A section-by-section survey of 1 Corinthians dealing with the issues of the nature of the Church, Christian behavior and social responsibility, sexuality, marriage and divorce, Christian worship, the spiritual gifts, and the resurrection
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This course will focus on the introduction, background, text, and discourse structure of the first letter of Paul to the Corinthians. Emphasis will be on the conflict between Christ and the culture, especially as applied to Christ/pagan tendencies in missionary situations. Focus will be on the use of primary source material in understanding the Bible, especially the text of the Bible itself. As a sidelight, the use of the text of I Corinthians as it applies to current controversies will be considered.
The final grade will be based on your work in the following way:
Introduction and Map 5% 6 Page Researched Paper 10% 10 Page Theology Paper 20% Homework 10% Major Tests 40% Final Exam 15%
2. Research paper
A research paper of 6 pages (12 point, type written, double spaced) will allow the student to
investigate a particular issue of Christian practice/ethics addressed in the epistle; the student is to
explore the topic with respect to its primary historical context, and then in its relevance for the 21
century church. Many examples of topics may be gleaned from the list of class topics. Please
obtain in advance the instructor’s approval for the topic you propose to research. Include
documentation and bibliography.
3. Theology paper
A theology paper of 8-10 pages (12 point, type written, double spaced) will give opportunity for
the student to read 1 Corinthians not just as a Christian manual of behavior, but as instructions
for believers based on solid Christian doctrine. For this paper, a particular doctrinal theme may be
traced throughout all or part of the book; or a practical issue may be chosen and investigated
regarding its associated theological implications.
Papers should not merely report the results of research, but should show that the student is
evaluating and processing the material. Be sure that 1) research regarding social/historical
background, 2) exegesis of relevant passages of 1 Corinthians, and 3) application to the present
day, are all evident. Work should be free of grammar and spelling mistakes
Papers are due as identified in the course schedule. Late submissions will be penalized
“For each week late, the grade will be reduced by 1/3 of a letter
grade.” Extensions will only be considered under valid extenuating circumstances such as long
term sickness, death in family, etc.
The natural man (I Cor. 2:14).
Lawsuits among brethren (I Cor. 6:1-8).
Homosexuality, sinful choice, genetic defect, or other (I Cor. 6:9-11).
The relationship between Paul’s teaching in I Cor. 7 (key verse to discuss is I Cor. 7:12) concerning marriage and that of Jesus in Matthew 19:3-12.
Widows are to marry "only in the Lord" (I Cor. 7:39).
Women wearing veils (I Cor. 11:2-16).
What happens to the soul at death does it sleep (I Cor. 15:20, 51)?
Baptism for the dead (I Cor. 15:29).
The collection for the saints and authorized uses of the contribution (I Cor. 16:1-2).
Another topic with the instructor’s approval.
Draw or trace a map or maps of the second and third missionary journeys of Paul in Asia and Greece and Paul's painful visit to Corinth from Ephesus, showing at least the following: the major bodies of water, all the cities mentioned in the Bible as being visited by Paul, the Roman provinces in which he preached the gospel. The journeys may be presented on one or two maps. Please limit your map size and substance to 8˝" x 11" paper. Extra credit may be given for neatness, detail, and good use of color.
(Email for the lectures, Homework)
Required Reading(click on link to download)
St Clement-Epistle to the Corinthians
St Chrysostom-Homilies on 1 Corinthians
Syllabus for Studies in Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians
Click on link to Listen to Corinthians
The Mythology Of Greece And Rome
Biblical Art Works for 1 Corinthians
Divisions in the Church
Problems, Questions, Answers
In the Christian Assembly
The Resurrection and Its Implications
|Art of the Ancient World|
|Greek Athlete at the MFA|
Watch Video on Apostle Paul (click on link to view)
Documentary of Apostle Paul and the Corinthian Church Video
Women in the Early Church
click on link to view Images of Corinth
Click on link to view Corinthian Excavations
Click on link to view Ancient Culture of Corinth
Click on link to view Corinthian coins
Click on link to view Paul and Corinthian woman's hair covering
Museum of Art and Antiquities of Ancient Greece
Ancient Gods of Greece
Traditions of Magic in late Antiquity
Ancient Olympian Games
Introduction to Paul's Epistle to Corinthians
Paul’s First Epistle to the Corinthians
Paul is the author and founder of the Church in Corinth (Acts 18:1-11).
Corinth was the capital of the Roman providence of Achaia and the seat of the proconsul. Corinth was notorious for its corruption and immorality. The word “corinthize” was adopted as referring to engaging in immorality. (Rom 1:26-32)
Paul first visited Corinth on his second missionary journey (April 50 A.D. - Sept. 52 A.D.) and stayed 18 months establishing the Church. The Corinthian Church was mainly Gentile and of a poorer class of people. After Paul’s departure a gifted Alexandrian Jewish convert named Apollos came from Ephesus and preached with notable success. (Acts 18:24-28; 1 Cor. 3:5-9)
Written from Ephesus around 55 A.D. During Paul’s third missionary journey (55 A.D. - 57 A.D.) Acts 19:1- 20:1 - 53-57 AD.
Communion with God vs. Communion with darkness
II. Paul writes to answer specific problems within the Church
· Factionalism (1:10-3:23)
· Civil Lawsuits (4:1-21; 6:1-8)
· Sexual immorality (5:1-13; 6:9-7:40)
· Meat Sacrificed to idols (8:1-9:27)
· Eucharistic theology and practice (10:1-11:34)
· Spiritual gifts (12:1-14:40)
· Resurrection Life ( 15:1-16:24)
I. Problems at the Church in Corinth:
Loyalty to the individual - hero worship -
· of those “of Christ”
· Doctrinal Speculations
· Issues of immorality
· Dealing with Pagan Religions
· Self-centeredness & Spiritual Gifts
Paul’s Answers to the Problems
The Problems stemmed from an improper understanding of what the Church is and the Kingdom. Paul shows that everything both life within the Church and life in general is sacramental - meant to be an offering to God. (Orthodox Study Bible)
· The Church is One (Chapts. 1-4)
· The Church is Holy (Chapts. 5-6)
· The Church is Catholic (Chapts. 7-14)
· The Church is Apostolic (Chapts. 15 & 3-4)
Paul’s Steps Towards a Solution at Corinth
Paul wrote a lost letter on Christian morality and Church discipline (5: 9-11)
Paul received two negative reports and sent Timothy (4:17;16:10-11) and wrote another letter 1 Corinthians. Chapters 1-6 reply to the first report (1:11) and Chapters 7-16 reply to the second report (7:1)