Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Glory Test

A friend of mine posted a while back "Seeking how to apply 1 Corinthians chapter 10...".  I decided to study that chapter to see what I could learn and why she chose this particular chapter.  I'm totally loving the new ways I learned to study the Bible.  I can't say that I know the honest and true answer, but for me in this time, the answer is the Glory Test.

Chapter 10 is broken into 3 categories, which at first glance, seem unrelated.  1 - Warnings from Israel's history, 2 - Idol feasts and the Lord's Supper, and 3 - the Believer's Freedom.  However when you really study, they are very much related.

God was with Israel in her beginnings.  She was His chosen people.  When He led them out of Egypt, He accompanied them in a pillar of cloud.  He brought them through the red sea, yet He was displeased with them.  They practiced idolatry, were sexually immoral, they tested God's patience, and they grumbled or complained about God's provisions.  God punished them then used their punishment to teach us how to act. 

In the second section, he goes back to idolatry.  You can't practice idolatry and seek the Lord.  He again mentions Israel and her actions as a warning.  To pursue idolatry is to arouse the Lord's jealousy.  You must choose God or gods.

There are times in our lives that we believe because we are saved or because we are free that we can do whatever we want.  Maybe there isn't anything stopping us or maybe there is and we choose to ignore it.  Sometimes we think we can do this one thing and because we are saved we will be forgiven.  But as children of God, that couldn't be further from God's plan for our lives.  Sure, He will forgive us if we are truly repentent of our actions. As His chosen children, we should live our lives in a manner becoming of the King.  We shouldn't have the desires to do those things for which we know in advance we need forgiveness.  Truly saved means throwing out our past (but learning from the mistakes) and living a new life in Christ. 

That is where the Glory Test comes in.  To ensure we don't make the same mistakes Israel did, and all the generations before us, we have to live each day running the Glory Test.  How do we ensure that we are not practicing idolatry?  Or that we are not acting sexually immoral?  Or that we are not testing Christ or God?  Or that we are not grumbling (really?? now I am in trouble)??  What is the Glory Test?  It is 1 Corinthians 10:31 - So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

Seems easy enough, right??  As mentioned in verse 13, "...And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it."  So when you are doing/saying something (or about to do/say something), you aren't sure it passes the Glory test (which means NO!!), and you hear this still, small voice to STOP, it is God giving you an out. Take it!

I am sure running the Glory Test will be the hardest thing I do all week.  But to live for Christ is the only way to truly live.  So I am challenging myself this week, month, year to ask before I do something or say something - is this idolatry, sexual immorality, testing God, or grumbling?  CAN I HONESTLY SAY THAT WHAT I AM ABOUT TO DO IS ALL FOR THE GLORY OF GOD?  If I cannot say yes, then I need to rethink my actions or my word.

Does this mean I cannot watch MU football?  I mean how can that be to God's glory?  I don't believe God is saying we cannot enjoy ourselves, but if our actions do not bring God glory, then we need to take a long, hard look.  So as long as my words and actions are pure and good while watching my fave sports team and I am not putting this game before God, I can bring God glory.  So's a good thing MU is going to the SEC.  Otherwise I could have honestly not watched MU/KU (at any sport), because as James tells us, "If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them."  And honestly, now I know I must run the Glory Test to ensure I do not fall into the traps in which the Israelites fell and be punished.     

The Glory Test.  The hardest test I'll ever have to take.  But the most rewarding.  To God be the glory, forever and ever Amen.


1 comment:

  1. Agreed! Thanks for writing about what God taught you. Sometimes we just don't do that enough. "Truly saved means throwing out our past (but learning from the mistakes) and living a new life in Christ." relates pretty well to James 1:21. I really appreciate this post, Mom!