This passage demonstrates Paul at his simplest, most practical level. Yes, we love the reams of deep theology which if like me, we struggle to understand, but here is the practical outworking of such comprehension. Paul begins by asking a series of questions, which he assumes are going to be answered affirmatively. Basically, he is asking if there is any point, any blessing to being a Christian believer and, as he assumes the answer is 'Yes', then here are some rules to stick by...Seek agreement rather than dissension, love each other-remember 'love' was seen as a doing word, a verb, in those times. No point saying to someone that you love them if you don't listen to a word they say or never do what they ask you to do! Put yourself in the right place by reflection and a greater thoughtfulness towards others. For me, it seems that human lives and understanding is a process of moving outwards...From the young years of dependence wholly on parental figures to a possibly self-obsessed independence, towards a growing awareness of others' needs and that it is not all about me and generally that begins to revert back to self and eventually dependence on one's children. If you are in that period of life when you can sense that your empathy for others is growing, then exercise it, develop it as a muscle. You will discover Christ most fully in your self-giving to others, particularly the outcasts and dying: in them is to be found Jesus in His hidden glory!
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