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1 Corinthians 9:4-18 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Don’t we have the right to be given food and drink? Don’t we have the right to take along with us a believing wife, as do the other emissaries, also the Lord’s brothers and Kefa? Or are Bar-Nabba and I the only ones required to go on working for our living? Did you ever hear of a soldier paying his own expenses? or of a farmer planting a vineyard without eating its grapes? Who shepherds a flock without drinking some of the milk? What I am saying is not based merely on human authority, because the Torah says the same thing — for in the Torah of Moshe it is written, “You are not to put a muzzle on an ox when it is treading out the grain.”[a] If God is concerned about cattle, 10 all the more does he say this for our sakes. Yes, it was written for us, meaning that he who plows and he who threshes should work expecting to get a share of the crop. 11 If we have sown spiritual seed among you, is it too much if we reap a material harvest from you? 12 If others are sharing in this right to be supported by you, don’t we have a greater claim to it?

But we don’t make use of this right. Rather, we put up with all kinds of things so as not to impede in any way the Good News about the Messiah. 13 Don’t you know that those who work in the Temple get their food from the Temple, and those who serve at the altar get a share of the sacrifices offered there? 14 In the same way, the Lord directed that those who proclaim the Good News should get their living from the Good News.

15 But I have not made use of any of these rights. Nor am I writing now to secure them for myself, for I would rather die than be deprived of my ground for boasting! 16 For I can’t boast merely because I proclaim the Good News — this I do from inner compulsion: woe is me if I don’t proclaim the Good News! 17 For if I do this willingly, I have a reward; but if I do it unwillingly, I still do it, simply because I’ve been entrusted with a job. 18 So then, what is my reward? Just this: that in proclaiming the Good News I can make it available free of charge, without making use of the rights to which it entitles me.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 9:9 Deuteronomy 25:4
Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

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