TODAY’S SCRIPTURE 1 Corinthians 15:33; 2 Corinthians 6:14
The most powerful person is not the loudest, strongest or the one with the best title. The most powerful person is the one with the most influence. While we should always be nice to everyone, there are some people who can be negative influences on us.

In 1 Corinthians 5:9-10 Paul refers back to a lesson he had taught them earlier. He apparently had taught them not to keep company with immoral people. He presents them with the idea that they would have to go out of the world completely to avoid being around people who were not godly. Since this isn’t possible, it helps us to at least be aware of the significance of both positive and negative influences.

We are supposed to try to have a positive influence on others. We should try to find people who will influence us in positive ways as well. Our friendships and relationships are crucial for defining who we are and who we will become.

In 2 Corinthians 6:14 Paul uses the example of being unequally yoked. The idea is of two oxen or similar animals yoked together pulling a plow. If they are unequal in strength, then they will offset each other. The weaker will drag the stronger back or the strong will drag the weaker to exhaustion. This is a reference to Deuteronomy 22:10 where Moses instructs that an ox and a donkey should not be allowed to plow together. Paul continues his thought in 2 Corinthians with two questions. “For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?” The example and this line of questioning is used to remind us we are called to live a certain kind of life and avoid anything or anyone who could take us away from that. How can darkness and light be present at the same time?

While we have been created to need fellowship, some fellowship is not good for us. Sometimes our relationships are not healthy. If we try to live godly lives, we cannot altogether avoid people who are not like us. We must interact with them whether it be at school, work, the ball field, the grocery store, or a restaurant. It is worth our time to consider filling the time we can control with positive influences based on fellowship with good people.

There are people who have more influence over us than we want, and we need to make sure we do not let them drag us down or encourage us to be someone we fight so desperately not to be. God does not want us to be dragged backwards by fellowshipping people with negative morals. He would much rather us be a positive influence on them and spend as much time as possible with people who make us better.

Today, I will…consider people whose fellowship is good for me and figure out how to spend more time with them.