Be on your guard, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. Your every act should be done with love. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 NABRE
Paul is closing his letter to the community at Corinth. He says be on your guard, he means be watchful, be awake, be ready, you never know when temptation will try to trick you. This is like Jesus words to his disciples in the garden of Gethsemane. They sleep as he prayed and Jesus told them to stay awake. At the time many thought a true Christian only sleeps when they are dead. Paul wants them to be alert so that deception cannot catch them off guard. Then he wants them to stand firm in faith, be courageous and be strong. For Paul Christian life is growth in strength and stability. Like a tree that sinks it’s roots deep into the soil, growth is measured by stability that enables fruitfulness. Like an acorn that becomes a big tree, he wants them to daily become more and more who they are in Christ: become what you are! Then he tells them to be rooted in love. So he exhorts them to let their every act be done in love. Paul knows love builds up, that it is through love they will become mighty in Christ and the church will grow mighty in Christ. Love should be the center of all activity in the church. Love grows each person, the church and the Kingdom of God.
We should always be vigilant for the coming of temptation, it will surprise us if we are not ready, no one is immune, even Jesus in the dessert was tempted. It takes daily spiritual exercise to grow our faith, increase courage and become strong, and then we can be ready. We must act with love at the heart of all we do. If we act with love as our purpose we will always be building up others and ourselves.
Do you daily exercise spiritual growth? Do you intend to build others up through love daily?It takes daily spiritual exercise to grow our faith, increase courage and become strong, and then we can be ready. We must act with love at the heart of all we do. Click To Tweet
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