Paul used the worldly Greek games of his times as a metaphor for born again Christians walking in the spirit. He compared it to an Olympic foot race that was common in ancient Greece. Runners had to qualify for the race, and once qualified—compete. All but one win a “wreath” made of plants and flowers, indicating the victor of the race. Yet, for the Greeks they competed for this wreath that decayed, but Christians compete for a crown of life that is eternal. Now, in your competition, there are certain things that if you continually partake in, you will be disqualified!
How can you be qualified to run the race in Christ? Well, you must be born again! Why? Because in order to see the Kingdom you must be born again. The Kingdom of Christ is what rests at the “finish line.” How can you run, focused on a finish line you can’t see? You will be running blind!
Being born-again is the beginning “track shot” that fires off the moment you are born-again. Once you have your salvation, you have been qualified to run and you can see “the finish line” in order to receive a “winning prize” of the inheritance of the Kingdom.
Paul mentions to the church of Corinth the examples of the Israelites and how we can learn from them.
Just as most races have rules in which, if runners break, they are disqualified from running and thus winning. So too, for us there are spiritual boundaries that if we cross, we will not obtain a crown of life and receive the inheritance of the Kingdom.
Idolatry is the first way out of the race. After the Israelites were taken out of bondage, after they eye-witnessed the most miraculous powers of God…they still fell into idolatry. We may ask, “How was this possible?” Well, they made the golden calf because, “They did not know what had become of Moses.” There was a delay, so they panicked. They could not wait, they were anxious and uncomfortable. So, they turned to what they were used to in the culture of that time: idols. The world of Egypt was ingrained into them.
So, how often do we go to modern idols for comfort to distract our discomfort? How often, despite seeing glorious works of God’s goodness, when trouble and delays come, do we get anxious and escape to some kind of idol? An idol is a counterfeit god that we go to for power, healing, highness, and even love. ANYTHING CAN BECOME AN IDOL! For, we make them! And then, the spirits behind them come to seize us.
If you continue to participate in idolatry, which there are many different forms of, you will be disqualified from running the race!
And so, just like idolatry has shape shifted in our era, so too with fornication. Interestingly, the Greek word for fornication is “porneuo.” Notice the word “porn” is in there? So, porn or “virtual sex” falls under fornication. Not only, but imagining flesh in your mind and masterbating is also fornication. All you have done is removed the porn screen and made it in your head! So, do these similar things and you will be disqualified.
Another disqualification is tempting God. The example used here is when the Israelites became discouraged in the wilderness. They, “Spoke against God and Moses,” basically accusing God that they were being led to their deaths. To say, testing or tempting God is questioning His sovereignty, and denying His power and divine provision. This is another way you will be disqualified. Also, Jesus was tempted by Satan to tempt God and test His divine power. So, we can also tempt God by behaving foolishly and expect to “be saved.”
The final disqualification is complaining. The example used is when the Israelites complained about being hungry, and missed their past lives in Egypt with pots “full of meat.” A simple, basic need that God provides for birds was being complained about. So, have this kind of discontentment attitude and you will be disqualified from the race!
Run To Win
At the finish line, is the Kingdom of Christ, or “the land of milk and honey.” We are so near it, we can almost taste it.
Yet, we have to run with certainty, and focus. Professional athletes train, and discipline their bodies and live all in order to win. So to with us…
Satan knows his time is short so he is rushing his agenda. He will tempt us with all of these disqualifying ways. Especially with idolatry. A book that will help you get your sprint back is, “The New Idolatry.” This book will defeat deception, the number one weapon the enemy uses against us to hinder our race.
Check out our ministry so you can run that race and win! You can also call our ministry hotline at 838-217-0104 for more information. We specialize in deliverance, deception, false doctrine, etc. Go ahead now, run, but break the rules and you will be disqualified!