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A Biblical Self-Image

A Biblical Self-Image

Low self-esteem. Our world is filled with clever ideas on how to help us feel better about ourselves. The Bible has something to say about it, as well but it’s quite different than what we’re accustomed to hearing.

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Firm Foundation, Volume 1

'This is one exciting letter. This is one relevant letter. This is a study that I just can’t wait to start. And I hope that God will create a similar expectancy in your own heart and mind."-Alistair Begg

Paul had been part of this church in Corinth when it was established, but when he comes to write to it in 1 Corinthians, he’s writing to a church that has wandered from its established foundations. All kinds of teaching and doctrine had been imbibed by people who should have known better. Many of those in Corinth were not as interested in the revelation that God had given in his Son and in his Word, but were more interested in speculation, novel ideas and theories. People had divorced belief from behavior and small group ministries followed particular teachers, snobbery forced people not to sit or talk with one another, based on what they had in life in material terms.

In general, when it came to spiritual things, the church in Corinth was a church that was fascinated by the spectacular and the flamboyant, forsaking the routine pathway of love that is grounded in truth. It might be referred to as the fellowship of confusion. And in that sense, there are striking resemblances to the Church in the 21st century.

Firm Foundation, Volume 2

“This is one exciting letter. This is one relevant letter. This is a study that I just can’t wait to start. And I hope that God will create a similar expectancy in your own heart and mind.” -Alistair Begg

The church in Corinth was a large church. Paul had been part of this church when it was established, but when he comes to write to the church in 1 Corinthians, he’s writing to a church that has wandered from its established foundations. All kinds of teaching and doctrine had been imbibed by people who should have known better. Many of those in Corinth were not as interested in the revelation that God had given in His Son and in His Word, but were more interested in speculation, novel ideas and theories. People had divorced belief from behavior and small group ministries followed particular teachers, snobbery forced people not to sit or talk with one another, based on what they had in life in material terms.

In general, when it came to spiritual things, the church in Corinth was a church that was fascinated by the spectacular and the flamboyant, forsaking the routine pathway of love that is grounded in truth. It might be referred to as the fellowship of confusion.

In Volume II of Firm Foundation - New Life, New Lifestyles, Alistair Begg looks at chapters five and six of 1 Corinthians wherein Paul deals with the subjects of sexual immorality and lawsuits as they pertained to the Christians living in Corinth. Again you will notice a striking resemblance to the Church in the 21st century.

Firm Foundation, Volume 3

In Volume Three of Firm Foundations, Alistair Begg examines chapters seven, eight and nine of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians. Paul’s desire for these people is that they might be presented mature in Christ Jesus and to that end he addresses a number of very practical elements of faith: Christian contentment; what it means to have freedom in Christ; what part love plays in that freedom; God’s plan for marriage; the rights and responsibilities of a Christian; how we can strive to “become all things to all men,” and finally how, as Christians living at the beginning of the 21st century, we should run the race of life.

Firm Foundation, Volume 4

It has been said that those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it, and the 10th and 11th chapters of 1 Corinthians are ripe with examples and warnings to the Christian who will heed them.

How far does Christian liberty extend? Is there a guideline for men and women in their relationship to one another and towards God? How may we correctly observe the Lord’s Supper?

These issues are as relevant to day as they were in the early church. In general, when it came to spiritual things, the church in Corinth was a church that was fascinated by the spectacular and the flamboyant, forsaking the routine pathway of love that is grounded in truth. It might be referred to as the fellowship of confusion. And in that sense, there are striking resemblances to the Church in the 21st century.

Do you easily forget the past? If so, then consider the lessons learned by the Corinthian church.

Firm Foundation, Volume 5

"I don’t want you to be ignorant. . ."

With these opening words, the Apostle Paul embarks upon the sensitive journey of encouraging the Corinthian church to show wisdom and discernment in the gifts and abilities of its members. As we’ll learn, this is primary in the health of the local church, for ignorance will breed those who are susceptible to wrong teaching. Wrong teaching leads to wrong living, and wrong living ultimately generates ineffectiveness in the body of Christ.

Chapter 12 of 1 Corinthians is concerned with the volatile issue of spiritual gifts. What are they? How are they manifested? Are some better than others? For many, this issue becomes a source of discrimination and individual pride rather than a source of unification and a spirit of oneness in Christ. Paul addressed these concerns with the Corinthian church, and we find that his words apply to the 21st century church as well.

Firm Foundation, Volume 6

The 13th chapter of 1 Corinthians may be one of the most beloved and most widely recognized portions of Scripture, but it also may be one of the most misapplied. When it is taken in isolation, this chapter becomes vulnerable to all kinds of interpretations, many of which are incomplete or misleading. In the first part of this volume of Firm Foundation, Alistair Begg connects Paul’s description of love to the immediate concern that the apostle had for the church in Corinth. By doing so, he gives us a richer and more faithful understanding of what Christian love should be like. In the second half of this series, we see that the God of love is also the God of order.

Paul continues his challenge to the Corinthian church in chapter 14 by giving them specific instructions on how to conduct themselves in worship. Since the function and focus of the church has not changed since the writing of this letter, Paul’s words on love and the gifts of the Spirit remain equally applicable to us today.

Firm Foundation, Volume 7

“Paul wants the Corinthian church to understand that for the Christian, life down here is simply hors d’oeuvres. It’s just the first course, the soup course. In other words, if Jesus is alive today, this isn’t it. But if he isn’t, then this is futility. There’s really no way around this, loved ones.” -Alistair Begg.

What does the Bible have to say about life after death? What will happen to our bodies? Do believers go immediately to be with Christ or not? In this volume of Firm Foundation, Alistair Begg turns to Paul’s teaching on Christ’s death and resurrection, and he explains the significance of these events for the Christian. Join him as he gives honest answers to some of life’s toughest questions.

Firm Foundation, Volume 8

“When Jesus calls people to himself, he calls them to serve. So, whether we’re called to serve in the capacity of an elder or an evangelist or a pastor, or whether we called to something entirely different, all of us are called to service. And service in the Bible’s terms is not a preliminary or a pathway to greatness. Service is greatness.” -Alistair Begg

In the closing chapter of 1 Corinthians, Paul teaches us that the reality of Christ’s resurrection has a direct impact upon ordinary life. Some of us may be inclined to believe that the high matters of doctrine are fine to think about on Sunday but are basically irrelevant to what we do on Monday. Paul’s final words challenge such a mindset. This volume of Firm Foundation is an exposition of the plain and practical instruction that Paul gave to the Corinthian church. We see here that if our beliefs are to be believable, there must be behavior that issues from our beliefs. Join Alistair as he clarifies the marks of this behavior and concludes the study of 1 Corinthians.

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