It Isnít Me
December 13, 2017
Read: 1 Corinthians 15:1Ė11
Bible in a Year: Hosea 12Ė14; Revelation 4
I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.óGalatians 2:20
As one of the most celebrated orchestral conductors of the twentieth century, Arturo Toscanini is remembered for his desire to give credit to whom credit is due. In David Ewenís Dictators of the Baton, the author describes how members of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra rose to their feet and cheered Toscanini at the end of a rehearsal of Beethovenís Ninth Symphony. When there was a lull in the ovation, and with tears in his eyes, Arturoís broken voice could be heard exclaiming as he spoke: ďIt isnít me . . . itís Beethoven! . . . Toscanini is nothing.Ē
In the apostle Paulís New Testament letters, he also refused to take credit for his spiritual insight and influence. He knew he was like a spiritual father and mother to many who had put their faith in Christ. He admitted he had worked hard and suffered much to encourage the faith, hope, and love of so many (1 Cor. 15:10). But he could not, in good conscience, accept the applause of those who were inspired by his faith, love, and insight.
So for his readersí sake, and for ours, Paul said, in effect, ďIt isnít me, brothers and sisters. Itís Christ . . . Paul is nothing.Ē We are only messengers of the One who deserves our cheers. óMart DeHaan
Father in heaven, without You we would have nothing. Without Your grace we would be hopeless. Without the Spirit of Your Son we would be helpless. Please show us how to give You the honor You deserve.
Wise is the person who would rather give honor than receive it.
INSIGHT: Paul warned the Corinthian church not to be enamored by the charisma or eloquence of human teachers. He reproved the believers for exalting him and reminded them that he did not come to glorify himself (1 Cor. 2:1-5); it is the message of the cross that is important, not the messenger (v. 2). The Holy Spirit is the real Teacher who reveals, teaches, and illumines us to understand Godís Word (vv. 10-16).
Are you sometimes tempted with spiritual pride? Ask the Holy Spirit to help you point others to the One who deserves the glory. Sim Kay Tee
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