1 Corinthians 4:14-21 ESV
14 I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. 15 For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. 16 I urge you, then, be imitators of me. 17 That is why I sent you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach them everywhere in every church. 18 Some are arrogant, as though I were not coming to you. 19 But I will come to you soon, if the Lord wills, and I will find out not the talk of these arrogant people but their power. 20 For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power. 21 What do you wish? Shall I come to you with a rod, or with love in a spirit of gentleness?
I.THE TENDERNESS OF A FATHER’S LOVE (14-15)
A. Paul is the spiritual father of the church at Corinth.
B. As their father, he fulfills his fatherly duty and warns them because of his love for them.
C. Guardians do not love a child the way a parent does.
II.THE TRUSTWORTHY EXAMPLE OF A FATHER’S LIFE(16-17)
A. A child’s greatest role model is their parents.
B. Paul wants the Corinthians to be like him so they will be more like Jesus.
C. A church’s greatest role model should be its pastor first, other elders and leaders second.
III.THE TEST IS NOT TALK BUT POWER (18-21)
A. The genuineness of who is mature in Christ is not seen in talk.
B. It is seen in the power of a transformed life and the power of Jesus using us to transform the lives of others.
A. Embrace the authority, accessibility, and the accountability the church provides as being for your good.