Paul had founded this church during his second missionary journey in the commercial center between the Aegean and Adriatic Seas that was the home of Aphrodite, the “goddess of love.” What Los Vegas is to gambling, Corinth was to prostitution and debauchery.
1 Corinthians was written by the Apostle Paul while he ministered in Ephesus on his third missionary journey. This letter was most likely written in Ephesus in the first half of 55 AD before the riot of the silversmiths. He was responding to a letter from the Corinthians that Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus had delivered to him (1 Cor. 7.1) and reports that he had received about problems in the Corinthian church.
2. The key word for 1 Corinthians is “correction.” There were a range of issues from divisions and immorality to questions about his Apostleship that he addressed. Disunity (1-4), Immorality (5-6), Marriage (7), Christian liberty (8-11), Worship and spiritual gifts (12-14), Resurrection (15), and “house keeping issues” (16).
3. Context of passage:
· In chapter 8 he discusses the importance of being sensitive to consciences in areas where Christians have some liberty. 9. But beware lest somehow this liberty of yours becomes a stumbling block...
· In chapter 9 he talks about how he has not insisted on his rights as an Apostle “for the gospel’s sake.” 12 Nevertheless we have not used this right … lest we hinder the gospel of Christ.
· In 10 he talks about things that might disqualify us from finishing well, idolatry, and conscience.
· 11 discusses head coverings and communion.
4. Subject of passage:
· At the end of chapter nine Paul compares how athletes run to compete for a prize to how believers “run” to compete for an “imperishable crown.” He said that he disciplined and subjected his body or made it a slave so that he would not be a “castaway (kjv) or be “disqualified (nkjv, nasv, niv).” The Greek word here adikimos is the negative form of the word dikimos which appears in 2 Timothy 2:15, “Study to show thyself dikimos unto God…” We also find it in James 1:12. Turn to and discuss. “for when he is dikimos, (a noun), he shall receive…
· Then in 1 Corinthians 10:1-15 Paul illustrates this truth with an illustration of the Israelites in the wilderness. He tells us (1) about the blessings Israel had in the wilderness, (2) rehearses the sins that caused God to be displeased with most of them, and (3) and challenges us to take heed and be assured of God’s faithfulness.
—————Stand to read 1 Corinthians 10:1-15—————
BIG IDEA: God has given us what we need to follow Him faithfully to the end.
TOPIC STATEMENT: Israel’s wilderness wanderings illustrate spiritual blessings of believers.
First note our connection to the Israelites in the wilderness. They were our fathers.
Not in a genetic sense as our physical ancestors. The “you” in this verse included Corinthian gentiles who had no physical relation to Israel.
In a spiritual sense, like Abraham is our father in Galatians 3:7 …”those who are of faith are sons of Abraham.” We all are eager to claim Abraham as our spiritual father, but have doubts about this bunch. :o)
APPL: What kind of spiritual connection to you have to your children, in your family? We can see physical traits, personality traits, but what kind of spiritual traits are you imparting to your children?
I. UNDER THE CLOUD verse 1b
A. OT allusion: to guide—Exodus 13.20-22 “by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way … by night a pillar of fire to give light”
B. OT allusion: to protect—Exodus 14.19-20 “and the pillar of cloud stood behind them … so that the one [Egyptians] did not come near the other [Israel]”
C. NT application: John 16.13 Holy Spirit, our guide
II. THRU THE SEA verse 1c
A. OT allusion: Red Sea crossing and destruction of Egyptian army—Exodus 14-15 esp. 14.22, 26, & 30-31
B. NT application:
III. BAPTIZED INTO MOSES verse 2
A. OT allusion: —“It is to be remembered that the word baptism has two senses—the one referring to the application of water as a religious rite, in whatever mode it is done; and the other sense of dedicating, consecrating, initiating into, or bringing under obligation to. And it is evidently in this latter sense that the word is used here…” ——A. Barnes
B. NT application: Spiritual baptism Romans 6.3-4 “buried with Him through baptism into death” “as Christ was raised...we also should walk in newness of life”
C. NT application: Spiritual baptism 1 Corinthians 12.13 all baptized into one body
IV. ATE SPIRITUAL FOOD verse 3
A. OT allusion: Exodus 16. 2-4 & 14-15 Manna also Deut. 8.3 ...that you might know...
B. NT application: Matthew 4.3-4 Word of God
C. NT application: John 6 esp. v. 26-36 Salvation
V. DRANK OF THAT SPIRITUAL ROCK verse 4
A. OT allusion: Water from the rock—Exodus 17.1-2 & 5-6 also Numbers 20.2, 7, & 10-11
B. NT application: John 4.10-14 Eternal life
C. NT application: John7.37-39 indwelling Holy Spirit
· We should not get too heady in all these spiritual blessing. They do not guarantee that God will be pleased with us. v. 6
· We should be careful not to be spiritually overconfident. v. 12
· God is faithful when we are tempted. v. 13
· We should use the blessings to increase our faith in, dependence on, and loyalty to the Lord.