Wednesday, November 28, 2012

November 28, 2012 … Avoiding Chameleon Christianity

Chronological Bible Reading Plan - Day 333

Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: 1st Corinthians, Chapters 1-4 To study these chapters, go to this link -

Blogger’s Note: See this photo of Paul’s 3rd Journey for geographical reference
Click on Photo for larger and clearer viewing

Highlight Passages: 1st Corinthians, Chapters 1-4 … Please take the time to use the link above and read this letter to a church who needed some direction. : [NLT] … {While on Paul’s 3rd missionary journey (see map) and near the end of Paul’s 3 years in Ephesus, he learned of the challenges being encountered by the church in Corinth; and he writes this 1st letter to that church to help them walk-the-walk of faith in a very hostile world. Friends, the church can become like a chameleon if it is not careful, taking on the color of the surrounding culture and world. We see that happening in our world now. So, Paul’s letter to the Corinthian Christians is just as relevant now as it was over 2000 years ago in about 55 AD.}

Reference Passage: Romans 12: 1-2 : [NLT] … {The first four chapters of 1st Corinthians harkened me back to the passage on worship, written later by Paul to the Christians in Rome; and like his letter to the Corinthians, it becomes an exhortation to Christian and Church living today. } 12 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. 

My Journal for Today: In Acts 18-19 yesterday, after going through Luke’s account of Paul launching into his third missionary journey (see the attached map), my chronological read takes me to the letter Paul wrote toward the end of his stay in Ephesus (in about 55 AD, right about the time of Acts 18-19). Paul had learned that the church he had helped established some years earlier in Corinth was having troubles … disunity, worldly living, and perverted worship. In other words the church there in Greece, in the very cosmopolitan culture of Corinth at the time, could be likened to the word picture I used above – like a chameleon - that little creature who takes on the color of its environs.

And when one reads through the earlier chapters of 1st Corinthians, as I hope you have today, one can’t help but be impressed that much of what Paul was writing about to a church in 55 AD could be (and is) powerfully pertinent to the CHURCH in America today. And as I studied through these first chapters of Paul’s letter to the Corinthian churches, my memory and spirit raised up thoughts of another passage Paul would write to another church (this one to Rome), … Romans 12: 1-2, which I really hope you have memorized (if not, I’ve copied for you in the NLT above). It’s a good summary thought for 1st Corinthians, Chapters 1-4, isn’t it?

Actually, returning to word picture of the chameleon, in the context of the letter to Corinth and the passage in Romans 12, the church in our world should be more like a horned-frog than a chameleon, standing out clearly, even though it may look weird to the world. Paul says in Romans 12: 2, Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. And my friend, if one (or a church) does that, holding on and living out the values of the Gospel and Christ in the world, he or she [or that church] will most certainly stand out and look a horned-frog to the world.

What say ye, my friend? Are we living more like chameleons or horned-frogs in this world?

My Prayer Today: … Lord, help me to be salt and light in this world. Amen

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