“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you …” (I Corinthians 11:23)
In this passage Paul was writing to the Corinthian church about what he had passed on to them about the practice of the Lord’s Supper. He said that what the Lord gave him, he passed on to them — and he then proceeded to delineate the details of the ordinance. Something we should not overlook in this passage, however, is the faithfulness of Paul’s stewardship of what the Lord gave him. He said: “I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you.” What did Paul give to the Corinthians? Exactly what God gave him — nothing more, and nothing less. He didn’t add to it his own opinions or feelings; and he didn’t take away anything he thought might be offensive. What he gave to them was exactly what God had first given to him.
This is the responsibility of a faithful steward of the word of God, in Paul’s day or in ours. Whether one is a pastor or evangelist, Bible Study leader, teacher, parent in a home or a discipler of individuals, the great responsibility of the one who deals with the word of God is to pass on to those who are taught the message that God has given them in His word. It is not for them to add their opinions, or to try to “soften” what God said. The goal of the good steward of the word of God is to be able to say of their own ministry just what Paul did of his: “I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you.”