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10/30 1 Corinthians 7-9

Paul writes in chapter 7 about marriage and chapter 8 about food sacrificed to idols.  At the end of chapter 9 he gives us his methods for success in his ministry.  Paul explains two very important concepts.

Being sensitive and flexible

Paul states that while he is free and a slave to no man, he willing becomes a slave to everyone.  He chooses to meet people where they are.  Imagine if you wanted to talk to someone about Jesus and you told them that you only have time next Tuesday @ 12 and you will be close to a local fast food place.  Can they meet you then and there?  Would you think they might be a little more receptive if you asked them when and where would be good for them.  Or if someone is a runner, would you become a runner just to talk to them during the cool down.  To what lengths are we willing to go to tell people about Jesus?

19Though I am free and belong to no man, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some. 23I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

Being prepared and having purpose

Speaking of running, Paul uses the analogy of running a race to get his point across.  Why even run in a race if your goal is to loose?  Whether it is to beat someone else or your best time, do it with a purpose.  If your goal is not winning someone to Christ, then what exactly is your goal?  We are called to share the Gospel with all unbelievers.

24Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.  25Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. 27No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Training is the key.  No one tries to run a race without doing some advance training.  Yep, decided to run a marathon today, so I’m getting up off the couch and heading out the door, be back in 26 miles.  Not going to happen is it.  Neither will you be successful with leading someone to Christ without spending time in God’s word, spending time thinking about how you may approach this person or that one, and most importantly spending time in prayer.

Paul was successful because he was flexible, sensitive, prepared and had a purpose.  Sounds like a winning combo to me.  What about you?

October 30, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , ,

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