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Welcome to the Westside church’s special Monday Morning Coffee podcast with Mark Roberts. Mark is a disciple, a husband, father and grand dad, as well as a certified coffee geek, fan of CS Lewis’ writings and he loves his big red Jeep. He’s also the preacher for Westside church.
Hello, and welcome to the Westside churches special Monday Morning Coffee podcast on this podcast, our preacher Mark Roberts will help you get your week started right. With look back at yesterday's sermon so that we can think through it further and better work the applications into our daily lives . Mark will then look forward into this week's Bible reading so that we can know what to expect and watch for. And, he may have some extra bonus thoughts from time to time. So grab a cup of coffee as we start the week together on Monday Morning Coffee with Mark.Speaker 2:
Good morning. Good morning. Welcome to the Monday morning coffee podcast for April the 11th. I'm mark and I am holding a great cup of coffee and mostly excited because I am home. Usually in this podcast, we talk about the sermon that I preach yesterday at west side . First thing, then we do daily Bible reading . We're going straight to first Corinthians 11 because, because I didn't preach yesterday at west side , I am very thankful to the men who fill in when I'm away. They always do a great job. I was in , in the St Louis area. I was with the Ellisville church of Christ, wonderful, wonderful group of Christians there, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. And in a very fortunate turn of events, there was a late flight Sunday night. And so I got to come home and sleep in my own bed. Usually these weekend meetings, you end up having to fly on Monday and sometimes making connections and , and so forth. You can end up flying most of the day Monday. It kind of kills the whole day. Nope, I'm home. And I'm ready to drink some coffee and read the Bible and talk about the Bible with you. So let's get started For Monday. Then we finish the section in first Corinth, chapter 11, about the woman and having something on her head, a covering, and how that relates to the man and to the created order. That's first Corinthians 11, nine to 16. I'm not gonna go back and revisit everything that I said in Friday's podcast or in Friday's live daily Bible reading. I, I just want to remind you, I don't think that you can bind the covering here that this is something for all women in all time in all places. I think this is a custom that's being violated in first Corinthians. As some women are throwing off some of the restraints of society and Paul doesn't want that to happen. I do think there are some important principles that could be learned here, but I should say this there's enough in this passage. That's difficult that it is it's hard to be dogmatic. And that starts in today's reading verse 10, a woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head because of the angels. And that is an enormously difficult passage. I don't think anyone has a great explanation of this. At least. I certainly haven't read what I thought was one of those aha. Well, that nails it kind of thing. There's just not great answers here. Some seem to think that maybe angels are watching the assembly and, and that would play a role here. Very people will talk about how a woman could be tempting an angel with her good looks, but of course, Jesus says angels don't marry or given in marriage, Matthew chapter 22 , really wonder how that would work. There certainly is a long Jewish tradition about women leaving their rightful places comes out of Genesis six and coming to earth and seducing earthly women. But that's actually a misuse of Genesis chapter six and not what's being talked about there. I'm not sure. I'm just not sure what to say about verse 10. There must be more to that in the teaching that Paul had done in Corinth . I don't have a great explanation. My granddad always said, when you don't know, you have to say, you don't know. I just don't know. I would direct your attention in verse 14 does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair, it is a disgrace for him. I think that passage helps with my argument that this is a custom, because nature doesn't say anything about long hair or putting a veil on not anything at all. In fact, in nature, we would see contradictory messages about hair. The male lion, for example, has the long hair that beautiful main where female lioness have no hair like that. They have the short hair. So Paul says the Corinthians should be able to learn this lesson on their own, but you can't, you can't get that lesson from reading national geographic or watching the discovery channel . That means I'm looking for a different explanation for the term nature here. And that term nature can mean a sense of propriety and decorum, the national customs, which one is born and brought up in. And that I think is where Paul is going. This is the custom, this is what you've always done. You need to be happy with that. Verse 15, a woman is happy with her hair. So why would she be ashamed of some kind of artificial covering women? Don't seem to mind that it it's gonna be good. And, and I think Paul