Neno: Bibilia Takatifu

1 Wakorintho 4

Mitume Wa Kristo

1Basi, mtuhesabu sisi kuwa watumishi wa Kristo na mawakili wa siri za Mungu. Zaidi ya hayo, mawakili wanatakiwa wawe waaminifu. Mimi sijali kama ninyi mkinihukumu au nikihukumiwa na mahakama ya wanadamu; kwa kweli hata mimi mwenyewe sijihukumu Dhamiri yangu hainishitaki; lakini hilo halinifanyi nisiwe na hatia. Bwana ndiye anayenihukumu. Kwa hiyo msitoe hukumu kabla ya wakati wake, kabla Bwana hajaja. Yeye atafichua mambo yaliyof ichwa gizani na kwa kuweka wazi nia za mioyo ya watu. Ndipo kila mtu atapokea sifa anayostahili kutoka kwa Mungu.

Basi ndugu zangu nimetumia mfano wa Apolo na mimi kwa faida yenu ili muweze kujifunza kutoka kwetu maana ya usemi, “Usivuke mpaka wa yale yaliyoandikwa.” Na hivyo hamtajivunia mtu fulani na kumdharau mwingine. Ni nani aliyewafanya kuwa tofauti na watu wengine wote? Mna kitu gani ambacho hamkupokea? Basi ikiwa mmepokea, mbona mnajivuna kana kwamba hayo mliyonayo si zawadi?

Mmekwisha pata kila kitu mnachohitaji! Mmekuwa matajiri! Mmekuwa wafalme pasipo msaada wetu! Lakini laiti kama mngekuwa wafalme kweli ili na sisi tuwe wafalme pamoja nanyi! Kwa sababu inaonekana kwamba Mungu ametuweka sisi mitume katika nafasi ya mwisho kabisa katika msafara wa maonyesho kama watu waliohukumiwa kufa hadharani, kwa sababu tumekuwa maonyesho kwa ulimwengu wote, kwa malaika na kwa wanadamu pia.

10 Kwa ajili ya Kristo sisi ni wajinga, lakini ninyi mna hekima ndani ya Kristo. Sisi ni dhaifu, lakini ninyi mna nguvu. Tunadharauliwa, lakini ninyi mnaheshimiwa. 11 Mpaka wakati huu tuna njaa na kiu, tumevaa matambara, tumeteswa, hatuna makao. 12 Tunafanya kazi ngumu kwa mikono yetu. Tunapolaaniwa, tunabar iki; tunapoteswa tunavumilia. 13 Tunaposingiziwa tunajibu kwa maneno ya upole. Tumekuwa kama takataka ya dunia hii, na uchafu wa ulimwengu mpaka leo hii.

14 Nawaandikia mambo haya, si kwa sababu nataka muone aibu, bali nataka niwaonye kama wanangu wapendwa. 15 Ingawa mnao viongozi wasiohesabika katika Kristo, lakini hamna baba wengi. Mimi nilikuwa baba yenu katika Kristo Yesu kwa kuwaletea Injili. 16 Basi nawasihi mfuate mfano wangu. 17 Kwa sababu hii ninam tuma Timotheo, mwanangu mpendwa na mwaminifu katika Bwana. Yeye atawakumbusha kuhusu maisha yangu katika Kristo ambayo yanakubal iana na mafundisho yangu katika kila kanisa ninalotembelea.

18 Baadhi yenu mmekuwa na kiburi mkidhani kuwa sitafika kwenu. 19 Lakini kama Bwana akipenda, nitafika kwenu mapema, nami nitapenda kujua, zaidi ya maneno yao hawa watu wenye kiburi wana uwezo gani? 20 Kwa kuwa Ufalme wa Mungu si maneno matupu bali ni nguvu. 21 Ninyi amueni. Nije kwenu na fimbo kuwaadhibu, au nije na upendo kwa roho ya upole?

The Message

1 Corinthians 4

11-4 Don’t imagine us leaders to be something we aren’t. We are servants of Christ, not his masters. We are guides into God’s most sublime secrets, not security guards posted to protect them. The requirements for a good guide are reliability and accurate knowledge. It matters very little to me what you think of me, even less where I rank in popular opinion. I don’t even rank myself. Comparisons in these matters are pointless. I’m not aware of anything that would disqualify me from being a good guide for you, but that doesn’t mean much. The Master makes that judgment.

So don’t get ahead of the Master and jump to conclusions with your judgments before all the evidence is in. When he comes, he will bring out in the open and place in evidence all kinds of things we never even dreamed of—inner motives and purposes and prayers. Only then will any one of us get to hear the “Well done!” of God.

All I’m doing right now, friends, is showing how these things pertain to Apollos and me so that you will learn restraint and not rush into making judgments without knowing all the facts. It’s important to look at things from God’s point of view. I would rather not see you inflating or deflating reputations based on mere hearsay.

7-8 For who do you know that really knows you, knows your heart? And even if they did, is there anything they would discover in you that you could take credit for? Isn’t everything you have and everything you are sheer gifts from God? So what’s the point of all this comparing and competing? You already have all you need. You already have more access to God than you can handle. Without bringing either Apollos or me into it, you’re sitting on top of the world—at least God’s world—and we’re right there, sitting alongside you!

9-13 It seems to me that God has put us who bear his Message on stage in a theater in which no one wants to buy a ticket. We’re something everyone stands around and stares at, like an accident in the street. We’re the Messiah’s misfits. You might be sure of yourselves, but we live in the midst of frailties and uncertainties. You might be well-thought-of by others, but we’re mostly kicked around. Much of the time we don’t have enough to eat, we wear patched and threadbare clothes, we get doors slammed in our faces, and we pick up odd jobs anywhere we can to eke out a living. When they call us names, we say, “God bless you.” When they spread rumors about us, we put in a good word for them. We’re treated like garbage, potato peelings from the culture’s kitchen. And it’s not getting any better.

14-16 I’m not writing all this as a neighborhood scold just to make you feel rotten. I’m writing as a father to you, my children. I love you and want you to grow up well, not spoiled. There are a lot of people around who can’t wait to tell you what you’ve done wrong, but there aren’t many fathers willing to take the time and effort to help you grow up. It was as Jesus helped me proclaim God’s Message to you that I became your father. I’m not, you know, asking you to do anything I’m not already doing myself.

17 This is why I sent Timothy to you earlier. He is also my dear son, and true to the Master. He will refresh your memory on the instructions I regularly give all the churches on the way of Christ.

18-20 I know there are some among you who are so full of themselves they never listen to anyone, let alone me. They don’t think I’ll ever show up in person. But I’ll be there sooner than you think, God willing, and then we’ll see if they’re full of anything but hot air. God’s Way is not a matter of mere talk; it’s an empowered life.

21 So how should I prepare to come to you? As a severe disciplinarian who makes you toe the mark? Or as a good friend and counselor who wants to share heart-to-heart with you? You decide.