Paul’s Use of Freedom

Am I not (A)free? Am I not an (B)apostle? Have I not (C)seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not (D)my work in the Lord? If I am not an apostle to others, at least I am to you; for you are the (E)seal of my (F)apostleship in the Lord.

My defense to those who examine me is this: [a](G)Do we not have a right to eat and drink? [b](H)Do we not have a right to take along a [c]believing wife, even as the rest of the apostles and the (I)brothers of the Lord, and [d](J)Cephas? Or do only [e](K)Barnabas and I have no right to refrain from [f]working? Who at any time serves (L)as a soldier at his own expense? Who (M)plants a vineyard and does not eat its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not [g]consume some of the milk of the flock?

I am not just asserting these things (N)according to human judgment, am I? Or does the Law not say these things as well? For it is written in the Law of Moses: “(O)You shall not muzzle the ox while it is threshing.” God is not concerned about (P)oxen, is He? 10 Or is He speaking entirely for our sake? Yes, it was written (Q)for our sake, because (R)the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing in the crops.

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  1. 1 Corinthians 9:4 Lit It is not that we have no right to eat and drink, is it?
  2. 1 Corinthians 9:5 Lit It is not that we have no right to take along...Cephas, is it?
  3. 1 Corinthians 9:5 Lit sister, as a wife
  4. 1 Corinthians 9:5 Peter’s Aramaic name
  5. 1 Corinthians 9:6 Lit I and Barnabas
  6. 1 Corinthians 9:6 I.e., to support themselves
  7. 1 Corinthians 9:7 Lit eat from

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