Editor’s Note: The AMI QT Devotionals from March 31-April 6 are written by David Son, who serves as the college pastor at Symphony Church in Boston. David, a graduate of UC Berkeley (B.S.) and Gordon-Conwell Seminary (M.Div.), was recently married to Grace.
Devotional Thoughts for Today
Now at Lystra there was a man sitting who could not use his feet. He was crippled from birth and had never walked. He listened to Paul speaking. And Paul, looking intently at him and seeing that he had faith to be made well, said in a loud voice, “Stand upright on your feet.” And he sprang up and began walking. And when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in Lycaonian, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!” Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. And the priest of Zeus, whose temple was at the entrance to the city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates and wanted to offer sacrifice with the crowds. But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of it, they tore their garments and rushed out into the crowd, crying out, “Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men, of like nature with you, and we bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them.
In the past few years, Stephen Curry has become a household name. Analysts, coaches, fellow players, and fans are gradually coming into agreement that he is the greatest shooter in the history of basketball. Winning an NBA championship, being crowned MVP, holding all sorts of all-time records— these are just testaments to the beauty of his game, the likes of which the world has never before seen. But perhaps the most admirable thing about Mr. Curry is his constant effort to point glory towards God, both on and off the court. In nearly every way that an athlete possibly can in public, Stephen points attention to God.
Barnabas and Paul, even with their impressive resume of teachings and miracles, said it well: “We also are men, of like nature with you, and we bring you good news….” So averse to self-glory that they tore their clothes at the news that men had begun worshipping them. Instead, they urged the people of Lystra to turn their praise towards the living God.
It’s incredible to see heroes who willingly step down from their pedestal and point the glory to another. These people touch us in a way that transcendent heroes never can. While there are plenty of talented and impressive people in the world, there is something paradoxical and yet beautiful about a humble hero that draws us in. Jesus Christ sits at the center of this beautiful paradox. He Himself could have said those very same words: “I also am a man, of like nature with you, and I bring you good news….” Take a minute today and reflect on the incredible humility of our King. How can we imitate the humility of Christ in our lives?
Jesus, there is no one like You. Thank You for being our humble King, stepping down from Your pedestal, and becoming a man. Help us to understand this mindset that You had, so that we might imitate You. Thank You for the Christ-like examples that we have: pastors, teachers, athletes, and also friends. Strengthen Your people to continue living in Your grace. In Your name I pray.
Bible Reading for Today: Proverbs 19
Lunch Break Study
Read 1 Corinthians 3:1-9, 16: But I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now you are not yet ready, for you are still of the flesh. For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way? For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not being merely human? What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, as the Lord assigned to each. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building. Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.
Questions to Consider:
- In this passage, what is Paul’s rebuke towards the church in Corinth?
- After explaining that both he and Apollos are just servants, how does Paul redefine the Corinthian church?
- What does it mean that we are God’s temple?
- Paul rebukes the Corinthian church because of jealousy and strife, which was causing division in the church. This division was because some people were fans of Paul’s teachings, while others were fans of Apollos’ teachings. Paul chastises them for bringing division in the church over such matters.
- Paul says that the church is God’s field, God’s building, and God’s temple.
- Many people misuse this verse to say something like, “You shouldn’t smoke cigarettes” or, “You should eat healthier because you are God’s temple.” But this is not the correct interpretation according to the context. Being God’s temple is a corporate call for unity within the church. Paul is urging churches to protect the unity of God’s dwelling place. Destroying God’s temple, in this case, has nothing to do with cigarettes, eating fried food, or getting tattoos. Destroying God’s temple happens when we cause division in the church.
In today’s Bible study, we talked about the importance of unity in the church. Spend some time and pray for the unity of your church community.