Daily Devotional Bible Verse
for there must be factions among you in order that those who are genuine among you may be recognized. (1 Corinthians 11:19 ESV)
The church in Corinth was dealing with a lot of problems: sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 5), idolatry (1 Corinthians 10), and taking the Lord’s supper in an unworthy manner (1 Corinthians 11). Paul explained that God actually allows these to occur in order to help us discern genuine believers from the frauds.
When factions do arise, our actions represent who is really the Lord of our heart and help in revealing its motives. For example, those defending a sexually immoral lifestyle are ultimately working from the selfish motive of self-gratification, many times exalting their own lusts above God’s law.
When controversy comes to your church or ministry (as it inevitably will if you preach the Gospel) use it as a learning experience and examine your own motives. Are you experiencing division over essential beliefs (the Bible, Jesus, Salvation), or peripheral beliefs (Worship Music, Church Name, Color of Carpet)? Essential beliefs are those hills upon which we are willing to die and should continually fight for. Peripheral beliefs are those that we need to address in love, remembering always that the world will know we belong to Jesus by the love we show for one another (John 13:35); especially amidst conflict and controversy.
Determine a right response to division by determining the underlying motives of those involved, including your own. You may not always be right!