The Danger of Disqualification
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The Danger of Disqualification

Like an athlete, Paul disciplined his body, keeping it under control so that he would not be disqualified after preaching the Gospel to others. The danger of disqualification is an alarming thought! Alistair Begg walks us through Paul’s recounting of the history of Israel’s idolatry and sin, which serves as a warning against overconfidence or presumption. Yet there is comfort as well: God never allows us to be tempted beyond what we are able and always provides a way of escape from sin.


27But I discipline my body and keep it under control,2 lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

27But I discipline my body and keep it under control,2 lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

Warning Against Idolatry

1For I do not want you to be unaware, brothers,1 that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, 2and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3and all ate the same spiritual food, 4and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. 5Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown2 in the wilderness.

6Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did. 7Do not be idolaters as some of them were; as it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.” 8We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. 9We must not put Christ3 to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, 10nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer. 11Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. 12Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. 13No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

14Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.

Copyright © 2021, Alistair Begg. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Text provided by the Crossway Bibles Web Service.

Alistair Begg
Alistair Begg is Senior Pastor at Parkside Church in Cleveland, Ohio, and the Bible teacher on Truth For Life, which is heard on the radio and online around the world.