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 1 Corinthians Chapter 16

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PostSubject: 1 Corinthians Chapter 16   Tue Sep 02, 2014 1:18 am

1 Corinthians 16:1

Counsel concerning the collection for the poor
The flow of the previous chapter, from a prolonged discourse on doctrinal matters to a concluding exhortation on practical diligence, moved smoothly to a discussion of a practical expression of that faith — care for the needs of others and in particular, the needy in Jerusalem.
At this appropriate juncture, Paul took up the Corinthian inquiry (cf. 1Co_7:1) concerning a proposed collection for God’s people (cf. 1Co_1:2) in Jerusalem (1Co_15:3). The Corinthians had apparently heard about the collection through members of the Galatian churches, the oldest of all the Pauline-planted churches (Acts 13:14-14:23) in Derbe, Lystra, Iconium, and Pisidian Antioch. Paul’s instruction to them was repeated to the Corinthians. Paul was concerned about the poverty stricken in Jerusalem. It seemed they had somewhat of an obligation to Jerusalem, since the beginning of the church was there.
The “Collection for the saints” is an offering for destitute believers in the over populated famine stricken city of Jerusalem. Paul had previously solicited funds from the churches of Galatia, Macedonia, and Achaia.

1 Corinthians 16:2

Paul never used the word “tithe” when he discussed giving, even though he gave more attention to giving than any other New Testament writer. Giving should be a systematic, weekly practice on Sunday when the church meets together. Giving was also to be proportionate — in keeping with one’s income (cf. Act_11:29). The income of some would permit them to give a greater proportion, while others, due to their few resources and other constraints on them, would be limited to lesser contributions. What was important was that giving be a unified ministry with each one participating, regardless of his income. Then when it came time to deliver the contributions to the saints in Jerusalem, no last-minute collections would need to be made, and the gift could be sent off gladly, not grudgingly (2Co_9:5) — as would be true if it were wrung out by emotional appeals or personal pressure. The church of the Lord Jesus Christ met on the first day of the week. The Christians practice first fruits. This is just saying take up a collection when you meet and have it ready. Each person should give according to what they can afford to give.
This evidences that the early church met on Sunday (Acts 20:7). The point is that giving must occur regularly, not just when one feels generous, particularly led to do so, or instructed to do so for some special purpose.
“As he may prosper”: No required amount or percentage for giving to the Lord’s work is specified in the New Testament. All giving to the Lord is to be free will giving and completely discretionary (see Luke 6:38; 2 Cor. 9:6-Cool.
This is not to be confused with the Old Testament required giving of 3 tithes which totaled about 23 percent annually to fund the national government of Israel, take care of public festivals, and provide welfare. Modern parallels to the Old Testament tithe are found in the taxation system of countries. Old Testament giving to God was not regulated as to amount.

1 Corinthians 16:3-4

Paul’s practice in money matters was scrupulously aboveboard. Not only did he avoid solicitation for himself (cf. 1Co_9:12, 1Co_9:15), but also when he acted to meet the needs of others he avoided direct involvement in handling the gift. He preferred instead that individuals from the various contributing congregations elect representatives to bear their gift (cf. 2Co_8:19-21) whom he might then accompany to the presentation. Paul did not want to handle the money himself, so he asked that they choose some honorable member, who would go and take the offering to the poor in Jerusalem. Paul is praising them for their help, in the word "liberality". Paul had really not planned to go with them. He said it did not matter if he were going; he still wanted someone else to carry the offering. He would let the chosen person travel with him, but he definitely did not want to carry the offering himself.

1 Corinthians 16:5

Counsel concerning future visits
The mention of his planned arrival in connection with the collection sparked another brief digression on the subject of future visits.
It was Paul’s plan to leave Ephesus, his place of ministry at that time (1Co_16:Cool, and journey through Macedonia, the region north of Corinth where the churches of Philippi, Thessalonica, and presumably Berea (cf. Act_20:4, a delegate from Berea accompanied Paul) flourished. They too were planning to make a contribution to the needy in Jerusalem (cf. 2Co_8:1-4). Paul tried to go back to the churches he had started to check and see how they were doing. Paul really wanted to wait a short time to let them get the problems in their church taken care of before he came. He loved these people and would come as soon as he was in their vicinity.
At the end of a 3 year stay in Ephesus, Paul wrote his letter and probably gave it to Timothy to deliver, v.10. Paul originally planned to follow Timothy a short while after, visiting Corinth on the way to and from Macedonia. He had to change his plan and visit only after a longer stay in Ephesus, then on to Corinth after Macedonia, to stay for a while.

1 Corinthians 16:6-7

On that journey (cf. Act_19:21) Paul hoped to be able to spend some time with the Corinthians, possibly as long as the winter since travel by sea in that season was ill-advised (cf. Act_27:9-44). Paul did come and stay with them for a while. They loved Paul and many of them would probably travel with him as he left. This would show how badly they felt about his leaving. This, in fact, he eventually did but not on the schedule here set forth. This change of plans became a source of trouble for him with the Corinthians later (cf. 2 Cor. 1:15-2:1). What Paul meant by the words you can help me on my journey is clarified later (1Co_16:11). He desired that his departure be marked by “peace,” which would be in keeping with the Lord’s will (cf. Jas_4:15). Notice that Paul says, “if the Lord permit”. He went where the Lord sent him. He stayed until the Lord said it is time to move on. Paul wanted to stay in Corinth for a while, but would be subject to the wishes of God.

1 Corinthians 16:8-9

For the time being, Paul intended to stay on at Ephesus in ministry, where the opportunities and the opposition were both great. Paul had spent a great deal of time at Ephesus. This could have been the trip when Paul had trouble with the silversmiths. Pentecost meant a great deal to the Christians, as well as the Jews. At Pentecost was when the Holy Spirit fell on 120, and they were all baptized in the Holy Ghost. One or the other of these situations may have arisen while he was writing this letter (cf. 1Co_4:19). It says something about Paul’s perception of his ministry that the presence of opposition was a sign to him of the viability of his labor and reason for pressing on, not running away (cf. Act_19:30-31). Paul was travelling from place to place and establishing churches along the way. He faced much opposition from the Jews during these trips. He was not only fighting all types of idol worship, but his greatest opposition was from the Jewish leaders themselves. The opportunities were great, but the "adversaries" {enemies} were many, as well.
Many adversaries: The apostle seems to have in mind his pending trip through Macedonia and is accounting for why he is staying a little longer in Ephesus.
Perhaps no New Testament church had such fierce opposition as the one in Ephesus (See 2 Cor. 1:8-10 where he described his experience in Ephesus, Acts 19:1-21) In spite of that opposition, the door for the gospel was open wide (2 Cor. 2:12-13 where Paul also had an open door, but no heart to remain and preach) and Paul stayed. At the end of the experience of opposition described in 2. Cor. 1:8-10, he wrote 1 Corinthians.
Those who opposed him in Corinth (1Co_4:18-21) probably took note of this.

1 Corinthians 16:10-11


In the meantime Paul intended to send his beloved assistant Timothy to Corinth. The younger man sometimes traveled in Paul’s place (cf. Php_2:19-24). That Timothy might have cause to fear while ministering in Corinth confirms, as this letter indicates, that working with the Corinthian church was no picnic. Timothy had been trained in the ways of the Lord by his mother and his grandmother, but a great deal of his ministry training had been from Paul. Paul thought of Timothy as his son in the spirit. When Timothy ministered, it was as if Paul were ministering. Timothy was an extension of the teachings of Paul. Paul is saying, it was the next best thing to him being with them himself.
Paul had sent him with Erastus to Macedonia, Acts 19:22 and then he was to travel to Corinth, perhaps to carry this epistle. “Without fear”: i.e. intimidation or frustration by believers in Corinth.
However, it probably says more about the character of Timothy, a man devoted to Christ (Php_2:19-21) but lacking Paul’s robust boldness (cf. 1Ti_4:12; 2Ti_1:7-8; 2Ti_2:1). This is just Paul giving the highest recommendation to Timothy to those in Corinth. Paul tells them not to hate him. Perhaps, Paul was afraid they would be jealous, because he thought so much of Timothy.
The identity of the brothers accompanying Timothy is not clear. It appears that Timothy went out from Ephesus with Erastus (Act_19:22). They may have been joined by some of the men who later composed Paul’s traveling party for delivering the collection (Act_20:4).

