The Pleasure Mad Society

A New Church in Corinth

Book of Acts Chapter 18

No matter what happens during mission work we must see that all the work done for the Lord Jesus Christ is honorable work.

Manual labor should never be seen as beneath the hands of God’s people!

God’s people must always be seen as unblameable in the way they behave in this world.

We know that the Apostle Paul is now on his second missionary journey.

We know that Timothy and Luke will be with him with Barnabas and Mark going in a different direction.

Paul had been to Athens, but he had been laughed out of town because of his message on Jesus Christ, but not before at least a few Athenians got saved.

This is how important it is that we preach and teach the “Gospel” and not some other message, because at least a few will always understand the truth and others will have the “Gospel Seed” planted within them, and the Holy Ghost can convict them of the truth of Christ from time to time.

Paul had now arrived in the city of Corinth.

Corinth was a major city in Greece at this time and was located at the southern tip of Greece.

Corinth was located on a piece of land that was only five miles across and bordered by two harbors, one on its east coast and another one on its west coast.

It is said that there was a means to drag a ship from one coast to the other to speed up the shipping process, probably a canal.

All traffic from north to south passed right through the city.

This made the city of Corinth a city with immense wealth.

People from many nations could be found at Corinth.

Corinth was home to a pleasure mad society!

The temples in Corinth were dedicated to Aphrodite the so-called goddess of fertility.

Corinth was also a sport minded society being the home for the Isthmian Games which was second only to the Olympic Games.

The city of Corinth was a place for much sin, but Corinth was also a place where the Gospel could be spread around the world.

The Apostle Paul had become discouraged in Athens and it showed as he entered into Corinth.

Paul, just like we all are, was at the mercy of God and we see right off God would supply his need.

Athens had been a place of closeminded people.

This is the normal results of philosophical and intellectual teaching!

Intellectual pride closes a person’s mind to the truth of God!

As witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ, we must choose to use our time where it can produce more fruit, unless directed by the Holy Spirit in a case such as Phillip, who was called out of a revival to witness to one man.

Once some are saved, we must spend some time to disciple them according to the Word of God or most of them will fade away and be useless to God.

*Act 18:1 After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth;
Act 18:2 And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them.

God knew that Paul had been discouraged in Athens and immediately and God gave Paul two new friends.

Aquila and Priscilla were two Jewish believers that had left the Church at Rome because of the persecution of Christians caused by the Emperor Claudius.

Claudius had demanded that all Jews leave Rome.

All who were Jews by birth, whether they were Jews or Christians were commanded to leave Rome.

Some say this happened because of attacks of the unbelieving Jews on the believing Jews.

Aquila and Priscilla became two of the best friends of the Apostle Paul and they were active Christians.

Rom 16:3 Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus:
Rom 16:4 Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.
Rom 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my wellbeloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.

Paul had entered Corinth with fear and trembling and until he met Aquila and Priscilla, Paul had truly little strength and was most probably broke and broken.

1Co 2:1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
1Co 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
1Co 2:3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
1Co 2:4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
1Co 2:5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

The Jews were all taught a craft as they grew up and Paul’s craft was tentmaking and God sent Aquila and Priscilla who were also tentmakers, and they formed a business together.

These two Christians later traveled with Paul to Ephesus where they settled.

One thing we see about these two Christians wherever we find them, we find their home is a center for Christian worship and Christian fellowship.

Remember they met a young preacher named Apollos who they brought into their home to instruct him as he had known no one but John the Baptist and knew nothing of Jesus Christ.

Act 18:24 And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus.
Act 18:25 This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John.
Act 18:26 And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.

They held church in their home in Corinth.

1Co 16:19 The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house.

They held Church in their home in Rome.

Rom 16:3 Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus:
Rom 16:4 Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.
Rom 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my wellbeloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.

They had certainly been Paul’s helpers.

They had risked their own lives in order to save the Apostle Paul!

Paul encouraged them all to get back to the work of the Lord.

*Act 18:3 And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers.
Act 18:4 And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.

Paul was never too good to work in support of himself to do the work of the Lord!

Paul was not always supported by the churches he had formed and sometimes those churches that did support him was just slow in getting to him.

When Silas and Timothy arrived, they brought some support from the church in Philippi.

Php 4:15 Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only.

The church at Philippi supported Paul all his remaining days because it was a mission minded church from the start.

Paul did not ever hesitate to work with his own hands to further the Gospel, it just took some of the time he could have been preaching.

Paul did what was necessary to reach people for Jesus Christ.

Paul reasoned with the Jews on every Sabbath.

Some may frown on this, but this was the only time the Jews would be gathered together in one place.

Paul presented sound, thoughtful, logical points and Paul answered all reasonable questions.

Paul did all he could to convince these Jews and these Gentiles the truth of Jesus Christ as the Son of God.

We should never be demanding, or argumentative when witnessing for Jesus Christ!

Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Paul never got tired of talking about the Lord Jesus Christ!

Act 20:31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

Col 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:
Col 1:29 Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.

Paul became more relaxed and excited when Silas and Timothy returned to him.

*Act 18:5 And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ.
Act 18:6 And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.

There should be no doubt in our minds that the Lord Jesus Christ is God’s Messiah whom the entire Old Testament speaks of.

All the Bible and all the Scriptures reveal Jesus Christ from Genesis to Revelation!

