Paul shared some intensely confrontational words with the church at Corinth throughout the letter. Yet he closes the letter on some very positive notes. As I perused the chapter I found 7 key concepts that he mentions that still have a part of our current day churches.
- The collection of offerings (1) – the fashion of collecting and the intent of the gift might be different from that which Paul refers, but, as believers we still consider the giving of funds for the ministry to be an act of worship.
- Meeting on Sundays (2) – As believers we recognize that every day is for the Lord. However, we still consider the first day, Sunday, to be the preferred celebration gathering (refer back to 1 Corinthians 15 as to why the resurrection has such meaning)
- Hospitality (6-7, 10-11, 20) – We are still blessed to have individuals that are willing to open their homes for visiting brethren. We also place a premium on developing an environment where people feel welcome when we gather (though no kisses).
- Missions/Evangelism (9) – Paul recognized doors that were open for the ministry of the Word. Interestingly, the open door included adversaries proving that open doors are not necessarily the entrance with the least resistance.
- Biblical Masculinity (13,14) – healthy churches continue to call men to act like men. Strength includes being watchful, standing firm in the faith and doing all things in love.
- Faithful Service (14-16) – the church is characterized as equipping the believers to do the work of the ministry. The household of Stephanas devoted themselves to ministry. Today’s church is filled with faithful servants!
- Anticipation of the Lord’s coming (22) – Even after nearly 2000 years we still look forward to the return of the Lord!
As you close out your reading in 1 Corinthians be mindful of the impact that Paul’s letter has had on our current day worship.