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Bible Commentaries
1 Corinthians 16

Smith's Bible CommentarySmith's Commentary

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Verses 1-24

Chapter 16

And so he writing to them now about taking up a collection for the saints [that are in Jerusalem], as he asked also the churches in the area of Galatia. Now he said on the first day of the week ( 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 )

Which would seem to indicate that they did gather together on Sunday.

let every one of you lay by him in store, as God has prospered him, that you don't take any collections when I come ( 1 Corinthians 16:2 ).

Paul didn't want them taking offerings while he was there, he wanted them to do this in advance before he got there.

And when I come, whoever you shall approve by your letters, I will send them to bring your liberality to Jerusalem. And if it is necessary that I go also, I will take them with me. Now I will come unto you, when I will pass through Macedonia: for I am going to pass through Macedonia. And it may be that I will abide with you, in fact even spend the winter with you, that you may bring me on my journey whithersoever I go. For I will not see you now by the way; but I trust to tarry a while with you, if the Lord permits ( 1 Corinthians 16:3-7 ).

Now Paul's plans here are all loose, hanging loose, whatever the Lord permits. Now this is what I'm hoping to do, this is what I plan to do. Plan to, you know, I'm going to pass through Macedonia, upper Greece, and I'm going to come on down there to Corinth, so I want you to have this offering all set. And I plan to spend maybe the winter there with you, if the Lord permits.

You know, it's always good when you're walking with the Lord to just hang loose. Whatever the Lord has in mind. I think that we make a mistake sometimes in getting so set in routines that we're not available for God to change our plans.

You know, a good way never to be disturbed is to always expect to be disturbed. If I'm always expecting God to disturb me at anytime, then I'm never disturbed when He does. But if I try to so order my life down to every last little facet, then I'm really disturbed when I'm disturbed. But if I'm expecting to be disturbed, then I'm never disturbed. Because I'm expecting it. So, James said, "Go to now you who say, tomorrow we're going to do this and this and this," he said you should rather say, "if the Lord wills tomorrow we will do this and this," because you don't know what tomorrow holds. Life is but a vapor, it just appears for a moment and it's gone. So you really don't know what tomorrow . . . so better to say, "If the Lord wills." And so Paul here, "if the Lord permits. You know, this is what I am planning to do providing if the Lord permits and the Lord wills." But he's leaving the options open for God to guide him. And this is what I am intending, it's what I'm hoping, what I'm planning, if the Lord permits.

But I'm going to tarry here in Ephesus until Pentecost ( 1 Corinthians 16:8 ).

That would be in until June. Then hoping to come on over to Macedonia, passing on down, and spend the winter. Corinth would be a great place to spend the winter, and so spend the winter there in Corinth before I take off for Jerusalem. Desiring, of course, to be back in Jerusalem for the feast of the Passover.

"I will tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost."

For a great door and effectual door is open unto me, and there are many adversaries ( 1 Corinthians 16:9 ).

I love that, "I'm gonna stick around here because there are a lot of problems." A lot of enemies, a lot of adversaries. So, hey, this is rich. I'm gonna stick here for a while. You know, where we face adversaries, a time to run you know. A lot of adversaries around, let's get out of here. But it was a challenge to Paul. Oh, that we would be challenged more for the work of the Lord. There is an effectual door, but there are a lot of adversaries. But oh, the opportunities are so great. I'm gonna stick around here for a while, things are really cooking, you know. Opportunities are great. A lot of adversaries, but the opportunities are great.

Now if Timothy comes, see that he might be with you without fear ( 1 Corinthians 16:10 ):

Don't intimidate him, he's a young man.

for he works the work of the Lord, as I also do. Let no man therefore despise him ( 1 Corinthians 16:10-11 ):

Now you remember when Paul wrote to Timothy he said, "Let no man despise your youth. But be thou an example unto the believer in your godliness and in your walk and all." And now he is writing the church and saying, "Now don't despise him. He's just a young man. But he is laboring for the Lord even as I do." And Paul wrote of Luke in another epistle, "I really don't have anyone who has the same burden and mind that I do, than Luke." I mean, Luke was just really a pattern of Paul. He had caught the same vision of Paul. And Paul said, "There's really no one that sees things quite as much like me as does Timothy." So he is writing to them, "Receive Timothy. He is serving the Lord just like I do; don't despise him."

but conduct him forth in peace, that he may come unto me: for I look for him with the brethren ( 1 Corinthians 16:11 ).