1 Corinthians 16:12

The last of the Corinthian questions (cf. 1Co_7:10) concerned Apollos. They apparently inquired about the possibility of a return visit from him. Paul said he had strongly urged Apollos to do this but that the gifted Alexandrian had decided to stay on in Ephesus with Paul, and not join Timothy and Erastus in their trip (Act_19:22). We must remember, again, that they had written a letter to Paul, and this is an answer to that letter. These Christians here at Corinth had probably asked in the letter for Apollos to come and minister to them. He was, possibly, one of their favorite ministers. It, also, seems that he was ministering somewhere else at the time and could not come.
Paul felt Apollos should accompany the other brothers, Timothy and Erastus, to Corinth. Apollos refused, staying in Ephesus longer. Paul respected his convictions.
Earlier in the letter, Paul had described himself and Apollos as fellow workers under God (1Co_3:9). This verse bears eloquent tribute to the fact that Paul conducted himself not as a master but as a partner with others who labored in ministry.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14

Paul gives 5 final commands. The Corinthian are to be alert, firm, mature, strong and loving.

Conclusion
Exhortation on appropriate conduct and commendation
Paul began the conclusion with a pointed exhortation along a fivefold line. The command, Be on your guard (grēgoreite) might be rendered “be diligent” in carrying out the will of God (cf. 1Co_15:58, “give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord”). In view of the Corinthians’ susceptibility to false teachers (cf. 2Co_11:3) the exhortation to stand firm in the faith was a timely reminder (cf. 1Co_15:1, 1Co_15:58). So too were the closing exhortations (similar to the Gr. text of several Pss., e.g., Psa_27:14; Psa_31:24) to be men of courage and be strong, that is, marked by maturity (cf. 1Co_14:20) and not infants easily swept aside (cf. Eph_4:14). This is a subject that we should dwell on quite a lot. It is just as important to remain in the salvation you have received as it is to be saved in the first place. To "stand fast", means not to be blown by every wind of doctrine. Be strong as men.
“The faith”: The Christian faith, i.e., sound doctrine as in Phil. 1:27, 1 Tim. 6:12; Jude 3.
That sort of diligence and commitment is required if everything is to be done in love (cf. 1 Cor. 12:31b-14:1). "Charity", here, is speaking of love. Paul is trying to teach them that Christianity is a relationship with the Lord in your heart. He is explaining to do things, because you love and not because of necessity.

1 Corinthians 16:15-16

Achaia was the Roman province extending over central and southern Greece of which Corinth was the capital. Those in the household of Stephanas were among the first converts in the region (cf. Act_17:34, for some in Athens believed), and they were among those who assumed responsibility for the general welfare of the church. Paul is reminding them here that these were some of the very first Christians. They, also, had totally dedicated themselves to the work of the Lord. Paul, possibly, was saying, even though they wrote me of these problems in the church, you must not have hard feelings about them. These things needed to be settled once for all.
The members of the household of Stephanas were among the first converts in Corinth, which is located in Achaia, the southern province of Greece. Stephanas was one of the Corinthians believers Paul baptized personally, and was visiting with Paul in Ephesus at the time this epistle was written. With Fortunatus and Achaicus, he probably delivered the earlier letter from Corinth mentioned in 7:1.
Sometimes Paul appointed elders (Act_14:23) but in this instance members of Stephanas’ household voluntarily took on the responsibility (cf. 1Ti_3:1). Paul recognized their position as ordained by God and urged others to submit to them. Paul is explaining that the new converts should listen to those who had been in the work longer and who had dedicated their lives to the work of the Lord. One primary qualification for church leadership was a willingness to serve (cf. Mat_23:11; Luk_22:26). To those who labored with this spirit, submission on the part of others in the church was due.

1 Corinthians 16:17-18

By their very presence, three men from the Corinthian church — Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus — were able to refresh and encourage Paul despite the fact that they probably also brought confirmation of the bad news earlier reported by Chloe’s people (1Co_1:11). These men were the probable bearers of the letter to which Paul had responded to. These were people who had come to minister to them in the things they were weak in. They had filled in the gaps in your spiritual learning.
Paul was glad about the arrival of his 3 friends in Ephesus who went there to be with him. The Corinthian were to give those men respect or their service to the Lord. One really great thing that happens when a group of old seasoned ministers get together, is that we refresh each others spirit. There is no room for jealousy in the ministry. Meet with other ministers, and share what God has shown you, and all will benefit by it.

