Key Verses: Chapter 16:1-4; 13--14;vs. 22
I. Collection For the Saints (in Macedonia) (Missionary offering) (verses 1-4)
Note: The Christians in Judea were suffering and needed financial help because their goods had been “spoiled”. It was “voluntary” and an “act of love” The early church was generous in their giving. Paul asked the Corinthian church to participate in giving in this Missionary offering. Paul instructed them to gove in the following manner:
a. The offering was taken up on the first day of the week (Sunday) at worship service.
(This shows us that the Christian designated congregation worship day was Sunday).
b. Every week the people were to put aside a certain amount of money to be collected for their Mission to the poor. It was to go into the treasury and set aside for the missionary work to the poor. This offering would be sent to Jerusalem either with Paul, or whomever they designated when he arrived. (vs. 2)
c. Giving was based on how God had prospered them financially. Everybody was asked to participate, regardless of social and financial status; not for an outside show, but given our of gratitude to God as well as out of a sense of duty and concern for the brethren. Giving was based on principle and not just emotional impulse.
d. Your giving is to be regarded as sacred as it is a sacred offering. (The “tithe” is holy unto the Lord.)
e. Paul would send a letter along with those designated to carry the offering and if necessary, he would travel with them. (vs. 3-4)
II. Paul’s ‘Proposed "Future" Visit (verses 5-9)
Note: Paul was in Ephesus at this time and planned to stay there during the winter until Pentecost. Then he was to travel to Macedonia and spend the summer, then possibly spend the winter with them.
a. Paul looked to them to help him with his personal expenses, and if they couldn’t, he worked and paid his own way.
b. Paul planned to spend the winter with them if God permitted.
c. Paul would spend the winter in Ephesus until Pentecost.
d. A “great door” (evangelistic) had been opened in Ephesus and that open door brought with it many adversaries. Opened doors bring many adversaries in ministry.
III. Concerning Timothy and Apollos (verses 10-12)
A. If Timothy come to Macedonia: Treat him well and take care of his needs. Don’t harass him or perplex him with your divisions and jealousies. He’s doing God’s work and is fully annointed and sanctioned to do so. (Timothy was young and could be intimidated)
B. Don’t say he does not have God’s full authority to do his work.
C. When he leaves you, send him along his way in peace so he can meet up with me. (Paul)
D. Concerning Apollos: (currently was detained in Ephesus) could not be in Corinth at that time but would be sent when it was more convenient for him.
IV. Paul’s Final instructions and Exhortations (verses 13-16)
a. Watch (you) Be sober and viligant.
They were to watch, be vigilant, guard against all the evils of which he challenged them to be aware of., This would include the evils of dissension, of allerroneous doctrines, acts of disorder stirred up in the fellowship, and especially of any false teachers,regardless of their rank within the church etc. They were to watch t prevent the ruining of their souls, and they began to question the validity of their salvation. They were warned to constantly be on guard because the enemies of the truth and holiness sought to infiltrate the fellowship and poison their faith in Jesus Christ., They were to watch with the same vigilance that is required of a sentinel who guards a camp, lest an enemy should come suddenly upon them, and surprise the camp when the army was locked in sleep.
b. Stand fast in the faith. Hold on the right doctrinal position and defend the faith. (vs.13)
Be firm in maintaining and defending the truths of the gospel. Do back down or yield to any enemy of the faith, but always maintain the truth, and stand firm in your confidence in God and the doctrines of the gospel with an unwavering faith and conscience; Be firm, straight foward in maintaining what you believe to be true, and in holding on to your personal confidence in God, regardless of all the "wiles" (tricks) all the arts, insinuations, and teachings of seducers, false teachers and the friends of false doctrine.
c. Be brave. (Having done all to stand…stand!)
The were to be stroing in the lord and in the power of HIS might. They were challenged to be steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.
d. Be strong: in the Lord (Ephesians 6:10)
e. Let your things (deeds) done with Charity (love)
Everything that they did was tobe done to the glory of the Lord and in Christian love.
f. Submit yourselves (give respect to) the helpers of the ministry (vs.16)
V. Salutations and final Greetings (verses 17-24)
A. Other Churches salute you.
B. Aquila and Priscilla greet you also.
C. All the other brethren salute you.
D. Greet each other with a holy kiss.
E. Paul saluted them. (in writing and in love)
Remember: If any man does not love the Lord Jesus Let him be “Anathema Maranatha” which means: “They who love not the Lord are rightly objects of loathing and execration to all holy beings; they are guilty of a crime that merits the severest condemnation; they are exposed to the just sentence of "everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord." And when He comes, He will judge them who rejected Him.”