NEXT-GENERATION MINISTRY ALERT: I can’t believe that we have been invited to teach Paul’s Epistles in Greece & Italy! We are teaching for ten weeks, in 10 cities and towns in those two countries. Pray for us as we go through all the EU rules for Covid-era travel. God is still working in transforming men and women to serve Him, just as He did here in the Lands of the Book 2,000 years ago. If everything goes well, we hope to do some live updates from some of the classes, and some of the”field trips” we are taking the students on to actual Biblical places.
God had performed an amazing miracle of grace in Corinth. A church was planted in one of the most un-Christian places on Earth. Imagine a wealthy beach town, which was also a bustling seaport filled with sailors, that was home to the most well-known brothels in the world, overshadowed by a huge temple shrine to demons. That was Corinth, in the first century. The reputation of Corinth had become a noun, to “Corinthianize” meant to freely live in sexual debauchery and drunkenness.
Now Paul, the one God used to plant that fledgling church was doing long-distance discipling by answering questions from the new believers and confronting problems that he had heard about.
First Corinthians chapters 11-14 are some key questions answered by God through Paul, and some big problems confronted by God’s Word through Paul. These chapters are so relevant to today’s world, and the state of believers living in some of the most tempting, confusing, discouraging, and uncertain days in history.
As always, God’s Word brings clarity, conviction, and certainty to our lives.
Lessons in 1 Corinthians 11: Gender-Based Roles, Communion & Consequences of Sin
1. 1 Cor. 11:1—BASIC DISCIPLESHIP IS IMITATION: Paul sets the example for us. He said that the Christian life is all about following Christ and inviting others to follow us, following Jesus. This was a regular theme in Paul’s teachings (1 Th. 1:6 “you became followers of us and the Lord”; 1 Cor. 4:16 “I urge you, imitate me”; Eph. 5:1 “be imitators of God”; Phil. 3:17 “follow my example”; Phil. 4:9 “things saw in me do”.
2. 1 Cor. 11:2-16—GOD’S GENDER SPECIFIC ROLES: Paul explains our gender-specific roles in the church and the home as reflecting the way God operates in the Trinity. Just as Christ’s role as the Son is to submit to the father, even though they are equal—so should we choose to submit to the roles He has given us.
3. 1 Cor. 11:23-26—COMMUNION & CHRIST’S RETURN: the purpose of the Lord’s Supper or communion is for me to proclaim the truths of my redemption by Jesus on the Cross—until He COMES. It is living in a way that constantly reflects His return and my seeking to have Him rule my life. Communion has three parts: the backward look (“in remembrance”); the inward look (“examine himself”); and the upward look (“till He comes”).
4. 1 Cor. 11:27-24—GOD CHASTENS BELIEVERS: as part of communion’s look back at the Cross and upward to Christ’s return, the inward look is for our spiritual health. If we do not stay obediently confessing and forsaking sin, Jesus warns us of consequences. Paul warns that believers are weak, sick, and die because they are unwilling to forsake sin. This is also covered in Hebrews 12:5-11; James 5:19-20; 1 John 5:16-17; Revelation 2:21-23.