we put on social media, the way we dress up in public, our hairstyle, to the way we respond to an issue in life. We have the privilege and responsibility of representing Jesus through the way we live. Keeping our consciences at the forefront, by not doing things we know are wrong, Paul also warns us not to go out of our way to offend. Our lives point to Jesus. So it’s important that we ask ourselves daily, “Is what I have on display right now going to lead people to Jesus or is it going to turn them away?”
“All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. “I am allowed to do anything” – but not everything is good for you, not everything is beneficial. Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others and do all to the glory of God. Instead of causing someone to stumble, we must use our freedom to inform the consciences of others for the good of their souls and for the glory of God. Even though something is legal, you should consider the effect on others before doing it.
We do not have a series of do’s and don’ts to comply with as believers – but we do have the Word of God that outlines all that He expects from His children. What you do on a daily basis will determine what you have in this life. If you are sowing to your flesh, the results will never be what you want. But if you sow to the Spirit, you will become stronger and stronger. You will get to a place where you confidently stand your ground, resist the enemy, and receive more from God — no matter what comes your way. You have a decision to make, it is important to you!