Paul had been discouraged yet Paul would never quit on God!

Silas and Timothy had brought wonderful news about the churches in Macedonia.

Silas and Timothy had also brought financial support which allowed Paul to devote full time to the work given to him by Christ.

Those in the Jewish synagogues opposed and blasphemed the Lord Jesus Christ and rejected the teaching of the Apostle Paul.

Paul turned his ministry into a ministry to reach Gentiles.

This turning point began in the ministry to the Corinthians.

Note that Paul was not pronouncing a curse upon these Jews.

Paul was just stating that his obligation to the Jews first was over, that he had met his responsibility to them.

Paul was free of their blood if they never repented.

We have this same responsibility to the lost, but if the salvation plan of the Lord Jesus is rejected then we are free from their blood.

Mat 10:12 And when ye come into an house, salute it.
Mat 10:13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.
Mat 10:14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.
Mat 10:15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

As we witness to the lost, we can turn from those who continuously reject the Gospel and continue on to others who have not had that same opportunity.

*Act 18:7 And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man’s house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue.

Notice how the Holy Spirit works.

Paul would no longer preach in this synagogue, but without a doubt there would be times that the Word of God could be heard through the sharing of walls.

Paul also knew it would be easier to find for those converts who were seeking to hear the Word of God.

This passage proves that the physical location of a church remains important!

The Apostle Paul was now identified as the missionary to the Gentiles.

Paul could associate with them because they were now his true brothers and sisters in Christ!

Rom 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
Rom 12:4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
Rom 12:5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

There was one man in particular that came to know the Lord Jesus Christ and all his family believed also.

*Act 18:8 And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized.

Notice again how the Gospel works.

Crispus, who was the chief of this synagogue came to know the Lord Jesus and then his entire family also believed.

This is the power of a godly father.

Today in America the father is a missing ingredient in far too many families!

Inside this new church would be others who were saved from a lifetime of immorality and corruption because this was the population of Corinth.

Rom_10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

We have no reason to be ashamed of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ!

Rom_10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

The strongest churches have members from all levels of society!

The words of the Lord always prove to be the truth!

Act 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

The Lord said he would never forsake us, and He meant what He said and He always means what He says.

How did the Lord Jesus help Paul?

*Act 18:9 Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace:
Act 18:10 For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.

We already know there is a lot of difference between a vision and a dream.

Because of the riches in the City of Corinth, this city was full of rich and powerful people.

It could be rather intimidating to witness to most of them.

The Jews had already rejected the message of Christ Jesus.

Paul did not know how long he would be able to preach to these Gentiles.

We can also see that the Lord Jesus Christ always has His eyes upon us and He sees what we are going through.

It is easy to get discouraged when witnessing for the Lord.

Here where I live in the Bible Belt everyone you meet will say they are saved when this cannot be true.

Paul was human as we all are, and we all are dependent upon the Lord Jesus for His presence and His encouragement.

We do not have to be afraid!

We do not have to feel intimidated!

Paul’s life had been threatened many times.
Paul had been persecuted relentlessly.
Paul had been stoned to near death.
Paul had been opposed even by some in the Church.
Paul had been beaten by rods which would be like a fiberglass fishing rod.
Paul had been cast out of many cities.

Paul thought upon these things as he faced the unknown in this city of Corinth.

Yes, he needed the help of the Lord, and the Lord is always right on time.

The city of Corinth was one of those places where we wonder if it is really worth the effort to tell such people about the Lord.

The storms of life will come and they will be numerous and it will never be easy to be a Christian in such places as Corinth, but it is the Lord who decides where we live and where we are born and He has His purpose.

We are to be missionaries to the place that the Lord has placed us!

There are no accidents in this world.

If you accept the providence of God then you now that this is true so, everything happens for a reason.

If we do not believe in the providence of God, then we are missing out on reality!

Act 17:28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.
Act 17:29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device.
Act 17:30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

The Lord Jesus knew exactly what Paul needed to hear.

There would certainly be those who would try to cause Paul harm, except for the fact that the Lord was not going to allow this to happen.

We sometimes forget the absolute power of God!

There were more Christians in Corinth than Paul realized.

The Lord said: be not afraid. Paul had the ability to preach boldly, and he needed to continue to do so.
The Lord said: speak. All Paul had to do was to speak the words that the Holy Spirit would give to Him.
The Lord said: Hold not thy peace. Preach the Word.

Certainly, Paul might be attacked for his stand on the Lord, but this same Lord has said Paul would come to no harm from them.

2Ti 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
2Ti 1:8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;
2Ti 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,

Paul was faithful to the Lord’s calling!

*Act 18:11 And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

How can we say we have “faith” if we give up or cower down every time things get a little tough or even a lot tough.

We cannot lose our salvation because of our faith!
We cannot live on spiritual highs; we live on faith!
We must endure some things because we have this faith!

We must walk by “faith” and not by our “feelings”!

What many do not realize is, that during this time of Paul’s teaching, he also wrote the two epistles to the Thessalonians.

Authoring the books of the New Testament that Paul wrote, were just as important as his preaching to the plan of God.

1Ti 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
1Ti 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

We do many foolish things when our faith is lacking!

We need to stay as close to Jesus as we can possibly get!

The Lord Jesus loves it up close and personal with each of us!


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