Spiritual privileges

For I do not want you to be unaware, believers, that our fathers were all under the cloud [in which God’s presence went before them] and they all passed [miraculously and safely] through the [Red] Sea; And all [of them] were baptized into Moses [into his safekeeping as their leader] in the cloud and in the sea;  and all [of them] ate the same [m]spiritual food;  and all [of them] drank the same [n]spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ.  Nevertheless, God was not well-pleased with[o]most of them, for they were scattered along the ground in the wilderness [because their lack of self-control led to disobedience which led to death]. – 1 Corinthians 10:1-5

I see Christians who have missed the high calling of God in Christ because of lust and sin, and inevitably they are remorseful. The joy of the Lord is gone from them. Where once they spoke boldly, they now ask questions. They talk about their spiritual hunger, their need to know Christ better, but there is more shadow than substance to it. You can see that wistful look which says, “Yes, I really do love Him – need Him – but I just can’t break this thing that has a hold on me! They can’t look you in the eye. – David Wilkerson

The Rock which gave water spoke of Christ who, as the pre-incarnate Christ, actually followed them, sustaining and meeting their needs in the wilderness, day after day. Likewise as believers today, Christ has given us the water of the Word and the refreshing water of the ministry of the Holy Spirit which sustains and ministers to those believers who will walk by the Spirit and drink from the fountains of the Word.

By the last three blessings Paul undoubtedly had the two ordinances of the church in mind—baptism (which portrays Spirit baptism), and the Lord’s supper (which portrays faith in the person of Christ and our need to continue to live by His life). But please note, these two ordinances portray spiritual facts and truth—truth that is to be appropriated by faith and by responsible Christian living. They portray our privileges and blessings in Christ, but they do not afford the believer with some magical protection by which we may presume upon the Lord and by which we may, in self-dependent rebellion, simply go our own way as did Israel, thinking that we have it made because of our blessings. – J. Hampton Keathley

After unloading the spiritual privileges of God’s people, Paul transitions into a startling contrast. The word “nevertheless” emphatically brings out the contrast between how many were blessed (“all”) versus how many with whom God was not pleased (“most of them”). This declaration is an obvious understatement of great proportions. Over two million people came out of Egypt, yet only two adults (Joshua and Caleb) were allowed to enter the Promised Land. The rest were “laid low”…as in six feet under! Literally, their carcasses were scattered across the wilderness. These individuals were tragically disqualified by death. They did not go back to Egypt and get “unredeemed.” The blood of the Lamb, which had taken them out of Egypt, was irreversible. They did not lose what they had, but they lost the reward God wanted to give them. – Keith Krell


The Danger of Spiritual Privilege



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