A Modest Proposal in the Pursuit of 1 Corinthians 10:31

by Brent Amato

This piece is currently featured on the CLS Blog and is shared here with permission. To learn more about the CLS Blog, visit CLSBlog.org.

It was probably written around A.D. 55 or 56 - a long, long time ago! It is part of the Bible, which means it is inspired by God (II Timothy 3:16), eternal (Isaiah 40:8, Matthew 5:18), not subject to any revocation or amendment (Deuteronomy 4:2, 12:32), and profitable to everyone who reads it (II Timothy 3:16-17). It was written to Christians at the Corinth Church, which could have included men like Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John, fishermen and Disciples; women like Lydia, a seller of fabrics and the first Christian convert in Europe; and people of all professions, including lawyers and law students. It was written for all times, even right now.

Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians contained truth and many strong exhortations including I Corinthians 10:31 - "Whether then you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." So very much has been written and contemplated about this comprehensive verse. Beyond making the initial point that it applies to the most basic, mundane things of life (very important to we Italians!), it appears to cover everything we do with no "loopholes", legal or otherwise. What does it mean for lawyers and law students?

While this Blog cannot answer that question for every lawyer or law student, much less everyone, I can make a modest proposal that can help us. How can Christians bring more glory to God in their law practice or law school experience? Can I suggest three questions to answer about this Biblical pursuit that might head us or keep us in the right direction?

1. What is distracting you? "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth." (Colossians 3:2). The issue is focus. Consider "things" in your vocation that might be an obstacle in your pursuit of I Corinthians 10:31. Confess them before God and repent (turn 180 degrees away from them and toward God).

2. What is bothering you? "Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need." (Philippians 4: 11-12). The issue is contentment. Consider what might be bothering you in your vocation that might be an obstacle in your pursuit of I Corinthians 10:31. Confess them before God and repent.

3. What do you fear? "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord…." (Proverbs 3:5-7). The issue is faith and trust. Consider the fears you have in your vocation that might be an obstacle in your pursuit of I Corinthians 10:31. Confess them before God and repent.

So now what? Obedience is always the order of the day (James 1:22-25, Acts 2:37, 22:10). Allow God to lovingly and clearly lead you (Psalm 139:23-24), and you will find antidotes to things of the earth, bothers and fears that hinder your pursuit of I Corinthians 10:31. Through God’s power, this life verse/goal for you and your vocation will grow closer and more attainable than you can think and imagine!


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