“For if I preach the gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! For if I do this of my own will, I have a reward, but if not of my own will, I am still entrusted with a stewardship. What then is my reward? That in my preaching I may present the gospel free of charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel” (1 Corinthians 9:16–18).
I am struck by Paul’s attitude. With so many persons I have met in various avenues of ministry, money was a major motivation. Paul makes it very clear that it was not so with him. In fact, he would not even boast in the fact that he was preaching the gospel to the Gentiles. He had received a divine call to preach the gospel and that meant he was under charge by God. What about reward and compensation for such a commitment? It came from the shear joy of seeing others receive eternal life without charge and the church built as a temple of God in the Spirit.
This again raises a question about our motives in ministry. Personally, I could not be happier than right now as I give time and personal resources to see the gospel spread through “true Timothy’s” to the unreached people groups of the world. That is my reward. I want to fulfill my responsibility as a “stewardship” to God and without any obligation to man.
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