Making Biblical Decisions: Working to Grow and Help Others Grow in Christ, Part 2 – December 29, 2023

Two weeks ago we began our look at 1 Corinthians 10. Here the principle for decision making reminds us that we should ask if the decision we will make will help ourself and others grow in Christ. How can we know if something will help others grow in Christ? How can we seek to ensure our spiritual growth? This text continues with three essential principles to help us consider what will edify. We should consider how these principles work in our everyday decisions.

Certainly, at first glance, some actions and decisions may seem to fail this test. After all, it would seem that strict adherence to this principle means that all we would do is read our Bible and pray all day. We would never discourage these actions, yet creation reveals that God expects us to conduct and participate in other things. When God placed Adam and Eve into the garden, He gave us the creation mandate to subdue and work the earth.

Consequently, there must be times in which these seemingly ordinary and unreligious actions help us and others grow in Christ. Thus, the first principle deals with this struggle. Everything we do should concern itself with God’s glory. Verse 31 reveals that even the most mundane actions of life, like eating and drinking, should glorify God. Indeed, while we should not live for leisure, honoring a regular Sabbath rest reminds the believer that he is a finite being serving an infinite God. Enjoying God’s gifts to us reveals the goodness of God to His people and his regular care for them.

There is then a place for Christians to enjoy sports, entertainment, the arts, and the outdoors. Yet, as Christians enjoy these things, they must keep them in their proper place. They must be viewed and used to provoke and promote spiritual growth and God’s glory. Even our food and drink decisions should point to God. We will deal with this principle more at a later time. However, every action, attitude, and statement should seek to make God look as good as He really is.

 The second principle addresses the need to encourage others to grow in Christ. We live in a very selfish society. Every aspect of the world around us encourages us to take care of ourselves first and to seek our good over every other possibility. Yet, God challenges us with the opposite mindset. We are not to seek our good but rather the good of those around us (verse 24). Rather than seeking to have it our way, we are to seek to promote others. Next week we will look at how this works out practically in life. Several texts of scripture will help us in this endeavor.