Updated: Jul 5, 2018
Paul wrote this letter from Ephesus (16:8, 9, 19) during his third missionary journey (Acts 19:1–10) about AD 56 or 57. Corinth was a great Greek city with busy commerce and thronging life. She took pride in wisdom, thriving idolatries and immoralities,. Paul wrote partly to answer questions sent by the Corinthian church (7:1; 8:1; 12:1), and partly to deal with distressing news that had come to him from Corinth about factions and other abuses in the church (1:11; 5:1; 6:1; 11:18, 20). This epistle is largely concerned with questions of practical morality and is useful for Christians of every generation. Paul dealt with these questions on the grounds of man’s relation to God; and not on a basis of psychological analysis. For example, •the factious spirit is wrong because a saving relation with God is not obtained by intellectual brilliance but by humble faith, and because the ministers of God’s gospel are simply his servants, responsible to Him. We are not to follow them arbitrarily. •immorality is a defiling of the temple of the Holy Spirit, an abuse of the body that has been redeemed by His blood. •Paul’s main principles for the problem of eating food offered to idols are: (1) that our liberty must not hurt the brother for whom Christ died and, (2) that we cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. For Paul, Christian ethics shows that Christianity is centred on Christ. These principles inspire and guide Paul’s attitude towards Christian living and are of abiding value. They can inform and guide our action today, when we are confronted by problems, which, although different in outward form, are the same in the fundamental spiritual issues.