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Bible Commentaries
1 Corinthians 16

Bridgeway Bible CommentaryBridgeway Bible Commentary

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Verses 1-4


Plans for the collection (16:1-4)

For many years Paul had been concerned for the poor Christians in Jerusalem, and he was always doing his best to help them (Acts 11:27-30; Galatians 2:10). During his third missionary journey he had been organizing a collection of money and goods among the Gentile churches to take to Jerusalem. He hoped that as the Jerusalem Christians saw the loving concern that the Gentile churches had for them, they would feel a greater sense of unity and fellowship with their Gentile brothers in other countries (cf. Acts 24:17; Romans 15:25-27). (Paul talks about this collection more fully in 2 Corinthians 8:1-15.)

The Corinthians were participating in this collection and had written to Paul about it. In response Paul advises them to put their offerings into the fund each Sunday, so that the money will be ready when he visits Corinth. The amount people give will depend on the amount they earn (16:1-2). The church should also choose representatives to take the money to Jerusalem, and when Paul comes to Corinth he will write letters to introduce these men to the Jerusalem church. In fact, he might even go with them (3-4).

Verses 5-24

Personal notes and farewell (16:5-24)

Paul’s plan is to visit Macedonia and then move south to Corinth. He realizes that the church in Corinth needs further help, so when he comes he wants to spend some time there (5-7). He is not sure when he will make this visit, as he currently has much urgent work to do in Ephesus (8-9).

When Timothy arrives in Corinth (cf. Acts 19:22), the Christians are not to treat him with any less respect than they would Paul, for Timothy and he are doing the same work. Paul is anxious for Timothy to return to Ephesus as soon as possible, so that he might find out whether the situation in Corinth has improved (10-11). Paul tells them he has suggested that Apollos pay them another visit, but Apollos feels the time is not yet suitable (12).

Paul urges the Corinthians not to act like children any longer, but to act like responsible mature adults (13-14). Not all of them have acted immaturely. There are faithful hard-working people like those of the household of Stephanus, and the church should follow their leadership (15-16). The other two men who have come with Stephanus to seek Paul’s advice are likewise ones whom the church should follow (17-18).

A number of people and churches of the province of Asia join Paul in sending greetings to the Corinthians. Among these are Aquila and Priscilla, and the church in Ephesus that meets in their house (19-20; cf. Acts 18:18-19,Acts 18:24-26).

Finally, Paul takes the pen from his secretary to sign the letter himself (21; cf. 2 Thessalonians 3:17). In his own handwriting he adds a warning to those who are disloyal to Christ, expresses his longing for Christ to return, and sends his love to all the believers in Corinth (22-24).

Bibliographical Information
Fleming, Donald C. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 16". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/bbc/1-corinthians-16.html. 2005.
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