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Paul's relationship to the Corinthian church was special in some ways. He was not only the founder of the church, but he continued to stay in a close relationship to it. It motivated his care by calling for his wise management, it tried his patience and self-control, but it rewarded him at times with a special proof of affection and obedience, and filled him with hope of its extended and healthy impact. His love for that church was of a special passion. It was like that of a father for a talented son beset with temptations, whose character combined excellence and defects.
Paul’s letters to the Corinthians, reveal more of the personal character of the apostle than any of his other letters. They show him to be a man, a pastor and a counsellor, as in conflict not only with heretics but with personal enemies. These Letters reveal his wisdom, his passion, his patience, his tolerance of principle and practice in all matters that did NOT affect salvation, his strictness in all matters of right and wrong, his humility and maybe above all, his unceasing activity and wonderful endurance.
There is yet something else that gives a special interest to these letters. We see what method Much more clearly than any other part of the New Testament, they show Christianity in conflict with heathenism. Paul founded the church in the midst of an advanced and corrupt people, and he answered questions of conscience arising out of the relationships of Christians to the heathen around them. The situations he came across may never happen again, but the principles involved in his decisions serve as lights to the church in all ages, such as church discipline, social relations, public worship, the nature of the church and the sacraments. These letters refer to everyday events in the establishment of the church among the heathen and to its conduct in Christian lands.
Divisions in the community (1:1-4:21)
Moral vices in the community (5:1-6:20)
Lawsuits before non-Christian judges (6:1-11)
Sexual immorality (6:12-20)
Answers to the community's questions on problems (7:1-15:58)
Eating meat sacrificed to idols (8:1-11:1)
The principles of deciding about gray areas (8:1-13)
The principles modeled in Paul's life (9:1-27)
The cost of ignoring the principles modeled in Israel's history (10:1-22)
The principles applied to the current issue (10:23-33)
Women's head coverings (11:1)
Public worship (11:2-14:40)
The Lord's Supper (11:17-34)
Spiritual gifts (12:1-14:40)
The Resurrection (15:1-58)
Closing greetings (16:1-24)
This Book has affected me much like that of 2 Thessalonians. So, I have brought forth much more information than I usually do in my commentaries.
Ch.1 . . ch.2 . . ch.3 . . ch.4 . . ch.5 . . ch.6 . . ch.7 . . ch.8 . . ch.9 . . ch.10 . . ch.11 . . ch.12 . . ch.13 . . ch.14 . . ch.15 . . ch.16 . . Special Comments