Tuesday, November 24, 2020

THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NOT IN WORD, BUT IN POWER [1 CORINTHIANS 4 VS 20] - EXPLAINED

'For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.' - 1 Corinthians 4 vs 20

Hello dearly beloved in the Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST. I trust GOD that understanding is granted you and insight, that you may see and know this matter which I now discuss. AMEN.

Many have wrongly interpreted and used the above Bible passage. Many quote that passage to mean that the Kingdom of GOD is not in Bible explanations, but in demonstration of the Supernatural. But hold on, how could the Kingdom of GOD not be in Bible explanations seeing that the job of every minister of the Gospel is to Explain CHRIST, to rightly divide the Word of TRUTH? - Selah

'Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.' - 2 Timothy 2 vs 15 {KJV}

It's evident that the Kingdom of GOD is in Word. - Selah. This makes it obvious that the context of our opening Bible passage must be investigated. - Selah

So in investigating the context of our opening Bible passage (1 Corinthians 4 vs 20,) let's see the pre-texts of that passage, and also the post-texts, so that we can have an understanding of what was going on there, and why the Apostle Paul made that statement and used that language. We will be seeing the pre-texts and post-texts in the Amplified Bible Translation;

'Some of you have become conceited and arrogant and pretentious, counting on my not coming to you.' - Verse 18

Something had happened in that Church, it was a thing of moral derail, a case of sexual immorality; and some of the Brethren, instead of them seriously addressing the issue, they spoke light of it, and even wished that the Apostle Paul doesn't come to that Church to address the situation. You may be asking I know this! We will see it shortly. Let's continue reading;

'But I will come to you [and] shortly, if the Lord is willing, and then I will perceive and understand not what the talk of these puffed up and arrogant spirits amount to, but their force (the moral power and excellence of soul they really possess).' - Verse 19

The Apostle Paul calls these set of Brethren puffed up and arrogant. These Brethren didn't mourn the issue that was on ground, they took it as nothing. Recall that the Apostle Paul had said this earlier;

'I'm not writing all this as a neighborhood scold just to make you feel rotten. I'm writing as a father to you, my children. I love you and want you to grow up well, not spoiled.' - Verse 14 {MSG}

He wasn't writing this letter to make them feel rotten.

This proves that they had done an abominable thing, and the Apostle Paul was writing to their correction. So He reminds them that He is not writing these letters to shame them, but that He wants them to grow up well. Take note.

'There are a lot of people around who can't wait to tell you what you've done wrong, but there aren't many fathers willing to take the time and effort to help you grow up. It was as Jesus helped me proclaim God's Message to you that I became your father.' - Verse 15 {MSG}

There aren't many fathers willing to take the time and effort to help you grow up

It's clear and evident that the focus of the Apostle's discussion in this letter (Chapter) was to correct the Church of their sin which they committed, and ensure their proper growth in the LORD. - Think about it

'I'm not, you know, asking you to do anything I'm not already doing myself.' - Verse 16 {MSG}

He implores the Brethren to follow after His upright ways in the LORD, making them see and realize that He is an example of the things (the good ways) He teaches and urges them to walk in. In other words, Apostle Paul preached what He did. Or rather, He practiced what He preached. - Selah

'This is why I sent Timothy to you earlier. He is also my dear son, and true to the Master. He will refresh your memory on the instructions I regularly give all the churches on the way of Christ.' - Verse 17 {MSG}

He is further comforting the Brethren by letting them see and understand that He is not taking things personal with them, but the same Instructions of CHRIST He instructs them with, are the same very instructions He sends out to the whole Churches. Hence, they should calm down and do the right thing.

It's clear right? It's getting clear to you right? Yea. Okay. We continue...

