Today’s reading: Num 17:1–18:32, 1 Cor 1:1–31, Ps 18:1–12
Today’s theme: God’s choice
Our society exalts the choice of man but today’s reading shows us the pre-eminence, sufficiency and enduring power of Gods choices. This is for those He has called to be leaders by his grace and those He has chosen to save by His grace
And the staff of the man whom I choose shall sprout. Thus I will make to cease from me the grumblings of the people of Israel, which they grumble against you.” Numbers 17:5 (ESV)
God’s point in the last three accounts (Korah’s rebellion, Aaron and the censer in the plague and now the rod that budded) are to emphasise His choice of Aaron as His High Priest. God does not change His choice because of man’s opinions. Jesus is now our better High Priest.
And the LORD said to Moses, “Put back the staff of Aaron before the testimony, to be kept as a sign for the rebels, that you may make an end of their grumblings against me, lest they die.” Numbers 17:10 (ESV)
In the same way God chose Aaron, which points to Jesus the ultimate High Priest, so God has chosen Elders (including Pastors) to have special authority in the church (Titus 1:9; 1 Pet. 5:5). With that authority comes the serious responsibility to live as examples to the people and serve them in the ministry (Acts 20:28; Titus 1:5–2:10; 1 Pet. 5:1–3).
God, our reward
And the LORD said to Aaron, “You shall have no inheritance in their land, neither shall you have any portion among them. I am your portion and your inheritance among the people of Israel. Numbers 18:20 (ESV)
Like the Levites, God is our reward, our treasure and our inheritance in Jesus.
Provide for ministers
And you may eat it in any place, you and your households, for it is your reward in return for your service in the tent of meeting. Numbers 18:31 (ESV)
The New Testament tells us that those who work should be provided for (Matt 10:9–10), in particular those who preach the gospel (1 Cor 9:2–18).
1 Corinthians 1:1–31
Called by God
Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes, 1 Corinthians 1:1 (ESV)
Paul like Aaron was chosen and called by God.
God will keep us
who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:8 (ESV)
We can have confidence that God will preserve and keep us until the final day.
Guard against fractions
I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 1 Corinthians 1:10 (ESV)
God calls us to unity over the core, essential truth of the Gospel and to live in harmony with our fellow believers. The problem in Corinth was that the division came over preferred leaders which caused fractions in the church. This leads to all sorts of bad attitudes like jealousy, envy and pride. We need to guard against this today.
The wisdom of God
For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. 1 Corinthians 1:21 (ESV)
Contemporary wisdom is man centred and anti God. Any god discovered by human wisdom would be man projecting his own thoughts into an idol and would give man a sense of pride in discovering God. This is why we cannot win people by the wisdom of the age. We need the drawing power of the Holy Spirit and the dynamic power of the Gospel message.
God saves us
so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. 1 Corinthians 1:29 (ESV)
We have nothing to boast about because we are saved, God is the one who chose, called and saved us. Not because we were wise or good but because He is gracious. To God alone be all the glory.
Yahweh the Great Warrior King
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2 (ESV)
David declares as a truth and from his own experience that Yahweh is the Great Warrior King. He is able to protect and preserve His people. Jesus is all of this for us.
Most of the above post is a copy of the original notes from the same date in 2014.
The Gospel Coalition on 1 Corinthians 1