Menu

HE WHO OVERCOMES SHALL INHERIT ALL THINGS,

and I will be his God and he shall be My son

1Corinthians 10 (part 1) EXAMPLES

1 Corinthians Chapter 10
Bible Study
(part 1)
 

Our Journey

 

“Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. But with most of them God was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.

Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.” Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; 10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.”
- 1Cor 10:1-11 NKJV

 

EXAMPLES

The Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul gave this Word to the Church, to those who have been saved from bondage to the world, been baptized, and are following Christ.

“These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has come.”
- 1 Cor 10:11 NIV

So, we do well to pay attention to what Paul says in this letter that he addresses in his opening statement to the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord” (1Cor 1:2) for that includes us.

All the letters of the Apostles were written just as much to us here in the 21st Century as they were to the saints in the generation of the first Christian church. And in some cases, even more so for us than for them, as we are now nearer the time of the “fulfillment of the ages.”

Here in his letter to the saints Paul is writing about the Israelites deliverance out of Egypt, and their journey toward the Promised Land, and telling us that what they experienced is an example we should heed.

Indeed, this speaks loud & clear to me, as an equivalent to our salvation from the world and our own journey toward the Kingdom of God on earth.

(one quick note... perhaps a study for another time... I do not see the Promised Land of Canaan as a type of the spiritual heaven. Remember there were enemies in the Land of Canaan. Rather it is a type for God's Kingdom here on earth, the place of being a light and ruling over God's creation. Currently the god of this age, the prince of the power of the air resides in this position. he is the enemy we are to overthrow, as Israel was to conquer and destroy the evil nations that inhabited the land promised to Israel in the covenant to Abraham.)

We truly need to realize that there is no new Testament without the Old. “Christianity” is not a new religion. What happened in the NT is another chapter in the unveiling of the Eternal plan of God. What He began with Abraham (even back to Noah when God chose him, and even to Adam in the Garden) is still being played out. We who have accepted God’s call and surrendered to Christ Jesus are brought His family, into the “Israel of God”; that “royal priesthood” that the Scripture talks about in both Testaments of Scripture. (see Exodus 19:5-6, Deut 7:6, Isaiah 61:6, Gal 6:16, 1Pet 2:9, Rev 1:6)
 

All that we have in the Scripture is to help us along the path God desires to lead us on. There is no other Way. And we have many examples all throughout, including Godly men & women who heeded His instruction, as well as others who began the Journey yet turned away from the Lord, and also those who refused to obey Him or know Him at all.

 



Peter reminds us that because of sin God turned “the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly.” (2Pet 2:6). This is a warning to us here today, as it has been True throughout the ages. Living ungodly is to live walking on a path different than the one that God has laid before us. Jesus taught us that “the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to Life, and those who find it are few.” (Matt 7:14)

Those whom the Lord has called are without excuse. Truthfully, to be “saved” and become a disciple of Christ carries far greater responsibility to repent and live righteously than those in the world. As we go through the Bible and study God’s Word we find that the bulk of the commands to “repent” are to the church, to God’s Elect, rather than to those “sinners” living out there in the world.

“Therefore you shall be careful to do as the Lord your God has commanded you; you shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.”
– Deut 5:32 NKJV

In the Book of Hebrews we find the exhortation to remain on the path that God has laid before us until the end, and a warning not to fall as did many of those whom the Lord saved from Egypt -
“Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.” - Heb 4:11 NKJV

These were setting an example, not only for their own children, but for the nations around them, and even for the believers throughout the ages. Little did they know the impact their decisions would have. God had given His people Israel instruction along with His salvation as they began their journey out of Egypt.

“The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘I Am the Lord your God. You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices. You must obey My laws and be careful to follow My decrees. I am the Lord your God.Keep My decrees and laws, for the person who obeys them will live by them. I Am the Lord.”  - Lev 18:1-5 NIV

Says the Proverb -
“Heed instruction and be wise,
And do not neglect it.”

- Prov 8:33 NAS

Had they heeded His instruction, and not neglected His salvation, then our passage in 1 Corinthians 10 would read much differently. As it was, the children of Israel seemed to continually waver between looking longingly back to Egypt and embracing the traditions of the pagan nations around them. Are we ourselves looking fondly back at that which God has set us free from? Are we compromising with the things of this world? Do we find our eyes wandering around, and our feet turning to the left and to the right? As a whole the example they left for us is a model of what NOT to do. The nation lost their inheritance. They compromised: indulging in, and practicing, the things God had warned them not to partake of that were done in Egypt and in the land of Canaan.
Are we keeping our feet on the path that will lead to our inheritance?

