On October 20th, we looked at the “both and” principle Jesus presents in Acts 1:8. Paul expands this idea in 1 Corinthians 9, but through the attitude of being a servant. “For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them” (1 Corinthians 9:19). Though Paul was a Jew, God gave him a very expansive view of what He want to accomplish through him. This view included the Gentiles – all nations.
Like Jesus, Paul took the position of being a humble servant. That was a requirement in reaching “all” with the gospel. As those verses in chapter 9 continue, Paul listed many situations where he became like the people he preached the gospel to; “To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings” (1 Corinthians 9:22–23).
It is not just individuals that Paul was thinking of winning/saving through the gospel, but all people groups of the world. That is why he was sensitive in every people group he met and adapted to their culture; becoming like those he wanted to win in order to gain their ear, heart and be saved.
Remember what is said about Jesus; “For we do not have a high priest [one that serves God on behalf of men] who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15). That is worth pondering! Can you and I serve the unsaved without partaking in their way of life so they see our humility and genuine interest in their souls? Jesus did this. Paul did this. Are we following these examples?
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