A Father’s Heart!
Scripture reading for August 8th: 1st Corinthians 4:1-21
Evangelists, teachers, pastors, and apostles are merely servants of Christ who have been entrusted with the secret things of God. “Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.” (1st Corinthians 4:1-2) The people of Corinth had been elevating various men who were servants of Christ. Paul was helping them to see that each one of these gifted people were merely servants of the Lord. As servants, God had called them to be faithful.
Not one person has anything in the way of gifts or talents that he did not receive from God. (1st Corinthians 4:7) If Paul was a gifted teacher and apostle, all those gifts came from God. If Apollos was a great encourager and church builder, that also was a gift from God. No one should elevate them above God. God had called them to faithful service and also had called the Corinthians to grow up in their thinking.
“I am not writing this to shame you, but to warn you, as my dear children. Even though you have ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the Gospel.” (1st Corinthians 4:14-15) Paul had a father’s heart towards these believers in Corinth. He loved them as a dad. There may have been many other teachers and pastors that taught these believers, but he had a unique relationship in being the first to share the Gospel with them.
Fathers have a heart to truly love their children in the faith. Fathers love enough to train their children in the proper ways. Paul had tirelessly taught this church for over two years. Fathers also correct and warn their children about coming danger and wrong attitudes. Paul warned them about arrogance and quarreling. He did not want his ‘children’ to get off in the devil’s territory! As a father, Paul was sending Timothy, his spiritual son, to bring this correction to the church in Corinth. (1st Corinthians 4:17)
Do you have a spiritual father in the faith? Do you have someone in your life who loves you enough to teach, correct, and discipline you? If you do, call that person today and thank them for their loving care. If not, ask God to bring a mature believer who can speak into your life.