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Read Introduction to 1 Corinthians


“To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless.”


Paul continues by a catalog of cold facts to show how far the apostles were from reigning as kings.

To the present hour

Paul says that he and the apostles were in pain right up to the moment he writes 1 Corinthians (cf. 4:13).

we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless.

The apostles suffered deprivations of the most basic elements of food, shelter, clothing, and water. They were beaten and left homeless. They wandered as vagabonds and were viewed as vagrants with no roof over their heads.


Ministry always involves a price.


The apostles paid a great price for ministry. Living the Christian life costs something. Many of us curry favor to the point of minimizing our message. There is certain flabbiness to Christian living today because we are cold, carnal, and careless. The attitude is, “Well, I am a Christian, and that is all I need.” This is self-centeredness that views the Christian life as religious spectators who sit in the stands and never get into the game. This is a great contrast to how the Christian life is to be lived.

Most of our contribution to the gospel is almost imperceptible, undetectable. I wonder how the kind of Christian life today stacks up with the kind of Christian life lived in the first century. I wonder if it is the same brand of Christianity. Does our Christianity cost something? We listen to a good sermon on Sunday and discard it on Monday. We lower our flags at half-mast on Monday.

He 11:37-38, 37They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented – 38of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth.