(2 Corinthians 2:1-11)
In the first letter Paul wrote to the church at Corinth, he was quite scathing about some of the practices they were accepting and allowing to occur. Those practices included many forms of adultery and immorality and had to be addressed in a direct and emphatic way.
Give and receive forgiveness and comfort
Judgement was made and those who were carrying out these immoral practices were brought to account. Their practices were shown up to the light of the truth and shown to be wrong and those who were doing such things were warned to change their ways or leave the church.
But in this letter we see a call for reconciliation, where the people who had wronged the church and repented, changed their ways and were seeking God’s forgiveness. And where this happens, Paul now instructs the church to also forgive and welcome back those who have repented.
(2 Corinthians 1:12-24)
One of the major phone companies here in Australia has the word ‘Yes’ as a combination motto, logo and customer promise. Whether they actually achieve that I don’t know, but it is a good marketing approach.
In Christ it is always YES
Most people like to hear a ‘yes’ response because it means they are getting a positive response to their questions or inquiry.
In Jesus Christ, we see here that He too responds with ‘yes’. Paul makes the point to the church at Corinth that,
For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. – (2 Corinthians 1:20)
(2 Corinthians 1:8-11)
Deliverance is one of the many messages we hear Christians speak about. It is often used as a means to draw people into churches.
Unlocking the key to deliverance
There is a church near where I lived some years ago where they had a sign out front announcing a weekly prayer meeting for people to come and get healing. And this is a great draw card because nobody likes to suffer.
Deliverance was at the root of many of the miracles Jesus performed while He walked on the earth. He healed the sick, lame, blind, deaf, paralysed and gave release from demonic possession to many people as part of His ministry. These people were delivered from all manner of afflictions and many followed Him purely because of the deliverance He gave.
But there is more to deliverance and a greater purpose, which is available to all still today through Christ Jesus.
(2 Corinthians 1:1-7)
In this second letter of Paul to the church at Corinth we see him answer a number of questions and issues raised in the first letter. While the first letter was quite stern in a number of places, this second letter is more conciliatory.
Comfort one another
Paul emphasises the need to walk in love more in this letter. He shows that, while there are circumstances that require strict action in the first letter, there is also the time to turn and offer compassion, mercy and love. When the one who sinned or was in the wrong turns and repents, then they should be offered forgiveness and reconciliation.
And we see this attitude come through strongly right from the beginning of this letter where Paul writes about the need to comfort those who have turned from their erroneous ways and returned to the Lord.
(1 Corinthians 16:5-23)
In these last words of the chapter and book of 1 Corinthians 16, what we see for the most part are Pauls final greetings and closing remarks to the church.
However in among those words are a few gems we can take away and use ourselves in our walk with Christ Jesus.
And the ones that stand out most to me are the words of verse 13 where the Corinthian church are instructed to be watchful. We too need to be watchful, both for the same things they needed and for the return of the Lord as we are in the end days.
(1 Corinthians 16:1-4)
In various places across this blog I have posted information about the financing of the Christian church.
It’s about giving, not tithing
I know that many in the church these days tithe and give offerings because that is what they are taught by their ministers and pastors. And there is no doubt that if a church is to operate it needs the financial funding to do so. Even those who hire local halls must have the money to hire and provide the needs of the church for the running of the church.
But the mechanism of the Christian church is not tithing. In this section of scripture Paul shows us how the giving process in the church ought to operate.
(1 Corinthians 15:58)
I just love this verse. It fills me with both comfort and encouragement because it is good to know that your work is both appreciated and valuable.
Your labour is not in vain
Anyone who does any kind of work for the Lord should also take comfort in these words.
They are words of hope because they tell us we are valued for what we are doing in the service of the Lord. The highest calling any person can have is to serve others. And there is no higher call than to serve the Lord God and His son Jesus Christ. Continue reading
(1 Corinthians 15:50-57)
This section of scripture is well known among Christians for a number of different reasons, but what it represents is one of the least understood principles in the bible.
The sting of death is sin and the power of sin is the law
It speaks directly to what the offer of God's grace is to mankind. Grace is one of those “churchy” words that Christians throw around all of the time. But understanding grace and what God has offered us is well described in this section.
And the final few verses offer an insight into the mystery of grace. They open up the power of the grace of God so we can better understand just exactly what God achieved through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
(1 Corinthians 15:35-49)
It appears to me that there is a great amount of interest, but not a lot of understanding about the resurrection of the dead.
Resurrection into eternity
The resurrection is THE most important and fundamental teaching in Christianity. It is because of the resurrection that Christianity even exists, as I have pointed out in other articles. If there was no resurrection, then there is no Christianity and your faith would be pointless.
Fortunately though, through our faith in the working of God we believe that the resurrection is real, that Jesus Christ was resurrected and is alive, and that we who have believed in Him will also be raised from the dead or transformed at His coming.
This section of scripture today provides other valuable and useful insights into the resurrection.
(1 Corinthians 15:29-34)
This section of scripture has three distinct but complimentary teachings. All of them are to do with baptism of the dead, and they each talk of the attitude we must hold as we hold the faith in Jesus Christ.
Bad company ruins good morals. If there is no resurrection, let us eat and drink for tomorrow we die
The three specific aspects that we look at in this verse today are:
- Baptism on behalf of the dead
- Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die
- Bad company ruins good morals
But the key to understanding these lies in the what they mean with regard to the faith and the truth of the new covenant, especially as it relates to the impact of baptism.