NO PEOPLE-PLEASING HERE
1 CORINTHIANS 4:1-5 NKJ
1 Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. 2 Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful. 3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by a human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. 4 For I know of nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord. 5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one's praise will come from God.
Even though Paul was a spiritually powerful servant of God, he did not position himself in a superior way.
In this passage, he wanted to be considered a servant of Christ. A manager of the mysteries of God. Remember, Paul was writing to a church that was divided. They were caught up in preachers and identifying with favorite speakers instead of Christ.
Paul gives a quick summary of how he is to be considered.
Then he makes a statement that provides some insight into why Paul handled opposition so decisively. He did not consider people's judgment of him very important. He considered what people thought of him a very small thing.
Paul did not even use himself as the standard but declared that Jesus was his judge. He then cautions the church about judging. Insisting they wait until the Lord brings to light what is in the heart.
This perspective had to be a great help to Paul. He met massive amounts of opposition everywhere he went. He was opposed by the Jews, who resisted Jesus as their Messiah. He was constantly being harassed by the Gentiles, who had their own gods and scoffed at the idea of God sending His Son to die. He was threatened by unbelievers whose way of life was called into question by the gospel. Paul's entire life involved dealing with this kind of opposition.
But one area that helped his outlook was not worrying about what other people thought of him. He wasn't concerned with pleasing people.
How much time have we all wasted being concerned with what other people think of us? Way too much mental and emotional energy has been consumed with trying to make everyone happy. It's a no-win scenario.
Adopting Paul's perspective would be a great help to our inner well-being. People may judge us, but we consider it a small thing.
I heard a missionary say that "other people's heads are no place to look for my happiness." What does the Lord think? He is the only one qualified to judge.
Dear Father, please help me put myself and other people's judgments in the right light. In Your light.