In the final defence of his authority, Paul painfully shares a personal out-of-body experience. He speaks about himself in the third person, lest anyone would think he was boasting about his experiences in Christ. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in…
Super Apostles – 2 Corinthians 10&11
In the last section of his letter to the Corinthians, Paul changes his tone from the theme of the earlier part of the letter, as he seeks to confront the ‘Super Apostles’, who were tarnishing all the good work done by him in the province of Achaia. He withdraws his claim of not indulging in…
Made Rich through Christ’s Poverty – 2 Corinthians 8&9
A passage that is quoted often before the time of giving in our Sunday services, Paul’s challenge to the Corinthian church has been used as a template to inspire and encourage the practice of tithing. However, Paul’s emphasis seems to be on the transformation of the heart and understanding the commitment that the church had…
Godly Sorrow – 2 Corinthians 7
After writing the severe letter to the Corinthians that was full of rebuke, Paul was troubled, especially when his companion Titus was held up in the Achaia province. Upon successful reunion with his protege, Paul finally found peace as Titus recounted the kindness that was shown to him by the Corinthians. Hearing reports that the…
Vanity and Idolatry – 2 Corinthians 6
As the Church in Corinth started growing in numbers, the people started to think that they were impervious to the sins of the world around them. They thought that they were immune to the pagan ways of their city, but slowly that fallacy caught up with them as they fell prey to their own vices….
A New Creation – 2 Corinthians 5
Tents were the earliest form of shelter for the early Israelites. Noah, Abraham and even Moses all lived a nomadic existence and depended on tents to protect them from the harsh weather. Later on, tents became obsolete as Israelites started moving into cities and into houses made of stone. No one desired to live back…
Death & Life – 2 Corinthians 4
Paul heard that his opposers were also tarnishing his name and the credibility of his gospel. Defending the integrity of his message, Paul wrote this section of his letter to the people of Corinth. Unlike the other preachers who peddled the word of God to make a name for themselves or to extract monetary benefit…
A Veil That Covers our Hearts – 2 Corinthians 3
With the rise of false preachers and deceitful messengers, the church in Jerusalem (which was the base for all missionary journeys) started issuing letters of recommendation to all its patrons about the ministers they would send to them. Paul himself would use such letters to introduce his associates when he would send them to a…
Captives in Christ’s Triumphal Procession – 2 Corinthians 2
Paul did not want to go to Corinth immediately after sending the letter full of rebuke at the hands of Titus. He was not sure how the church at Corinth would react and wanted to give them time to process and act on his rebuke. He says that he had confidence in the people to…
The God of All Comfort – 2 Corinthians 1
Regarded by most Bible scholars as the fourth letter that Paul wrote to the Corinthians, it serves as an affirmation to its readers who had heeded to Paul’s harsh rebuke in the preceding letter. Paul also wanted to prepare the hearts of the congregation for his next visit and remind them of the commitment they…
Corinthians – Introduction
Paul wrote letters to the church in Corinth in response to various allegations and accusations he heard among the church members.
A Church Divided – 1 Corinthians 1-2
We have been given the Spirit of God to judge for ourselves what is right and wrong. The Spirit of God within us will make known the plans that God has for us. Let us not get swayed by human leaders and apostles and forget what Jesus wants in our lives.
The Church Leaders – 1 Corinthians 3-4
For Christ to increase, we need to decrease, but leaders sometimes are worried about their followers and disciples perceiving them as imperfect people. They put on a show in front of their congregations, lest someone should think of them as sinners like the rest of us.
The Evil Within – 1 Corinthians 5
Paul started addressing specific incidents that deeply troubled him because of how sexual immorality was running rampant in the church of Corinth. He cites one particular incident of a congregation member who was having sexual relations with his father’s wife, perhaps a callback for us of how Reuben slept with his father’s wife.
The New Temple – 1 Corinthians 6
The people of Corinth had started corrupting the greatest temple of the Lord, their own bodies and Paul sought to make them realize the gravity of their actions.
