Summary: What was Pauls example to follow as he presented the gosple of Christ? Is that our example as well?
1st Corinthians 10:32-11:1
Follow me as I follow Christ
Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God—even as I try to please everybody in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved. Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
Ill: Be Such a Brother
A well-to-do businessman gave a fine car to his brother. One day when the brother went to the place he’d parked the car, he saw a ragged boy looking the car over with great interest. Instead of saying, “Get away from that car, kid,” he smiled at the youngster. The boy was the first to speak. “Is that car yours, Mister?” “Yes, it is,” was the reply. “What did it cost?” was the next question. “Nothing,” said the man. The boy looked at him curiously and said, “You don’t look like the kind of guy who would steal a car.” The owner laughed and said, “No, it was a present from my brother.” The boy seemed incredulous. “Do you mean to say he gave it to you as a present, and it didn’t cost you anything?” “That’s right.” Then the boy said the most surprising thing of all: “I sure do wish I could be such a brother as yours.” One might have expected him to say, “How I wish I could have such a brother as yours.” The man asked him what he meant, and he explained: “I’ll tell you. My youngest brother had polio and he can’t walk to see all the shops in town and enjoy the toys, at least by seeing them in the windows. How I wish I had a car like this to take him around. Our father died, and we won’t get any presents this Christmas. But at least I can walk along the streets and enjoy the shop windows; my brother can’t even do this. That’s why I’d like to be a brother like your brother.
Paul is telling us to be a brother like this, to put others first.
Paul says in 1st Corinthians 9:22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some. In other words to become what they need for their understanding when it comes to Christ!
Paul’s willing adjustment of his living in order to identify with those to whom he witnessed was part of what today we call preevangelism. What he did in this regard was not a part of the gospel; it had nothing to do with the gospel. But it helped many unbelievers to listen to the gospel and be more open to receive it.
He related to them and their needs, he was a friend to them!!
Paul then goes on in verse 1 of chapter 11 to give us the example he follows and that we should follow as well.
11:1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
A picture of Christ example is in Philippians 2:1-11
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.