Do you know who you are in Christ? Do you know you were called by God through his will? You have a plan and a purpose, have been enriched in every way, in all your speaking and in all your knowledge because our testimony about Christ was confirmed in you. Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed! You are chosen by God to be a Christian in this time and in this season, your purpose to be fulfilled in this age. Chloe had a purpose. This purpose, from a very obscure woman’s household, included a letter to Paul of Tarsus. This letter sent inspiration and encouragement to the Corinthians.
The Apostle Paul wrote the majority of The New Testament, the Lord using this man’s gift of interpretation, communication skills, determination, perseverance, faith, and knowledge of Scripture to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In his opening words to those who so desperately needed to hear the Word of God, Paul knows exactly who he is, “an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God”. This could read for us today, Nicole, an encourager to women in Christ Jesus by the will of God. Just as Paul knew he was called by God, I am encouraged by his words today. Woman, if you are a Christian, then you are called by God to be used for his glory.
In his opening words, Paul encourages his listeners with bestowing the grace and peace to them that only Christ can bring. I love that. Today, you do not hear these words, “Nicole, grace and peace to you from the Lord Jesus Christ.” How I would relish in these spoken words if used by Christians greeting each other this way. Paul’s heart is for the Gospel, to remind and fan the flame in the Christian community we have been enriched in every way; in all speaking and all knowledge and we lack no spiritual gift as we eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. Powerful words, for imagine if the pastor of every Christian church walked up to the pulpit, blessed the people and reminded them, “you are enriched in all your speaking and all your knowledge through Jesus Christ who gives you strength”. Amen!
Now, getting to the reason this letter is written. “My brothers, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:11). This woman’s name is mentioned once in Scripture, but has much influence on the Apostle. From one sentence we can read between the bold print and attempt to gain insight into an obscure woman. There are several assumptions we can make: Paul trusted this household led by Chloe, the letter was to inform not gossip, slander or defame the church members and the sense of urgency could be understood completely. Paul was summoned by Chloe’s house to address sexual immorality, divisions, lawsuits, marriage, food sacrificed to idols, feasts, the Lord’s supper, proper worship and freedom in the church.
These letters to the Christians in Greece can be compared to our churches today. We have divisions, ramped sexual immorality, lawsuits, marriage problems, etc. These words are as relevant today as they were thousands of years ago. Why? Human nature has never changed. Our flesh desires what it wants and our minds tend to follow. Our advances in technology, many still amaze me today, have increased our knowledge becoming indispensable, but also have enhanced depravity. The internet can be used in productive ways, but also can encourage destructive paths. These Spirit inspired letters from Paul speak just as loudly to our culture as it did then. God’s intuitive promises, his creativity knowing man’s spiritual need for wisdom, giving Paul the pertinent words that would last centuries is nothing short than a miracle. Remember God knows man’s heart, he also knows what man needs to spiritual survive and thrive.
I am thankful for the letter sent by Chloe’s household. The love these people had for the church to flourish, for the Gospel of Jesus Christ to be spread and knowing Paul would encourage the church is inspiring to me. Many Christians today, including women, have the tendency to gossip and “talk” about the House of God and all of its problems through bible study, prayer groups and fellowship. If the Holy Spirit has prompted you to “stop the madness”, enough with the chatter, but pray for the Gospel to Spread, pray the overseers are focused on the Word, encourage those in leadership you appreciate all they do. The church does not need our gossip, backstabbing mouths; the church needs prayer!
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 holds some of the most inspiring words for my spirit. As a mother and wife, I have stayed home for most of my children’s lives. I have studied the Word, prayed, worshipped, believed, hoped and wrote everything the Lord has put in my heart. On the outside, the physically eyes could not see anything happening, but in the spiritual I was fighting a spiritual battle for my family believing I could do something great for the Lord. “Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble men. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despise things and the things that are not to nullify the things that are so that no one may boast before him.”
Many have looked upon me as just a housewife and mother, but that is not what God sees. He sees a daughter of the Most High, a woman after his own heart, a persistent mother who continues to ask, seek and knock for those entrusted to her. God sees what I can be, not what I am or was. I definitely was not wise, nor influential and born of noble birth, but God saw me as his child, enriched in every way, in all my speaking and in all my knowledge, not lacking any spiritual gift as I eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. I am thankful for the eyes of God, which is why I believe Christ said this so often, “If you have eyes to see and hears to hear let him listen.” Ask for those spiritual eyes and spiritual hears to see and listen for what God is doing through you.
The bible does not say who Chloe or her household were. It does not say they were influential, wealthy or born of noble birth, for God will use anyone who has a willing heart to obey him. The Apostle Paul received the letter and acted immediately. I am sure he was grateful for this household’s desire for the Gospel to spread, for the love of Christ and their trust in him to write a letter encouraging believers, churches and Christian communities for thousands of years.
Let us pray and CONFESS the Word of the Living God;
We come to you as daughters and servants of the Most High. I desire to serve you with all my heart, mind and soul, so I pray the words of my mouth and meditations of my heart are pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer (Psalm 19:14). I want to be a woman such as Chloe. I want the love for the church, the spreading of the Gospel, and Truth to be present in my actions, words and attitudes.
I desire a pure heart, for the bible says out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34). May my words be full of the Holy Spirit, seasoned with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self-control (Galatians 5:22). I know it is difficult to tame the tongue, but I also know I can praise your name with my heart and have your wisdom to guide my mouth and lips to promote instruction (James 3:7-8, Proverbs 16:23).
I know the greatest praise of all is the confession with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and if I believe with all my heart God raised him from the dead, I have eternal salvation (Romans 10:9). May I be as Chloe, unashamed of the Gospel, ready to pick up my cross and carry it for the plan and purpose you have ordained for me (Romans 1:16, Matthew 10:38, Romans 8:28). I pray to encourage and lift up the body of Christ, always in prayer and thanksgiving. I thank you this day for I can come to my Lord boldly, request your strength to do all things and live for something bigger than myself (Hebrews 4:16, Philippians 4:13). In the name of Jesus of Nazareth I pray, Amen.