Today's passage: 1 Corinthians 16:12-24
- Earlier in the letter, Paul addressed a “Paul versus Apollos” controversy in the church. Verse 12 confirms the controversy had nothing to do with Paul and Apollos. They were in agreement and partners in ministry!
- Verses 13 and 14 do not contradict each other.
- Loving people (Giving of yourself for their benefit) requires watchfulness, faith-filled firmness, maturity (Manliness), and strength.
- It appears the men (Or some of the men) of Stephanus' “household” were the first elders in the church at Corinth. Perhaps later joined by Fortunatus and Achaicus, who could have also been deacons.
Questions to consider:
- Paul was an Apostle and Apollos was not. Did Paul have authority to tell Apollos where he could and couldn't minister? Who would decide if Apollos ever preached at Corinth? What does this teach us about church governance even in the first century?
- Does it appear Paul was intimidated by people who did not believe (Verse 22)? Does this mean he had no heart for the lost (Romans 9:1-3, Ephesians 3:8)? How should we balance these ideas, knowing they do not contradict each other? What is our confidence? How should we view people in relation to our calling and identity in Christ?
- Reading verses 13 and 14 together, what does it mean to act like a man? Why is it so important the men of the church act like men? (And the women of the church act like women? – No longer little children) Where can you grow in maturity and love for the sake of others?