St Michael’s and St Barnabas 13th May 2018
Readings – 2 Corinthians 5:14-21; Matthew 5:21-26
On the surface the church in Corinth was an exciting place to be. The services were full of the Holy Spirit. Men and women would regularly stand up to prophesy. People frequently prayed in tongues. The sermons were full of eloquent rhetoric and those outside the church spoke well of its leaders.
But if you dug a little deeper, you would soon find that the church faced all kinds of problems. For a start, each leader attracted their own group of followers and the church was splitting into factions. When the church came together for a meal, some brought lots of food to eat, and some brought nothing, showing the huge gap that existed between the rich and the poor. There were some who resented Paul’s leadership and spread rumours he wasn’t the man he claimed to be.
So when Paul sat down to write to the church in Corinth, he knew had to deal decisively with this issue. He was well aware that whenever there are splits, factions or divisions within a church, that church is less than God intends it to be. No matter how exciting the services, no matter how impressive the leaders, if there was no unity, then the work God wanted to do in and through the church was being undermined. Read the rest of this entry »