is driving towards the idea that the Christians in Corinth need to abide by some of those local customs there so that the church is not a scandal in the community. And a , I , I make a couple of applications here. I know people are always looking to, to make use of this text. Do women have to have long hair today? And I think the answer to that is no, they do not. You can't bind verse 15. If you're not gonna bind versus 1, 2 16 to be consistent, we would have to have some sort of veiling going on. I can't bind the veil. Although, as I said on Friday, I certainly wouldn't prohibit a woman or shame a woman. If that is a , if that's a decision she's made, if she's come to a different conclusion from this passage, she should not violate her conscience. And I have no trouble with that whatsoever, but there is nothing here that would cause me to say that a woman has to have long hair. And that of course creates a category of sin. That gets really complicated. How long is long, that if you're in sin, if you don't have long hair, then somebody needs to decide what makes hair long enough to, to qualify for righteousness. And that is really, really complicated. And then of course the , the correlator to that is it's for men to have long hair today. And the answer to that is no, that was the custom and Quran . That's not ours. There are men in scripture who had long hair, the NAZA rights, Samson ABM, Samson did this. And the NAZA rights did this with God's approval. So if this is some universe , an ending rule about hair , why did that not apply to Samson , to the naite vows as God requiring those men somehow to sin? And maybe the best thing that I can say outta first Corinthians chapter 11 is to give you an example of a similar kind of custom that we could make application of these principles too . What about the custom of vowing the head in prayer? Now I couldn't bind that. There's lots of examples of praying in all sorts of different postures in scripture. You certainly could not bow that you bind that you absolutely must bow your head when we pray, but that's what everyone does. That's what we grew up with. That's what we know that is our tradition. And in fact, if somebody decided they would not bow, they arrogantly lifted their head in their chin and, and , and stubbornly, maybe clenching their fist. I'm not bowing. I'll show you people. That would be a disruption in the assembly. People would look over there and think what is going on with that? Why won't he bow? Does he not respect the Lordship of Jesus Christ? That's why we bow in prayer. What's going on there. It would cause great problems. And I think Paul would write there, isn't this the custom haven't you always done this. Haven't why aren't you bowing. Let's do that so that you're not creating a disruption in the assembly and even more causing maybe the community around you to think that you do not respect the Lord. I think that's a , I think it's a really good application out of first Corinthians chapter 11, we would not bind the specific custom that's being talked about here, women wearing the veil, but we can learn from that, that Christians are to respect some local customs so that we can be perceived properly in the community and have unity and harmony in our assemblies. And Paul will go on to talk about unity and harmony and in the assembly, in our reading tomorrow, when he begins to discuss the Lords supper, it's Tuesday, and we're talking about the Lord's supper. Now this is not nearly as controversial as the matter with the covering in the first part of first Corinthians chapter 11, but this is extremely a vital information for us. This is the earliest existing record of the institution of the Lord supper. This is written well before the gospels were written and Paul is working here with a couple of problems with the Lord supper. First, they are turning the supper into a common kneel . In fact, it's becoming almost a party and there seems to be some division going on here along class lines on income and wealth lines. The church is being divided in its observance of the supper. And Paul is certain that needs to get fixed. He wants at to stop and stop immediately. And we get that. As soon as we start reading today in verse 17, we are gonna read verse 17 to 25 today in the following instructions, verse 17, I do not commend you. This is very strong in the original and means I am very unhappy with you. We're asking that question about the mood and the emotional tone of Paul. Well, there you go. Not happy because when you come together in the assembly, it's actually making things worse. Worship ought to make things better for the local church. And instead, this is going the opposite direction. You might notice verse 18 in the first place. Paul says, when you come together, there's actually no second. Paul never actually then says in the second place, which has led to a lot of speculation about what his second point is. Maybe that's the material about spiritual gifts that begins in chapter 12. Think a little bit more about that, but do remember Paul has already taught about the Lord's supper, bringing unity in chapter 10 when he talked about how we don't eat at, at the table of demons. And we don't bless the cup of demons. We