1 Corinthians 16:19

Salutation, imprecation, and benediction
The churches… of Asia, perhaps those indicated in Revelation 2-3, joined with Paul in sending greetings to their sister church in Corinth (cf. 1Co_1:2). Aquila and Priscilla were tentmakers whom Paul met in Corinth and with whom he lived. They had followed Paul to Ephesus and remained there in ministry, making their house available as a meeting place (cf. Rom_16:3-5). We remember that Priscilla and Aquila were a husband and wife that Paul had lived with. In fact, Paul had been a tent maker with them to make a living. They were both teachers of the Word of God and they, also, opened their home as a church. They were all three responsible for founding the church in Corinth and in Ephesus.
The following Scripture shows that both of them taught. Acts 18:26 "And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto [them], and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly."
They had become good friends with Paul, since he stayed in their house during his first ministry in Corinth, Acts 18:1-3. He may have stayed with them the entire year and a half.
“In their house”: The early church used homes of believers for worship and many other activities.
They would, of course, know and be known by many in the Corinthian church.

1 Corinthians 16:20

All the brothers may refer to those from the Corinthian church in Ephesus at the time of writing (1Co_1:11; 1Co_16:17), or to believers in Ephesus who met in a house(s) other than that of Aquila and Priscilla, or simply to the collective community of Christians in the province of Asia.
The holy kiss (cf. 2Co_13:12; Rom_16:16; 1Th_5:25; 1Pe_5:14) was primarily a symbolic expression of the love, forgiveness, and unity which should exist among Christians. As such, it became associated with the celebration of the Lord’s Supper as a prelude to its observance. It was a mark of the familial bond which united believers. It was not unusual in these days for a man to kiss another man in greeting. He did not kiss him on the lips, but on the cheek. Notice the type of this kiss {holy}. Paul is saying; do not be distant to your brothers in Christ. Show that you care for each other.
This was a pure expression of Christian love between men with men and women with women, with no sexual overtones.
There is no indication that it was restricted to one’s own sex in the New Testament era (cf. Luk_7:37, Luk_7:45). The suggestion to separate the sexes for the exchange of the kiss arose in the late second century due to concern about criticism from non-Christians and the danger of erotic abuse. By the third century it seems that the sexes were separated, and by the fourth century the clergy and laity were also kept apart. Such, however, was apparently not the case in the New Testament church where love for one another was openly expressed.

1 Corinthians 16:21

At this point Paul stopped dictating the letter (cf. Rom_16:22; Gal_6:11) and wrote the final words himself. Paul is just saying that this is not second-hand information, but from him personally. He greets them personally.
Paul dictated the main part of the letter to a scribe, but finished and signed it himself.

1 Corinthians 16:22

Paul’s personal note began with a passionate warning probably aimed at false teachers (cf. 1Co_12:3) whom he believed to be already present in the congregation (cf. 2Co_11:3-4). The verb love (philei) is related to the noun philēmati for “kiss” (1Co_16:20). It expresses adoration and devotion, qualities absent in false brethren. Paul invoked God’s wrath on these false teachers (cf. Gal_1:8-9) and in the same breath appealed to Christ to return (cf. Mat_7:21-23; Rev_22:20). "Anathema" seems to mean excommunicated. Love of the Lord and the Lord's people is really the essence of Christianity. To not love the Lord would mean that you had rejected the Lord. You would just automatically cut yourself off, if you did not love the Lord. Of course, I think that is terribly important.  Come, O Lord! Renders the Greek words marana tha (“Maranatha”), which transliterate the Aramaic “Lord, come.”
1 Corinthians 16:23-24

To the congregation of Christians in Corinth, Paul invoked what they sorely needed, the continued grace of the Lord Jesus (cf. 1Co_1:4). This statement is a trademark of Paul. This is like speaking a benediction on them. It is actually a prayer of Paul's for them to continue in the unmerited favor of the Lord. He assured them of what they hardly deserved, his fervent though unrequited (cf. 2Co_6:11-13; 2Co_12:15) love (agapē) He embraced the disunited lot of them (cf. 1Co_1:10) as their spiritual father in Christ Jesus (1Co_4:15). Paul is just saying I love you, you are my spiritual children. Paul knows the only way to truly love people is to allow the Lord to love them through you. Amen, just means, so be it.
The first epistle to the Corinthians was written from Philippi by Stephanas and Fortunatus and Achaicus and Timotheus as dictated by the Apostle Paul.
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