Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. . . I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel.
1 Corinthians 9:19,22,23
Something for Something
Quid pro quo.
That’s Latin for “something for something.” If I give you something, I expect you to give me something fair in return. If I work for a company, I deserve to get paid a fair wage. It’s my right.
And that’s all fine and good, as long as we remember that it goes both ways. If I put in the work, I deserve fair wages. But if I don’t put in the work, I deserve to be fired.
But God works a strange economy. He doesn’t give us what we deserve. He gives us what we don’t deserve. For our sins of crossing the line with God or not measuring up to his standards, we deserve to be punished. Instead, God, who is rich in mercy, gave us his Son.
Jesus had equal status with God because he is God. But he wasn’t so full of pride that he had to hold on to that status. No! He set aside his divine privileges and enslaved himself to his Father’s will so that he might save us. In perfect obedience to his Father, Jesus lived a selfless life and died a selfless death. And as a result, we are free from sin’s curse and Satan’s accusations.
Now, we are free to be all things to all people. For the sake of other people’s souls, I don’t have to insist on my way or my rights. I can meet people where they are at. I can listen to their point of view and try to understand. Then, I can point them to Jesus so they might share in the freedom that comes from his forgiveness.
Lord Jesus, teach me true humility, so that I help rather than hinder the cause of your Gospel. Amen.
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