We have become a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.
—1 Corinthians 4:9
In 1 Corinthians, the apostle Paul describes the difficulties he and the apostles had endured for their faith: “We have become a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men” (4:9). In this verse, the word translated “spectacle” is the Greek word “theatron,” from which we derive our English word “theater.” Our lives have become a theater to the world, both to angels and to men.
In his paraphrase of the Bible, Eugene Peterson captures the meaning of the word: “It seems to me that God has put us who bear his Message on stage in a theater in which no one wants to buy a ticket. We’re something everyone stands around and stares at” (1 Corinthians 4:9 MSG). We are all in a theater. We are on life’s stage.
Your life—especially the difficult parts, including your failures—will never make sense until you understand that your life story is part of a larger, eternal drama that is being played out on the world’s stage for both a visible and an invisible audience. This drama began in heaven many, many years ago when Lucifer rebelled against Satan and was cast to earth.
And this epic drama, of which you and I are a part, is going to answer three major questions:
- Who will ultimately prevail in the eternal battle between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan?
- Who is the more worthy ruler of the universe: God or Satan?
- Will Satan be successful in turning God’s creatures, like you and me, against their Creator?
The people around you right now are watching this drama to see how you respond to life’s successes as well as failures, to the joys of life as well as the disappointments of life. Do those things draw you closer to God or they drive you away from God?
There is also an invisible audience watching this drama on earth. God and his angels in heaven are watching. But not only them—Satan and his demons on earth (and even some confined under the earth) are watching too. Everyone is watching this epic drama and the part we are playing.
You will never be able to evaluate your life and your failures correctly until you properly evaluate the whole of your life. In order to experience your second act in life, you need to understand the duration of this drama, your role in it, and your reward for participating in it.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Prepare for Your Grand Finale!” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2016.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
Scripture marked MSG taken from “The Message,” Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.