Steadfast, Immovable, Always Abounding
I Cor. 15:58 says, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” In the previous verses leading up to verse 58, Paul is telling the Corinthians about the second coming of Christ and how the faithful, spiritual followers of God will gain victory over death through Christ. Notice verse 57, “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Paul then tells them in verse 58 how they should conduct themselves in this life in order to be able to look forward to a better, eternal life in heaven. In verse 58 Paul begins with, “Therefore”, in other words when we consider the gravity of what Christ did for us by being sacrificed on the cross for our sins, and because we are promised that he will come again to reward His faithful servants with a home in heaven, then our reasonable response is to want to serve Him in whatever way He commands.
Paul gives three traits that Christians need to possess in verse 58. Three thing that Christians are to “be”.
1) Steadfast. Strong’s Concordance says the biblical definition of steadfast is “sedentary”, or “immovable” or “firm”. The same term is use in Col 1:23 which says, “if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul became a minister.” For the Christian, being steadfast means we are rooted or grounded firmly in Christ, our Rock, and His teachings. We are to stand firmly on God’s word and not be persauded by man or our own lustful desires that try to lead us away from God and into sin. A Christian is to be steadfast, firm, solid in God’s word and the practicing of it, and unyielding to anyone or anything that would pull he or she away from it.
2) Immovable (“Unmoveable” in the KJV). This term is used only once in the Bible and has a similar meaning to “steadfast”. Immovable, according to Strong’s means “not to be moved from its place, unmoved” or metaphorically to be “firmly persistant.” The picture here is of a Christians that will not be moved away from the Lord. A Christian that realizes that Christ is the Rock, the Firm Foundation for the church, our Salvation, in short our All in All. Therefore, faithful christians realize where their stength lies and will not be moved from its source, which is God Almighty. Psalm 62:6-7 says it this way, “He is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. (7) In God is my salvation and my glory; The rock of my strength, And my refuge, is in God.” These words in a Psalm of David give us a wonderful defintion of being immovable in God.
3) Always abounding in the work of the Lord. This is the third trait that Paul mentions in I Cor. 15:58 that christians must posses in order to be firm in the hope of eternal life. Over and over in God’s word, His people are commanded to labor in the kingdom of Christ. Eph. 2:10 reminds us that we were created “in Christ Jesus for good works”. Many other passages instruct us to labor, such as Galations 6:9-10, Matthew 25, Matt. 7:21, James 2 which talks about faith and works and the connections between the two. Matthew 25 tells the parable spoken by Jesus concerning the master and the servants which were given talents. Verses 14 through 30 describe how 2 of the servants were productive laborers for their master and were rewarded, but the servant who had been given one talent did nothing with it, rather choosing to bury it in the ground. He was call “wicked and lazy” by his master and sent away in punishment. The parable is a reminder that God’s people must be “doers of the word and not hearers only” (James 1:22).
God has promised us victory over death through His Son if we will simply be faithful, obedient servants all of our days here. Considering the sacrifce of Jesus and the assurance of God’s promises this would truly be the least we could do for Him.
- Garrett Alsip