So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31
As Christians, we frequently use the word GLORY in its various forms. We glorify God and call Him glorious. It is our desire to bring glory to Him by the way we live.
To glorify God is to honor Him, through our conduct, good behavior, and the fruit of our labors. As His light shines on us, we endeavor to reflect that light back on Him.
Curiously, our focus text was written in the context of meat sacrificed to idols. Imagine you were invited to a barbecue at a friend’s house. Later, upon a visit to your mother-in-law, you are reprimanded for eating meat sacrificed to idols. The conversation may have gone something like this:
“You ate at Jim Bob’s house?”
“Oh, no. You didn’t eat the meat did you?”
“Well, yeah. Some of the best barbecue I’ve ever eaten. I gave thanks to God for it.”
“Did you know that Jim Bob buys his meat from the Pagan World Discount Market? Their meat’s cheaper because it’s first sacrificed to idols.”
“No. I had no idea. Didn’t think to ask.”
“You should be ashamed of yourself. You offended God.”
Admittedly, that scenario isn’t common to our day. But it did occur in Paul’s day as Christianity grew amidst pagan religions. And it was in that context that Paul gave this instruction: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
How do we apply this teaching to today? We can fellowship with people of different faiths without violating our conscience. That doesn’t preclude us from glorifying God because of what is in our heart. Our loyalty, our allegiance, our faith, and our thanksgiving belong to the Lord.
Paul’s teaching also applies to our interaction with Christians from differing denominations. Rather than wrangle over doctrine, we respect their consciences while unyieldingly holding to our beliefs.
Despite our efforts to shield ourselves from the world, worldly doctrines, and those who think and behave radically different from ourselves, we can still get along with them while remaining true to our convictions.
Glorifying God is a matter of attitude and conscience. Our heart should always be tuned into God and acting in accordance with honoring him.
Paul points out that respect for others is vitally important. In verse 24 he says, “No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.”
In a nutshell, don’t violate your conscience or that of others. Do your best to live in harmony with all people.
Why? The two verses that follow our focus text give the answer.
31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 32 Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God— 33 even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved. 1 Corinthians 10:31-33
Our conscience is seared with a motive that glorifies God with the goal of seeing people come to Christ. You don’t have to beat people over the head with the Bible for them to be saved. Your life, Christian love, and your respect for others that glorifies God helps them to see Christ. Keep yourself situated in the best possible place for God to use you. In that environment, the Holy Spirit prepares hearts to receive the gospel message. It’s like preparing the soil for planting.
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish