1 Corinthians – Paul’s Authority

Posted on Posted in 1 Corinthians

“This letter is from Paul, chosen by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and from our brother Sosthenes. I am writing to God’s church in Corinth, to you who have been called by God to be his own holy people. He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus, just as he did for all people everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.” 1 Corinthians 1:1-3

Paul starts this letter as he usually stared his letters. The first thing that he wants to establish is his authority. He wants the people in the church to know that he had the authority to write them on the problem that was part of the church. Paul was an apostle. He was not one of the apostles that walked with Jesus when Jesus was on earth. Paul was chosen by Jesus on the road to Damascus. We can read about this in Acts 9. He then tells the people that he is writing this letter to a holy people that is chosen by God and made holy by Jesus Christ. Yes, Paul is establishing authority, but he wants everyone to understand that this authority is given to him by Jesus Christ.

In the first ten verses of Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians the name of Jesus Christ occurs no fewer than ten times. This was going to be a difficult letter for it was going to deal with a difficult situation, and in such a situation Paul’s first and repeated thought was of Jesus Christ. Sometimes in the Church we try to deal with a difficult situation by means of a book of laws and in the spirit of human justice; sometimes in our own affairs we try to deal with a difficult situation in our own mental and spiritual power. Paul did none of these things; to his difficult situation he took Jesus Christ, and it was in the light of the Cross of Christ and the love of Christ that he sought to deal with it.

It tells us something about the Church. Paul speaks of The Church of God which is at Corinth. It was not the Church of Corinth; it was the Church of God. To Paul, wherever an individual congregation might be, it was a part of the one Church of God.

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