Wednesday, April 1, 2015

1 Corinthians 15:1-11 Resurrection of Christ

KEY VERSE: 1 Cor 15:9-11 For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.

KEY THOT: Grace does not mean no more work, but God’s grace empowers me to work even harder.

Paul affirms that he is who he is (apostle) by the grace of God shown to him. Unlike others who think grace excuses them from work, Paul declares that it is because of God’s grace that “I worked harder than any them”, but at the same time emphasizing that it was not self-effort but God’s grace (power) working in him that enables him to work harder. 

While God’s grace saves me not by works, God’s grace empowers me so that I can do the works of God. The Christian faith does not make lazy saints, but hardworking ones. We are resurrection people, not dead people—and I demonstrate it by my capacity for hard work, not indolence. 

Hard work is good—as long as it is God’s work that I am doing, not my own work. I know that no matter how difficult the assignment, God will grant me the grace to get the job done. I only need to obey and be ready to work hard.

I should not take up a work-assignment on the basis of whether it is easy or hard work. But my decision is based on whether the assignment is from God or from man. If it’s from God, I will take it up even if it is going to require hard work from me because I know that God does not sponsor a flop—He will grant me grace to get the job done.

Father, I thank You that work is not a curse because You have instituted work even in Eden. Work is good if it’s God’s work because You have made us like Yourself--to be creative and to be fruitful. Thank You that in the midst of work, You have given us rest. Amen,

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