1 Corinthians 3: An Effective Ministry
Here is a question for you. How do you build an effective ministry for Jesus Christ? Let’s talk about this website here.
To make it effective, I need to have great writing, great design, great search engine optimization, cultural relevance and so many other things.
Actually, that is only part way accurate. I do have a responsibility to do my best work. However, I would argue that effectiveness is not my ultimate concern. I draw that from 1 Corinthians 3.
1Co 3:4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?
1Co 3:5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
1Co 3:6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
1Co 3:7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
God uses everything for His benefit. Yes, perhaps He could use my writing to encourage someone. I would love to hear that. Like Apollos, maybe I am watering the ground. However, God provides the increase. God is the one who brings about any of the increase that comes from any of our ministries.
Obviously, if you run a website, you want people to read it. If you pastor a church, you want people to attend. However, ultimately our responsibility seems to be to do our best, but God is going to provide the increase at His pleasure. Paul and Apollos were faithful at doing their jobs. They ministered to the church in Corinth, and there’s nothing at all wrong with that. However, what we definitely do not want to do is become obsessed over the results. If God is calling you to a certain ministry and you are faithful to give it your best work, then that is all you ultimately have control over. Think about the Old Testament prophets. Nobody ever listened to them, but they were faithful to the mission that God had given them. We need to keep that perspective in our modern day ministries as well.