1 Corinthians 10:23–24 (NKJV) 23 All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. 24 Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well-being.
My walk with Christ has led down many paths, through many lives, and the end result has left me with many stories to tell. I love everything the Lord is doing in me and through me. One of the most intriguing things I face is the questions many people have about their own walk. Of course, you get the normal, “is it okay for me to drink” and “is it normal to still get angry even after being saved” and so on. I have also had some questions that I will not get into here. The Lord has been so faithful to give me the words to say in each of these somewhat awkward conversations. At the end of the day, I believe these questions are always asked because they ultimately want to serve the Lord in obedience. All Things Are Lawful For Me The Corinthians were essentially looking to understand what they could get away with. Paul answering truthfully that all things are lawful. If you were to participate in some sort of sinful activity, that sin has already been covered by the blood of Jesus. Therefore, there is nothing we can do that is going to jeopardize our salvation. As long as there is true repentance, the sin will be forgiven. This, of course, is a beautiful thing because we have all fallen short of God’s glory and will continue to do so until this earthly life ends. The question then becomes not whether something is lawful or not, but is it going to be beneficial to my walk with the Lord? Is it going to bring me closer or further away from Christ? Not All Things Are Helpful Let’s be honest, if we start any question out with the words… is is okay, it probably isn’t. Like a child asking a parent “is it okay for me to have a popsicle before dinner?” That child knows it is not going to be helpful to eat that snack before dinner, they know the answer before it is really even asked. I get the alcohol question a lot. I answer this question the same way every single time… I ask them if drinking that alcohol brings them closer or further away from the Lord? If it takes your focus off the Lord, even for a moment, it probably should be avoided. There are a number of other common questions that I am asked, but they all have the same answer. If you are truly stumped, just ask yourself, “Is this helpful to my walk with Christ?” If the answer is yes, awesome. If the answer is no, you should seriously consider what the Lord is placing on your heart. Move Forward Or Fall Back The Lord has brought you to a better understanding of right and wrong. We honestly have to decide if we are going to move forward in obedience or fall back into the flesh. I hear all the time about how sin is not as simple as black and white. We have been conditioned to believe that what is good for one person may not be good for another and vice versa, but the Bible is very clear what is right and helpful and what is wrong. We are going to slip from time to time, we are going to miss the mark. But our lives should be moving forward in obedience to Christ and His commandments. Closing Thoughts: Most of the time we know the answer before we even ask it, this is especially true with it comes to sinful behavior. It is true that all things may be lawful, but the question will always be whether it brings you closer to the Lord or not. If you are participating in something that is taking you away from God, it may be lawful, but it certainly is not helpful! 1 Corinthians 8:9 (NKJV) 9 But beware lest somehow this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to those who are weak.