Paul Surrenders His Rights
9 jAm I not free? kAm I not an apostle? lHave I not seen Jesus our Lord? mAre not you my workmanship in the Lord? 2 If to others I am not an apostle, at least I am to you, for you are nthe seal of my apostleship in the Lord.
3 This is my defense to those who would examine me. 4 oDo we not have the right to eat and drink? 5 pDo we not have the right to take along a believing wife,1 as do the other apostles and qthe brothers of the Lord and rCephas? 6 Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working for a living? 7 sWho serves as a soldier at his own expense? tWho plants a vineyard without eating any of its fruit? Or who tends a flock without getting some of the milk?
8 Do I say these things on human authority? Does not the Law say the same? 9 For it is written in the Law of Moses, u“You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain.” Is it for oxen that God is concerned? 10 Does he not certainly speak for our sake? It was written vfor our sake, because wthe plowman should plow in hope and the thresher thresh in hope of sharing in the crop. 11 xIf we have sown spiritual things among you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 12 If others share this rightful claim on you, do not we even more?
Nevertheless, ywe have not made use of this right, but we endure anything zrather than put an obstacle in the way of the gospel of Christ. 13 Do you not know that athose who are employed in the temple service get their food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in the sacrificial offerings? 14 In the same way, the Lord commanded that bthose who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel.
15 But cI have made no use of any of these rights, nor am I writing these things to secure any such provision. For I would rather die than have anyone ddeprive me of my ground for boasting. 16 For if I preach the gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For enecessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! 17 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 fa stewardship. 18 What then is my reward? That in my preaching gI may present the gospel free of charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel.
19 For hthough I am free from all, iI have made myself a servant to all, that I might jwin more of them. 20 kTo the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To lthose outside the law I became mas one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but nunder the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. 22 oTo the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. pI have become all things to all people, that qby all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, rthat I may share with them in its blessings.
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives sthe prize? So trun that you may obtain it. 25 Every uathlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we van imperishable. 26 So I do not run aimlessly; I wdo not box as one xbeating the air. 27 But I discipline my body and ykeep it under control,2 lest after preaching to others zI myself should be adisqualified.
Warning Against Idolatry
10 For I do not want you to be unaware, brothers,1 that our fathers were all under bthe cloud, and all cpassed through the sea, 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3 and dall ate the same espiritual food, 4 and fall drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. 5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for gthey were overthrown2 in the wilderness.
6 Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as hthey did. 7 iDo not be idolaters jas some of them were; as it is written, k“The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.” 8 lWe must not indulge in sexual immorality mas some of them did, and ntwenty-three thousand fell in a single day. 9 We must not put Christ3 to the test, oas some of them did and pwere destroyed by serpents, 10 nor grumble, qas some of them did and rwere destroyed by sthe Destroyer. 11 Now these things happened to them as an example, but tthey were written down for our instruction, uon whom the end of the ages has come. 12 Therefore vlet anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. wGod is faithful, and xhe will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
14 Therefore, my beloved, yflee from idolatry. 15 I speak zas to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. 16 aThe cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? bThe bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? 17 Because there is one bread, we who are many are cone body, for we all partake of the one bread. 18 Consider dthe people of Israel:4 eare not those who eat the sacrifices participants in the altar? 19 What do I imply then? That food offered to idols is anything, or that fan idol is anything? 20 No, I imply that what pagans sacrifice gthey offer to demons and not to God. I do not want you to be participants with demons. 21 hYou cannot drink the cup of the Lord and ithe cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and jthe table of demons. 22 kShall we provoke the Lord to jealousy? lAre we stronger than he?
Do All to the Glory of God
23 m“All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up. 24 nLet no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. 25 oEat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the ground of conscience. 26 For p“the earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof.” 27 If one of the unbelievers invites you to dinner and you are disposed to go, qeat whatever is set before you without raising any question on the ground of conscience. 28 But if someone says to you, “This has been offered in sacrifice,” then do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for the sake of conscience— 29 I do not mean ryour conscience, but his. For swhy should my liberty be determined by someone else's conscience? 30 If I partake with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of that tfor which I give thanks?
