On Lay Elders

It seems that this would be the strongest passage against lay eldership as proposed by Mark Dever. Verse fourteen seems to give a general principle which says those in “ministry” should be supported. I do question how much Paul relied on his support from the churches. But it is difficult to argue this as scripture doesn’t expressly say in what way he normally received support only that he willingly rejected the support he was entitled to from the Corinthians by tent making. It is further complicated by the fact that Paul is an apostle and not a pastor.

I am not speaking these things according to human judgment, am I? Or does not the Law also say these things? 1Corinthians 9:9 For it is written in the Law of Moses, “YOU SHALL NOT MUZZLE THE OX WHILE HE IS THRESHING.” God is not concerned about oxen, is He? 1Corinthians 9:10 Or is He speaking altogether for our sake? Yes, for our sake it was written, because the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing the crops. 1Corinthians 9:11 If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 1Corinthians 9:12 If others share the right over you, do we not more? Nevertheless, we did not use this right, but we endure all things so that we will cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ. 1Corinthians 9:13 Do you not know that those who perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who attend regularly to the altar have their share from the altar? 1Corinthians 9:14 So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.

1Corinthians 9:15 But I have used none of these things. And I am not writing these things so that it will be done so in my case; for it would be better for me to die than have any man make my boast an empty one. 1Corinthians 9:16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for I am under compulsion; for woe is me if I do not preach the gospel. 1Corinthians 9:17 For if I do this voluntarily, I have a reward; but if against my will, I have a stewardship entrusted to me. 1Corinthians 9:18 What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may offer the gospel without charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel.” (1Corinthians 9:8-18 NAS95S)

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