Sermon #1546[1]                          Miscellaneous Sermons


     Title:      All Things Are Yours

     Text:      1 Corinthians 3:21-23

     Subject:     The Believer’s Treasury



There is a statement in 1 Corinthians 3:21 that is absolutely astounding. Were it not written in the Book of God, it could not be believed, but it is written, “all things are yours;” and that is the title of my message to you—“All things are yours!” Imagine that. “All things are yours!” Read the rest of the text with me.


(1 Cor 3:21-23)  "Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; {22} Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; {23} And ye are Christ's; and Christ is God's."




I.      First, I want us to pause and think about the people to whom the Holy Spirit makes this promise—“All things are yours.


This promise of God was made to God’s saints at Corinth, to the Corinthian believers. There is much in that fact alone to instruct and comfort us.


Throughout this Epistle we see


"Sovereign grace o'er sin abounding!"


Everywhere in these 16 chapters we see boundless grace flowing the inexhaustible fountain beneath the throne of God to needy sinners.


The Corinthians were a people given up to lewdness of every description by nature, profligate, licentious, base, and vile to the extreme. Yet, there was in Corinth a band of men and women who were the peculiar objects of Jehovah’s love, distinguished from other people by his distinguishing grace.


(1 Cor 6:9-11)  "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, {10} Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. {11} And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."


Can any here read the black catalog of abomination and sin described in verses 9-10 without blushing because it identifies and describes you?


Here we are reminded once more of our own natural depravity, of the corruption of our hearts, and of the vileness by which our lives have been identified.


Yet, at the same time, having some little experience of the lovingkindness and grace of our covenant God, flowing to us in boundless freeness through our Lord Jesus Christ, his darling Son, we rejoice to be reminded too of his goodness and grace, of his wonderful woks of mercy, and the great things he has done for us in Christ.—“And such were some of you; but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of God."


Immediately, our proud hearts are laid low, humbled in the dust before the throne of his grace; and that is exactly as it should be.


And such were some of you.


These Corinthian saints were exactly alike us, before and after God saved them by his grace.—"And such were some of you.” Look at them before the Lord took them in hand, and afterwards. Can they be the same people?


·       They were filthy, horribly filthy! Now they are washed from all sin in the precious atoning blood of Christ!

·       How depraved they are. But, now, they are sanctified, partakers of a nature as pure and as spotless as the sinless nature of our Lord Jesus Christ!

·       They were condemned. Now they are "justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.


What does that mean? It means something more than acquittal from charges. It is being perfectly and completely cleared of all charges. But it is still more than that. To be justified is to stand before God completely measuring up to and fulfilling all his holy law, without the possibility of reversal.


God, in his Gospel, declares us to be free from all sin, justified from all things, and all fair, without fault before the throne of God (Rev. 14:5).


(Rev 14:5)  "And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God."


Sinners Still


All this is gloriously true. How our hearts rejoice in knowing it! Yet, God’s saints are never without spot in their own eyes. Far from it! And we are never without spot in the eyes of others. Thank God, he does not behold iniquity in us! But others do and we do. With Job, we cry continually, “Behold, I am vile!” With Paul, we are compelled to lament without ceasing, “O wretched man that I am!” Saved sinners we are; but sinners we are still.


The Scriptures never let us forget this fact any more than our own experience will. And the Apostle Paul, writing by divine inspiration, while constantly reminding these Corinthian saints of their sainthood by grace, constantly reminded them of what they were by nature.




If ever we learn this in reality, if it ever becomes to us something more than sound and accurate doctrine, we will become a little more kind, sympathetic, forbearing, and forgiving with those who are weak, wavering, and fallen (Eph. 4:32-5:1).


(Eph 4:32)  "And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you."


(Eph 5:1)  "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;"


The Galatian churches were, perhaps, more corrupt in doctrine. But the Church at Corinth was more corrupt in practice than any church of the Apostolic age. Yet, as we read the Corinthian and Galatian Epistles, inspired Epistles I remind you, there is not a word, not a word or a hint, to those who are taught of God that they ought to abandon the fellowship of the saints because some of the members were doctrinally unsound or even morally corrupt.


