Just because you can doesn’t mean you should

From 1 Corinthians: A 35-Day Devotional

In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Paul says we are not our own. We were bought at a price. Having received our bodies as a gift from God, we are to use them to honor God.

Problems arise when we see our decisions as separate from our bodies or too small to impact our life. If we want to honor God with our bodies, we have to first honor Him with our decisions.

Not thinking things through is how “just one drink” leads to several drinks and eventually a night of regret. It’s how the racy photo you meant for one person can leave you exposed before lots of people. It’s how the innocent private message on Facebook can lead to a full blown affair.

Small decisions have eternal impacts.

Like the church in Corinth, we easily buy the lie that grace means “I have the right to do anything” (1 Corinthians 6:12).  As Christians, our actions are covered by the cross. We have forgiveness for everything — past, present, and future. But grace is not an excuse to do wrong; it’s a reason to do right.

Grace is not an excuse to do wrong; it’s a reason to do right.

There is grace, but there is also truth. God’s best for us is found on the other side of every decision, big or small. What is right for someone else is not always right for us.

Some practical questions to ask when a decision arises:

  • Is there a specific command for or against it in the Bible?
  • Will this draw me or others closer to Jesus?
  • Will doing this represent Jesus well?
  • Is it necessary or helpful?

The Bible is God’s Word, not a Magic 8 Ball. Rules might make decisions easier, but they don't cultivate intimacy or longing for Christ. The more we seek God in all that we do, the more we begin to think as He does and the easier it becomes to decide.

Reflect:

  • Do you seek God in the small decisions?
  • Have you ever made a seemingly small decision that impacted the rest of your life?
  • What is one way you can train yourself to think more like Christ?

Devotionals From This Study

to Discover More

Session 1

Do we all have spiritual gifts?

If we’re willing to admit it, most of us who follow Jesus have wondered if we have a spiritual gift. Just like any other type of compari...

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Session 2

What it means to be united

Let’s be honest: the Church isn’t exactly famous for its unity. We quarrel over worship styles, specific preachers, and which Bible trans...

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Session 3

The one time boasting is OK

When we think of who we were before Jesus, can’t help boasting about what He has done. Jesus rescued us. He took us out of the muck and m...

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Session 4

What happens when the church comes together

Ever found yourself on the receiving end of one of these comments: “You saw 13 people get baptized last weekend! That’s great. Did I tel...

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Session 5

The church is bigger than a building

God is in the building business. He’s not so concerned about specific architecture styles or floor plans, but about constructing great th...

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Session 6

What your silent judgment says about you

There are many examples in our daily lives of ways we judge others. Maybe we have a conviction against alcohol, but we look down on other...

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Session 7

Do you do what you say you believe?

Growing up, it was common to hear kids say, “If you are going to talk the talk, you better be able to walk the walk.” On the playground,...

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Session 8

What happens when sin goes unaddressed

God created the church to serve as light to the world. The church should be a place where love is abundant, God’s truth is displayed, and...

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Session 9

How to know when popular opinion is wrong

On TV, opinion-givers comment on other opinion-givers and call it news. Often, information’s value is determined by its effect on ratings...

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Session 10

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should

In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Paul says we are not our own. We were bought at a price. Having received our bodies as a gift from God, we are ...

Read Devotional

Session 11

God cares about your sex life

Watch any sitcom featuring a married couple talking about sex, and you will hear of husbands wanting sex, but not getting it, or wives wi...

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Session 12

God, please save my spouse

Belief can create tension in a marriage. For example, you might believe Clemson is the better university while your spouse bleeds garnet ...

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Session 13

Change how you see instead of what you see

In a world full of Photoshop and instant gratification, it’s easy to buy the lie that if we don’t like something, we can and should chang...

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Session 14

Don’t tie the knot until

When we’re single, we think marriage will fix our problems. But could it just be the idea of marriage we love? Dreaming together is easy....

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Session 15

Why can’t I do what I want?

When we discuss hot button issues today, “food sacrificed to idols” is not at the top of our list. But in the early church in Corinth, wh...

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Session 16

Why give time and money to the church?

It’s easy to hide in a big church. When hiding we may not fully appreciate the consequences of failing to fulfill our commitment to serve...

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Session 17

Do I have anything to offer?

Each of us has a unique ability. For instance, some are blessed with the ability to write. And within the field of writing, a special “so...

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Session 18

Are you training to win?

You read your Bible, attend church, tithe, serve, pray and passionately love Jesus. You do all the right things and you’re living the Chr...

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Session 19

Where to turn when life is more than you can bear

Ever heard the saying "God won’t put more on you than you can handle"? If you’ve been in a situation where someone told you this, you kno...

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Session 20

What are you going to chase today?

When we get married, we say yes to fully giving our lives to our spouses. There is no going back to our old life. We can’t have one foot ...

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Session 21

The greatest responsiblity we have as Christians

Life changes when we receive Jesus as our Savior. When we surrender our lives to Jesus, we receive forgiveness, eternal life, and freedom...

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Session 22

Why submit to my husband?

Paul instructs the church at Corinth on what’s proper in a worship service, specific to their culture — i.e. women wearing a head coverin...

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Session 23

Why searching your heart is a helpful practice for every day

If your smartphone’s autocorrect changes "I love you" into "I loathe you," it might lead to a rough evening for you and your significant ...

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Session 24

You were made for this

God gives us the gifts of the Spirit to fulfill the purpose of the church — reaching people far from God and teaching them how to follow ...

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Session 25

Does church even need me?

Every Sunday, you have a choice. You can go to church, or you can take advantage of the last day of the weekend by sleeping in and relaxi...

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Session 26

Are you serving with the right motivation?

Walking into NewSpring, you are greeted by several people. Entering the auditorium, you receive a pen and notes, then are helped to a sea...

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Session 27

How to go from good to better to best

Seek the gifts that build up the church. That was Paul’s answer to believers who wanted to see the Holy Spirit in their lives. Praying in...

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Session 28

Does structure limit the Holy Spirit?

When we wake up in the mornings, we do certain things to start our day.  When we go to sleep at night, we have another routine to help us...

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Session 29

Are you going through the motions?

It’s easy to live life just going through the motions. We have all experienced moments when we drive to the grocery store, pick the kids ...

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Session 30

Why does an empty tomb matter?

Miracles can be one of the difficult parts of Scripture to believe. The supernatural is rare, at times confusing, and by our understandin...

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Session 31

You are who you hang around

“You are known by the company you keep.” How many times have we heard that old saying? As a teenager, that might have sounded silly, but...

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Session 32

How to embrace the unknown

We hate the unknown. Everyone has to live with it, and we all have different ways of handling it. Most of us would not hand a car salesm...

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Session 33

You don’t need to fear death

What would you do for Jesus if you knew you couldn’t fail? Would you travel somewhere dangerous to spread the Gospel? Start that ministr...

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Session 34

How can I make a difference in the world?

Occasionally, in the midst of all the media’s doom and gloom, we hear a heartwarming story about radical love and generosity that touches...

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