1 Corinthians 16:1 Now about the collection for the Lord’s people: Do what I told the Galatian churches to do. 2 On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with your income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made. 3 Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jerusalem. 4 If it seems advisable for me to go also, they will accompany me.
5 After I go through Macedonia, I will come to you—for I will be going through Macedonia. 6 Perhaps I will stay with you for a while, or even spend the winter, so that you can help me on my journey, wherever I go. 7 For I do not want to see you now and make only a passing visit; I hope to spend some time with you, if the Lord permits. 8 But I will stay on at Ephesus until Pentecost, 9 because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.
10 When Timothy comes, see to it that he has nothing to fear while he is with you, for he is carrying on the work of the Lord, just as I am. 11 No one, then, should treat him with contempt. Send him on his way in peace so that he may return to me. I am expecting him along with the brothers.
12 Now about our brother Apollos: I strongly urged him to go to you with the brothers. He was quite unwilling to go now, but he will go when he has the opportunity.
13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 14 Do everything in love.
15 You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the Lord’s people. I urge you, brothers and sisters, 16 to submit to such people and to everyone who joins in the work and labors at it. 17 I was glad when Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus arrived, because they have supplied what was lacking from you. 18 For they refreshed my spirit and yours also. Such men deserve recognition.
19 The churches in the province of Asia send you greetings. Aquila and Priscilla greet you warmly in the Lord, and so does the church that meets at their house. 20 All the brothers and sisters here send you greetings. Greet one another with a holy kiss.
21 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand.
22 If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Come, Lord!
23 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.
24 My love to all of you in Christ Jesus. Amen
And so, ends the first letter to the Church in Corinth. Now the commentary has a couple things to add.
See that he may be with you without fear: Paul had trouble with the Corinthian Christians not respecting his authority as an apostle and as a minister of the gospel. If they didn’t respect Paul, what might they do to a young man like Timothy? So, Paul asks the Corinthian Christians to respect Timothy when he comes.
Let all that you do be done with love: All the watching, all the standing fast, all the bravery, and all the strength the Corinthian Christians might show meant nothing without love. They were called to do all those things in a meek, humble spirit of love.
Well, it sounds like Paul has taken control of the church. He's discussing all the travel arrangements and he's shipping a collection for the church in Jerusalem. This morning, I read that Paul is indeed credited with building the first church. There are no witnesses who would testify they saw Jesus and Paul having any kind of conversation. Is Paul simply following the money to destroy the church from the inside out?
During the day these Bible Studies worry me. I have questions. I try to walk a mile every morning. During my walk yesterday, I kept wondering how Paul would know what's going to happen in the end times. He spent no time with Jesus, so Jesus is not Paul's source. I thought maybe the Apostle John might have been teaching Paul about the private teachings of Jesus. John and Jesus were best buddies. I'm pretty sure Jesus taught John more than Paul could ever garner on his own. I tried to look it up this morning... but John doesn't seem to be the source either.
What does the regular collection of shiny Ducketts have to do with Salvation? Paul is credited with setting up the Christian Church. Why is Paul putting money at the foundation of the church? Yes, I know that the people in Jerusalem needed help.... but why preach you don't have to have your thingy cut, or you don't have to learn kosher, but still preach that you have to tithe? Paul wanted a salary????
When I was searching for the commentary this morning, I saw that verses 13 & 14 were the topic of searches. Paul says be courageous and do everything in love. I'm sure that gets a lot of quotation from the pulpit. It just doesn't seem to be Paul's style. It's almost as if he's being sarcastic.
To be in Paul's church, you don't have to have your thingy cut.
To be in Paul's church, you don't have to do kosher.
To be in Paul's church, you have to bring money.
Be courageous... bring cash.