Summary: How can I be more faithful to God? Most of us have asked that question. And God shows us some key steps to take here in 1 Corin 4.
How Can I Be More Faithful to God?
1 Corinthians 4:14-21 (read vs. 1-21)
Sermon by Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church - Oct. 1, 2008
*How can I be more faithful to God? Most of us have asked that question. If we took a survey here tonight, most people would say, “I want to be more faithful to God. I want to be more faithful to His Kingdom and His church. But how can I be more faithful?” God shows us some key steps to take here in 1 Corin 4.
1. First: Seek wisdom about God’s warnings.
*In vs. 1-6 Paul talked about God’s requirement for faithfulness, and how we shouldn’t be puffed up against each other. In vs. 7 Paul stressed that every good thing we have is a gift from God. In vs. 8-13 he talked about how easy the Corinthians’ life had been in comparison to the apostles. Paul talked about how much more he and the other apostles had suffered for Christ.
*Then in vs. 14 Paul said, “I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you.” This warning came from Paul as a kind word of caution -- a loving admonition that really came from God. God wants to warn His people, and we need to pay attention to His warnings.
*Now some warnings are worthless -- jokes really. Bob Jones is the founder of the Michigan Lawsuit Abuse Watch. Each year his organization holds a contest to discover the most ridiculous warning labels found on products sold in the U.S. Here’s a small sample of the warnings they’ve found:
-A sleeping aid that warns "May cause drowsiness."
-A propane torch that cautions "Never use when sleeping."
-A printer cartridge that states "Do not eat toner."
-An iron label that reads "Never iron clothes while they are being worn."
-A three-hook fishing lure declaring "Harmful if swallowed."
-House-slippers warning "Do not eat."
-And a toilet-cleaning brush that warns "Do not use for personal hygiene." (1)
*Many of man’s warnings are ridiculous, but we must pay attention to God’s warnings. Start paying attention to God’s warnings. His Word is filled with warnings. For example, the Lord finished His Sermon on the Mount with these words:
21. "Not everyone who says to Me, `Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.
22. Many will say to Me in that day, `Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’
23. And then I will declare to them, `I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
24. Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:
25. and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.
26. Now everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand:
27. and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.’’ (Matt 7 21-27)
*And Paul gave this warning in Gal 6:7-10.
7. Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.
8. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.
9. And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
10. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.
*If you want to be more faithful to God, start paying attention to the warnings in His Word.
*Listen to James Merritt’s description of the incredible value of God’s Word:
-The Bible contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, the happiness of believers.
-Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its decisions are immutable.
-Read it to believe, believe it to be saved, practice it to be holy.
-It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you.
-It is the travelers guide, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword, the Christian’s character.
-Here paradise is restored, heaven opened, and the gates of hell disclosed.
-Christ is its grand subject, our good its design, and the glory of God its end.