Faithlife Sermons

Supporting The Ministry (Part 1)

1 Corinthians  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  39:54
0 ratings
· 3 views
Files
Notes
Transcript
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →

Secular -

In a Sunday School class, a teacher questioned all the children, “If I sell my car and my house, donate all of my savings to the church, and arrange a grand garage sale will there be any chance for me to enter heaven?
One of the children from the class replied excitedly, “NO!”
“After I’m done with mowing the yard, cleaning the church daily, and keeping all the things tidy, would I be allowed into heaven?”
The reply was the same, “NO!”
She asked, “well then, how can I enter heaven?”
From the last chair in the back of the room, a 5-year-old boy screamed frustratedly, “You need to be dead first!”

Historical/Cultural Context -

Paul preached the gospel in Corinth in the early 50s AD during his second missionary journey (Acts 18:1–18). When opposition grew fierce there, the Lord Jesus spoke to him in a vision assuring him that he had ‘many people’ in the city (Acts 18:10). With this encouragement, Paul stayed on for eighteen months, ‘teaching them the word of God’ (Acts 18:11). God used Paul’s ministry to bring about the birth and establishment of the church in Corinth.

Biblical Text -

1 Corinthians 9:1–18 NKJV
Am I not an apostle? Am I not free? Have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord? If I am not an apostle to others, yet doubtless I am to you. For you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord. My defense to those who examine me is this: Do we have no right to eat and drink? Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas? Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working? Who ever goes to war at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not drink of the milk of the flock? Do I say these things as a mere man? Or does not the law say the same also? For it is written in the law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain.” Is it oxen God is concerned about? Or does He say it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written, that he who plows should plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope. If we have sown spiritual things for you, is it a great thing if we reap your material things? If others are partakers of this right over you, are we not even more? Nevertheless we have not used this right, but endure all things lest we hinder the gospel of Christ. Do you not know that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple, and those who serve at the altar partake of the offerings of the altar? Even so the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel. But I have used none of these things, nor have I written these things that it should be done so to me; for it would be better for me to die than that anyone should make my boasting void. For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel! For if I do this willingly, I have a reward; but if against my will, I have been entrusted with a stewardship. What is my reward then? That when I preach the gospel, I may present the gospel of Christ without charge, that I may not abuse my authority in the gospel.

-[Prayer]-

Life Principle - We Are Called To Support Our Local Church With Our Time, Talents, & Monetarily.

Life Point- Support Your Local Church, Not False Teachers.

Exegetical -

1 Corinthians 9:1–12 NLT
Am I not as free as anyone else? Am I not an apostle? Haven’t I seen Jesus our Lord with my own eyes? Isn’t it because of my work that you belong to the Lord? Even if others think I am not an apostle, I certainly am to you. You yourselves are proof that I am the Lord’s apostle. This is my answer to those who question my authority. Don’t we have the right to live in your homes and share your meals? Don’t we have the right to bring a believing wife with us as the other apostles and the Lord’s brothers do, and as Peter does? Or is it only Barnabas and I who have to work to support ourselves? What soldier has to pay his own expenses? What farmer plants a vineyard and doesn’t have the right to eat some of its fruit? What shepherd cares for a flock of sheep and isn’t allowed to drink some of the milk? Am I expressing merely a human opinion, or does the law say the same thing? For the law of Moses says, “You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain.” Was God thinking only about oxen when he said this? Wasn’t he actually speaking to us? Yes, it was written for us, so that the one who plows and the one who threshes the grain might both expect a share of the harvest. Since we have planted spiritual seed among you, aren’t we entitled to a harvest of physical food and drink? If you support others who preach to you, shouldn’t we have an even greater right to be supported? But we have never used this right. We would rather put up with anything than be an obstacle to the Good News about Christ.

