Was ______ Crucified for You?
One of the many dangers of being a preacher, elder, deacon or anyone in a perceived authoritative position is making a following. The scary part is doing it unknowingly. Most of the time we do not know converts are not converted to Christ, but rather converted to the preacher. What happens when problems arise and it is time for bags to be packed? Those who are not converted to Christ drop off the radar and the church loses track of the preacher’s convert. Paul tells us plainly in 1 Corinthians 1:10-17 those who are converted to a person, rather than Christ, are dividing Christ. Let’s observe two ways we can avoid dividing Christ:
1 Corinthians 1:10 - Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment.
We must all agree or literally, speak the same thing, when it comes to who we follow so that there will be no divisions, or schisms, in Christ. This comes by having our focus not on one another, but rather on Christ. The Corinthians couldn’t see Christ for the legacy of Apollos, Paul and Cephas. As leaders we must show people we are not leading for ourselves, but for Christ. As we follow Christ we lead. We must also speak the same thing and not get caught up in the big names of the church. Was ____ crucified for you? You can fill the blank in with your favorite theologian, preacher, elder or leader.
- 1 Corinthians 12:22-25 - On the contrary, it is much truer that the members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary; and those members of the body which we deem less honorable, on these we bestow more abundant honor, and our less presentable members become much more presentable, whereas our more presentable members have no need of it. But God has so composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that member which lacked, so that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another.
So that there is no division in the body we must recognize our gifts, as well as others’, for what they are: an opportunity to care for one another. I should aiding someone in developing their gift instead of showcasing mine. This is the cause of a lot of division. People perceive the gift of teaching as the ultimate gift and become converted to the teacher, rather than being converted to the Giver of the gifts. Not only should we not think more highly of others than we ought to, but we also should not think more highly of ourselves than we ought to think.
When we provide a proper prospective of Christ and the gifts He has supplied the church can stay unified and Christ’s body work with the head in a unit. Don’t get in the way of Christ or His message and help others to develop in their walk. When we speak the same thing, Christ, there isn’t much room for ourselves to get in the way.
Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, so that in us you may learn not to exceed what is written, so that no one of you will become arrogant in behalf of one against the other. For who regards you as superior? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as if you had not received it? – 1 Cor 4:6-7