April 4, 2021
1 CORINTHIANS 11-12
DAY 92: JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE IN A YEAR
Today’s journey takes us back to a very troubled church at Corinth. Why were there so many problems at the church at Corinth? Why were there so many divisions among the people new to this new faith, the People of the Way? Could self-service be interfering with God-service?
Before our reading today, take some time to stop and pray, seeking God’s wisdom for the reading. Read 1 Corinthians 11-12. Let’s journey!
Corinth was a major port city, with many temples to false gods. It was also a rather wealthy city, and known for its immorality. In Acts 18, we read about Paul helping to form the church in Corinth. He remained with them about 18 months before moving on to continue his missionary work elsewhere. While in Ephesus, Paul received reports that there were problems, big problems in the church at Corinth. This letter follows a distinct pattern, in that Paul addresses and describes one of five problems, and responds with a message from the Gospel. The problems Paul addresses are Divisions (1-4), Sex (5-7), Food (8-10), The Gathering(11-14), and The Resurrection(15).
1 Corinthians 11-12: Our journey today begins by considering whether a man and woman are different in God’s eyes. The controversy is more about self-centered advancement than about understanding God’s command. God created everyone, and continues to create everyone in the womb, to perform a specific mission to advance His kingdom. For those who are confused, God did not create a woman to be a man’s servant. This entire discussion reveals the depth of serving oneself rather than submitting; that’s right, submitting to God and following His direction for their lives, unlike the fallen church at Corinth. Things really haven’t changed much today. Additionally, the church at Corinth turned the Lord’s Supper into a drunken dinner party where self-promotion was practiced. The Lord’s Supper is celebrated to allow the believer to remember what Jesus has done for us, the believer, and what Jesus shall do for us, the believer, upon His triumphant return. Paul continues to address the issues that were dividing the church of Corinth, such as spiritual gifts. Members of the church disputed which of the Spiritual gifts was most important. Unfortunately, this continues today amongst believers. The Apostle Paul, using the parts of the human body to illustrate, explains that like the human body, Spiritual gifts, work together to accomplish God’s purpose, mission, within the body of Christ. Just like we need all of our body parts for our bodies to function properly; all the Spiritual gifts must be present to fulfill God’s purpose. There was no unity of purpose at the church in Corinth. The church at Corinth was riddled with people pursuing self-interest rather than pursuing God’s purpose. (1 Corinthians 11:1-12:31)
After reading chapters 11 and 12, consider the following: What problem is Paul addressing? In your own words, summarize what Paul is saying to address this problem. Is Paul’s message still applicable today? How and why?
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