Wednesday, May 23, 2018

1 Corinthians 1:4

Scripture Writing, hand lettering, Bible memorization

We are continuing our short series about how you can find the Gospel message in almost any verse of the New Testament if you look for God's work. Today is 1 Corinthians 1:4. If you've missed the first three verses, click on the orange Scripture Writing label at the bottom of this post to get back to the others.

I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given to you in Christ Jesus ~1 Corinthians 1:4

-while this verse was originally written about giving thanks for a person's conversion to faith in Christ, do not discount it for sharing the Gospel message with those who are still lost. Focus on explaining WHY Paul was giving thanks, and to WHOM he was giving thanks, and for WHAT he was thankful.

-I give thanks to my God always for you - Paul is talking about how thankful he is because of the relationship he had with the church member in Corinth. He thanks God for them as people, and as he remembers them daily it brings him joy. God the Father is to WHOM Paul is giving thanks.

-because of the grace of God - this is the WHY Paul was thankful, because God had saved these men and women from their sinful ways and had set them upon a path to follow His will and share His love with others. They didn't have to be perfect yet, Paul knew God would work in their live over time, but he understood that their faith in Christ has saved them, and God had poured out His grace upon them. These Corinthians were living a life of grace that they did not deserve because Christ had made the necessary sacrifice for their sins. Remember that grace is unmerited favor - getting something good you do not deserve.

-that was given to you in Christ Jesus - this focuses on the WHAT Paul was thankful for. The grace of God was poured out upon the Corinthians (to you) because of Christ Jesus' redemptive work upon the cross. Christ had paid the penalty for their sins, and now that they had been forgiven, they were experiencing God's grace instead of His wrath.

We all have a lot of reasons to be thankful for when it comes to others. Do not be tempted to discount how much joy and growth comes into your life because of those you interact with on a daily basis. Can you pray this verse over someone today? Can you give God thanks for blessing someone else and forgiving them? Then do it! Ask God to give you two people, one to pray this verse over who is already a believer, and one that needs to know that no sin is too big for God to forgive. That will be the person you can share this verse with. Tell them of how amazing grace is!

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