Homiletical -

I personally, don’t like to mention money from the pulpit. I think it may be an over reaction because of the few years I spent studying the Pentecostal/Charismatic name-it-and-claim-it movement. However, we are going through this book expositing the text. So here we are.
What is going on here?
Paul had just shared about conscience and has hit them with a lot of things up to this point on how to believe and act. Because act out what you truly believe.
There were those going around saying that Paul is not a true Apostle because he was not one of the 12 or one of Jesus’ half brothers.
The Judaizers and other false teachers were going against Paul’s teaching. So he addresses their criticism of him line by line. rhetorical question by rhetorical question. These same types of things are said about pastors and ministers today. Some of the criticisms may be valid for certain ministers, but not all.
1) Paul points out that he saw the Lord physically on his way to Damascus. He was knocked off his horse and the Lord showed and spoke to Him.
2) He is not less of an apostle than the others for he writes “am I not as free as anyone else?”
3) His work amongst the Corinthians and them coming to faith is proof he is an apostle, even if others deny him the Corinthian church should not because he is, at the bare minimum, their Apostle.
He has setup why you should listen to him over other people. Over the false teachers.
We know that Peter equates Paul’s writings as scripture:
2 Peter 3:15–16 NLT
And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him— speaking of these things in all of his letters. Some of his comments are hard to understand, and those who are ignorant and unstable have twisted his letters to mean something quite different, just as they do with other parts of Scripture. And this will result in their destruction.
Scripture is not something that we can pick and chose what we apply and not apply. We believe and do it all. Where we fall short God grants forgiveness and is made strong in our weakness:
1 John 1:9 NLT
But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.
2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.
So we know that those today who distort the teaching of scripture is nothing new. Which is why 1) Paul puts this section in hist letter to the Corinthians and why 2) we must study, not just read the Bible:
2 Timothy 2:15 NASB95
Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.
Now we come to his direct questions for those that question him:
1) 1 Corinthians 9:4
1 Corinthians 9:4 NLT
Don’t we have the right to live in your homes and share your meals?
It was common for teachers to be put up for the night or a few nights and be taken care of by the hosts of the house. This allowed them to not have to worry about having a place to stay in small villages that didn’t have inns. It also freed them up for the cost of food and lodging in larger cities.
2) 1 Corinthians 9:5
1 Corinthians 9:5 NKJV
Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?
Having a believing spouse in this culture was kind of like a status symbol. You have a household and you are taking care of it well. So this was a criticism laid against Paul.
3) 1 Corinthians 9:6-7
1 Corinthians 9:6–7 NKJV
Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working? Who ever goes to war at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not drink of the milk of the flock?
In many situations, Paul would go into a city and work a job in order to supply his own way and not lay that upon the people as he was introducing the Gospel.
Why?
Because many teachers of others religions and so-called Christian teachers would require a payment or an offering of money in order to listen to them. Paul didn’t want to be lumped in with them in people’s minds as they were taking advantage of the people.
You might say they were living the high life while those in their congregations were struggling to make ends meat. Does that sound like some teachers in the world today? Your name-it-claim-it folks?
Now Paul continues down this vein letting them know that it is right for the worker of the Gospel to be given a certain monetary gift in order to live. This should be done at a fair livable wage, from which the church can afford.
1 Corinthians 9:8–12 NLT
Am I expressing merely a human opinion, or does the law say the same thing? For the law of Moses says, “You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain.” Was God thinking only about oxen when he said this? Wasn’t he actually speaking to us? Yes, it was written for us, so that the one who plows and the one who threshes the grain might both expect a share of the harvest. Since we have planted spiritual seed among you, aren’t we entitled to a harvest of physical food and drink? If you support others who preach to you, shouldn’t we have an even greater right to be supported? But we have never used this right. We would rather put up with anything than be an obstacle to the Good News about Christ.
Notice Paul says that is right for the man of God who preaches the Gospel to be supplied by the Gospel.
Now this is the part that I hate to teach on, but it is in the Word. I don’t like talking about money because it seems so self-serving to me. Yet here it is in the scripture.
One question that comes up all the time is “What should a minister be paid?” Well, the conventional wisdom says that they should be paid whatever the average of the church members make in their jobs. Then we take that range of pay and pick something on the higher end.
That’s all well and good, but if a church can’t afford it, they can’t afford it.
God often calls ministers to bi-vocational ministries and even volunteer ministries. This is usually for a season. That is what Paul is referring to when he says he had not used this right.

Illustration -

Now you have so-called ministers who will not only use the right but take advantage of that right and then blow it out of the water.
Benny Hinn comes to mind. Right here in Orlando Benny was preaching and then told them to shut off the cameras. They shut them off and then he said and I quote, “My family and I have been good to you all year, it is now your time to be good to us. Give your watches, rings, cash, checks. Whatever you have.”
The sad part is that people did it! They gave all their high dollar items in the offering plate. When it was all set and done he had them turn the cameras back on so he could finish his speech. Yes I said speech, because he is so theologically whacked that his speeches shouldn’t be called sermons.
This is pure selfishness and disgusting. When I read this section of scripture about the other teachers Paul refers to here I always think it was something like what happened there in Orlando.
Now on the other end you have a church that won’t let the pastor or his wife take another job, but they literally says things like, “We pay our pastor so little because we want him to remain humble.” Yet the people who say that aren’t living in run-down homes with a car that may or may not start and can’t afford to put shoes on their kids feet.
You think I am joking? I am not. I know of a minister that, that was his first church.
One last thing about this.
My grandmother who went to be with the Lord in the mid 90s was a Godly woman. She had a direct line to God we used to say. Because if we had a problem and she prayed about it, it just seemed like the problem was resolved quickly. This wasn’t a one-off but 98% of the time.
She got to the place where she would send a little in to her church and then send just about the rest of here Social Security to these TV charlatans.
We didn’t know until after she died that her house was falling apart. There were holes under the couch, the refrigerator, and her bed. She would hide it from us because she wanted to give to the work of God. The whole time these men during this time had golden faucets and toilets and an A/C in their doghouse for their dog.
Yes, this stuff actually happened. When she was gone, we were all incensed! We would have fixed things for her, but she got tired of everyone telling her stop giving to these frauds because she believed in them. I think that’s why she never told us.
These evil wolves in sheep’s clothing are going to have to answer for that one day I guarantee it!

Life Principle We Are Called To Support Our Local Church With Our Time, Talents, & Monetarily.

Call to Action – altar call….

Related Media
Related Sermons