I call your attention to this fact because there are many who are very quick to abandon a local church, disassociating themselves from a fellowship of believers, moving to another across town or across the street, causing discord in the kingdom of God, in the name of “Spirituality,” “Righteousness,” or “Doctrinal Purity.” In reality, such separation arises from a horribly evil self-righteous, self-serving spirit. Am I better, holier, more righteous, more knowledgeable than you? No! I am one of you and one like you, just exactly like you, both by nature and by grace.


Here at Corinth we see elect, redeemed, and regenerate objects of God’s mercy, love and grace behaving in a most horrid manner. Not only are they not walking straight, they are not walking at all, but fallen, horribly fallen.


·       Chapters 1, 2 and 3—Carnal Strife and Division

·       Chapter 4—Judging God’s Servant a False Prophet

·       Chapter 5—Incest

·       Chapter 6—Going to Law

·       Chapter 7—Asceticism

·       Chapter 8 and 9—Niggardly Giving

·       Chapter 10—Strife, Call for Unity

·       Chapter 11—Abuse of the Lord’s Table

·       Chapter 12—Strife about Gifts

·       Chapter 13—Brotherly Love

·       Chapter 14—Strife about Tongues and Prophecy

·       Chapter 15—Questioning the Resurrection

·       Chapter 16—A Call to Liberality in Giving, Steadfastness in Faith, and Sincere Love to Christ


Still, the Apostle Paul, writing to these Corinthians, addresses them at the saints of God, sanctified, justified, redeemed and called in Christ (1:1-3, 30-31). He opens the third chapter with these words, “And I, brethren.” He gives no approval to their ungodly behavior, but labors to correct it. Yet, he does so not as a condemning judge, but as an understanding brother (Gal. 6:1-2).


(Gal 6:1-2)  "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. {2} Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ."


This word of grace, this word of promise, this promise of immeasurable bounty is addressed to sinners saved by God’s free grace in Christ. Let us ever be mindful of the fact that that is exactly what we are, that and no more. Let that fact inspire our hearts with unceasing gratitude and praise.


(1 Cor 4:7)  "For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?"


(1 Cor 1:26-31)  "For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: {27} But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; {28} And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: {29} That no flesh should glory in his presence. {30} But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: {31} That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord."


All things


II.               To these poor, believing sinners, the Apostle Paul says, “all things are yours.


(1 Cor 3:21)  "Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours."


The Corinthian church was divided into cliques, and their cliques divided into cliques. In the third chapter Paul has been addressing their divisions over preachers. They were, like most, great followers of men. False prophets love for men to exalt them and follow them. They exalt themselves and promote themselves. God’s servants exalt Christ and promote one another. They are co-laborers in the Master’s Vineyard. One plants, another waters, but God gives the increase.—“Therefore let no man glory in men.


Then, he says, “For all things are yours.” Coming from Paul, that sounds a little strange. He declared, For Christ’s sake, "I have suffered the loss of all things" (Phil. 3:8). Yet, both statements are true. The moment we experience the possession of the unsearchable riches of Christ, all old things are swept away. Having nothing, we possess all things (2 Cor. 6:10). Having nothing in this world to meet my soul’s needs, I have all things in Christ.—"All things are yours."


How far does the Holy Spirit intend for us to carry that statement? I’ll tell you exactly how far. Look up to heaven. Measure all things between yourself and your God upon his throne. Count up all things around his throne.—"All things are yours." Look down to hell. Whatever is there, whatever there is between here and there, all that comes from there to here and all that goes from here to there.—"All things are yours." Look back to the past. Look forward to the future. .—"All things are yours." Look around the globe, North, South, East and West, .—"All things are yours."


Obviously, I cannot begin to imagine, much less proclaim, all the fulness of this promise. So, let me simply call your attention to what the Holy Spirit says in our text.


(1 Cor 3:22)  "Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours;"


Gospel Preachers


When Paul tells us, “all things are yours,” the first thing he mentions is Gospel preachers. He uses himself, Apollos, and Peter as examples.


Comparisons are commonly made between preachers. One is praised and another criticized. One is admired and another despised. Nothing could be more shameful. Faithful gospel preachers, all of them, are ascension gifts of Christ to his Church (Jer. 3:15; Ps. 68:18-19; Eph. 4:8-12).


(Psa 68:18-19)  "Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them. {19} Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah."


