When God calls you into His arms through Christ, you become set apart and adopted into an eternal family where love is meant to lead you and the stain of sin cannot linger anymore. You soon realize what the words of the Bible mean and how true and real they are when seen through your new spiritual eyes. Worship music sounds so different through your spiritual ears and the love of God is reflected through your softened spiritual heart. When you realize the Father has called you into His family to be one of His children the world around you feels darker and more foreign. You soon realize that you are truly not of this world.
The difficulty lies in the fact that we still inhabit this foreign world so that we can share our new family with the lost and grow it as we seek new siblings to introduce to our perfect Father. Our old nature and the lesser things of this world scream for our attention. The comfort we use to have in temporary, earthly things calls to our fallen nature to return to what is familiar. But your Heavenly Father has a provision for you that far exceeds anything in this world. What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him (1 Corinthians 2:9) His eternal, unconditional joy and peace will sustain you as the things on earth tarnish and fade.
First Corinthians, chapter 2 talks about the wisdom of God that becomes available to us in our adoption. We have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. (1 Corinthians 2:12) We are given a view of the world that the Creator has provided to us. We must be willing to hear the still small voice that echoes in our spiritual ears, see the world though spiritual eyes, and love the people God puts in our path with our God filled hearts. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory. (1 Corinthians 2:7)
The wisdom of God will not fit into the fallen nature of this world. His wisdom will not always make sense to us or those around us. The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:14) We have to let our faith drive us to be strong in our difference. We have to be willing to stand out as we show the nature of our Father to the world. Allow His wisdom to lead you and He will draw His chosen to you. You will face rejection just like He did when He clothed Himself in flesh and walked the earth to be our Savior. Realize that the world will not understand a family to which they do not belong. Be strong enough to stand up for your adopted family and draw the lost in. Let God’s wisdom manifest in you and see what unimaginable things the Lord has in store for His willing children.
The discerning sets his face toward wisdom, but the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth. (Proverbs 17:24)
Many of us as believers find ourselves at odds with the secular world as we grow deeper in the Lord and walk in submission to the Spirit. The things that use to bring us happiness now grow cold when compared to the joy found in our Savior. I came across a few passages in 2 Corinthians that made some amazing points. Let’s look at the background and then make God’s word through Paul applicable to us today.
Paul was originally a persecutor of the faith. So not only was his message looked down upon as he spread the gospel, but the people also used his previous position to question his character and authenticity. Imagine the difficulty Paul faced being rejected personally and then having his message rejected as he traveled to share the good news. We all face the same issue after we find our value in the Lord. Not only are our beliefs questioned but the life Jesus turned us from stays with us as a stigma. People think we are hypocrites because they don’t yet understand the power in the blood of Christ. Let’s look at three passages that pulled at my heart and see how Paul walked in this. Let’s learn for him.
For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you. (2 Corinthians 1:12)
This is beautiful. People can question what you believe, but when you are walking in and led by the Spirit you are without fault in what you present. You bring the simplicity and godly sincerity of God’s Word and the good news of Jesus. The goal is not to rely on earthly wisdom (watered down Christ) to draw people but to let God be God while you plant His seeds. The harvest belongs to the Lord. It is because of this that Paul can have a clear ‘testimony of conscience’ when people question what he professes to the lost.
Therefore, when I was planning this, did I do it lightly? Or the things I plan, do I plan according to the flesh, that with me there should be Yes, Yes, and No, No? (2 Corinthians 1:17)
Here we find Paul explaining his presentation of the gospel and innocence in seeking acceptance from his actions. He makes the people aware that his explanation of the Gospel isn’t intended to gratify his flesh through praise for him. It is from the Spirit and focuses the glory to God. The reactions of the listeners is not a priority to a believer. We are called to be an example in a dark world. Our light should not dim when the environment we walk in stays dark. We reflect the light of God without apology and should accept the same rejection that our Savior received if that’s the result of our walk.
Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead (2 Corinthians 1:9)
This passage came before the others in the Word, but was kept until last as a summation which says it all. As children of the living God we can present His word and represent Him in our actions without worry. His Word is true, everlasting and unchanging. The reaction of the lost belongs to them and the transformation of their hearts belongs to the Lord. We should reflect God’s light through the guidance of His Word and Spirit never using our own wisdom which waters down His perfect power. His power is manifest in our weakness and submission. Your walk is with your Lord and the opinions that walk incites are the fuel that glorifies God and makes Him shine brighter. You be the vessel and let God be God! In that there is no fault.