1 Corinthians 4 What does success look like?

1 Corinthians 4

Do you ever feel like what you’re doing doesn’t matter? That you’re not making any eternal difference? That you must be doing something wrong because life is really difficult?

👉 Here is what Paul said in terms of his own ministry.

• Paul was not concerned that some thought little of his speaking abilities (v 3).

• Paul did not trust even his own judgment of himself (v 3).

• Even when living faithfully, Paul knew his righteousness came from Christ and not himself (v 4).

• The people were judging his spiritual effectiveness as if it was all finished (v 5) when it’s not over until Jesus comes back.

• People may never – never – praise those who are faithful to Christ but God promises to reward such people (v 5).

• People often judge the success of a ministry based on unbiblical standards (v 6). {worldly praise, platform, popularity, and prosperity}

Do you want to know what a “successful” ministry looked like for Paul (v 9-23)?


• spectacle
• a fool for Christ
• weak
• disrepute
• hunger
• thirst
• poorly dressed
• homeless
• labor
• manual labor
• reviled
• persecuted
• slander
• scum of the world

👉 All I know is that:

  1. Sometimes – success looks a whole lot like struggle.
  2. Jesus is worth it.

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