I know that I need to get God's Word deeper in my heart to make it part of me and my daily life. And I need the Holy Spirit's help with that. Sermons play a role in that. That's why my wife and I went through the sermon text at lunch yesterday and drafted a list of questions that might be covered.
Then we carefully took notes when we heard it. We looked for principles based on the text and for application to our everyday life. Did I find it relevant? Yes. I felt more convicted than I would like to admit.
It was from 1 Corinthians 8. This is one of the chapters where the Apostle Paul addresses the controversy about eating meat offered to idols. At first, it was hard to see the application for today. But looking at it as an example of how to settle conflicts, it made sense.
#2 Normal Like Me Notes from Ada Bible Church
- Intro was a question about what kind of grills people in the service grilled on, charcoal, propane or a pile of wood.
- In the Corinthian church, the question of what grilled stuff you can eat was about to tear the church apart.
- He gave short profile of the city of Corinth. There were all kinds of gods who had their own temples. Animals would be sacrificed. Priests would sell the excess meat.
- Sounds like the priests had their own meat shops where they sold the excess.
- The challenge: Should Christ believers eat meat offered to false gods?
- (At this point, the question is what does this have to do with me? Is this food story? Something else?)
- The church in that city turned to the Apostle Paul to resolve that question.
- APPLICATION: In this story, Paul gives important lesson about handling conflict.
- In conflicts, Jeff said, the operative question is what’s helpful.
- THE CORINTHIAN QUESTION: 4 So, what about eating meat that has been offered to idols? Well, we all know that an idol is not really a god and that there is only one God.
- An idol is nothing
- THOSE WHO SAID DON’T EAT: 7 However, not all believers know this. Some are accustomed to thinking of idols as being real, so when they eat food that has been offered to idols, they think of it as the worship of real gods, and their weak consciences are violated.
- Because idols are nothing, Christian’s have the freedom to eat the meat.
- However, some people have hyper-sensitive consciences; we need to be careful about how we use our rights to eat the meat. 9 But you must be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble.9 But you must be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble.
- I need to be careful that I don’t derail the faith of others by what I do.
- Those who eat the meat offered to idols have the knowledge that it’s okay to do, but they should use love with those who don’t feel that freedom.
- Paul’s thought: What helps somebody spiritually is more important than what he eats.
- APPLICATION: WHAT’S HELPFUL?
- Example: Two siblings fighting over a dresser left by a parent with each claiming that their mother promised it to them. What to do?
- Fights over dresser type arguments can linger for years, decades.
- Question should not be whose right, but what is helpful?
- He pointed to Ephesians 4:29: 29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.
- He gave another example about a big argument between his grandparents who argued over a roll of nickels left in their Nevada hotel room. The money was to be used in the hotel casino.
- His grandma wanted nothing to do with money that had been given by the casino to be used for gambling. His grandfather vehemently disagreed.
- What would have been the right thing to do?