So help him along his way, because I'm waiting for him and looking for him.

As touching our brother Apollos ( 1 Corinthians 16:12 ),

Now you remember in the beginning of the epistle, Paul spoke about Apollos, and some were saying, "I'm of Cephas. I'm of Peter. I'm of Apollos. I'm of Paul." And he said, "One plants, one waters; God gives the increase. I planted, Apollos watered; God gave the increase. He who plants is nothing, he who waters is nothing; it is God who gives the increase." Now, Paul is writing to them concerning Apollos.

Now touching our brother Apollos,

I greatly desired him to come unto you with the brethren: but his will was not at all to come at this time; but he will come when he shall have a more convenient time. Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, be ready like men, be strong [stand up like men, actually]. Let all your things be done with love ( 1 Corinthians 16:12-14 ).

So even as Paul closes so many of his epistles, you remember Romans 13 , he got into these short little exhortations. The last of Thessalonians he gets into short little exhortations. So here, short little exhortations: now watch, stand fast in the faith, be strong like men, stand like men, be strong. Do everything with love.

And I beseech you brethren, (you know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry,) ( 1 Corinthians 16:15 )

I love that. What a great addiction. They've addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,

that you submit yourselves unto such, and to every one who helps with us, and labors. I am glad for the coming of Stephanas and Fortunatus and of Achaicus: for that which was lacking on your part they have supplied ( 1 Corinthians 16:16-17 ).

So I appreciate these fellows coming with the supplies that they've brought.

For they have refreshed my spirit and yours: therefore acknowledge ye them that are such. Now the churches of Asia ( 1 Corinthians 16:18-19 )

Paul was at Ephesus, you remember.

they salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you ( 1 Corinthians 16:19 )

Paul first met Aquila and Priscilla in Corinth. They were converts of Paul there in Corinth, it would appear. He first met them there, then they went on to Ephesus and worked with Paul in Ephesus.

Aquila and Priscilla salute you in the Lord, with the church that is in their house ( 1 Corinthians 16:19 ).

Churches don't have to meet in buildings. They can meet under trees, they can meet in houses, and where two or three are gathered together in His name, you've got a church. The Lord is there. Gathering to worship Him. And so, "The church that is in their house greets you."

All the brethren greet you. And greet one another with a holy kiss. The salutation of me Paul in my own hand ( 1 Corinthians 16:20-21 ).

So Paul had dictated the letter up to this point. Now he takes the pen out of the hand of the secretary there, who he's been dictating the letter to, and squinting bad eyes, he says, "I'm gonna write this in my own hand." And so the big scribbly letters, because he can't see very well, and so they really recognize, yea this is Paul. Look at that.

So the salutation of Paul is with my own hand.

If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema, Maranatha ( 1 Corinthians 16:22 ).

Let him be anathema. Anathema is accursed. Any man who doesn't love the Lord Jesus Christ is really accursed. Maranatha, the Lord cometh! This is the mental attitude that we are to have at all times. The mental attitude with which we live in this materialistic society. The mental attitude as we face the materialism of the world. The Lord cometh! We are in the world. We are not to be of the world. We are to have our every contact with the world as light as possible, realizing that the Lord is coming. Don't get too involved in the temporal, material things. Get more involved in the eternal, spiritual things. As we get into II Corinthians, Paul will tell us, "for we look not at the things which are seen, they are temporal, but the things which are not seen, they are eternal."

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. My love be with all of you in Christ Jesus. So be it ( 1 Corinthians 16:23-24 ).

Glorious -- I Corinthians.

And next week, or the following week, we begin II Corinthians, the first couple chapters. And you'll find that it will also be a very fascinating epistle. You know, it's always exciting to realize that our next meeting could very possibly be in the air -- for Maranatha! The Lord is coming!

And so may the Lord be with you and bless you this week. May the Word of God dwell in your hearts richly through faith. And may you begin to comprehend with the saints just how much God really does love you. And may you begin to experience more and more God's touch of love and power in your life, as you seek to walk with Him in a way that is pleasing unto Him. God bless you, fill you with His love. In Jesus' name. "

Bibliographical Information
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 16". "Smith's Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/csc/1-corinthians-16.html. 2014.
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