1 Corinthians 9-11: Whatever You Do

We should all memorize 1 Corinthians 10:31:

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

We should memorize this verse because it has massive implications on the mundane and routine things of life, those things we do the most.

What does it mean to eat and drink to the glory of God? Does it imply that we should sing praises during dinner? Or are we to pray before each bite?

And what about the “whatever you do” part? That pretty much covers everything, doesn’t it? How do we sit to the glory of God? What about driving or exercise? Or sex or music or going to the park or celebrating birthdays?

How in the world are we supposed to do all these things to the glory of God?

Well, Paul helps us with that. You see, the preceding verses of chapter 10 warn the Christian about intentionally or unintentionally falling into idolatry. Paul begins by reminding the Corinthians of the rampant idolatry of Israel while they wandered in the wilderness. He then continues on with a word of encouragement:

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

We will come under the temptation to put created things before the Creator, but God is faithful to lead us out of temptation.

Then he comes to the issue of food. He begins here by touching on the Lord’s Supper and the need to approach it with reverence. Then he moves into a discussion about food sacrificed to idols. His point here is that when we eat the bread and drink the cup, we participate with Christ, but those who sacrifice to idols participate with demons. The point is not so much the food as it is the heart:

The one to which we sacrifice is the one we worship.

So, are we sacrificing our family on the altar of work? Then our idol is work and we are not working to God’s glory. Do you sacrifice the well being of your spouse to satisfy your own sexual appetite? Then you are worshiping at the altar of sexual immorality. Do you put your school before service to the church? Then Christ is not your goal, financial success or academic achievement is? Do you sacrifice church for your kids sports? Then you are worshiping your kids.

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Do you see it? Paul is calling us to pursue a life of zero idolatry. Nothing comes before Christ and every earthly thing has its place in God’s design. We are to prioritize the way that God calls us to. We are to eat and drink with thankfulness. We worship God in whatever we do by seeking to bring Him greater glory in all of it. Creation points to Him, and so we must do the same.

THis is difficult for us to do because our tendency is toward idolatry, but God is faithful and will not allow us to wallow in temptation without a means of escape. Let us cling to Him and seek to align our lives with His great power and purpose so that He is the own who gains the praise from our everyday activities and from the whole of our lives.

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