December 20, 2019

Giving Up to Give More

December 20, 2019


1 Corinthians 9:1-16
This weekend’s scripture: Matthew 1:18-25


From this passage, we learn that some apostles felt the freedom to take advantage of their status and rights. They married and received financial payment for their ministry work. They were afforded certain privileges and they took them. Paul doesn’t see anything wrong with this, but he also wants to point out his different philosophy.

For Paul, he felt that denying himself privileges was the best way to reach more people for Christ.  He decided not to take a salary from the church and instead worked so that he might share Christ with others that labored with him. He decided not to marry so that he would have the freedom to travel on missionary journeys all over the world.

It is often the case that we do not find our truest freedom unless we deny ourselves some of our greatest privileges. This is the paradox of the gospel call. It is possible to have it all, Paul might say, but only if you’re willing to give it all away.


  • As we approach the new year, are there any privileges that you are feeling called to give up for next year?


  • Talk about why it is sometimes important to make sacrifices in order for a greater good. Who has been an example of that in your life?


Almighty and gracious God, you freely give your grace to us—the greatest gift you could have ever poured out for us was the blood of your Son. Help us to give up the pleasures of this world for the sake of your kingdom today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.