Summary: An appeal for God’s people to turn to Christ as the first and most effective responder to help and heal the trials, troubles and tribulations of life.
The Solution For All Our Problems
I Cor. 10:1-13 "Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as [were] some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it]."
Let us first consider the statement of this scripture in context. In dealing with the many problems that exist among the carnal members of the Church at Corinth, Paul is pointing out that their problems are only unique in time and place. He uses the experience of God’s ancient people to drive his point home.
The Old Testament was given to Israel as their rule of faith and practice. The law and the terms of that covenant were fulfilled in Christ. (See Matt. 5:17-18, Luke 24:44, Col. 2:14-17) We should never try to place ourselves back under the law. Religions that do this are in essence asserting that Christ did not come to become our Passover on the Cross.
But Paul is telling us that the Old Testament still serves us well today. The Ten Commandments were not merely ten suggestions. In reiterating the principles of the Law Jesus would say, "But I say unto you." In doing so, He made it clear that we could be law breakers in our heart.
In addition, Paul is pointing out that the Old Testament is filled with types, shadows, figures and symbolism that should speak to us today. A number of lessons are easily seen in this passage. Christ, as the Rock speaks to us of His eternality and faithfulness to His people. We are warned of the dangers of lusting for material and worldly things. We see the chastening hand of God upon the awful sins of idolatry and fornication, both physical and spiritual. We get a glimpse of His judgment upon those who murmur against His appointed spiritual leadership. It is clear that Paul was exhorting those at Corinth that in spite of their problems, they did not have to follow the path of their spiritual forefathers. But that real and lasting solutions can only be found in Christ.
But some would say today: "But you have no idea what it’s like to be married to her...." "Listen, friend, you just couldn’t understand being married to such a selfish slob." "How could anyone ever understand what it’s like to work for the sort of egotistical and heartless boss I work for. He makes my life at work a misery. He’s just a ------ tyrant." "But you couldn’t understand what its like to work with the sort of crowd I work with. You wouldn’t believe how selfish and self-serving some of them are. When you work with such a mob of back-stabbers, you’ve got to watch your back all the time; especially if you’re a Christian." "But the other kids’ parents don’t make rules like mine do." And my favorite, "It’s just not fair!"
Some might say that only worldly people woud make such excuse, but Christians are prone to voice similar protests. Although many times the complaints are legitimate and are based upon real life situations that are difficult to confront, just what do such statements say? They all seem to say one thing, "Please excuse me from my responsibility to respond like a Christian to the problems and perplexities of life. My problem is just too unique and difficult."
WE CAN FACE LIFE’S PROBLEMS WITH THE KNOWLEDGE THAT THEY ARE NOT UNIQUE. Is it true that any particular Christian is called to face situations that are unprecedented, confront a crisis that is too complex, solve problems that are insoluble, bear burdens that are unbearable of live a life that is unlivable for Christ? But even if God were to allow a Christian to face a test that was absolutely and utterly unique, would this be an adequate excuse for a response or conduct that is not Christ-like?