Groups following other preachers rejected Paul's ministry and gospel. In 1 Corinthians, Paul warned the church against living a self-centered life rather than a Christ-centered life.
1 Corinthians is Paul's second attempt to deal with problems by letter from Ephesus and was delivered by Apollos. The situation in Corinth was troublesome enough that Apollos refused to deliver the second letter Paul wrote. Instead, Timothy delivered the letter that is now known as 2 Corinthians.
1. Good and Father of Jesus Christ
2. Father of Compassion
3. God of all comfort in all our troubles
- As we receive comfort from God, we are told to give comfort in the same way.
- Christian comfort doesn't mean we will be comfortable.
- God's comfort is giving us strength to meet the troubles that will come into our lives. BUT through Jesus, our comfort will overflow.
- Our strength is in God and that comfort will overflow when we rely on him and not on ourselves. (1:5)
- Rely on God no matter how bad things get. Even if you think death is a real possibility, rely on God. God can raise the dead. Therefore, don't lose hope. (1:9)
- Paul gave credit to his prayer partners for receiving favor from God.
- He wrote that the favor was granted because of the prayer of many.
- Their prayers helped deliver Paul from persecution and trouble. (1:11)
3. According to God's grace. (1:10-12)
God's promises are "Yes" in Christ and through Christ the "Amen", or agreement, is spoken by us to the glory of God. (1:20)God makes us stand firm in Christ because:
1. He anointed us
2. He set his seal of ownership on us
3. He put his Spirit in our hearts
4. His Spirit acts as a deposit,or guarantee (1:21-22)
Church leaders should work with you and cause joy, not lord it over the church.
- Paul's relationship with the Corinthian church was painful, but he knew he had to lead them to Christ's way.(2:2-4)
- Forgiveness is essential for a church. Christians are not free to withhold forgiveness and comfort.(2:5-11)
- Satan can and will cause disruptions within a church body.(2:11)
The Lord opens doors for his leaders and people. God goes before us and leads to victory in evangelism. (2:12-14)
- Paul made a point about profiting from the Word of God. He pointed out that many peddle the Word of God for profit, but he and his leaders did not do this. (2:17)
- I love how Paul writes that we are a letter from Christ, a result of ministry, written not in ink, but with the Spirit of the Living God. A letter not written in stone, but on tablets of human hearts. (3:2-3)
- Paul gives credit to God for his competence as a minister of the new covenant. He followed not the letter of the law, but the Spirit of God that gives life. (3:4-6)
- The law given to Moses came with glory,so shouldn't the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? (3:7-8)
- We who have this glorious covenant should be bold. The veil that separated God's people from him is taken away by faith in Christ.(3:14-16)
- The Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom. Our unveiled faces all reflect the glory of the Lord.
We are being transformed into his likeness with ever increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (3:17-18)