have a table, we have the Lord supper, and that brings Christians together in verse 19. Then he says, there must be factions among you. And certainly we wonder why Paul would say that. Why must there be factions? Some people think this is sarcasm. Some think that it's just a recognition of this is how life is that it's going to happen. There's to be problems and we have to work to correct those kinds of difficulties in truth. From time to time, I'm a little encouraged when I hear a brethren having problems and division and, and difficulties and strive when I read first Corinthians. And I think, well, you know, this is how it's always been. The church has always had some kind of problems and we just have to work through them. But the difficulty here is they're not coming together to worship God verse 20, 21 and 22, but instead there's some kind of party going on. And it seems rather clear here that for Paul eating and worship are not to be mixed. It's interesting how that has changed down through time and lots of churches. There's, there's not hardly anything that ever happens without some kind of food going on. But Paul clearly says for 22, that that's, that , that eating doesn't belong in our assembly. That's not something the church needs to be doing. Instead, we wanna focus on God and eating has brought the Corinthian brethren. A lot of difficulty here. They need to us on what Jesus gave to the church as the commemoration of his death barrel and resurrection. And Paul turns his attention to that with some very specific words, verse 23, I received from the Lord. And then of course, this famous passage about the Lord supper follows. We read some of this today and we read the rest of it tomorrow, read through that, but read through that and think about the Corinthian church and how they would hear that. We've talked about listening to the new Testament, maybe run this through your phone and have it, read it to you in an audio way so that you can sit in the Corinthian church and hear these instructions and think about it in terms of, Hey, that group over there, they've already done the Lord supper. By the time I get here, here's another group back there. They're waiting. They're gonna do it by themselves. Later on, they brought a bunch of food. Those folks over there have a bunch of food. There's different parties that are eating and drinking, and some people are getting wild and crazy about all of this. Think in those kind of terms, then read Paul's instructions. See if you can't come out in a good place. As we think about what Paul says about the Lord supper, and then maybe we can make even some applications to our observance of the Lord's supper as well. That's Tuesday's reading then first Corinthians chapter 11, verse 17 to 25 it's Wednesday. And we are completing first Corinthians chapter 11 by reading verses 26 to 34. Seems a little weird to talk about the Lord supper on Wednesday. That of course is not the day that we observe the Lord supper, but Paul in our reading today makes that the Corinthians understand the importance of engaging their heart in full worship. Here, that's the theme. He talks here about eating and drinking here in an unworthy manner. And of course, someone may take that to mean that I have sin in my life and I'm not worthy to take this. And that is absolutely not, not what Paul is talking about here. If that was true, then no one would ever get to take the Lord supper. Of course, we're not worthy of this. Unworthy here describes the, how we are eating, not the person who's eating and drinking to partake in , in an unworthy manner is to take away which fails to respect the, the supper that is in an irreverent and thoughtless way. That's what Paul is getting at because that's, what's going on in Corinth . That's become a party and people aren't giving any thought to what Jesus said or did they, aren't filling up this act of worship with meaning and purpose with , to take in an unworthy fashion would be just to eat the bread and drink the fruit of the vine in a , in a thoughtless and careless way without paying any attention to what this is really all about. Notice again, verse 28, examine yourself. Don't just take, make sure that you're in the right frame of mind to take examination here. Isn't just so much about, am I a Christian? Am I doing what's right, but am I in the right frame of mind right now? Am I, I , I need to evaluate my behavior at this moment to make sure that I'm taking the supper in the right kind of way in verse 29, then he says, we need to discern the body. And that may well mean recognizing the difference in the sacred and the secular or making this into a common meal. It may have something to do with failing to observe the supper in a fashion that brings the church together in unity. And Paul even says that there's real spiritual, real spiritual problems. I don't think you can take verse 30 and, and , and on in a literal kind of way, verse 31, some have died. The Lord doesn't strike people dead for the failure to worship properly. And we should probably be pretty thankful about that. I suspect that most of us at some point in time have not worshiped very well, but Paul does say when we don't worship, when we don't really engage with the