I have to say, I am enamored with 1 Corinthians 4:1-2. I love these verses because they are in one of those rare places in the bible where the instruction is crystal clear. There is no imagery or metaphor, just the Word. I latched onto them in my 20s and appreciate them so much. Here is what the verses say.
This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.ESV
Prior to chapter 4, Apostle Paul addresses divisions in the church and attempts to bring truth and correction through the Gospel. He points the Corinthians to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and uses his ministry as an example a few times. Divisions are carnal, he says, and give no compliment to the Father nor to the indwelling Holy Spirit. Bottom Line: We belong to Christ. Christ belongs to God. We belong to no man.
Then boom. Chapter 4. As believers in and sons of God, we should have the reputation of servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. We are servants…of Christ. It is so simple that we must not overlook it. I know people who served their lives away for men convinced that they were servants of Christ. I also know people who broke free and became servants of Christ again. Let’s be clear. Our service has a broad reach — all kinds of people will benefit from our service. But our heart position as servants belongs to Jesus.
We are also stewards of God’s mysteries. The ESV Study Bible commentary notes that mysteries in 1 Corinthians 4:1 refers to the Gospel and what God reveals. What is a steward? A manager, overseer, and governor — entrusted by God. This is powerful, and worth some dedicated reflection time. The gifts and calling we doubt, drag our feet about, and refuse to use are a TRUST… BY GOD… for us to manage. Wow.
And what’s more, Apostle Paul says, stewards have a requirement of FAITHFULNESS. Okay, here’s the range of meaning — persons who show themselves faithful in the transaction of business, the execution of commands, or the discharge of official duties. Read that again!
Our time, talent, and treasure are trusts from God. Our family members are trusts from God. Our businesses are trusts from God. Are we being faithful? Let’s check our stewardship, Dear Ones, and get to managing God’s business. Selah.
Dr. Shaunta D. Scroggins is the founder of The Bereans’ Commentary.
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"In the darkness of night, I wait expectantly for understanding and knowledge for your people."
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