1 Corinthians 9-11 World English Bible

The Rights of Those Who Preach the Gospel

9 1  Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Haven’t I seen Jesus Christ, our Lord? Aren’t you my work in the Lord? 2  If to others I am not an apostle, yet at least I am to you; for you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.

3  My defense to those who examine me is this. 4  Have we no right to eat and to drink? 5  Have we no right to take along a wife who is a believer, even as the rest of the apostles, and the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas? 6  Or have only Barnabas and I no right to not work? 7  What soldier ever serves at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard, and doesn’t eat of its fruit? Or who feeds a flock, and doesn’t drink from the flock’s milk? 8  Do I speak these things according to the ways of men? Or doesn’t the law also say the same thing? 9  For it is written in the law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain.” [1] Is it for the oxen that God cares, 10  or does he say it assuredly for our sake? Yes, it was written for our sake, because he who plows ought to plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should partake of his hope. 11  If we sowed to you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we reap your fleshly things? 12  If others partake of this right over you, don’t we yet more? Nevertheless we did not use this right, but we bear all things, that we may cause no hindrance to the Good News of Christ. 13  Don’t you know that those who serve around sacred things eat from the things of the temple, and those who wait on the altar have their portion with the altar? 14  Even so the Lord ordained that those who proclaim the Good News should live from the Good News.

15  But I have used none of these things, and I don’t write these things that it may be done so in my case; for I would rather die, than that anyone should make my boasting void. 16  For if I preach the Good News, I have nothing to boast about; for necessity is laid on me; but woe is to me, if I don’t preach the Good News. 17  For if I do this of my own will, I have a reward. But if not of my own will, I have a stewardship entrusted to me. 18  What then is my reward? That, when I preach the Good News, I may present the Good News of Christ without charge, so as not to abuse my authority in the Good News.

19  For though I was free from all, I brought myself under bondage to all, that I might gain the more. 20  To the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain those who are under the law; 21  to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might win those who are without law. 22  To the weak I became as weak, that I might gain the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I may by all means save some. 23  Now I do this for the sake of the Good News, that I may be a joint partaker of it.

24  Don’t you know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run like that, that you may win. 25  Every man who strives in the games exercises self-control in all things. Now they do it to receive a corruptible crown, but we an incorruptible. 26  I therefore run like that, as not uncertainly. I fight like that, as not beating the air, 27  but I beat my body and bring it into submission, lest by any means, after I have preached to others, I myself should be rejected.

Warning against Idolatry

10 1  Now I would not have you ignorant, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; 2  and were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 3  and all ate the same spiritual food; 4  and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of a spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ. 5  However with most of them, God was not well pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

6  Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. 7  Neither be idolaters, as some of them were. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.” [2] 8  Neither let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them committed, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell. 9  Neither let us test the Lord, as some of them tested, and perished by the serpents. 10  Neither grumble, as some of them also grumbled, and perished by the destroyer. 11  Now all these things happened to them by way of example, and they were written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the ages have come. 12  Therefore let him who thinks he stands be careful that he doesn’t fall. 13  No temptation has taken you except what is common to man. God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted above what you are able, but will with the temptation also make the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 14  Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.

15  I speak as to wise men. Judge what I say. 16  The cup of blessing which we bless, isn’t it a sharing of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, isn’t it a sharing of the body of Christ? 17  Because there is one loaf of bread, we, who are many, are one body; for we all partake of the one loaf of bread. 18  Consider Israel according to the flesh. Don’t those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar? 19  What am I saying then? That a thing sacrificed to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? 20  But I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons, and not to God, and I don’t desire that you would have fellowship with demons. 21  You can’t both drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You can’t both partake of the table of the Lord, and of the table of demons. 22  Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than he?

Do All to the Glory of God

23  “All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are profitable. “All things are lawful for me,” but not all things build up. 24  Let no one seek his own, but each one his neighbor’s good. 25  Whatever is sold in the butcher shop, eat, asking no question for the sake of conscience, 26  for “the earth is the Lord’s, and its fullness.” [3] 27  But if one of those who don’t believe invites you to a meal, and you are inclined to go, eat whatever is set before you, asking no questions for the sake of conscience. 28  But if anyone says to you, “This was offered to idols,” don’t eat it for the sake of the one who told you, and for the sake of conscience. For “the earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness.” 29  Conscience, I say, not your own, but the other’s conscience. For why is my liberty judged by another conscience? 30  If I partake with thankfulness, why am I denounced for that for which I give thanks? 31  Whether therefore you eat, or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 32  Give no occasions for stumbling, either to Jews, or to Greeks, or to the assembly of God; 33  even as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of the many, that they may be saved.

11 1  Be imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.

The Covering of Women's Heads

2  Now I praise you, brothers, that you remember me in all things, and hold firm the traditions, even as I delivered them to you. 3  But I would have you know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God. 4  Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonors his head. 5  But every woman praying or prophesying with her head unveiled dishonors her head. For it is one and the same thing as if she were shaved. 6  For if a woman is not covered, let her also be shorn. But if it is shameful for a woman to be shorn or shaved, let her be covered. 7  For a man indeed ought not to have his head covered, because he is the image and glory of God, but the woman is the glory of the man. 8  For man is not from woman, but woman from man; 9  for neither was man created for the woman, but woman for the man. 10  For this cause the woman ought to have authority on her head, because of the angels. 11  Nevertheless, neither is the woman independent of the man, nor the man independent of the woman, in the Lord. 12  For as woman came from man, so a man also comes through a woman; but all things are from God. 13  Judge for yourselves. Is it appropriate that a woman pray to God unveiled? 14  Doesn’t even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? 15  But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her, for her hair is given to her for a covering. 16  But if any man seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither do God’s assemblies.

Disorder at the Lord's Supper

17  But in giving you this command, I don’t praise you, that you come together not for the better but for the worse. 18  For first of all, when you come together in the assembly, I hear that divisions exist among you, and I partly believe it. 19  For there also must be factions among you, that those who are approved may be revealed among you. 20  When therefore you assemble yourselves together, it is not the Lord’s supper that you eat. 21  For in your eating each one takes his own supper first. One is hungry, and another is drunken. 22  What, don’t you have houses to eat and to drink in? Or do you despise God’s assembly, and put them to shame who don’t have? What shall I tell you? Shall I praise you? In this I don’t praise you.

The Institution of the Lord's Supper

23  For I received from the Lord that which also I delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night in which he was betrayed took bread. 24  When he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “Take, eat. This is my body, which is broken for you. Do this in memory of me.” 25  In the same way he also took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink, in memory of me.” 26  For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

Partaking of the Supper Unworthily

27  Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks the Lord’s cup in a manner unworthy of the Lord will be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. 28  But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread, and drink of the cup. 29  For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, if he doesn’t discern the Lord’s body. 30  For this cause many among you are weak and sickly, and not a few sleep. 31  For if we discerned ourselves, we wouldn’t be judged. 32  But when we are judged, we are punished by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world. 33  Therefore, my brothers, when you come together to eat, wait one for another. 34  But if anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, lest your coming together be for judgment. The rest I will set in order whenever I come.


Footnotes

[1] 9:9 Deuteronomy 25:4

[2] 10:7 Exodus 32:6

[3] 10:26 Psalm 24:1

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