1 & 2 Corinthians
"The More Excellent Way"
In 1 Cor.15:8, Paul
declared himself to be "an apostle born (before the due) time." This
statement is especially true concerning many of Paulís writings. For
example: Paulís teaching on the man of sin, the Second Coming of Christ and
the first resurrection were not relevant for the first century. However,
because of the Apostleís present tense manner of delivery, many of the
saints applied those teachings to their day. Some even went to the extremeÖ
retiring from their employment, withdrawing from everyday life to wait for the
Lordís return. Such was the case in the Thessalonian church.
In many ways, this New
Testament theologian writes more to the church of our time than to any other
generation. The Corinthian epistles are a good example of this. By the end of
the first century AD, the supernatural phenomenon of Pentecost was waning. The
church was becoming more and more ecclesiastical and ritualistic. Eventually,
the problems associated with Pentecost no longer existed. Frankly, the church
The church had dried up and
was lapsing into an era that was later called by the historians "The Dark
Ages." In spite of this, there were always a few groups over the
centuries that experienced the renewing from heaven. They spoke in tongues and
had visions, etc. However, it was still quite rare until the twentieth
century. In the year 1904, there was a tremendous Pentecostal revival in
Wales. That revival helped to spark others such as the "Azuza
Street" revival, in Los Angeles (1906). They experienced an outpouring of
the Holy Spirit similar to Acts chapter two. That event sent spiritual shock
waves around the world. Suddenly seekers from all directions were coming,
crying out for the baptism from heaven.
God has since moved in many
places and in many denominations. The Charismatic movement which began about
1966, touched many churches, churches that did not even believe in the
supernatural realm of the Spirit. Today, there are many Spirit-filled
congregations throughout the land, and suddenly Paulís Corinthian epistles,
written 1950 years ago, have become very relevant.
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