Greeting: The Author and the Recipients Established (vv.1-3)
Prayer: Thankfulness for the Corinthians’ Blessings (vv.4-9)
- The ability to communicate or express scriptural concepts (v.5a). They were acquainted with “every saying” of their Bible.
- The objective knowledge of what the scriptures meant (v.5b). However, this word ‘gnosis’ is not as strong as ‘epi-gnosis’ as in Heb. 10:26. It is an outward, speculative, intellectual knowledge, not necessarily a inward, deep, conscious knowledge of conviction (or, recognition).
- The testimony of Christ’s character reflected among them by Paul and others during his eighteen-month stay in Corinth (v.6). A tremendous benefit; seeing the truth of God presented in a godly manner!
- The possession of many gifted local brethren (v.7a). But gift is not godliness, and it is no substitute for a right spirit. The gifts that the Corinthians valued most highly were the sign gifts; 1 Cor. 12, 14. In the course of this epistle Paul sets straight their understanding of which gifts were truly “the best gifts”, and what spiritual quality (love) was better than all the gifts combined.
- The knowledge that Christ is returning to set up His kingdom (v.7b). It isn’t the Rapture that is in view, but the appearing of Christ. The Rapture is more of a personal thing, the Appearing is more public. This is a basic element of Christianity; the looking forward to the time when all things will be set right.
- The possession of an all-the-way-home Savior (v.8a)! No matter the poor conduct of the Corinthians at the present time, Christ would preserve them in His High Priestly grace until the end of the wilderness pathway.
- The prospect of being outwardly blameless in the day of Christ (v.8b). The Day of Christ is the day of Christ’s display of glory, when we will be manifested with Him. It is after the judgment seat of Christ, when we will appear before the world in the perfection of our standing in Christ.
- The introduction into the one true Christian fellowship. It is not fellowship with His Son (1 John 1:3), but “the fellowship of His Son”. It is that fellowship of which Christ is the central figure, and of those who have a part with Christ in all of the blessings associated with Him.1 Fellowship with the Father and His Son (1 John 1:3) is more the thought of communion. Here it is the circle of association with Christ. Many fellowships have been set up by men that distract from or seek to subdivide this one true fellowship; but it still endures. Every believer that is indwelt by the Spirit of God is in this fellowship, as the partners and co-heirs of Christ. There is a solemn responsibility for those in it, to not dishonor His Name; hence it is “Jesus Christ our Lord”.
Not including benedictory prayers at the ends of his epistles, Paul records twenty-eight of his prayers! It is nice to trace these prayers through his writings. We are very thankful for them because they give us: (1) an insight into the heart of the apostle, and (2) a pattern for the way we should pray.Thirteen of them are petitions (asking for something). Eleven of them are prayers of thanksgiving, like this one. Four of them are a combination of both: a note of thanks, then a request. Read more…
- “Fellowship of his Son,” which follows just after, means having a part together, and with Christ (koinonia) and in the blessings that are with Him. Partaking (metokee) is not communion (koinonia), which last is a closer thing. I partake of a thing, and in that measure have it in common with another. It is more in the character of communication. For instance in Hebrews 2:14 we have the difference in an important case. “Forasmuch, then, as the children were partakers of [kekoinoneken] flesh and blood [because we all had it, it is all in common], he also himself likewise took part [metesken], of the same.” Some misused it to teach that He took sinful flesh, which is nowhere said; but Christ did take flesh and blood. In Luke 5 the two words are used in a general way. “They beckoned to their partners” [metokois], v. 7, while [koinonoi], v. 10, shews they had common share, with nothing very definite for distinction. Words are used sometimes in a less, sometimes in a more, definite sense. We use a great number of words which have merely a different shade of meaning without an intention of making a difference. You might say, They both live in the same place, or in the same locality, but you do not mean another thought. Locality is the more general term. So going shares or partnership might have a shade of difference. – Darby, J.N. Notes of Readings on 1 Corinthians.