Gospel for a Messy Church – Part 4 The Tension of the Gospel 1 Corinthians 8-10 May 21st, 2017
I. Knowledge vs. Love (I Cor. 8:1-3)
A. Knowledge creates a division between Strong and Weak (I Cor. 8:4-7)
B. Might makes Rights… (I Cor. 8:8)
C. … but Rights may be Wrong (I Cor. 8:9-13)
D. Love maintains the union between Strong and Weak
II. Freedom vs. Service (I Cor. 9:19-10:22)
A. All things to all people (I Cor. 9:19-23)
B. True Freedom requires Self-Control (I Cor. 9:24-27, 10:6-14)
C. You are Not your Own (I Cor. 9:23, I Cor. 10:15-22)
III. Living with Gospel rooted Tension
A. Love is superior to knowledge (I Cor. 8:2-3)
B. Tolerance is not enough (I Cor. 8:12-13, 10:23-24)
C. Do ALL to the Glory of God (I Cor. 10:31)
Questions for Further Reflection
1. Paul makes a distinction between those who are certain of their freedom in Christ and those who don’t possess that knowledge. Is it easy for you to see yourself in one of those two camps?
2. Paul says that wounding your brother’s conscience when it is weak is sinning against him. Have you ever been on the giving or receiving end of such a blow?
3. While acknowledging the rights that the strong have, he exhorts them to lay them down. What rights do you imagine you have that you might find difficult to give up for someone else?
4. Is the Christian life one of freedom or service?
5. What does it look like in your own day to day life to be all things to all people?
6. A common theme throughout this letter has been that you are not your own. What are some areas in which our culture rejects this wisdom? What are some areas in which you reject this wisdom?
7. How have you fallen into the trap of tolerance? What might it look like to actively love instead of merely tolerate?
8. Paul ends this section with a very general exhortation to do EVERYTHING to the glory of God. Run through your day or week. How might you do ALL things to the glory of God this week?