March 23 2023 devotion on 1 Corinthians 8:1-2

We know that “we all have knowledge” about this issue. But while knowledge makes us feel important, it is love that strengthens the church. Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn’t really know very much. But the person who loves God is the one whom God recognizes. ~ 1 Corinthians 8:1-2

Paul is answering questions sent to him about issues in the church at Corinth. In chapter 8 he addresses the issue of meat offered to idols. As he opens chapter 8 the first three verses stand out to me. (Read verses) Knowledge makes us feel important. Knowledge highlights what I know. It is a very heady thing. It is a very prideful thing. Pride is the sin that follows knowledge around. But notice that Paul says, “…it is love that strengthens the church.”

It is interesting to note that the heresy in the first century church and caused so much chaos was Gnosticism. The term “gnosis” is the term for knowledge and the Gnostics believed that they had special knowledge and special extra biblical revelation on a variety of matters. They used their so-called knowledge to create disorder in the church. It seems that Paul could be engaging this heresy in this conversation in chapter 8. I would also note that Gnosticism is alive and well in 21^st^ Christianity. Just watch Christian television and listen to any number of TV evangelists who have had a “special revelation” from God.

I especially appreciate the phrase of verse 2, “Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn’t really know very much.” I enjoy learning and knowing and studying. But the longer I do ministry the more I realize that there is so much that I don’t know. Sadly, I don’t even know what I don’t know. That is very humbling and a good reminder. I do know the value of love. Love is imperative. It strengths. It Heals. It even walks the extra mile alongside someone, even someone I might disagree with. I would rather be known as someone who loved greatly than as someone who knew a lot. There will always be more to learn and to know, but walking in love will always be the best way to live.

Lord Jesus thank you for this reminder today. Thank you that love is a greater course of action than knowledge. Help me always to love first and then search for answers to questions out of love instead of out of the pride of knowing. Thank you for your patience with me. In Jesus name amen.