I came across this verse and it made me think about spiritual gifts.
“And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues.” (1 Corinthians 12:25, NKJV)
Did you see it? Let’s try it in the NLT…
“Here are some of the parts God has appointed for the church: first are apostles, second are prophets, third are teachers, then those who do miracles, those who have the gift of healing, those who can help others, those who have the gift of leadership, those who speak in unknown languages.” (1 Corinthians 12:25, NLT)
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Paul shares a list of things God appoints for the church (a.k.a. gifts) and in this list is leadership. Leadership doesn’t seem spiritual does it?
A little later on in 1 Corinthians Paul says, “Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts…” (1 Corithians 14:1a).
I think just like it is important for someone to pursue after the necessary gifts of miracles and church planting, it is just as important to pursue leadership. We need leaders in our homes, churches, and businesses.
This is a book review for Booksneeze.com. I was not paid for this review.
Todd Hunter’s book Our Favorite Sins had me from the very beginning. Something I usually do not comment one, but feel I should give kuddos to this time, is the graphic designer for the book cover. I like the subliminal message of the apple (symbol of temptation from the Garden of Eden) being slowly eaten as you move through the title of the book. Great job designer!
Now, on to the book. The whole time I was reading this book I kept hearing over and over in my head the scripture, “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:24 NKJV). Not only because Hunter used the scripture in the beginning of the book, but because I felt it was a constant reminder of the sinful nature we have as humans. Hunter did a great job explaining how that beating temptation requires struggle because it always involves sorting out rightly ordered desires for good and godly things from our disordered desires for wrong things (p. 3). See, Hunter breaks out the good stuff even on page 3. A few other favorite quotes from the beginning to help wet your appetites and maybe cause you to be tempted to read are:
- Not all temptations are sexual.
- It is sad and bizarre that we indulge our flesh even for a moment, after which we’re sure to feel guilty and ashamed.
- Sin makes you stupid. (One of my favorites!)
- Sin always brings struggle. But rather than struggling against the Spirit and our conscience, we need to strive with them, recruiting them as all-purpose foot soldiers in the fight against sin and temptation.
- Temptation is always produced by desire. Samson desired something so much that he tossed aside his desire to live in obedient partnership with God. Delilah had something he wanted so badly that his desire for her caused his desire for God and God’s purpose to fade into the background. (Ouch! I never want anything to cause God to fade to the background.)
- Americans don’t know what to do about temptation. Five out of ten don’t know what to do with the extra change given to them by the cashier.
- Christians struggle with challenges today that are unique to our culture and decade. Eve never coveted Adam’s smartphone. But, temptation was there. Culture changes and so does the species of temptation. Fifty years ago a book on temptation would never mention Facebook or Twitter.
- Sin from temptation is like a major earthquake under water. We think we can hide it, but it causes a tsunami of destruction.
- I can be tempted only when a desire I already have within me matches something that comes to my attention.
Wow! Right? I hope this has sparked something that would make you want to consider temptation and the role it plays in our life. Hunter goes on to discuss specific types of temptation for the remainder of the first half of the book and then the second half of the book he begins to deal with practical things that don’t work and do work in relation to overcoming temptation. Check out the Modern and Futile chapter; it’s an interesting read that will provoke you to prayer.