LIBERATING THE CAPIVIES
I Corinthians 9:1-27
Dr. Jerry Vines
In the eighth and ninth chapter of I Corinthians the great
theme is the liberty we have in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is wonderful
to know that as a believer in the Lord Jesus that if the Son, therefore,
shall make you free, you shall be free indeed. Christian liberty is one
of the great truths of the life of a child of God. Jesus has set us
free. He has set us free from the bondage of sin. We now have freedom.
We are no longer under the bondage of the law. We are free to enjoy
life to its fullest extent. But because we have freedom in the Lord
Jesus Christ and because we know this does not mean that we are
free to abuse that liberty and be detrimental in the lives of other
people. That's really what he is talking about in the 8th chapter. He
has pointed out that the knowledge of our freedom is to be balanced by
our love for other people. So, it's very important to keep that
balance. You will know the measure of the maturity of a Christian by
how he uses his liberty. You will know how mature a believer is by the
way he handles the whole area of Christian liberty. So, Paul is going
to draw an illustration from his own life to show us that Christian
liberty must be balanced by love. Paul is going to show that he has the
right as an apostle to receive financial, material support. But he will
show us in a rather unusual and remarkable way how that knowledge is to
be balanced. So, we are going to find that this whole chapter really
divides itself into two main divisions.
First of all, he defends his right to receive support.
Notice how the chapter begins. It starts with a series of questions and
all of these questions have the answer, yes. Am I not an apostle? The
answer is yes. Am I not free? The answer is yes. Have I not seen
Jesus Christ our Lord? The answer is yes. He did see the living Lord
on the Damascus road. He says to the Corinthians, are not you my work
in the Lord. ...
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