by Jerry Vines

I Corinthians 3:5-15
One of the problems the Corinthian church was having was a
misunderstanding of the role of the man of God in their midst.
Because of that there were some people who pledged their alle-
giance to Paul. Other people pledged their allegiance to Apollos.
Still others were wrapped up in the ministry of the Apostle Simon
Peter. It was causing L, -Onus problems in the church fellow-
ship. To paraphrase what Paul says in verse five, he is basically
saying, Who are these men? They are ministers by whom ye be-
lieved. The word ministers there is a word that emphasizes the
lowly position of the servants of God. A good close paraphrase of
that might be that these men are merely errand boys by whom you
believe through whom the Lord gave every man the opportunity to be
saved. Thank God for the men of God. We're grateful for men that
God uses to win us to Christ and to bring us the Gospel of Jesus
Christ but we must always keep in mind that the work is far more
important than the worker. The ministry is far more important
than the minister. In a very skillful way, Paul is going to turn
our attention away from the men of God to the work of God itself.
Paul uses two beautiful illustrations to describe what the
church of the Lord Jesus Christ is all about. In verse nine, he
makes two statements about the church. He says,
ye are God's husbandry,
Which means, you are God's cultivated field. Secondly, he says,
ye are God's building.
This lays before us the magnitude of building a church for the
Lord Jesus Christ. The first illustration is taken from agricul-
ture. He talks in verses 6,7 & 8 about the role of the men of God
and how that the men of God plant the seed and other men come and
water. He makes the point that it is God who causes the crop to
grow. That a beautiful way of describing the work of God -
calling a church a cultivated field. That's really what a church
is. It is either a beautiful garden ...

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