Lord supper, that's going to result in spiritual illness that we're going to get weak and flabby in our discipleship. We ought to think a lot more about that. Sometimes we hit a flat spot in our discipleship and I wonder how many people think, you know, what I need to do. I need to go to church and I need to get to church. And then when we're taking the Lord's for , I need to just lock down and get fully into that really make sure my mind is in that pay attention to the table. Talk. And then when those, I get those elements out and I take those elements, I'm just so focused on what Jesus has done for me will help me be a better Christian. We ought to think in those kind of terms, cuz Paul says that will help you be a better Christian. And in fact, verse 33, as we do this together, it will help the church be more unified. And, and it does help us be more unified. You just think about that special moment at west side , but we sing that song. And then there's the talk at the table. And we are all in this. We are all doing this together. And yes, there's some different things about how we actually are the logistics actually getting the emblems out to everybody. We used to pass trays and now everybody has their own individual communion and, and people are able to open that and, and take and so forth. And, and there's some good things about that. Uh , sometimes the trade passing thing was a distraction and the fella appeared at the aisle there and , and maybe startled you cuz you're really, really reading your Bible or really focused upon Jesus or sometimes people drop trays that that could get crazy. That wasn't a perfect system and know the individual communion cups that business. Isn't a perfect either, but we're doing the best we can. And I think there's some really good things about that that allow us to, to get the emblems to each individual Christian in a timely kind of fashion, without all kinds of distractions going on so that we can pay attention to Jesus and we can pay attention to what the Lord suffers all about. That's so important at Corinth and that is still so important today. Some people there's , somebody's gonna say it's the most important act of worship and the Bible never says that there's lots going on in worship and it all matters and it all counts, but it certainly is an extremely significant act of worship. There's not any denying that. And when the church of Corinth was doing this badly and making a mess out of it, Paul says, you gotta fix it. And here's what you need to do to get this fixed. I'll see you tomorrow. As we start a whole new section of Corinthians, Paul's gonna talk about miraculous gift. What does he have to say to that? And what's going on with that in Corinth , see you tomorrow. We'll be reading in first Corinthians chapter 12. Today is Thursday. And we are beginning the section on spiritual gifts by reading chapter 12 versus one to 11. This is the longest block of material in the cor Indian pistol . And so that really helps us see how vital this matter is to Paul. And while we don't have a lot of controversy among brethren today about these gifts, of course, generally speaking, we are far out of step with the kind of practices that go on in many charismatic and Pentecostal churches. We miraculous gifts of course are exciting and that has become a sign, particularly tongue. Speaking of having an authentic religious experience. I think some of that is a challenge to us today to try to help people better understand what spiritual gifts we're all about and what Paul says here, even in the Corinthian correspondence that helps us understand the cessation of spiritual gifts, but maybe the real challenge is that we don't overreact to that kind of thing and allow the things that are going on around us that are not biblical and not scriptural to drive our interpretation and understanding of these things. We wanna make sure that we understand what the Bible says, not what we have. All he is decided already is so or what we need to believe so that we can tell our charismatic neighbor how wrong he is. That's just not a sound approach to scripture. I wanna say clearly I think this material teaches the cessation of spiritual gifts. So you're not about to hear some wildly new understanding of this material, but I am concerned that too often, I think I have looked at this through the lens of modern practices and what I need to load up in my gospel gun and some ammo to shoot at others rather than let's read Corinthians and hear what Paul says to that church and understand that first. And then we'll be able to make appropriate kinds of applications to our, to our times today. We can never understand what the Bible means now until we understand what the Bible means meant then. So the breakdown here is Paul will talk about there's a variety of spiritual gifts versus one to 11, and then the unity of those gifts and the rest of chapter 12. Then he will talk about a better way, something more important than spiritual gifts in chapter 13, that of course is love. And then chapter 14 contains some very specific regulations of those gifts. And as you're looking at this material, it is clear that there is some real zaniness going on. Some people are saying, Jesus is anathema . Jesus is condemned and claiming. They are saying that under the influence and power of spiritual gifts, that absolutely cannot be happening. Tongue speaking is being exalted as the most desirable gift nobody seems to be in did and how the gifts would work together for the common good of the church. Love is not being exercised in the assembly and the use of these gifts. And there is confusion and chaos in the assembly as well. There just seems to be a spirit of rivalry and jealousy present in Corin. There seems to be a good bit of, of selfishness. Look at me, I'm gonna do my thing and I wanna do my thing. I want everybody to pay attention to me. I want to be the star of the show. And that is absolutely far removed from anything like what new Testament worship should really be. And Paul moves decisively in this material to correct, to fix those kinds of problems. So verse two, he says, you know that when you were pagans, you were led straight mute idols. However you were led , this is a difficult phrase to translate the new American standard in the ESV seemed to have the idea probably the best that you fell into following after idol seems to be the idea. And we know that there was, there was a very, very much a manifestation of ecstatic frenzy, babbling , the kind of thing that we see passing for Pentecostal tongue speaking today, that many charismatic folks say, this is what they did in the Bible. No, no. That's what pagan idol cults did in Bible times. And that's what Paul is getting at in verse two, make sure you underline in verse seven to each is given the manifestation of the spirit for the common good for the common good. That is the overriding principle in everything that Paul is going to be saying about spiritual gifts. What we do together in the assembly needs to been everybody in the assembly. And then he gives a list of spiritual gifts. Now this is not an exhaustive list. This is not everything. Paul has a similar list later that he will write in the book of Romans, but he talks here then about, we have these different gifts, the gift of wisdom that may be practical knowledge, then the gift of knowledge itself, just knowing what God wants us to do. And then Paul even mentions the gift of faith. And we certainly wish that we knew more about that. Maybe that is an extra measure of faith and belief. And I think the rest of those gifts then that he enumerates in verse 10 probably are pretty clear. Make sure in 10 that you see that the gifts of various kinds of tongues that is foreign languages. That is not some sort of ecstatic utterance. That is the gift of known languages. And we've seen that in acts chapter two, the very first time that gift was exercised . See that in fact, through the rest of what Paul will talk about when he begins to talk about tongue speaking, notice here's a bonus note. Verse 11, the holy spirit has personality will and sovereignty. The holy spirit is not an impersonal force. The holy spirit is in fact, the third person in the Godhead and acts as a person does. So that's our reading for Thursday. It sets up all of these different kinds of gifts. Paul says are part of the body of Christ. Then Paul's gonna talk about what we do with those gifts to benefit each other. That'll be tomorrow's reading on Friday, we'll read tomorrow versus 12 to 31 and that'll be our last reading for the week. See you on Friday. Well, we made it to Friday and we're reading today in first Corinthians 12 versus 12 to 31. This is kind of a long reading here, but it's hard to cut this into pieces because this is a powerful, powerful metaphor that Paul uses a new way to think about the church here. And it completely rules out warfare or competition or selfish rivalry. We are Paul says repeatedly here, the body of Christ and in the body, you have different parts and you need every part and the parts have to work together. The application of that to the church at Caron to us today is obvious and clear. Let me give you a few notes on some of the verses here, verse 13, one spirit, we're all baptized into one body. That's not a reference to holy spirit baptism. We know from the book of acts, that that's a rare event that doesn't happen all the time in acts chapter 11, verse 15. Peter makes some references to that. Everybody's not baptized in the holy spirit, even in new Testament times. So for Paul to mention something that only happened to a select few here would utterly go against and destroy the very point that he is making, which is that we're all here together. And that we're all doing this together there . So the holy spirit and baptism are off tied together. Jesus does that in John chapter three in verse five in his conversation with Nicodemus acts chapter two and verse 38, repent be baptized for the remission of your sins and receive the gift of the holy spirit. I think he's talking here about the influence of the spirit through the teaching of the word of God, through the teaching of the gospel. We have also admitted to that. We are all been immersed baptized because of that. And so again, we are all in this together and to complain then verse 15, that you don't have a gift or for a deacon to complain that he's not an elder is as ridiculous as a foot complaining that it is