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Devotional - week of May 23, 2010


seek the good of others

 

Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.  1 Corinthians 10:24 (NIV)

 

For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.  1 Corinthians 10:33 (NIV)

 

Paul’s statement in 1 Corinthians 10:24 presents a very challenging and difficult responsibility for any believer. How could anyone live that way? Paul says in verse 33 that he lives that way. If we know how Paul lived that way, we can know how we can have the same quality of life.

 

Any believer who has found the way not to seek his own good but to seek the good of others has found the way to freedom from a spirit of selfishness. How did Paul do that and how can we do that? Paul says in 1 Corinthians 4:17:

 

I have sent Timothy to you, who is my beloved and faithful son in the Lord, who will remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church.

 

The key to understanding the life of Paul is understanding his “ways in Christ.” Paul’s ways in Christ are those that come from his experiencing his oneness with Christ. This enabled him to be free of selfishness and to have a spirit of love for God and for others. Can we do the same?

 

There is help for us in several places in the New Testament. One place is in 2 Corinthians 5:15. It says:

 

… and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.

 

Paul had preceded this statement by writing in 2 Corinthians 5:14, “If one died for all then all died.” Freedom from selfishness is in living out our crucifixion with Christ. Living out his crucifixion and resurrection fills a person with love for God and for others. Living for God is living for others.