However, not all back then made bad choices. There were OT Prophets and NT Apostles that did give us a good pattern to follow -

“Do not grumble against one another, brethren, lest you be condemned. Behold, the Judge is standing at the door! 10 My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. 11 Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.”
- James 5:9-11 NKJV

The Apostle wrote of himself & his fellow laborers in sharing the Gospel, encouraging the saints to, “join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern.” (Phil 3:17)

And again Paul humbly wrote -
"Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” - 1 Cor 11:1 NIV

We do well to follow the example of men & women who kept their eyes fixed on Jesus, and the “end intended by the Lord.” The Promised Land. The fullness of the Kingdom of God. The goal set before them affected the way they lived, it influenced the choices they made. As Moses they “chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for (they) looked to the reward.” (Heb 11:25-26)

And ultimately, we have the example set by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to follow -

“For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.”
- John 13:15 NKJV

“Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.”
 - 1Pet 2:21 NKJV

Again, we find “suffering.” It is painful to let go of that which our Adamic nature would cling to. Relinquishing control of our lives to Jesus is hard. Transferring our trust and security in money to God is not easy. Facing the reality that some of our activities are displeasing to our heavenly Father can be very uncomfortable for our Adamic nature.

But it is through suffering and the chastening of God that we are changed from “glory to glory” and transformed into the “image of His Son”. Remember that Jesus Himself was “made perfect through suffering.” (Heb 2:10) Our Perfect Example, Jesus, endured through suffering and persecution, remaining faithful to God and His plan. He endured through every temptation and did not sin. (Heb 4:15, Luke 4:1-14)

I've often heard people use the phrase - What Would Jesus Do, or WWJD. And honestly that makes very good sense. When faced with situations and decisions, even as we look to the Lord for guidance to make the right choices, we can imagine Jesus in that situation and think - 'How would Jesus act? What would He say? What choice would He make?

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
- Heb 12:1-2 NKJV

I believe some of that "cloud of witnesses" are these Godly patriarchs, prophets & apostles who ran the race well; whose words and lives serve to encourage us to do likewise. May we follow their example, and the examples of Joshua & Caleb, who by "serving God with their whole hearts" were the only two out of approximately 2 million adult Israelites who had been saved from Egypt that entered into their inheritance. The land had been promised to all who were set free from bondage, yet most – although they had been saved and given God’s Word - did not receive the promise.

He swore to give them the land of Canaan, yet it didn’t happen for the vast majority of those to whom the promise was given. (Numbers 13 & 14). He has promised the Kingdom to those of us whom He has saved from bondage to sin. Will that promise be fulfilled? It will if we obey His commands and walk in His Way. But if we refuse and follow the example of those in the wilderness, we will not.

“How often they provoked Him in the wilderness,
And grieved Him in the desert!
41 Yes, again and again they tempted God,
And limited the Holy One of Israel.
42 They did not remember His power:
The day when He redeemed them from the enemy.”

- Psalm 78:40-42 NKJV

“He established a testimony in Jacob,
And appointed a law in Israel,
Which He commanded our fathers,
That they should make them known to their children;
6 That the generation to come might know them,
The children who would be born,
That they may arise and declare them to their children,
7 That they may set their hope in God,
And not forget the works of God,
But keep His commandments;
8 And may not be like their fathers,
A stubborn and rebellious generation,
A generation that did not set its heart aright,
And whose spirit was not faithful to God.”

- Psalm 78:5-8 NKJV

May we take these examples to heart and learn from them. Will we heed God’s Word, or blatantly dismiss it as did Jehoiakim who burned the Word of God written on the scroll by Jeremiah warning the king and Israel of coming judgment if they refused to repent? (Jer 36). Will we remain on God’s path, trusting Him to fulfill His promises in His time and way, or look for a shortcut? Will we be a good example to our children and to those around us?

Paul wrote to exhort the elders and leaders of God’s people to walk steadfastly in the Way and be that Godly example that will bring blessing upon both those under their charge and themselves as well, ensuring they would receive their inheritance and reward in that Day.

“Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.”
- 1Pet 5:1-4 NAS

Amen.

Let us be aware of what the ancient people of God experienced, and learn from the example they set – both of those who were faithful to the Lord, obeying and trusting Him; and of those who disobeyed or were lukewarm in their walk, and forfeited their inheritance.

We will look next at the event which preceded the Journey: for without the sacrifice of the Lamb we could not even have begun.

God’s wisdom & understanding to us all,
Michael


Next… PASSOVER

Go Back

Comment

Blog Search

Blog Archive