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1 Corinthians 9

1 Am I not an apostle? Am I not free? Have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord?
2 If I am not an apostle to others, yet at least I am to you. For you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.
3 My defense to those who examine me is this:
4 Do we not have the right to eat and drink?
5 Do we not have the right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?
6 Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no authority to not work?
7 Who ever serves military duty at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not drink of the milk of the flock?
8 Do I say these things only as a man? Or does not the Law say the same also?
9 For it is written in the Law of Moses, You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain. Is it oxen God is concerned about?
10 Or does He say it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written, that he who plows should plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope.
11 If we have sown spiritual things to you, is it a great thing if we reap your material things?
12 If others are partakers of this authority over you, should we not even more? Nevertheless we have not used this authority, but endure all things so that we might not hinder the gospel of Christ.
13 Do you not know that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple, and those who serve at the altar partake of the altar?
14 Even so the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel.
15 But I have used none of these things, nor have I written these things that it should be done so with me; for it would be better for me to die than that anyone should make my exulting void.
16 For if I preach the gospel, there is no glory to me, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel.
17 For if I do this willingly, I have a reward; but if against my will, I have been entrusted with a stewardship.
18 What is my reward then? That when I preach the gospel, I may present the gospel of Christ without charge, that I may not abuse my authority in the gospel.
19 For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might gain the more;
20 and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law, that I might gain those who are under the Law;
21 to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under the Law toward Christ), that I might gain those who are without law;
22 to the weak I became as weak, that I might gain the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might in any way save some.
23 Now this I do through the gospel, that I may become a fellow partaker of it.
24 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.
25 And everyone who competes for the prize controls himself in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we an imperishable.
26 Therefore I run in this manner: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air.
27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.
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