1 Corinthians 9:15
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing this in the hope that you will do such things for me, for I would rather die than allow anyone to deprive me of this boast.

New Living Translation
Yet I have never used any of these rights. And I am not writing this to suggest that I want to start now. In fact, I would rather die than lose my right to boast about preaching without charge.

English Standard Version
But I have made no use of any of these rights, nor am I writing these things to secure any such provision. For I would rather die than have anyone deprive me of my ground for boasting.

Berean Study Bible
But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing this to suggest that something be done for me. Indeed, I would rather die than for anyone to nullify my boast.

Berean Literal Bible
But I have not used any of these. And neither have I written these things that it should be thus with me; for it would be better to me to die, rather than that anyone will make void my boasting.

New American Standard Bible
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.

King James Bible
But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done unto me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But I have used none of these rights, and I have not written this to make it happen that way for me. For it would be better for me to die than for anyone to deprive me of my boast!

International Standard Version
But I have not used any of these rights, and I'm not writing this so that they may be applied in my case. I would rather die than let anyone deprive me of my reason for boasting.

NET Bible
But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing these things so that something will be done for me. In fact, it would be better for me to die than--no one will deprive me of my reason for boasting!

New Heart English Bible
But I have used none of these things, and I do not write these things that it may be done so in my case; for I would rather die, than that anyone should make my boasting void.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
But I have not been accustomed to any of these things, neither have I written this that thus it should be done to me, for it would be better for me to die than that someone would nullify my glory.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I haven't used any of these rights, and I haven't written this in order to use them now. I would rather die than have anyone turn my bragging into meaningless words.

New American Standard 1977
But I have used none of these things. And I am not writing these things that it may 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.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But I have used none of these things, neither have I written these things that it should be so done unto me; for it were better for me to die than that anyone should make this my glory void.

King James 2000 Bible
But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done unto me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my boasting void.

American King James Version
But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done to me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

American Standard Version
But I have used none of these things: and I write not these things that it may be so done in my case; for it were good for me rather to die, than that any man should make my glorifying void.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But I have used none of these things. Neither have I written these things, that they should be so done unto me: for it is good for me to die, rather than that any man should make my glory void.

Darby Bible Translation
But I have used none of these things. Now I have not written these things that it should be thus in my case; for [it were] good for me rather to die than that any one should make vain my boast.

English Revised Version
But I have used none of these things: and I write not these things that it may be so done in my case: for it were good for me rather to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

Webster's Bible Translation
But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done to me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

Weymouth New Testament
But I, for my part, have not used, and do not use, my full rights in any of these things. Nor do I now write with that object so far as I myself am concerned, for I would rather die than have anybody make this boast of mine an empty one.

World English Bible
But I have used none of these things, and I don't write these things that it may be done so in my case; for I would rather die, than that anyone should make my boasting void.

Young's Literal Translation
And I have used none of these things; neither did I write these things that it may be so done in my case, for it is good for me rather to die, than that any one may make my glorying void;
Study Bible
The Rights of an Apostle
14In the same way, the Lord has prescribed that those who preach the gospel should receive their living from the gospel. 15But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing this to suggest that something be done for me. Indeed, I would rather die than for anyone to nullify my boast. 16Yet when I preach the gospel, I have no reason to boast, because I am obligated to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!…
Cross References
Acts 18:3
and he stayed and worked with them because they were tentmakers by trade, just as he was.

Acts 20:33
I have not coveted anyone's silver or gold or clothing.

1 Corinthians 9:12
If others have this right to your support, shouldn't we have it all the more? But we did not exercise this right. Instead, we put up with anything rather than hinder the gospel of Christ.

1 Corinthians 9:18
What then is my reward? That in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge, and so not use up my rights in preaching it.

2 Corinthians 11:10
As surely as the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine will not be silenced in the regions of Achaia.
Treasury of Scripture

But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done to me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

I have. See on ver.

1 Corinthians 9:12 If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? …

1 Corinthians 4:12 And labor, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being …

Acts 8:3 As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering into every house, …

Acts 20:34 Yes, you yourselves know, that these hands have ministered to my …

1 Thessalonians 2:9 For you remember, brothers, our labor and travail: for laboring night …

2 Thessalonians 3:8 Neither did we eat any man's bread for nothing; but worked with labor …

neither.

2 Corinthians 11:9-12 And when I was present with you, and wanted, I was chargeable to no man…

2 Corinthians 12:13-18 For what is it wherein you were inferior to other churches, except …

for.

Matthew 18:6 But whoever shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me…

Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear to …

Philippians 1:20-23 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing …

(15) But I.--Again, after the assertion of the right, we have the statement that though he had vindicated the right by the highest and unquestionable authority of Christ Himself, the Apostle had not seen fit to avail himself of it.

Neither have I written these things.--Better, neither am I writing. The Apostle in these words carefully guards against the possibility of their taking these arguments used here as an indication of any intention on his part to give up now the independent position which he had hitherto assumed.

