“At thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16: 11)
The Basket Case Chronicles #99
“For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more” (1 Cor. 9:19).
Here he states the principle, and in the verses following Paul gives three examples of how he applied the principle. He became as a Jew (v. 20), he became as one apart from the law (v. 21), and he became weak (v. 22). The principle is that he imitated the Lord Jesus, who became like us in our lowly state in order to bring us salvation. Not only did he imitate the Lord, he imitated the Lord in the freedom he had to not do it.
If God owed us our salvation, it wouldn’t be by grace. Paul was not a church planter under constraint from the demands of those who would be blessed by it; he says emphatically that he is “free from all men.” What moved him then? He was constrained by the promise of an abundant harvest, a harvest that was going to stagger the imagination. He gave himself away so that he “might gain the more.”
He had a deep insight into the very nature of the world. God has built planting and harvesting right into the fabric of all things, and Paul had learned to see his life as seed, and to long for the time when more grain was golden than any man ever thought of.