1 Corinthians 15:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 15:10, NIV: But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them--yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.

1 Corinthians 15:10, ESV: But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.

1 Corinthians 15:10, KJV: But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.

1 Corinthians 15:10, NASB: But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me did not prove vain; but I labored even more than all of them, yet not I, but the grace of God with me.

1 Corinthians 15:10, NLT: But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out his special favor on me--and not without results. For I have worked harder than any of the other apostles; yet it was not I but God who was working through me by his grace.

1 Corinthians 15:10, CSB: But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.

What does 1 Corinthians 15:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In the previous verse, Paul described himself as unworthy of the title "apostle" of Jesus Christ. After all, he oversaw the imprisonment and death of Christians in his eager attempts to wipe out faith in Christ after Jesus' resurrection from the dead and return to heaven. Why would God ever choose Paul to represent Christ to the world?

Paul takes no credit for the turnaround. Christ confronted him on his way to persecute more Christians and converted Paul to faith in Christ, commissioning him to take the gospel to the world, especially to Gentiles (Acts 9:3–6; 22:6–11). Clearly, Christ did not do this because Paul had earned it or proven himself worthy. Paul had proven himself opposed to Christ and all who followed Him.

Paul declares now that it is only by God's grace that he became what he was: Christ's messenger. Grace is the gift of a good thing that is unearned. Paul did not reform himself and start over. He was transformed and sent out.

God's grace was not wasted on Paul, he adds. He is not bragging when he says that he responded to God's grace through faith in Christ by giving himself heart, soul, mind, and body to the mission he received. He insists that he worked harder than any of the other apostles who came to their position in a more natural way, quickly adding that he does not take credit even for his focus and work ethic. His ability to do that also came from God's grace.