1 Corinthians 16:5-11

In 1 Corinthians 16:5-11 Paul is wrapping up his letter to the church at Corinth. He has a plan to come visit later after heading through Macedonia. “I will visit you after passing through Macedonia, for I intend to pass through Macedonia, and perhaps I will stay with you or even spend the winter, so that you may help me on my journey, wherever I go.” As is often the case, things happened differently than he planned. Instead, Paul made a much sooner, painful visit to Corinth to personally confront them in some areas we will discover when our journey through scripture takes us to 2 Corinthians.

Paul’s plan at the time was not to just pass through, but maybe to spend a long period of time with them over the winter. As is often the case though, our plans may not be the same as Gods. And Paul knows that as he writes. “For I do not want to see you now just in passing. I hope to spend some time with you, if the Lord permits.” Why didn’t Paul go to Corinth immediately? Because he sees that God had given opportunity now in Ephesus. Paul wisely relied not only on his own desires, but also on God’s open doors. Paul knew the secret of directed service.“But I will stay in Ephesus until Pentecost, for a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.”

Paul also knew that opposition often accompanies opportunities. There was plenty of that in Ephesus at the time. He has someone he’s been training that will be joining the effort. Paul had trouble with the Corinthian Christians not respecting his authority as an apostle and as a minister of the gospel. If they didn’t respect Paul, what would they do to a young man like Timothy? So, Paul asks the Corinthian Christians to respect Timothy when he comes. He wants to set Timothy up for success. “When Timothy comes, see that you put him at ease among you, for he is doing the work of the Lord, as I am.”

Paul warns the church not to take advantage of a young and inexperienced Timothy. “So let no one despise him. Help him on his way in peace, that he may return to me, for I am expecting him with the brothers.” Timothy suffered from both a lack of confidence and a lack of respect. It was important for God’s people to not take advantage of this in Timothy, and it was important for Timothy to never give others reason to despise him. Wherever Timothy was, he was on his way to see Paul, and would probably stop in Corinth on the way. Paul is doing all he can to make sure that stop is positive and useful.

One response to this post.

  1. Reblogged this on The Searchlight.

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