1ST EPISTLE TO GOD'S CHURCH IN CORINTH
WEDNESDAY 28 JUNE 2023
In terms of the church in Corinth, the work of Pauline ministry here was confronted by spiritual warfare with spiritual implications, due to the city's gross immorality and idolatrous beliefs. This very church reflected the society in which it existed, to some extent, meaning that most of the problems of the church found their root in the city's lifestyle. Paul, however, did not approach or confront any challenge or problems of this very church by power or might, which of course, is not the method of the gospel, but by the Spirit, by the power of truth and the meekness of wisdom.
Reference: 1 Corinthians 1:2 New Living Translation (NLT) I am writing to God's church in Corinth, to you who have been called by God to be his own holy people. He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus, just as He did for all people everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours.
With the support of Sosthenes our brother, Apostle Paul wrote his first epistle to the church of God in Corinth, and addressed them as saints called by God to be His holy people. This church was strategically located in Corinth, the most important city in Greece, and at the time of Paul's intimate contact with the church, the city was cosmopolitan and hugely blessed with commercial prosperity but in a grossly sinful atmosphere which pervaded the mind of those residents in the city.
So the city was ruled by the power of corrupting influences and gross immorality in the hearts of men; hence, this influence was somehow, felt and noticed in the lifestyle of the Gentiles who had come to Christ, even after their conversion and salvation. Since Paul founded this church, he was able to address their manifold problems, pressures and struggles such as unquestionable practices, unashamed immortality, loose attitude, and idolatry.
No opposition was made against the gospel in this church, but several factions arose in the church meetings which posed as a possible danger to the administrations and progress of the church. So Paul addressed it through the conquest the Word of God gains over the minds of the saints. This means that, no matter how feeble the saints in Christ appear to be, when their problems and faith challenges are thoroughly addressed by the weapon of might through God, such issues and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, will be brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. In a nutshell, the preaching of the cross and intercession by men of faith and prayer will always be disastrous to idolatry, impiety, wickedness and gross immorality. It can turn even the hearts of worst of sinners from such evil practices - to God.
Just like Paul, when we come to the point where we understand that we are accountable to God, for the souls committed to our trust, then we buckle up and follow up our converts, both old and new, in order to keep track of their spiritual progress and development. In addition, we should equally take soul winning seriously, which must be done prayerfully, so as to persuade and win the lost around us to Christ, not to drive them by force, because the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, and the evidence of the gospel truth is more convincing and influential when intercession is hugely involved. Stay tuned for part 2. Shalom!
Scripture Reading - Psalm 119:133; John 12:26; Ephesians 5:1; John 15:8; 1 Peter 2:21.
Guided Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, I thank you for your awesome power and ability which intervene in the lives of your people, when they face worldly challenges or problems. The saints are your children by new birth in Christ, and always the beloved in Him. They are the elect, in whom you delight. You are well pleased with the spiritual progress of all the chosen ones in Christ, and I'm one of them. For this reason, I bless and honour you today, with my flow of thanksgiving, in Jesus' Name, Amen!