(Eph 4:8-12)  "Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. {9} (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? {10} He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) {11} And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; {12} For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:"


God sends his preachers with his Word to his people, and prepares them for the place, and the people, and the sphere in which he has purposed to use them. Some are pioneers, missionaries, blazing a new path. Others are settled pastors, overseeing and tending the flock. Some tend large flocks. Some tend small flocks. But all God-sent preachers are yours. It is not wrong to prefer one man’s ministry above another’s. What is wrong is allowing that preference to degenerate into discord and division. Let us take great care that we honor and never speak disrespectfully, or in any way that might lead others to think disrespectfully of one of God’s servants (1 Thess. 5:12-13; 1 Tim. 5:17-19).


(1 Th 5:12-13)  "And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; {13} And to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves."


(1 Tim 5:17-19)  "Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. {18} For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward. {19} Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses."


The World


Then, as he describes what he means by saying "all things are yours," Paul says, "the world." Surely, he didn’t mean to say that. I think he did. We are separated from the world that lieth in the wicked one. We are commanded of God, “love not the world.” We are constantly urged not to entangle ourselves with the world, to avoid the ways of the world, and to live for the world to come. Yet, our text declares that “the world” is ours.


All that the world contains and all that transpires in it is for God’s glory and our good. If the question is raised—“Why do the wicked live?” the answer must be given, “for our sake!”


·       Ham must forever serve Shem and Japheth.

·       The wicked are God’s sword, by which he cuts the cords that bind us to the earth,

·       God's hammer to smash our hard hearts and break all our fair designs of earthly ease,

·       God's chisel with which he breaks off the rough edges of his diamonds,

·       God's rasp and sandpaper, by which he polishes the jewels of his electing love.


“Why do the tares grow together with the wheat? To keep the wheat warm.”                            Thomas Bradbury


Wondrous mystery this is, and wondrously delightful to our souls.—Our heavenly Father graciously puts all creation under contribution for the good of his church and kingdom.—"Fire and hail; snow and vapors; stormy wind fulfilling his word" (Ps. 148:8). The fire that consumed their tormentors preserved the Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego. The water that protected Israel and a wall and a bulwark, drowned the Egyptians. In Joshua's days, hailstones defeated the armies of Canaan. Hail, lice, flies, locusts plague the Egyptians. The Lord God included in his covenant promise to his people that he would make the beasts of the field, the fowls of heaven, and the creeping things of the earth (Hos. 2:18).


Illustrations: The Covenanter in the Cave—The Snow Drift Protecting the Scottish Family in Prayer


God in heaven is never at a loss for means to shelter, protect, defend, and feed his children in this world. "The earth is the Lord's," and he will use it for our good and his own glory.


·       This present world is yours.

·       The world to come is yours (1 Cor. 2:9).




"All things are yours…life or death"—The inspired Apostle is declaring that this mortal state of existence, this miserable, fleeting life must soon cease is ours. All that pertains to life in this world is yours. But when Paul speaks of life, he is talking about more than this physical life. He is talking about that life that is ours in union with Christ.

·       Eternal Life promised before the world began.

·       Eternal Life purchased by Immanuel’s Blood!

·       Eternal Life communicated to and wrought in us by the omnipotent, irresistible power and grace of God the Holy Spirit.




Death—Are you afraid of it? If you are in Christ, you have no reason to fear that king of terrors. It is written, “All things are yours—the world—life—death!” There are some who, through fear of death, are all their lifetime subject to bondage (Heb. 2:15), and well they should be. But for you, my blood washed brother, my white robed sister, death is the gateway to glory. Our Lord Jesus Christ has "abolished death and brought life and immortality to light by the gospel" (2 Tim. 1:10).


The sting of death is sin, and the end of sin is death. In the death of Christ death lost its sting, for sin was put away and every question concerning it forever settled between God and your soul. Christ’s death was the death of death for us. And since his death is ours, death is ours!


·       Christ’s death is yours.

·       The death of God’s saints is yours.

·       The death of your pastor is yours.

·       The death of your dearest companion is yours.

·       The death of your body is yours.


Are you beginning to see the fulness of this great promise?—“All things are yours!” Read on. “Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours.”


Things Present


"Things present," are yours. “Things present” may not be very pleasant, but they are all right. They are all by the will of our God. They are all brought to pass by him for our good.

·       Pleasant and Unpleasant

·       Prosperous and Adverse

·       Strength and Weakness

·       Wins and Losses

·       Triumphs and Defeats

·       Wealth and Poverty

·       Health and Sickness

·       Life and Death


But the list continues still.— All things are yours—Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours.”


"Things to come"


Yes, my brother, yes, my sister, "things to come" are yours, too. The anxious dread tomorrow, the toils and weariness of the coming week, the heartaches of the months and years that may lie before us, the sorrows and bereavements yet to come—“all are yours.


Satan’s trials, your failures, Shemei’s cussing, Ziba’s slander, —“all are yours.


The sickness that shall lay you low, the pains that will tear your body, the dark forebodings that will plague your soul and drive you to Christ, and the cold hand of death that will snuff out your last breath in this world—“all are yours.


The promises of God all fulfilled, the foes of your soul all defeated, sickness, sorrow, suffering, and sin all forever annihilated, God's purpose of grace and of redeeming love all fulfilled, your entrance into glory, beholding his face, embracing him, being embraced by him, seeing Christ as he is, being made like him, a glorious eternity with him—“all are yours.”—"All are yours; and ye are Christ's, and Christ is God's."


And Ye Are Christ’s


III. In verse 23 the Apostle speaks of something even higher, even more glorious, comforting and assuring than  we have yet seen. He tells us that we are Christ’s peculiar, distinct, treasured property. —“And ye are Christ’s!


I will come back to this, the Lord willing, on another occasion, but I want send you home rejoicing in, amazed at, and walking in the strength of this bread.—“Ye are Christ’s!


Yes, all things are his. The Father has given all things to the Son as our Mediator, Covenant Surety, Successful Savior, and Almighty Redeemer. He owns all things. All things were created by him and for him. But “ye are Christ’s!


(Deu 32:8-12)  "When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel. {9} For the LORD'S portion is his people; Jacob is the lot of his inheritance. {10} He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye. {11} As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings: {12} So the LORD alone did lead him, and there was no strange god with him."


We are his peculiar people and his peculiar property. We have obtained and find our inheritance in him. That is easy enough for us to grasp (Eph. 1:11). But here is another fact a bit more difficult for us to grasp. Our great God and Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ obtains and finds his inheritance in us (Eph. 1:18). We are the fulness of him that filleth all in all (Eph. 1:23).


(Eph 1:11)  "In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:"


(Eph 1:18)  "The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,"


·       He is the glory of His people Israel (Luke 2:32) and His people Israel is His glory (Isa. 46:13).

·       The Lord is the inheritance of His people (Num. 18:20) and His people is His inheritance (Deut. 32:9).


Tender Care


What tenderness, affection, and care our God has for us! It is beyond comprehension, or even illustration. Does a father love, care for, and tenderly watch over his family? The God of glory is our Father!


(Ps. 103:13,14) "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust."


(Jer. 31:20) "Is Ephraim My dear son? is he a pleasant child? for since I spake against him, I do earnestly remember him still; therefore My bowels are troubled for him; I will surely have mercy upon him, saith the Lord."


But a father is sometimes thought to be hard and uncaring, even when he is most tender and most caring. Therefore our Father compares himself to a woman, even to a tender mother.


(Isaiah 46:13) "As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem."


What can be softer than a loving mother’s tender heart? Nothing except the tender heart of our God and Savior! He compares himself to a tender hearted mother to show us his unfailing, unchanging, unconditional, free love for his weak, wavering, wandering children. It may not be true in any earthly family, but in God’s family (that family in which all the children except the firstborn Son are all adopted) a child is always a child. Neither all the demons of hell nor all the devils of our own black hearts can cause him to disown, disinherit, or unchild us!—"Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion of the son of her womb? Yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee" (Isa. 49:15).


Think of a father’s love for his son, or a mother’s love for the baby nursing at her breasts, and you will have a faint picture of God’s great love for us. Think again of the love of a bridegroom for his bride and you will have another faint picture of your Savior’s love for you (Eph. 5:25-32).


Ye are Christ’s”—Think of it! You and I have been raised to such high honor and dignity that we have been made the sons and daughters of God almighty. We have been so highly dignified that the Son of God has taken us to be his Bride! Though we are black with sin, wretched, vile, base, corrupt and corrupting in ourselves, our Savior declares, "Thou art all fair, My love: there is no spot in thee" (Songs 4:7).


Ye are Christ’s!”—The objects of his love.—The people of his care.—Approved of, accepted by, and one with him! He is near you. His omnipotent arm upholds you. His ear is open to your sighs. His arm is under your head. His right hand embraces you. “Ye Are Christ’s!




"Ye are Christ's" by reservation (Jer. 50:20).


(Jer. 50:20) "In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve."


God has a people in this world whom he has reserved, a people who are his, a people who shall be saved.—“Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace" (Rom. 11:4-5).


·       By Election

·       By Predestination

·       By Donation

·       By Separation (Sanctification)




"Ye are Christ's" by redemption. He, and he alone, had the right, the power, and the will to redeem us. And he and he alone has redeemed us.—With Zechariah, our joyful confession is, "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he hath visited and redeemed his people" (Luke 1:68).—"Ye are not your own, for ye are bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's" (1 Cor. 6:19,20).




"Ye are Christ's" by divine regeneration and effectual calling. He sent his Spirit at the appointed time of love, gave us life by the omnipotent power of his grace and created faith in us by irresistible mercy. We roamed as far from God as sheep can roam. But the Good Shepherd sought us out, found us, and fetched us home.


"Jesus sought me when a stranger,

Wandering from the fold of God;

He, to save my soul from danger,

Interposed His precious blood."





"Ye are Christ's" by the special relationship of spiritual union. We are nearer to Christ than a wife is to her husband.—Nearer to Christ than a baby is to its mother.— Nearer to Christ than a son is to his father.


“Near, so very near to God,

Nearer I cannot be,

For in the person of His Son

I am as near as He!


Dear, so very dear to God,

Dearer I cannot be,

For in the Person of His Son

I am as dear as He!”


We are bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh—One with him! This relationship, this union is eternal and indissoluble.


‘Twixt Jesus and the chosen race

Subsists a bond of sovereign grace,

That hell, with its infernal train,

Shall ne’er dissolve nor rend in vain


Hail! sacred union, firm and strong,

How great the grace, how sweet the song,

That worms of earth should ever be

One with incarnate Deity!


One in the tomb, one when He rose,

One when He triumphed o’er His foes,

One when in heaven He took His seat,

While seraphs sang all hell’s defeat.


This sacred tie forbids their fears,

For all He is or has is theirs;

With Him, their Head, they stand or fall,

Their life, their surety, and their all.”

                                        John Kent


Christ is god’s


III. Our text declares, “All things are yours…And ye are Christ’s.” But there is one more word here to instruct and cheer our hearts.—“And Christ is God’s.


I have read and studied this text with much profit to my soul for years. But I never quite understood why Paul was inspired to put that last statement in the text. I knew that he was not suggesting any kind of inferiority in Christ. I knew that he was not suggesting that Christ is not God, or that he is something less than God. But I could not get what he was saying. I believe the Lord has taught me. This helped me a lot. I hope it helps you.


The Holy Spirit put this last statement in verse 23 because his purpose is to assure us that all this great boon of grace is absolute and certain. When Paul says “and Christ is God’s” he is talking about our Lord Jesus as our Mediator and Covenant Surety. Since you are Christ’s and Christ’s is God’s, all is well and all shall be well forever! If we are Christ’s by such a relationship, in such a union, then as he is, so are we in this world!


(1 John 4:17)  "Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world."


·       Is Christ a Son? So are we.

·       Is Christ justified? So are we.

·       Does Christ possess all things? So do we.

·       Is Christ accepted? So are we.

·       Is Christ secure? So are we.


(1 Cor 3:21-23)  "Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; {22} Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; {23} And ye are Christ's; and Christ is God's."



[1]       Danville Sunday Morning—October 26, 2003

        Fairmont Grace Church, Sylacauga, AL (Thursday PM—11/13/03)

        West Harpeth Grace Church, Franklin, TN (Sunday PM―11/16/03)

        Grace Baptist Church, Taylor, AR (PM 11/19/03)

        Tape #    X-84a