Labouring in the Lord

Certain passages of Scripture, if carelessly read, might give the impression that God delegates some of His work to Christian leaders to do for Him as a manufacturer might sublet to others certain items in a contract; such, for instance, as First Corinthians 15:58, “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” In First Corinthians 16:10 Paul says plainly that Timothy “is carrying on the work of the Lord, just as I am,” but we must never understand from this that these men did a work of God apart. Rather they were the obedient instruments in whom and through whom God wrought His own work.
Any misunderstanding about this is cleared up by the explanation of Paul in Colossians 1:29, “To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me”; and First Corinthians 15:10, “I worked harder than all of them–yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.”


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