Summary: Paul tells the believers about servanthood.


1 Corinthians 4:1-7

I. Think About Faithfulness—(vv. 1-2).

A. Those entrusted. This phrase is from the Greek word for “stewards.” As Christians we are stewards and we are to be faithful to our trust.

B. The secret things of God. This is from the Greek word translated “mystery” in other places. It does not refer to things difficult to understand, but to things not revealed before the Gospel was given.

1. The mystery is that we are all one in Christ and the church.

2. Paul is still on the subject of division in the church.

C. The real leaders are those who serve others. Jesus taught this in John 13:1-17.

D. Paul had the spirit of faithfulness to service. Evidently many of the Corinthians had not.

II. Think About Judging—(vv. 3-6).

1. The Corinthians were evidently very critical because of their immaturity.

2. Paul says some things about judging that will help us in all of our relationships.

A. The appointed time of judgment (v. 5).

1. Only God can see into people’s hearts. We are to be servants, not judges.

2. Jesus is coming! He will judge (John 5:22).

B. The basis of their judgment.

1. The Corinthians were judging by their likes and dislikes.

2. The basis of judgment is “that which is written” (v. 6).

3. “I do not even judge myself” (v. 3). While we are to evaluate ourselves, if our self-judgment is the final word, we will be despondent. God forgives us, but many times we won’t forgive ourselves.

C. The reason for their judgment.

1. Their reasons were wrong. They criticized some in an attempt to build up the man they liked.

2. Much criticism of others is a vain attempt to build ourselves up.

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