Daily Devotion, 5-21-2020 - Beware of Your Allegiance

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Devotion: May 21, 2020
Reading: 1 Corinthians 3:5-23
Beware of Your Allegiance

This week the emphasis of our devotions has been geared towards living together as the Church. We have received guidance on pouring ourselves into others, navigating through difficult topics, and dealing with disputes. Today we turn our attention to another potential problem in church and that is our leadership allegiance. I have certainly enjoyed the leadership and guidance of many great leaders over the years and have tried to be a loyal follower as these leaders have guided me spiritually as well as vocationally. Allegiance to leaders is important but when our allegiance blinds us from seeing the bigger picture and the mission we are all working towards (which is disciple making), it is time to step back and assess that allegiance and its basis.

For the Christian and the Church, the ultimate leader is Jesus. When we place our allegiance in anyone else, to include the pastor, the lay leader or the various other leaders in the church, we have lost focus and begin to make our decisions based on the wrong motives. In today’s Scripture (which showed up recently in another devotion), the church of Corinth has begun to divide over different cliques that are formed based on different leaders in the church to include Paul and Apollos. Paul is encouraging the people of Corinth to follow the ultimate leader, Jesus, the true foundation of any church and of the Church universal. Paul reminds us that we collectively are a temple, and the foundation on which the temple is built is not Apollos or Paul or any other pastor, past or present, but is Jesus Christ.

Paul explains further than only the Divine God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, is capable of true wisdom and the moment that any of us think we are wise…well, we need to think again. The people of Corinth were using worldly wisdom to assess leadership potential and letting their different allegiances based on that worldly wisdom divide them. Although Paul was one of the leaders he mentions as having allegiance from loyal followers, Paul tells them (and us) that quarrelling over leadership is not good and that Jesus is the ultimate leader and foundation to whom we all need to give our allegiance. The same principle applies to our allegiance to leaders outside the church. No matter what the institution (political, economic, educational, even family), the foundation on which we build ourselves up should be Jesus. Jesus should be our rock, our salvation, and our go-to leader, in all circumstances and situations.

Have you pledged your allegiance to Jesus, first and foremost? Are your day to day decisions based on the impact Jesus has on your life and on the relationship you have with him? Let’s all pray that our allegiance remains steadfast in the truly Wise One who is interceding on our behalf, right now, so that we might live together, as the Church, in peace and unity.

Dear God, we give you thanks for your Word, and through the prophets and apostles you inspired to speak through, we have received great guidance on how to conduct ourselves in the church. You have told us how to pour ourselves into each other so that we can pour out your love to others who have not come to know you. You have taught us how to navigate through difficult conversations, through your Son, Jesus and how to deal with disputes and disagreements so that we might live together in unity. You have given us Jesus as a perfect example of all things good. Help us to place our allegiance in him as the truly Wise One who showed us the way and left the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in that way. In His name we pray, Amen.

 
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