1 Corinthians 9:16-27 (KJV)
16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!
17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.
18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.
19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.
20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;
21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.
22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.
23 And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.
24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:
27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
O’ Lord see me through, Jesus see me through, there is a race that I must run, there are victories to be won! Oh God give me power every hour to be true!!! Lord Jesus see me through!!
As ordained servants of God, there is just one goal. The crown on the head and the voice that says “ Well Done and Welcome Home.”
But how do we achieve this goal? Every true believer is a minister of God and a preacher of the gospel. May I remind you, some people were specifically called, some called themselves and some was just simple availability.
For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.
But I tell you, God Equips the Called, He never calls the Equipped! Availability is a key ingredient in the call of God.
“If God Calls you, He will Provide for the Vision.”
Apostle Paul is our example in this study, and our study is divided into three subheadings.
The Pattern of Self-Denial, 1 Corinthians 9:16-19.
As Christians, preaching the gospel of Christ and everything Christ stands for is unavoidable. We are not ashamed of the gospel of Christ.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
To some, we might look like fools and sound stupid, but whence we know our target and know that our goal is to win them to Christ, we ought to remain steadfast not boasting about it, nor feeling “ I have arrived.” It is a must as true Christians to preach the gospel.
1 Corinthians 1:18
For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness, but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God.
Jesus Christ said; if anyone wants to be His servant, he must first denial everything including his own self, pick up his cross and follow Jesus. Luke 14:25-33, Luke 9:23.
Self-denial is a must to become a true child of God. We have to deny ourselves a lot of things, from the way speak, to the way we act. We are now a new creature; our old lifestyles have been nailed to the cross.
There’s a reward for selfless service to God and mankind. We should never abuse the gift of God upon our lives. “ Those who preach the gospel must live the gospel”
Serving all men, 1 Corinthians 19-23.
As workers in the vineyard, we ought to remember,
“Your Goal is very much more Important than the Role you Play.”
If we have this at the back of our mind, certainly we will preach Christ effortlessly and selflessly. Our utmost desire for should be the desire of total flexibility. I mean we have to be flexible to change in accordance to God’s words and will. Apostle Paul became four different persons on four different occasions.
And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might, by all means, save some.
But notice, he was still under God’s commandments and rules. He did not break any of them to please men.
He talks about becoming a Jew so that he could win the Jews; those under the law so he could win them; those without the law; and to the weak he became weak. At the end of the day, he became all things to men, in pursuit of saving them. As fellow laborers in the vineyard, we need to study our situation before we can lead the situation.
We need to add value to our work as ministers before God is going to give us direction.
Striving for a Crown, 1 Corinthians 26-27.
This is it!
I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
There is a race to run, a crown to be worn. If we truly understand this, our walk with God will have a huge impact on our service towards the propagation of the gospel of Christ. We have to run with Focus, Train & Compete with Passion, and Fight with Purpose and Master our Flesh.
Mr. flesh is one entity that refuses to let go without a fight. Romans 7:15-25, Apostle Paul was talking about the power of the flesh confronting him and trying to prevent him from serving God.
What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise.
Galatians 5:16 give us the Antidote to kill the flesh, we have to walk only in the spirit and do the things that are spiritually minded.
“Watch & Pray!” notice the bible says, Watch first. We need to observe every step we are taking and everything we are doing. Focus on the high calling of God in Christ Jesus lay aside every weight of sin and never pamper our weaknesses. Deal with our internal rubbish, confront our foundation because it will spring up and destroy our calling. We need to set our affections on the things that are above, mortify our body, (fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness). We need to put off the old man, which is lying, anger, lust, greed, pride, and filthy communication. Only then can we safeguard ourselves. It is compulsory we put on the new man and practice charity (love), which is the golden rule in becoming perfect in our walk with Christ. This guarantees our finishing well. Col 3:1-17.
Col 4:2 &17
Finally, continue in prayer and watch in the same with thanksgiving. Please take heed to the ministry, which you have receive from God, that you may fulfill it.
Have great Passion for the Work, which exceeds our Position, Gains and personal Preferences. Remain fixed on our Mission and Flexible in our Methods in Achieving it.
Remember we have to keep under our body and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means when we have preached to others, we ourselves should be a castaway.
Our goal and target are hearing those sayings from God when we have gone the last mile of the way, and we are resting at the close of the day. We only want to hear God say.
“ Well Done and Welcome Home My Good and Faithful Servant!”
Remember the true Picture, less you lose sight of the Vision. Priority is key, Discernment is Priceless.
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