‘Power Not Talk’ 4:14-21

The important role humility plays in the life of the church

Christ’s way is our example, there is no way we can follow him without being like Him

As we build a church culture here @ Midtown an essential element of our fellowship is Humility

Humility is the quiet, consistent obedience to Christ’s ways and words

Humility is a realistic estimation of one’s own spiritual maturity

Humility is recognizing God’s work in the life of Leaders that He places you under

Humility is the power of God displayed in life, relationships, serving; not words

(4:8 & 4:10 Last Week)

Already you have all you want! Already you have become rich! You have begun to reign—and that without us! How I wish that you really had begun to reign so that we also might reign with you!

We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honored, we are dishonored!

  • These are statements that point out the immaturity of the Corinthian believers
  • Sarcastic rhetorical way of making an argument (The Truth In Love)
  • The Corinthians had unrealistic estimations of their Spiritual Maturity


I am writing this not to shame you but to warn you as my dear children.

  • The goal of Godly leadership is never shame, but children need guidance
  • Speaking the truth in love to others is a major challenge (Spirit Empowered)
  • Parental Love is not passive, parents have a responsibility to address issues
  • True love is displayed in discipline
    • My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in. ~ Proverbs 3:11-12

Even if you had ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel. Therefore I urge you to imitate me.

  • A guardian is not a parent…a different level of care and commitment
  • A father is involved from conception forward (a Spiritual Father is a real gift)
  • A child learns by imitating their parents

For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, my son whom I love, who is faithful in the Lord. He will remind you of my way of life in Christ Jesus, which agrees with what I teach everywhere in every church.

  • Timothy is the son being faithful in the Lord, which they have strayed from
  • The reminder is of Pauls way, which is the way of Christ (Apostolic Way)
  • Jesus imprinted the Disciples & Paul, they in turn set the pattern

Some of you have become arrogant, as if I were not coming to you.

  • Arrogance is the opposite of Humility
  • Arrogance knows better and does not place itself under authority
  • They think they don’t have to answer to Paul and God’s chosen leaders / way

But I will come to you very soon, if the Lord is willing, and then I will find out not only how these arrogant people are talking, but what power they have.

  • There must have been some report to Paul of the boasting and arrogance
  • Paul is grounded in God’s will
  • Are the Corinthians talking the talk or walking the walk?
  • He sends Timothy to represent 1st but he will come himself

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.

  • Paul knew the Power of God and had been there / done that by God’s power
  • Talk is rooted in arrogance, power in humility
  • God’s kingdom is honored and gloried by His power not our talk

What do you prefer? Shall I come to you with a rod of discipline, or shall I come in love and with a gentle spirit?

  • Paul is saying there will be correction, their approach will determine his
  • God will discipline His church, one way or another

Application Questions:

What do you have in place to keep you from becoming ‘Spiritually Arrogant’?

Who can you imitate as examples of ‘Spiritual Maturity’?

How do we as a body embrace of culture of humility?

In what ways do you accept correction and discipline from leadership you are under?