Whom to Please – I Corinthians 7:32-34

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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Singer Ricky Nelson once had a hit song entitled, “I Went To A Garden Party.” In the chorus, he repeats the words: “You can’t please everyone, so you’ve got to please yourself.” This kind of philosophy seems to be drummed into our heads from every source: the media that seeks to brainwash us with ungodly standards, coworkers, and even family who embrace wrong concepts. We hear things like: “You’ve got to look out for number one,” and, “If you don’t look out for yourself, who will?” But especially for Christians, there is a far higher standard by which to live.

We, who know the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, should never forget we owe a debt of love and gratitude to Him who purchased our salvation with His life’s blood. Our constant goal ought to be to please Him rather than ourselves. Paul urges us to “…live unto the Lord [because]…we are the Lord’s…” (Romans 14:8). Then he reminds us that believers “…should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them and rose again” (II Corinthians 5:15). Paul also tells Christians who are married, to consciously and constantly seek to please one’s mate. The proper role of the husband is described being concerned “…for the things of the world, how he may please his wife” (I Corinthians 7:33). The instruction here is for a husband to provide well, bring security to his wife, and do the many things he learns will please her. Likewise, Paul tells Christian women: “…she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband” (I Corinthians 7:34). In neither instance is Paul talking about or sanctioning any form of worldliness. Instead, he is teaching a genuinely godly individual will seek to do all the things they know will please their mate. It should be uppermost in their thinking and activities. If one’s marriage partner expresses that something is important to them, immediate action should be taken to comply or supply what will please them. Following this course is not only God’s revealed will; it also brings greater harmony, stability, and happiness to any marriage. But when an individual only lives to please oneself, instead of one’s mate, the marriage often crumbles around them.

Who are you going to try to please today? If you’re married, we urge you to please the Lord by seeking to please your mate. Doing so will pay high dividends here and in eternity.

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."