31 So, whether you eat or drink, or uwhatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 32 vGive no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to wthe church of God, 33 just as xI try to please everyone in everything I do, ynot seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved.
11 zBe imitators of me, as I am of Christ.
2 Now I commend you abecause you remember me in everything and bmaintain the traditions ceven as I delivered them to you. 3 But I want you to understand that dthe head of every man is Christ, ethe head of a wife1 is her husband,2 and fthe head of Christ is God. 4 Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, 5 but every wife3 who prays or gprophesies hwith her head uncovered dishonors her head, since it is the same ias if her head were shaven. 6 For if a wife will not cover her head, then she should cut her hair short. But since it is disgraceful for a wife to cut off her hair or shave her head, let her cover her head. 7 For a man ought not to cover his head, since jhe is the image and glory of God, but kwoman is the glory of man. 8 For lman was not made from woman, but woman from man. 9 Neither was man created for woman, but mwoman for man. 10 That is why a wife ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.4 11 Nevertheless, nin the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; 12 for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And oall things are from God. 13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a wife to pray to God with her head uncovered? 14 Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair it is a disgrace for him, 15 but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering. 16 pIf anyone is inclined to be contentious, we have no such practice, nor do qthe churches of God.
The Lord's Supper
17 But in the following instructions I do not commend you, because when you come together it is not for the better but for the worse. 18 For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, rI hear that there are divisions among you. And I believe it in part,5 19 for sthere must be factions among you in order tthat those who are genuine among you may be recognized. 20 When you come together, it is not the Lord's supper that you eat. 21 For in eating, each one goes ahead with his own meal. One goes hungry, uanother gets drunk. 22 What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise vthe church of God and whumiliate those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I commend you in this? No, I will not.
23 For xI received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that ythe Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body, which is for6 you. Do this in remembrance of me.”7 25 In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death zuntil he comes.
27 aWhoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord bin an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning cthe body and blood of the Lord. 28 dLet a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. 30 That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some ehave died.8 31 fBut if we judged9 ourselves truly, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged by the Lord, gwe are disciplined10 so that we may not be hcondemned along with the world.
33 So then, my brothers,11 when you come together to eat, wait for12 one another— 34 iif anyone is hungry, jlet him eat at home—so that when you come together it will not be for judgment. About the other things kI will give directions lwhen I come.
12 Now mconcerning1 spiritual gifts,2 brothers,3 I do not want you to be uninformed. 2 You know that nwhen you were pagans oyou were led astray to pmute idols, however you were led. 3 Therefore I want you to understand that qno one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is raccursed!” and sno one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.
4 Now tthere are varieties of gifts, but uthe same Spirit; 5 and vthere are varieties of service, but uthe same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is uthe same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 wTo each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of xwisdom, and to another the utterance of yknowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another zfaith by the same Spirit, to another agifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another bthe working of miracles, to another cprophecy, to another dthe ability to distinguish between spirits, to another evarious kinds of tongues, to another fthe interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, gwho apportions to each one individually has he wills.
One Body with Many Members
12 For just as ithe body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, jso it is with Christ. 13 For kin one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—lJews or Greeks, slaves4 or free—and mall were made to drink of one Spirit.
14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, nGod arranged the members in the body, each one of them, oas he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts,5 yet one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, pall rejoice together.
27 Now qyou are the body of Christ and individually rmembers of it. 28 And sGod has appointed in the church first tapostles, second uprophets, third teachers, then vmiracles, then wgifts of healing, xhelping, yadministrating, and vvarious kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 31 But zearnestly desire the higher gifts.
And I will show you a still more excellent way.
The Way of Love
13 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have aprophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, bso as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 cIf I give away all I have, and dif I deliver up my body to be burned,1 but have not love, I gain nothing.
4 eLove is patient and fkind; love gdoes not envy or boast; it his not arrogant 5 or rude. It idoes not insist on its own way; it jis not irritable or resentful;2 6 it kdoes not rejoice at wrongdoing, but lrejoices with the truth. 7 mLove bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, eendures all things.
8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For nwe know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but owhen the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 12 For pnow we see in a mirror dimly, but qthen face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as rI have been fully known.
13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.