This is my defense to those who would examine me. (A)Do we not have the right to eat and drink? (B)Do we not have the right to take along a believing wife,[a] as do the other apostles and (C)the brothers of the Lord and (D)Cephas? Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working for a living? (E)Who serves as a soldier at his own expense? (F)Who plants a vineyard without eating any of its fruit? Or who tends a flock without getting some of the milk?

Do I say these things on human authority? Does not the Law say the same? For it is written in the Law of Moses, (G)“You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain.” Is it for oxen that God is concerned? 10 Does he not certainly speak for our sake? It was written (H)for our sake, because (I)the plowman should plow in hope and the thresher thresh in hope of sharing in the crop. 11 (J)If we have sown spiritual things among you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 12 If others share this rightful claim on you, do not we even more?

Nevertheless, (K)we have not made use of this right, but we endure anything (L)rather than put an obstacle in the way of the gospel of Christ. 13 Do you not know that (M)those who are employed in the temple service get their food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in the sacrificial offerings? 14 In the same way, the Lord commanded that (N)those who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel.

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Footnotes

  1. 1 Corinthians 9:5 Greek a sister as wife

17 Let the elders (A)who rule well be considered worthy of (B)double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, (C)“You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, (D)“The laborer deserves his wages.”

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13 (A)“You shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him. (B)The wages of a hired worker shall not remain with you all night until the morning.

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