Social Media 2024 (6)

How Should Christians Spend Their Lives?

As believers, we are called to pay attention to how we live. Scripture reminds us that we must carefully consider how we walk. It also offers us practical wisdom on how to walk wisely and in ways worthy of the Lord.

One such passage is from the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 where we find three specific ways we can spend our lives. 

1) Spend your life caring about the glory of God. 

Paul instructs in 1 Corinthians 10:31, “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

How can the small activities of one person on a massive planet full of billions of people possibly bring glory and honor to God? Let me share two helpful definitions: 

The glory of God is the weight of all that God is, the fullness of his understanding, virtue, and happiness. - Jonathan Edwards

To glorify God is to magnify the greatness of his character – not as a microscope magnifies by making small objects look large, but as a telescope magnifies by giving us a glimpse of things that are unimaginably big. - Kevin DeYoung

Notice that we cannot add to God's greatness. That's not what bringing glory to God means. God was great before He made us. He is self-sufficient in and of Himself. 

So to bring glory to God in every situation and every decision is not approaching life thinking, “I have to make my God great.” Instead, we say, “My God is great. How are my priorities and choices reflecting the greatness of my God?” 

If we are harboring anger and unforgiveness against another person, we are not displaying the glory of God's forgiveness. If we live in constant anxiety and fear about the unknowns of life, we are not displaying the glory of God's sovereignty and control. If we beat ourselves up because we cannot forgive ourselves for past sins, we are not displaying the glory of the finished work of the blood of Jesus on the cross. 

All that we say and do should point others to the greatness of God.

2) Spend your life caring about the good of others. 

In 1 Corinthians 10:23-24, we read, “'All things are lawful,' but not all things are helpful. 'All things are lawful,' but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.”

As we make decisions from day to day, we have to consider how our actions, words, and decisions affect other people. As much as it depends on us as Christians, we should not go into a situation wanting to offend anyone or cause them to stumble. While we certainly do not negotiate with what God says in His Word, we should not actively seek to be controversial or confrontational. We should not want to be impatient, unkind, or unloving. In fact, as people who love Jesus, it should bother us if we discover we have offended someone with our words or actions, and we should seek to make things right by asking for forgiveness.

Jesus commands us in Mark 12:30-31, “‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” 

As we seek the good of those around us and try to love others in this way, we should not spend our time asking, “Well, who is my neighbor?” We must say, “How can I be a neighbor to whoever is in front of me?"

3) Spend your life caring about the gospel going forward. 

1 Corinthians 10:32-33 gives us the final point we will consider - “Give no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved.”

People coming to know the Lord matters most in every decision we make. 

If the rights we think we have as Christians ever trump our neighbor's redemption, we are wrong. Sadly, many of us as conservative Christians can become so passionate about our rights that we forget the individuals and ideologies that frustrate us do so, not because they are trying to be difficult, but because they are lost. 

Again, we need to be aware that our attitudes and actions can be a stumbling block to those who do not know Christ. We need to ask if the decisions we are making will push the gospel forward. This awareness does not mean we fail to stand for what is right. It does not mean we cannot have convictions. It does not mean we cannot live out our belief system. It simply means we do not have the spiritual liberty in Christ to forget that lost people matter in every decision we make. 

As you move through each day, start making it a habit to ask yourself these three questions in your decisions: What will bring the most glory to God? What is good for those around me? What will push the gospel forward?

If you live with these questions in mind, I truly believe yours will be a life well spent.