Hurricane Michael interrupted our community groups this week, so I want to offer a brief reflection on the passage we had planned to study: 1 Corinthians 9:1-23, notably verses 19-23.
19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.
There is a call for each of us in this passage to forsake our self and become “all things to all people.” This could be taken in a number of directions, and certainly there are certain things in the world that we will not become. The key is in verse 22: “To the weak I became weak.” This is a hint at our vocation as Christians. But our vocation as Christians is to love, and so this is also a hint at God’s understanding of love (something we will come back to in chapter 13 later in our series).
What does this mean for us? Each time we encounter another person—especially non-Christians, but even other believers—we are called to let go of things we might think of as important or preferential to better love that person and share the gospel with them. We are called to enter their life joyfully and lovingly. That may mean meeting at a time of day that isn’t great for our schedule, or participating in a hobby that we have little interest in. But when we step into another person’s world with love, we do so for the sake of the gospel, that we may share with them in its blessings.