A Corrupted Institution – 1 Corinthians 7
From its very inception, the institution of Marriage was supposed to unite two individuals to serve God as one body. Over the years mankind, especially the forefathers and other leaders have had a hand in corrupting this sacred union. Marriage became a means to bear offspring and not a way for its members to unite in their sole purpose to connect with God. However, Paul’s instructions to the Corinthians on the subject of marriage may seem like a concession rather than the norm.
A Stumbling Block – 1 Corinthians 8-10
Corinth being a melting pot of cultural diversity, made it hard for the new believers to separate themselves from the pagan traditions that surrounded them. One such issue that Paul tries to address is eating of meat that was sacrificed to the pagan gods. Since only part of the animal was used for sacrificial purposes,…
For the Sake of the Gospel – 1 Corinthians 9-10
In his letters to the believers in Corinth, Paul not only addresses the failures of the church but also addresses the allegations levelled against him. When immorality is allowed to take the driver seat in a church, it will try its best to bring down the workers of God. If Paul’s ego would have been…
Complete Surrender – 1 Corinthians 11
As the church in Corinth continues to struggle with the rampant sexual immorality, Paul tries to rein in the congregation by taking them back to the very purpose of creation. After dealing with cases of unfaithfulness among the men and women in the church, Paul tries to take a step back and addresses the need for discipline in hopes of bringing back order to the worship in the church.
In Remembrance – 1 Corinthians 11
Our Remembrance of Jesus’s sacrifice should not be only on Sundays when we are standing in the communion line but throughout the week and should be reflected in everything we do.
One Spirit Many Gifts – 1 Corinthians 12
Being a relatively new church, the Corinthians had lot of queries regarding their order of worship. One of the main concerns was the mystery that surrounded the spiritual gifts given to the members by the Spirit. They saw these gifts as a means to create a hierarchical order between themselves rather than using it for the purpose that God intended.
Christ is Love – 1 Corinthians 13
With the growing thirst for Spiritual Gifts among the church at Corinth, Paul points out the greatest gift that they all needed in their lives, something greater than any other gift and without which all other gifts are worthless.
Order in the Church – 1 Corinthians 14
The purpose of group worship is to gather together and praise God. If the purpose was for each one to talk to God personally, that could have been done from the comfort of their homes.
The Heavenly Man – 1 Corinthians 15
Depending on our fellow believers will only get us so far and might even lead us away from God. The only way to defeat death is to depend on the heavenly man and follow His path.
Till We Meet Again – 1 Corinthians 16
Let us learn from the bitter experience of Paul and his fellowship with the Corinthians that we should not depend on human beings for love and compassion but on God for His grace and mercy.
God loves a Cheerful Giver – 2 Corinthians 9:7
Jesus is keen on keeping our relationship with Him as personal and He is eager to reward us personally. If we expose His intimate relation to earn riches and fame, then Jesus warns us that we have already been ‘rewarded’ with riches and fame. If we keep it personal between ourselves and Him, He is assuring us a reward from our heavenly Father.
The Word Became Flesh
At the outset, John in his book introduces the ‘word’ as God Himself. John 1:14 says that God became flesh and dwelt among us. As we are celebrating Christmas, we need to understand why God became flesh. The author of Hebrews explains the reason in Hebrews 2:14-15
There is Only One God
All believe in one God, but the environment refers to so many Gods and Goddesses where people believe that each of them has some specific task to perform. Likewise, idols are made by men as an object to concentrate on, as they are unable to concentrate on the `unseen’ or `unknown God’. Hence, people believed on all these as various means or ways to reach the `One God’.
Seeing the Unseen
Jesus said this to the Pharisees who were unable to see Him and accept His work due to their limited knowledge of the scripture. Scripture is a written law that should be implemented in our day to day life. This is being implemented by two sources, one is with human mind and discipline, the other with God’s mind and discipline. Human mind has laid down some punitive elements to implement the law but God implements His law through unconditional love. Human mind uses a law to accuse but God uses the same law to rescue.