Day 333 – Friday, November 29: I Corinthians 1 – 4
Day 334 – Saturday, November 30: I Corinthians 5 – 8
Day 335 – Sunday, December 1: I Corinthians 9 – 11
Day 336 – Monday, December 2: I Corinthians 12 – 14
Day 337 – Tuesday, December 3: I Corinthians 15 – 16
Day 338 – Wednesday, December 4: II Corinthians 1 – 4
Day 339 – Thursday, December 5: II Corinthians 5 – 9
Day 340 – Friday, December 6: II Corinthians 10 – 13
Tis’ the most wonderful time of the year! Wow where did the last week go. Throw in Thanksgiving, Black Friday Shopping, Strep Throat that was picked up at the Thanksgiving Table, a Funeral, the church boiler on the fritz, our Youth Group Cookie Walk and their Christmas Party, and now the stomach flu is going around our house. Phew! What a whirl wind! Yet, we still call this the most wonderful time of the year. Right now, I’m questioning that, and praying that I don’t get the stomach bug that my wife and son seem to have at the moment.
To the Church in Corinth . . .
While we have two letters included within the Bible addressed to the Church in Corinth, there were a variety of communications that were written either by Paul or by the church that have been lost over time. Take for instance:
- I Corinthians 5:9 – Where Paul refers to a letter about “Sexually Immoral Persons” that he had written earlier to the people in Corinth.
- I Corinthians 7:1 – Refers to a letter the Corinthians had written to Paul with various questions they had concerning the faith. Questions the remaining portion of I Corinthians goes on to address.
- II Corinthians 2:2-4 – Paul makes mention to a letter of “distress and anguish” which he had written to the people . These themes don’t fit the nature of I Corinthians, we we can assume there was another letter written by Paul in anguish.
- Then of course we have I Corinthians,
- and II Corinthians.
Add that all together, and we have at least five different “Letters” sent back and forth between Paul and the Church in Corinth. Pretty impressive, considering this was well before the days of word processing, texting, or a simple email. Let alone, things like FedEx, UPS, and the USPS weren’t even thought of. Sending a letter took work. You needed pen, paper, a scribe who could write, and finally someone reliable enough to get it delivered safely. As we read through the rest of the Bible, remember that this was not small task as we treasure these words of communication back and forth between God’s people.
I Corinthians . . .
We can’t go through this letter without mention of Chapter 13. All of u s know it . . . or should, “Love is patient, love is kind . . .” You’ve probably heard it at nearly every wedding you’ve been too. As you read this text, I want you to try something. For this is the heart of Paul’s message of love and building up the kingdom of God in Corinth. Substitute your name in place of the word “Love.” If you are in a relationship substitute both of your names. This is how the pastor read it at our wedding . . . “C.J. and Wendy are patient. C.J. and Wendy are kind. . . .” How does that change the reading for you? It makes you think doesn’t it? How often do we fall short of sharing the love entrusted to us through patience, kindness, gentleness, and self control? My friends we are in trouble!
Now just when all seems hopeless. Make one other substitution for me. Read it again and substitute Jesus for “love.” Ah!!! Now we get the idea. For Jesus is always patient, kind, never envious, boastful, arrogant, or rude. Jesus never insists on his own way, and he will always believe all things. This is the heart of the Gospel and the reminder that Pastor John Mawhirter preached at our wedding 21 + years ago. Love is what is entrusted to us. We are called to give, receive, and life in love. Yet, being human we will fail. While we may not live in perfect love, thanks be to God, someone does . . . Jesus!!
II Corinthians . . .
My take away from II Corinthians was Chapter 11 whee Paul lists his sufferings. If you are going to read anything, read again II Corinthians 11:16-33. I know ministry has its challenges, yet my sufferings are nothing compared to Paul, and indeed nothing compared to the cross. Friends . . . let us not take our faith for granted! Persecutions still happen today in the name of Christ. So together let us boast in the goodness of God!
Finally a quick glimpse at the videos from thebibleproject.com if you are interested:
Day 341 – Saturday, December 7: Galatians 1 – 3
Day 342 – Sunday, December 8: Galatians 4 – 6
Day 343 – Monday, December 9: Ephesians 1 – 3
Day 344 – Tuesday, December 10: Ephesians 4 – 6
Day 345 – Wednesday, December 11: Philippians
Day 346 – Thursday, December 12: Colossians
Day 347 – Friday December 13: I Thessalonians
Day 348 – Saturday, December 14: II Thessalonians
Day 349 – Sunday, December 15: I Timothy
Day 350 – Monday, December 16: II Timothy