'I know there are some among you who are so full of themselves they never listen to anyone, let alone me. They don't think I'll ever show up in person.
But I'll be there sooner than you think, God willing, and then we'll see if they're full of anything but hot air.' - Verse 18 - 19 {MESSAGE BIBLE TRANSLATION}

Now this brings us to our main Bible Passage, Verse 20;

'For the Kingdom of God consists of and is based on not talk but power (moral power and excellence of soul).' - 1 Corinthians 4 vs 20 {AMP}

You see..., the Apostle Paul simply said, The Kingdom of GOD is not about mere talks without outward corresponding fruits, but It is in Moral power - not mere talks of morality, but showing forth the fruits of your talks indeed. - Selah. It was in the same vein He said this;

'Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.' - 2 Timothy 3 vs 5 {KJV}

Denying the power thereof | Not having the power thereof

He was saying the same thing here. He was talking about Brethren who profess godliness, but their outward conduct doesn't align with their profession (the talk of their mouth.) He even counsels that such Brethren should not be associated with. Why? They will infect you with such ungodliness.

'Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.' - 1 Corinthians 15 vs 33 {KJV}

The word "communications" used there means "Company / Associations". So, evil associations corrupt good manners. - Selah

So back to our Opening Bible Passage;

'For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.' - 1 Corinthians 4 vs 20 {KJV}

So we clearly see now what the Apostle Paul was talking about after seeing the Pre-texts. He never meant that the Kingdom of GOD is not in too much Bible Explanations, neither did He intend to say the Kingdom of GOD is in Supernatural manifestations, even though the Kingdom of GOD surely is in the manifestations of the Supernatural; yet as per the context of that discussion, that's not what the Apostle Paul was talking about. Remember this;

"A Bible text will never mean today what it never meant when it was first written." - A certain Preacher

Take note of the above quote. Always seek to know what the meaning of a Bible text or passage is when it was originally written, and don't be too quick to give the Bible your own meaning - You might be wrong! - Selah

Okay finally, let's see the post-text of our opening Bible Passage, so that we can sum up our finding;

'Now which do you prefer? Shall I come to you with a rod of correction, or with love and in a spirit of gentleness?' - Verse 21 {AMP}

Shall I come to you with a rod of correction?

You see, it's obvious that there was an issue in the Church that the Apostle was correcting them of. I told you earlier that it was an issue of immorality (sexual immorality), right? And you might have wondered how I knew that. Now the next chapter makes it plain;

'It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife.
And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.' - 1 Corinthians 5 vs 1 - 2 {KING JAMES VERSION}

See how the Message Bible Translation puts it;

'I also received a report of scandalous sex within your church family, a kind that wouldn't be tolerated even outside the church: One of your men is sleeping with his stepmother.
And you're so above it all that it doesn't even faze you! Shouldn't this break your hearts? Shouldn't it bring you to your knees in tears? Shouldn't this person and his conduct be confronted and dealt with?'

Uhmmm. Waooow. I suppose this discussion is clear to you now. The KJV puts the verse 2 this way as given above;

'And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned...'

Now, it was this category of Brethren who were arrogant about the situation that the Apostle Paul addressed in our opening Bible passage when He said, For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power. It's obvious that they had a defense to this abominable act instead of mourning it and addressing it. Hence the Apostle Paul said this;

'But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power.' - 1 Corinthians 4 vs 19 {KJV}

You see...The Apostle Paul was like, when I come to you guys, I will examine the life style and conduct of the arrogant amongst you who seem to have a defense for this evil deed. You get the point now? Yes. Certain of the Brethren had talks in defense to the error which had being committed. Possibly they were trying to bend the Word by way of sweet talks to suit and console the heart of the offender, instead of first rebuking Him and then consolation and comfort follows. So the Apostle Paul then said, when He comes, He will take an observation of their lives, to see if they have the moral power they speak of, whether they practice the Message themselves that they are trying to preach (even though they never knew they were simply arrogant and puffed up.) You get it? Yeaa. Hence the Apostle Paul said,

'For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.'

Denoting that, it's not about how sweet you can preach the Message, but how well you can show it forth.

I suppose this subject is clear to you now. GOD grants you understanding. AMEN.

GOD Bless you.
- Jenning U. Angel

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