Paul built a church in the most important city in Greece. Corinth was a hub for worldwide trade and commerce, but it also had a degraded culture and people who worshiped idols. 1 Corinthians is the first of two letters Paul wrote to the church after hearing reports of how they were faring. In chapter one, he preaches to them about the importance of unity.
1 Cor. 1: 10 Paul says, “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”
Our country today, as well as the church, is so divided; with half of the people believing one way and half holding to a different view altogether…how do we do as Paul says and be united in what we think and how we feel? Our greatest contentions have come to be because of our political views. (It’s no wonder they say never to discuss religion or politics). But still, shouldn’t we, as Christians, be on the same page when it comes to what is best for our country?
Even the early disciples faced certain divisions in their beliefs… I recall one about circumcision, which led to many disagreements between Peter and Paul. Today people tend to look at our culture, or how the majority of the people live, in order to determine what is right or wrong. If the majority of the people do it, it becomes the new normal for our entire society. Like the church in Corinth, we have turned back to our pagan ways and accepted things that God clearly tells us in His Word is wrong.
Many of us hear and often want to believe in certain ideas many call ‘conspiracy theories.’ One such theory, that was shared by many believers in recent weeks, was that God would step in at the last minute and change the outcome of our election. Though the theory was way too far-fetched to fully buy into, I was one who hoped and prayed that voter fraud would be proven, believing that the President we had was the one we needed. But God, as always, knew better.
It has taken the last few days for me to process this truth and to realize perhaps we are a church not ready for such a miracle. As His people miracles are to be expected to happen…but on His call and at a time when we think not. I fully understand why God saw it best not to step in. We can only imagine, given the attitudes of those who did not want Donald Trump for President, what terrible things we’d be seeing happen right now had the election results been reversed.
Looking at the turmoil of the last four years, perhaps we need a four-year break from the constant insults and criticism that has prevailed. I’m sure President Trump could stand a break. Maybe the media won’t make sure we know about every dysfunctional or controversial thing President Biden does or says. Maybe the people who impersonate him will do it respectfully and without hate in their hearts. That in itself will be a welcome change.
As Paul pointed out to the church in Corinth the things that needed to change, he reminded them in chapter 13, that love is the most important thing. Even with faith to move mountains we are nothing without love. Love suffers long and is kind, envies not and is never puffed up. Love does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not its own way, is not easily provoked, and thinks no evil. Love rejoices in the truth, bears, believes, hopes and endures all things. Love never fails; but where there be prophecies, they shall fail; where there be tongues, they shall cease; where there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
There will be many challenges to face in the coming days, months and years, but if we, God’s people, are all on the same page and work together to build up the church and continue to do our part to spread the good news of Jesus Christ, God will continue to bless the church and our country…and the miracles will come.
1Cor. 16: 13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, be brave like men, be strong. 14 Let all your things be done with love.