It were better for me to die.--The meaning of these words is evidently that the Apostle would rather die than make void his right to boast or glory in his unremunerated work in the Church--which would be the case if he now or ever condescended to receive, as others did, any support from them. There is, however, a great variety of readings as to the actual mode of expression of this thought. One suggestion is that the words may read thus:--"It were better for me to die than (receive reward from you); no man shall make my ground of boasting void." Another is; "It were better for me to die, rather than any one should make my ground of boasting void." There is great weight in favour of both of these readings. The following have also been suggested as possible readings of the passage:--"It were better for me to die than that my ground of boasting should die; no one shall make it void;" and "It were better for me to die than that my ground of boasting ----; no man shall make it void." In this last case the Apostle pauses in the middle of his impassioned declaration, and leaves the sentence unfinished, as he flings aside the thought that his ground of boasting could be removed, and exclaims earnestly and emphatically, "No man shall make it void." Perhaps, on the whole, especially having regard to the character of the writer, this last rendering is most likely to be the true one. In any case, the general drift and meaning of the passage is the same. The Apostle would rather die than lose his ground of boasting, and he boldly asserts his determination to let no one deprive him of it.

Verses 15-23. - Self denying ordinance of St. Paul. Verse 15. - I have used none of these things. None of the forms of right which I might claim from these many sanctions. He is appealing to his own abandonment of a right to encourage them to waive, if need required, the claims of their Christian liberty. His object in waiving his plain right was that he might give no handle to any who might desire to accuse him of interested motives (1 Corinthians 9:4; Galatians 6:6, etc.). Have I written; rather, do I write; the epistolary aorist. That it should be so done unto me. Do not take my argument as a hint to you that you have neglected your duty of maintaining me, and have even seen me suffer without offering me your assistance. Better for me to die. Not "to die of hunger," as Chrysostom supposes, but generally, "I should prefer death to the loss of my independence of attitude towards my converts." Than that any man should make my glorying void. The Greek is remarkable. Literally it is, than my ground of boasting - that any one should render it void. Another reading is, better for me to die than - no one shall render void my ground of boasting. But I have used none of these things,.... Either none of these arguments or reasons, for a minister's maintenance, taken from the reason of things, the law of Moses, the examples of the priests and Levites, and the order and appointment of Christ, in favour of himself, and that he might be provided for by them accordingly; or none of the things he had a right to do as other apostles, as to eat and drink at the public expense, to lead about with him a sister, a wife, had he any, and to forbear working with his own hands:

neither have I written these things, that it should be so done unto me; it was not on his own account that he gave these strong reasons, urged these instances, and so undeniably proved this point, that ministers should be maintained by the people; and this he says to prevent what some might be ready enough to suggest, that though the apostle had as yet took nothing of the church at Corinth, it was plain, that for the time to come, he meant to do it; and therefore had written these things with such a view, to make way for his after supply from them. This he denies, and gives his reason for it,

for it were better for me to die; through want, with famine, could he be supplied no other way, than to take the least farthing of them:

or than that any man should make my glorying void; meaning not so much his inward pleasure, joy, and satisfaction in preaching the Gospel freely, it being more blessed to give than to receive; but his boasting or glorying, not before God, but against the false apostles; that he had never taken anything of the church at Corinth for preaching, nor never would, when they had insinuated he preached for gain, and by artful methods had got their money, and drained their purses. 15. Paul's special gift of continency, which enabled him to abstain from marriage, and his ability to maintain himself without interrupting seriously his ministry, made that expedient to him which is ordinarily inexpedient; namely, that the ministry should not be supported by the people. What to him was a duty, would be the opposite to one, for instance, to whom God had committed a family, without other means of support.

I have used none of these things—none of these "powers" or rights which I might have used (1Co 9:4-6, 12).

neither—rather, "Yet I have not written."

so done unto me—literally, "in my case": as is done in the case of a soldier, a planter, a shepherd, a ploughman, and a sacrificing priest (1Co 9:7, 10, 13).

make my glorying void—deprive me of my privilege of preaching the Gospel without remuneration (2Co 11:7-10). Rather than hinder the progress of the Gospel by giving any pretext for a charge of interested motives (2Co 12:17, 18), Paul would "die" of hunger. Compare Abraham's similar disinterestedness (Ge 14:22, 23).9:15-23 It is the glory of a minister to deny himself, that he may serve Christ and save souls. But when a minister gives up his right for the sake of the gospel, he does more than his charge and office demands. By preaching the gospel, freely, the apostle showed that he acted from principles of zeal and love, and thus enjoyed much comfort and hope in his soul. And though he looked on the ceremonial law as a yoke taken off by Christ, yet he submitted to it, that he might work upon the Jews, do away their prejudices, prevail with them to hear the gospel, and win them over to Christ. Though he would transgress no laws of Christ, to please any man, yet he would accommodate himself to all men, where he might do it lawfully, to gain some. Doing good was the study and business of his life; and, that he might reach this end, he did not stand on privileges. We must carefully watch against extremes, and against relying on any thing but trust in Christ alone. We must not allow errors or faults, so as to hurt others, or disgrace the gospel.
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