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Weekly Devotion

For two weeks we have the opportunity to read 1 Corinthians. Each week we will read eight
chapters.
Paul established the church at Corinth. He spent about eighteen months there. He wrote
this letter we know as Corinthians from the village of Ephesus. One of the stories about the
start of this community can be found in Acts 18:1-4.
Its important to remember that not everything in the Bible is an eternal truth. Some of
what Paul wrote in this letter connected to a specific situation. We can learn from them, but
were not always called to apply them to our own lives.
Pray and discern! And enjoy your reading!
Comments about the devotion can be E-mailed to pastor@colpres.org.

Monday, August 31
Read Corinthians 1
Right away we can see the divisions that exist in the faith community in Corinth, and we can
see the message that Paul wants to share.
People wanted to identify with a certain leader in the community. They belonged to Paul or
Apollos or Cephas. It sounded like a group of people who were wearing buttons for a
political candidate. People even went as far to say that they were baptized in the name of
someone.
This grieved Paul greatly.
Paul believed that the gospel message would bring people together. And that this message
was very simple. The message is in verses 23-24:
but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but
to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom
of God.
As you pray today, give thanks for this message. Though the Christian faith is certainly
sophisticated and deep, its foundation is the message of the cross.

Tuesday, September 1
Read Corinthians 2 & Acts 18:1-4
We can probably sympathize with Paul in what he shared in the first five verses of chapter
two. Pauls method was to go into the synagogue on the Sabbath and proclaim that Jesus
had died on the cross and was raised. This wasnt a complicated or particularly nuanced
message. It certainly didnt rival the intellectualism of Corinth. But this message was
powerful.
Paul shared his vulnerability in verses three and four
And I came to you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling. My speech and my
proclamation were not with plausible words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of the
Spirit and of power.

We can almost imagine Paul standing up in the synagogue and sharing this simple message.
We can probably imagine the courage it took for him to share.
Last Sunday and this Sunday Pastor Paul is talking about New Evangelism. He is
encouraging us to know our own faith story and find ways to share it with people. This
takes courageit is similar to the courage of Paul going to the synagogue. As you pray
today, pray for an opportunity to share your story.

Wednesday, September 2
Read 1 Corinthians 3
Once again Paul shared that the message he shared was not a complicated or nuanced
message. He used the metaphor of a house in verses 10-15.
Paul identified himself as a skilled master builder. He laid the foundationwhich was Jesus
Christ. Others would add to that foundation, but this is central to the message of the
gospel.
Paul knew that this message would be viewed as foolishness in the world. The world craved
other messages and saw them as power. To think that a man dying naked on a cross could
be powerful was foolishness.
Its foolishness to us too. The world teaches us to value money and prestige and looks. It
doesnt teach us to embrace a person who suffered.
Pray about this message today and how it impacts your own life. Pray that you can discover
and continue to find power in the message.

Thursday, September 3
Read 1 Corinthians 4
Once again Paul wrote dramatically about the differences between serving Christ and
serving the world.
Look at what he wrote:
To the present hour we are hungry and thirsty, we are poorly clothed and beaten and
homeless, and we grow weary from the work of our own hands. When reviled, we bless;
when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we speak kindly. We have become like the
rubbish of the world, the dregs of all things, to this very day. 1 Corinthians 4:12-13
The next time you feel like someone is upset with you, remember these verses. We are
called to bless that person.
Wow is this hard! This is a PHD in being a disciple or follower of Jesus Christ.
Which should lead us to pray. Pray every day you can live out these aspirational values.

Friday, September 4
Read 1 Corinthians 5-6
In these two chapters Paul wrote about specific situations in the community. Specifically he
wrote about sexual immorality and lawsuits.

In 6:12 he wrote about using our conscience.


Al things are lawful for me, but not all things are beneficial. (He also repeated this in
10:23)
This is quite a statement! Even if doing something is following a law, it still might not be
good for us.
Determining this takes discernment. And it takes prayer. Paul shared that in everything we
do we are called to glorify God. At the end of this chapter he talked about glorifying God
with our body.

Saturday, September 5
Read 1 Corinthians 7-8
Look at 8:1b-2, Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. Anyone who claims to know
something does not yet have the necessary knowledge; but anyone who loves God is known
by him.
Paul will write more about this in 1 Corinthians 13 when he wrote the priority of Gods love.
It doesnt matter how much we know or how many spiritual gifts we have, if we dont share
these with love then we are falling short.
Think about how deeply you live and share love. Talk to God about it.