From “Woe” to “Wow”
In 1 Corinthians 9 Paul begins by saying that he is worthy of financial support from the Corinthians because of the effort that he put into the ministry there. However, Paul says that he did not want to be a burden to the Corinthians in any way. He did not want to compromise his opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. He then writes this: 16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel! Paul knew it was mandatory for him to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. It wasn’t an optional thing for him to do. He had to do it. He couldn’t think of anything else. I don’t think I’m missing the application here when I say that we too should feel this way about the importance of preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. But do we? I admit that “woe” is not what I typically feel if I don’t take advantage of the chance to share the gospel. I do often feel convicted about it but “woe” is way too strong a term.
I’m pretty well convinced that most followers of Jesus don’t feel uneasy at all about not preaching the gospel. This is a problem. The preaching of the gospel is not for a select few but for all of us. It takes very little training to be able to clearly present the gospel…and then let God do the rest. Most of what it takes is simply desire. I believe that if we do this, we will go from “woe” to “Wow”! If I can help you get more comfortable with preaching the gospel to your family, friends or neighbors, please let me know. Ask God to give you the kind of burden that Paul had for those who are lost without Jesus.