not a hand a foot can't be a hand. It would be a crummy hand. If you grafted it onto the end of your arm, feet need to do feet. Things that hand need to do hand things. And it is God who knows where we will be best in the body verse 18. It's God who sovereignly arranges us in the right place. And if you are one of those parts of the body that doesn't seem to be as showy and that everybody knows, just remember, we need even the feeble organs verse 22, I think about the heart. That's a pretty delicate organ. You take your heart out and start to play with it. Your are gonna have real health issues and verse 24. Then there are parts of our body that we cover. Probably Paul is referencing the sexual organs here. We honor them. Even the more we clothe them, we give them extra attention. So wherever you are in the body, don't don't do anything. That's gonna cause vision verse 25. Look how we've come back to that issue of division that Corinthians begins with in first Corine chapter one, selfishness and Corinth is causing division. So the application verse 27 is that we all need to work together using whatever gifts we have to bless everyone else in the local church. That's where the Corinthians need to be. That's what they need to be thinking about. And guess what? That is exactly what you and I need to be thinking about. Sometimes people will say, since I am a secessionist , I don't believe these spiritual gifts go on in the body today. Sometimes people will say, well, then these verses don't mean anything. And of course that's completely true. They're teaching us important principles about how the local body functions together. We don't have spiritual gifts, but we still have gifts. We have abilities. We have talents. How should we work together? How should I see my gift? How should you see your abilities in the local church? All of this says, we want to do things that help each other and verse 31, the word there, earnestly desire, the word for desires, the word for coveting. It's not wrong to want to stretch and do more and be more effective, but it is absolutely wrong to destroy the unity of the local church with a fixation on my gifting. Oh, this is what I wanna do. And I'm determined to do it. I'll give you a quick application of that. As we wind up the week here, there are , there have been some women who are gifted speakers. And as , as a result of that, they want to preach. They want to violate the rules and regulations that Paul will set forth in first Corine chapter 14 will get to that next week. And we'll talk more about that, but they wanna violate those rules and regulations because I'm so gifted in this area. They need to read first Corinthians chapter 12. They need to pursue the way of love. First Corinthians chapter 13. We'll be reading that on Monday before I let you go. I hope that you're thinking about Sunday services on Sunday, the 17th, that is Easter Sunday. And I understand, and you understand that Easter is not something that the Bible mandates. We remember the Lord and we remember his death barrel resurrection. If we've talked about in our Bible reading this week, we remember him every Sunday, not just once a year, but there will be lots of people looking for a place to go to church on Sunday. They feel like they need to do that. People are doing that. We should go somewhere, make sure that you're extending an invitation to your friends and your family help people think about coming aside , particularly because Sunday morning, I want to talk about what we do with doubts. And there seems to be more doubts about the Bible about Jesus, about God, than there ever has been. That's probably a result of so much media and the internet. So many channels where people can go to get information that would raise doubts and they can hear about things that would cause them to have doubts. I'm talking about doubt this Sunday, and I'll be using that to introduce some important material, an important preaching series in may. So this is a big Sunday for us at west side . Make sure that you are there and make sure you have invited someone to come because we're gonna talk about what you do when you have doubts like, like Thomas did. He doubted the resurrection. So looking forward to seeing you on Sunday, thank you for listening to the Monday morning coffee podcast, hope that you have subscribed or followed this podcast. Cast hope that you're telling others about it until next time. I hope that your coffee today is delightful and your Friday is blessed and starts a great weekend. That will include a Sunday with us at west side . I hope that your day today is a good day and the Lord is with you today, all day. I'll you on Monday, Monday morning, I'll have a cup of coffee and I'll be ready to read the Bible with you.Speaker 1:
Thanks for listening to the west side church of Christ podcast. Monday morning coffee with Mark far more information about Westside . You can connect with us through our website, just christians.com and our Facebook page. Our music is from upbeat dot .com that's upbeat with two PP's, UPP , B E a T , where creators can get free music . Please share our podcast with others and we to look forward to seeing you again with a cup of coffee , of course , on next Monday ,