A Brief Intro to the Corinthian Correspondence

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Paul & the Corinthians : 

Paul & the Corinthians V. Wiles

An Elaborate History : 

An Elaborate History Paul’s relationship with the Corinthian “Saints” can be deduced from his extensive correspondence with them over a period of 4-5 years. 1 and 2 Corinthians are two separate canonical documents – but these two “letters” are compilations of several letters written by Paul over this period of time. Paul mentions several “visits” between the Corinthians and himself in these letters.

#1 : 

#1 Paul establishes the church in Corinth and spends more than eighteen months there. Acts 18

#2 : 

#2 See 1 Corinthians 5:9 Paul writes his first, now lost, letter regarding church discipline. Possibly = 2 Cor 6:14-7:1

#3 : 

#3 See 1 Corinthians 4:17 Paul sends Timothy to visit the Corinthians.

#4 : 

#4 See 1 Corinthians 1:11 Paul receives reports from Chloe’s people of divisions and immorality.

#5 : 

#5 See 1 Corinthians 7:1 Paul receives a letter from the Corinthians concerning questions they need to have answered.

#6 : 

#6 See 1 Corinthians Paul writes another letter to answer them and to respond to Chloe’s report. Note: some would read 1 Corinthians as TWO LETTERS: chs. 1-6 and chs. 7-16.

#7 : 

#7 See 1 Corinthians 16:10 Paul sends Timothy on another visit. ?with the letter (1 Cor)?

#8 : 

#8 See 2 Corinthians 3:1 Paul hears of opposition at Corinth from outsiders with letters of reference. He is concerned, but does not yet realize how serious the situation will become.

#9 : 

#9 See 2 Corinthians 2:14-7:4, minus 6:14-7:1 Paul writes a third letter to warn and admonish them.

#10 : 

#10 See 2 Corinthians 10:10 This (third) letter is used against him and real danger to his leadership emerges.

#11 : 

#11 See 2 Corinthians 16:7; 2:5 and 7:12 Contrary to earlier plans, he pays a brief visit to Corinth, where he finds open rebellion and insult.

#12 : 

#12 See 2 Corinthians 7:12, 2:4 Paul writes an angry letter = 2 Cor 10-13.

#13 : 

#13 See 2 Corinthians 12:17 Paul sends Titus to check on affairs.

#14 : 

#14 See 2 Corinthians 1:13, 7:5-6 Paul learns from Titus of the success of his letter and of Titus’ visit.

#15 : 

#15 See 2 Corinthians 1:1-2:13, 7:5-16 Paul writes a letter of reconciliation.

#16 : 

#16 See 2 Corinthians 8-9 Paul arranges for a “gift.”

#17 : 

#17 See 2 Corinthians 12:14, 13:1 Paul visits a third time.

#18 : 

#18 See 2 Corinthians 16:3; Romans 15:25-27 Paul writes Romans from Corinth.

A Timeline : 

A Timeline Paul’s first visit: He establishes Corinthian church Letter 1 (lost) – Then Timothy visits Chloe’s Report; Letter from Corinthians with questions Letter 2 = Corinthians (responds to Chloe and questions) Timothy visits again (delivers Letter 2?) Report of Disruption – Paul writes a 3rd letter (2 Cor 2-7, minus 6) of warning Paul’s 2nd visit and then 4th “angry” letter (2 Cor 10-13) Titus visits Paul writes a 5th “reconciliation” letter (2 Cor 1-2; 7-16) The “Gift” letter (6th) = 2 Cor. 8-9 Paul visits a 3rd time and writes Romans during this visit.

1 Corinthians – an outline : 

1 Corinthians – an outline 1 Corinthians 1-4 – THE FOUNDATION 1 Corinthians 5-6 – Two Case Studies 1 Corinthians 7-15 – “Now concerning . . .” 1 Corinthians 16 -- Closing

Our Plan -- : 

Our Plan -- 1 Corinthians 8-10 – November 9 and 16 1 Corinthians 11 – November 30 1 Corinthians 12-14 – December 7

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