July 19/1Corinthians 9

In the last chapter Paul had talked about how the love of God, and not just knowledge, is what would hold the church together.  Here in chapter 9 Paul demonstrates how love is lived out in his own life.

Verses 1-15 > With knowledge from life and also from the Old Testament Paul says that he knows that he has a right to be supported by the very Church that he started. However Paul chose to act on love in which he didn’t receive support from the church. He didn’t want to be accused of being in it for the money as a lot of itinerant preachers were in that day. He loved the Lord and the people so much that he was willing to work to support himself and thereby quench any criticism that could come from some of the weaker Christians or even people outside of the Church. In Paul’s way of thinking love got the nod ahead of rights. In our selfishness we tend to put our rights ahead of love.

Remember in chapter 6 when the Christians were suing each other because it was their right? Well if love would have ruled in their hearts you wouldn’t have seen any lawsuits. Love would have settled their issues.

Verses 16-19 > To Paul all that mattered was serving God by serving people the gospel of Jesus Christ. To Him that was pay enough. Paul loved Jesus! It is amazing what we will do when we are in love. I didn’t like washing my dad’s car when I was a teenager. I would do it as fast as possible and just get it clean enough to pass inspection. But the day came when I had a date for Friday night and dad agreed to let me use the car. Well not only did I wash it but I also gave it a shiny wax job and I was whistling while I was doing it. What changed > Me! The car was the same, the water was still wet but I was IN LOVE! Love is the game changer when it comes to living for Jesus.

Verses 20-23 > It doesn’t matter who we are around love will cause us to find a way to tell people about Jesus even people who are way different than us. Love caused Paul to find some common ground with all types of people so that he could share Jesus with them.

The 4th of July fire works help us at Hilltop to find common ground with people using our parking lot to watch the fireworks from. We serve them music, food and face painting which is common ground for most anybody. It gives us a chance to tell them about Jesus. Love causes our people to set aside an evening to serve other people.

What common ground could you find with the people in your neighbor to be able to tell them about Jesus? Ask the Holy Spirit for suggestions.

Verses 24-27 > Paul said that is takes the discipline of an athlete to keep focused and the mission of telling people about Jesus. Love kept Paul from getting off track. He didn’t want to be disqualified from hearing “well done” from  the one he love >  Jesus.

“Paul had one great goal in life: to glorify the Lord by winning the lost and building up the saints. To reach this goal, he was willing to pay any price. He was willing even to give up his personal rights! He sacrificed immediate gains for eternal rewards, immediate pleasures for eternal joys.” Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary (Vol. 1, p. 602). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

Hilltop love is the game changer. Love of Jesus will carry over to love of people. That love will move us to tell people about Jesus.

Be Inspired Hilltop!




  1. Mark Gundersen says

    Paul was the apostle that led in setting up new church’s in Asia and southern Europe. This led to others looking to find something to hold against him. His response was that what is good for the goose is good for the gander but he was not going to push his rights. He let the church know that the eternal rewards were more important than the earthly rewards.