YOU CAN DO WHAT YOU OUGHT
Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?
I can do all things though Christ which strengtheneth me.
Paul did not mean that he could do anything he wanted to do or some foolish thing. He could do all things that God wanted him to do.
We can do anything we ought to do, anything He wants us to do. And that leaves plenty of room for miracles! There is wide latitude within the limits of God’s will. We shall not feel cramped.
There is much we know is God’s will without making further inquiry. There is more of His will that opens up as we trust and obey. He would not ask us to do what cannot be done. But it is done through Christ, who keeps on pouring His power into us. His strength is made perfect in weakness, “that the power of Christ may rest upon us.”
We can do all the work that is within His will. He who said, “Go ye,” said, “Lo, I am with you,” and “All power is given unto me.”
CARNALITY WITH A HALO
For ye are yet carnal:…are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
I Corinthians 3:3
Let it be observed that the marks of carnality Paul had in mind here were not card-playing, dancing, and theater-going. They are, indeed, marks of carnality, but Paul was concerned with some sins we overlook while we lambaste other forms of evil. “Whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?”
Some who have long prided themselves that they do not smoke or haunt the movies seem not to have discovered that in their partyism and church strife they are just as carnal as the worldlings they censure.
Nothing has harmed the cause of Christ more than the Paul-Cephas-Apollos factions. And they are all the more deceptive because such carnality looks so much like zeal for the truth. “Nothing is so like conviction as simple obstinacy,” and more than one dear brother has fancied himself Mr. Valiant-for-truth when, indeed, he is Mr. Fond-of-a-fight.
Be sure your “conviction” is not carnality.