TEXT: 1 Corinthians 16:1-24
Big Idea: “True gospel communities are marked by mutual care.”
Introduction: Paul ends this letter by showing great care for the Church. In that, he reminds us that gospel communities provide care for one another in…
1. Financial giving (v. 1-4)
Paul asks them to give to a collection for the Jerusalem church. We see their giving was done a) on Sundays, b) by everyone, c) as each person could afford, and d) thought out ahead of time, not under compulsion. And the motive of giving was to express love and gratitude to God, to reflect unity among the churches, and to remind us that we are stewards of what belongs to God.
2. Fellowship with one another (v. 5-7)
Paul wants to plan out his travel to spend quality time with the Christians in Corinth, because he values fellowship. We all have busy lives. But when it comes to us caring for one another, nothing takes the place of spending time together. We gather, we encourage and edify each other. And then we go out and take good news of the gospel to those who don’t yet know Jesus, so that they may know the fellowship we enjoy.
3. Challenging one another (v. 10-14)
Some in Corinth were angry with Paul because of his correction of them. So Paul challenges to them not to take their anger out on Timothy when he comes. He also challenges them to grow up and act like men (v.
13) so that the church will be healthy. Because gospel communities live out life together, we have a unique vantage point into each others’ lives. If we love one another as fellow sinners saved by grace, then we should be able to give a grace-filled, biblical challenge to one another about anything.
4. Being godly examples to follow (v. 15-20)
Because the gospel produces an outward mindset to serve others, a gospel community is always aware of the example we set for one another and for the world. To call ourselves “Christian” should carry with it extreme gratitude for the one who saved us, and profound awareness that we carry His name. Good examples are never perfect. Good examples remind us how to lean on God’s grace in our imperfection.
Conclusion: (v. 21-24) No matter how much the Corinthians got wrong, no matter how much trouble they caused Paul, he still loved them. Because of the love of Christ, we can be a gospel community who care for each other, and who care enough to take this gospel to a dying world.