Tag Archives: 1 Corinthians 3
Yesterday’s appointment at the chiropractor wasn’t a fun one. Typically, one of my favorite times of the month is when I go in for my monthly alignment. Last month, something didn’t feel right. As the doctor and I discussed the situation from the previous appointment, he discovered that the other doctor never gave me the next step of exercises. I was faithfully doing the stretch exercises I was given long ago; however, I was supposed to receive core exercises thereafter, exercises that would get me to the next level. Without having the core exercises, my weak joint continues to give me great problems.
Just like I needed to go from the basic stretch exercises to core exercises, so we as followers of Christ, are not to just stay stuck on the basics of our faith. There is a time for spiritual milk, and then there’s a time when we are able to have solid food. If we stay milk drinkers, never attempting to take a bite of the solid food, we will never get to where we are meant to be, nor will we grow into who we are meant to be, because we will be stuck. Solid food is for the mature (Hebrews 5:14).
Remember friends, you are a child of God. By faith in Jesus Christ, not only are you a child of God, but you have the Spirit of God within you. That being said, you have the option to continue drinking the basics of Christianity, or to continue to grow. The Psalmist speaks about a desire for God, as he says, “Earnestly I seek You; I thirst for You, my whole being longs for You” (Psalm 63:1 NIV). This is the thirst we should always have in our walk. In 1 Peter 2:2, we read of the importance to long for, to crave pure spiritual milk. We can note that there is a time for milk, and a time for solid food (1 Corinthians 3:2). Today, consider where you are at with your walk. Ask the Spirit to reveal to you if you need a refreshing of spiritual milk, or if you should be moving on to some solid food. May He continue to break you, mold you, and continue to reveal Himself to you.
[The Vineyard Workers: Matthew 20:1-16]
Isaiah 1:19 – “If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good things of the land.” [HCSB]
God uses EVERYONE obedient to Him – Peter asks “WHAT’S IN IT FOR ME”?
“Then Peter chimed in, ‘We left everything and followed you. What do we get out of it?’ Jesus replied, ‘Yes, you have followed me. In the re-creation of the world, when the Son of Man will rule gloriously, you who have followed me will also rule, starting with the twelve tribes of Israel. And not only you, but anyone who sacrifices home, family, fields—whatever—because of me will get it all back a hundred times over, not to mention the considerable bonus of eternal life. This is the Great Reversal: many of the first ending up last, and the last first.’” – Matthew 19:27-30 [MSG]
“Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous? So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”- Matthew 20:15-16 [NIV]
1) This parable is not about salvation or eternal life
Salvation is not earned by works
Ephesians 2:8-9 – “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” [NASB]
Titus 3:5-6 – “He saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior.” [NLT]
2) This parable is not about rewards for service
God rewards differently
1 Corinthians 3:8 – “He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor.” [ESV]
LABORERS WHO BEGAN AT 6AM FAILED TO BE THANKFUL – SELF-SERVING ATTITUDE
We all will receive great rewards for following Jesus (see Revelation 22:12)
OBEDIENCE – act of obeying, words or actions denoting submission to authority, dutifulness
- Obedience expresses faith in His wisdom and love. (Hebrew 11:6)
- Obedience expresses hope in a future blessing. (Mark 10:29-30)
- Obedience expresses love (John 14:15, 2 John 1:6)
- Obedience glorifies God (Matthew 5:16)
Bible Study Questions:
1) In this parable, we read about a Landowner, Laborers, a work day, a Vineyard, and the end of the work day. What do you think these people/things represent?
Day of work –
End of the work day –
2) Those who were hired last were unworthy of what they received. They were receiving a day’s wage despite working less than a day’s work. They were paid first. They were treated equally.
How does this resemble God’s grace?
What reminds us of our unworthiness?
3) Those who were hired first were paid last. It was their opinion that they were treated unfairly though they were paid an equal amount and given exactly what was agreed upon.
Why was it difficult for these workers to accept God’s grace towards others?
What made this an unfair transaction (from their vantage point)?
4) Before this parable, Peter asks what the disciples will gain for leaving everything behind. Jesus twice speaks of the Great Reversal. Those who are first will be last; those who are last will be first. It wasn’t about the difference of the reward. We should all be thankful.
How can we obey with an attitude of gratitude? What does this look like?
What should be our motivation of service?
More Than A Story is a 12-week Sermon Series and Bible Study focused on the parables of Jesus.
Here’s a message I shared recently. You can download the outline by following the link below.
Romans 10:14-15 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? (NLT)
[Illustration of young man with hope to share Gospel with entire class. He doesn’t but someone he shares Gospel with is a football player who becomes valedictorian and shares at graduation. ]
Isaiah 52:7 – “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of the messenger who brings good news, the good news of peace and salvation, the news that the God of Israel reigns!” (NLT)
- Remember Our Qualification Comes from God
2 Corinthians 3:5 It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God. (NLT)
- Be Prepared to Share
1 Peter 3:15 – “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.” (ESV)
With GENTLENESS and RESPECT
- Make the Most of Your Time
Colossians 4:5-6 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. (NIV)
Speech SEASONED with SALT
Wholesome, kind, purposeful, gentle, truthful, loving – Ephesians 4:29 – Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)
- You’re the Planter – Not the Grower
Don’t get upset when your expectations don’t happen. – 1 Corinthians 3:6-9 – I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building. (NIV)
God makes it grow