2 Corinthians 13:10 Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the power which the Lord hath given me to edification, and not to destruction.
The Bible’s built-in dictionary defines edification by contrasting it with destruction. Destruction gives the sense of tearing down something; therefore, it makes sense that edification refers to the opposite of tearing down. Consider a related word: an edifice is a building. This further confirms that edification means to build up something. As saints of God, we should be building ourselves and others on our most holy faith (Jude 20). In fact, everything we do should be judged by whether or not it works to build up or to strengthen us or other believers. Christians should focus on consciously building others in the faith. Consistently edifying others takes thorough planning and direction; whereas, destructive behaviour frequently takes place haphazardly.
- (For children): Did you ever work hard at building a tower with blocks only to have someone walk by and knock it down? How did you feel? This example demonstrates how much easier it is to destroy than it is to build. Our words function the same way. Satan finds pleasure from those who use their words to hurt and tear down others.
- (For everyone): Do you build up other believers or tear them down? Are they spiritually stronger for knowing you? What are some things that you could do to edify others today?
- Why is it important that we edify other believers? In what ways could this please the Lord? How could it be displeasing to the Lord if we destroy others?
- Ask the Lord to show you the importance of edifying others.
- Ask the Lord to give you a desire to edify those around you.