An Emphasis on Conduct and Carnality in the Church
Up and Close with The Apostle Paul Series
1 Corinthians 1:1-3 (KJB) Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, 2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: 3 Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Corinthian Church was experiencing problems as its members attempted to build on a solid foundation of God and to grow and mature spiritually in things of Christ (2nd Peter 3:18). They had taken steps to ask the Apostle Paul for his help by way of a letter and Paul gave an answer back to them in his first letter to the Corinthian Church.
This church was located and established within an area with several shrines and statues dedicated to idols. This city was a rather busy large area visited by many tradesmen and people selling wares. Because of the continual influx of various belief systems between lost and saved hearts, both carnality and conduct issues became evident in both this city and within this struggling congregation.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (KJB) Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
It is true that people often elect to take as wide a birth possible when navigating through their own conscience concerning their character traits and personal preferences, especially when pitted against the will of God for their life. Members and leaders of this Corinthian Church were no different in ancient times than what is often at work in many congregations today. Though many did genuinely desire to serve and savor God in their heart, the pressures and pull of sin spoke loudly to the carnal nature of their flesh.
This caused many to question doctrine, lower their standards, to rationalize, and ultimately more immature members to be inclusive concerning sin. The presence and pull of sin are like spiritual cancer. It can cause preachers, leaders, and the congregation at large to be subject to the pull of their flesh as they face continual temptation and precisely why every Christian must be ready to run their spiritual race in this life with godly gusto!
The result of the presence and power of sin in this church served to bring confusion and questions and they were expressed in a letter to the Apostle Paul. These questions were concerning things such as eating meat, idols, and division in the church. Varying opinions were the tender of many heated quarrels and spiritual battles among members and leaders
One thing is certain, God intended for His Truth to be rightly divided among preachers, teachers, and in the lives of each of us by recording this answer for us in 2 Timothy 2:15. Yes, every man of God can and should prove himself by using Word of God in knowing what is true, just, and eternally reliable as they sojourn in this world.
Doctrinal issues and practical applications for every professing Christians in rightly dividing scripture is clearly presented in 1st Corinthians, including the wisdom of God, His prominence, His gospel ministry and preaching of the cross, and the importance of celebrating sanctification and service at intervals in the lives of every sincere believer. The second missionary journey of the Apostle Paul is described in this book in detail.
It is also the timeframe in which the Apostle Paul met and worked among two dear friends, Priscilla and Aquilla. This couple shared fellowship with the Apostle Paul in their trade as tentmakers and in ministering to both lost and saved hearts.
This letter by Paul to the Corinthian Church was to address various sticking points concerning disunity among members. Sin was a problem in this city area dotted about with shrines and idols. The presence of ungodly circumstances created problems and disorders in this city and in the church as sin became more and more prevalent. These answers were penned by the Apostle Paul, at the direction of God were to reverence Him, practice sincere separation from sin, and to enjoy fellowship with other believers. All these things are important in this world filled with increasing sin and evil today.
**In the next devotion in this series Up Close and Personal with the Apostle Paul the title isThe Consolation of God Revealed when we focus on the book of 2nd Corinthians.
Please read other devotions in this series: