Rights and Responsibilities – Hope 103.2

Rights and Responsibilities

Read 1 Corinthians 10:23-24 23 You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is beneficial. 24 Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others. (NLT) There is much debate about claiming our rights. Various […]

By David ReayThursday 25 Oct 2018LifeWords DevotionalsFaithReading Time: 2 minutes

Read 1 Corinthians 10:23-24

23 You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is beneficial. 24 Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others. (NLT)

There is much debate about claiming our rights. Various groups defined by sexuality, ethnicity, religion, or socio-economic status want their rights protected. The difficulty comes when those rights, legitimate though they might be, conflict with the rights of others. Whose ‘rights’ triumph? Those with the loudest voices, those with most political clout, those with the most media attention?

Back in the first century, Paul addresses a similar situation. In Corinth, some Christians were boldly exercising their rights to be free of certain rituals and traditions—often to do with what to eat and not to eat. They rejoiced in their freedom. Who cares about the old rules—we are right with God through grace, not observing the old rituals.

True enough. But Paul wants to add an extra dimension to this. I may be free to do or not do certain things. However, I have to take others’ sensitivities into account. I can’t just do what I like just because I am allowed to do so. If exercising my liberty causes great problems for others, then I may have to voluntarily restrict my liberty.

My rights may be real and legitimate. Then again, my responsibilities are just as real and legitimate. My freedom must never become freedom to do as I please.

Blessings
David Reay