Study Sheet for I Corinthians 16:1-24 (click here for Study Notes)
Now about the collection for God's people: Do what I told the Galatian churches to do. On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made. Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jerusalem. If it seems advisable for me to go also, they will accompany me.
After I go through Macedonia, I will come to you-for I will be going through Macedonia. Perhaps I will stay with you awhile, or even spend the winter, so that you can help me on my journey, wherever I go. I do not want to see you now and make only a passing visit' I hope to spend some time with you, if the Lord permits. But I will stay on at Ephesus until Pentecost, because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.
If Timothy comes, see to it that he has nothing to fear while he is with you, for he is carrying on the work of the Lord, just as I am. No one, then, should refuse to accept him. Send him on his way in peace so that he may return to me. I am expecting him along with the brothers.
Now about our brother Apollos: I strongly urged him to go to you with the brothers. He was quite unwilling to go now, but he will go when he has the opportunity.
Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.
You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the saints. I urge you, brothers, to submit to such as these and to everyone who joins in the work, and labors at it. I was glad when Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus arrived, because they have supplied what was lacking from you. For they refreshed my spirit and yours also. Such men deserve recognition.
The churches in the province of Asia send you greetings, Aquila and Priscilla greet you warmly in the Lord, and so does the church that meets at their house. All the brothers here send you greetings. Greet one another with a holy kiss.
I Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. If anyone does not love the Lord-a curse be on him. Come O Lord! The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love to all of you in Christ Jesus. Amen. (NIV)
Paul ends this letter by giving the Corinthians instructions about taking collections to help "God's people" who were in need.
1. Who were "God's people" for whom the early church took collections? (see Acts 24:17; 9:2, 13, 21; Romans 15:26)
2. Why did Paul tell the Corinthians to "set aside a sum of money," and what was significant about doing so "on the first day of the week"? (see Acts 20:7; Rev. 1:10)
3. Who besides the Corinthians were involved in collecting money for "God's people" in Jerusalem? (2 Cor. 8:1-3; 9:1-4)
4. What possible reasons explain the extreme poverty of the saints in Jerusalem? (Acts 11:28; Acts 8:1)
Paul makes several personal requests of the Corinthians. One of those was a plea to the church at Corinth to welcome Timothy if he should come and to treat him well.
1. Who was Timothy? (see Acts 16:1; 1 Corinthians 4:17; 2 Cor. 1:1, 19; Philippians 2:19-22; 1 Thess. 3:2, 6)
2. What characteristics might Timothy have had that made Paul warn the Corinthians not to refuse to accept him? (see I Tim. 4:12; 2 Tim.1:7)
3. What do his concerns for Timothy tell you about Paul?
"Now about our brother Apollos" Paul says. "Now about" echoes other subjects Paul addressed in this letter (see 7:1; 8:1; 12:1, 16:1) and suggests that the Corinthians had written to him, asking about the possibility of Apollos visiting them.
1. Who was Apollos? (Acts 18:24-28)
2. What history did Apollos have with the Corinthian church? (see I Cor. 1:11,12)
3. How might this history have affected Apollos' willingness to visit them?
Paul admonishes the Corinthians to "be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love."
1. What is involved in being on guard and in standing firm? (see I Cor. 1:8; 2 Cor. 1:21; Gal. 5:1; Philippians 1:27; I Thess. 3:8; Titus 1:9; Ephesians 6:13)
2. How does one "do everything in love"? (Romans 5:8; Eph. 2:4; 1 John 4:7-12; I Cor. 13; 14:1)
Another person whom Paul endorsed was Stephanas, who with his household was the first convert in Achaia.
1. Where is Achaia, and where was Corinth in relationship to it? (see map of Paul's missionary journeys)
2. Why did Paul ask the Corinthians to submit to Stephanas on the basis of his devotion "to the service of the saintsand to such as these and to everyone who joins in the work, and labors at it"? (see 1 Thess. 5:12; Romans 16:1,2; Hebrews 13:6, 16, 17; Ephesians 5:21)
3. Paul also included Fortunatus and Achaicus in his statement, "Such men deserve recognition." Why did Paul believe they and others like them deserved recognition? (see Philippians 2:29-30; I Timothy 5:17, 18)
1. How do you decide where to give your tithes and offerings?
2. What people minister to you and mediate God's love and grace to you?
3. Who has God placed in your life for you to mentor?
4. Are there people whose ministry you have not respected, or others whose leadership you have "deified"?
1. How is God calling you to be accountable to him with your money and your time?
2. What self-indulgence to you need to submit to Jesus, asking him to replace it with his Spirit and to help you be "on guard" and to "stand firm"?
3. To whom is God asking you to "submit", honoring God's leadership and ministry in your life?
4. What loyalty or resentment to you need to give to God, asking him
to help you to know the truth and to make you His medium of love to those
he places in your life?
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Studio, Redlands, CA USA. All rights reserved. Revised October 8, 2000.