Monday, December 28, 2009

1 Corinthians 11:17-34 (Practical Missional Help)

Reading this passage as a “missionary how-to” text opens it up to some interesting interpretations. If ones reads Paul as though he is dealing with a new church in a cosmopolitan context it is easy to see that they are tinkering with how they do things. Paul is holding their practices up to the standard set elsewhere in Scripture: Love. Everything a church does should build up the body. Also interesting:

Here it almost sounds as if the Lord’s Supper had a pot-luck meal associated with it.

They did not live in community.

They did not share ordinary meals together.

The “unworthy manner” Paul speaks of (vs. 27) is not referring to the believer’s personal spiritual condition—our worth is found in Christ, not our own purity—but rather in the actual way we DO the Lord’s Supper.

It also seems as if Paul is saying in verse 27 that divisions, differences, and maybe even splits in the church or people leaving serve to test who is truly a part of the Kingdom. This is something church planters and new churches can certainly understand… and even take encouragement from.

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