Wednesday, July 19, 2017

I Corinthians 8:1-13

I Corinthians 8:1-13

1. Verses 1-13 What does he say that love will do in this verse? (1) How?

What can knowledge cause? (1-3) Why?

What is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God, but one? (4)

Where were, the idol gods located that Paul opposed? (5)

What do we know about God? (5-6)

What happened to a weak Corinthian Christian’s conscience if he ate meat that was offered to an idol? (7)

What does this mean? What do you think about that?

Does eating meat make us better or worse? (8) What is Paul saying?

For whose sake must the Corinthian brethren abstain from the liberty of eating meats offered to idols? (9)

What could our liberty become to those who are weak? (9) How?

If you cause a weak brother to perish what have you committed? (10-12) What do you think about that?

According to Paul “when ye sin against a brethren and wound their weak conscience; ye sin against whom? (12)

For how long did Paul say he would eat no flesh, lest I make my brother to offend? (13)

What is Paul saying?

What shows the value that Paul placed on a soul? (13) What do you think about that?

Discussion Question

1. What is more uplifting Love or Knowledge? Why?

2. What principles should guide us in the exercise of Christian liberties?

1 Corinthians 8:1 Now concerning the next question you proposed. All of us have knowledge - A gentle reproof of their self - conceit. Knowledge without love always puffeth up. Love alone edifies - Builds us up in holiness.
*1 Corinthians 8:2 And if any man think that he knows anything,.... Whoever has an opinion of himself, or is conceited with his own knowledge, and fancies that he knows more than he does; which is always the case of those that are elated with their knowledge, and treat others with contempt, and have no regard to their peace and edification: he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know; if he did, he would know this, that he ought to consult the peace, comfort, and edification of his brother; and therefore whatever knowledge he may fancy he has attained to, or whatever he may be capable of, and hereafter obtain, for the present he must be put down for a man that knows nothing as he should do; for he knows neither his duty to God nor man; if he knew the former, he would know the latter.
***1 Corinthians 8:3 But if any man love God - In that way which the commandment requires, which will necessarily beget love to his neighbor, the same is known of him - is approved of God, and acknowledged as his genuine follower.
1 Corinthians 8:4 We know that an idol is nothing - A mere nominal god, having no divinity, virtue, or power.
1 Corinthians 8:5 For though there be that are called gods - By the heathens both celestial, (as they style them,) terrestrial, and infernal deities.
1 Corinthians 8:6 Yet to us - Christians. There is but one God - This is exclusive, not of the One Lord, as if he were an inferior deity; but only of the idols to which the One God is opposed. From whom are all things - By creation, providence, and grace. And we for him - The end of all we are, have, and do. And one Lord - Equally the object of divine worship. By whom are all things - Created, sustained, and governed. And we by him - Have access to the Father, and all spiritual blessings.
1 Corinthians 8:7 Some eat, with consciousness of the idol - That is, fancying it is something, and that it makes the meat unlawful to be eaten. And their conscience, being weak - Not rightly informed. Is defiled - contracts guilt by doing it.
**1 Corinthians 8:8 But meat commendeth us not to God - This is to be regarded as the view presented by the Corinthian Christians, or by the advocates for partaking of the meat offered in sacrifice to idols. The sense is, “Religion is of a deeper and more spiritual nature than a mere regard to circumstances like these. God looks at the heart. He regards the motives, the thoughts, the moral actions of people. The mere circumstance of eating ‘meat,’ or abstaining from it, cannot make a man better or worse in the sight of a holy God. The acceptable worship of God is not placed in such things. It is more spiritual; more deep; more important. And therefore, the inference is, “it cannot be a matter of much importance whether a man eats the meat offered in sacrifice to idols, or abstains.” To this argument the apostle replies 1Co_8:9-13, that, although this might be true in itself, yet it might be the occasion of leading others into sin, and it would then become a matter of great importance in the sight of God, and should be in the sight of all true Christians. The word “commendeth” παράστησι  parastēsi means properly to introduce to the favor of anyone, as a king or ruler; and here means to recommend to the favor of God. God does not regard this as a matter of importance. He does not make his favor depend on unimportant circumstances like this. Neither if we eat - If we partake of the meat offered to idols. Are we the better - Margin, “Have we the more.” Greek Do we abound περισσεύομεν  perisseuomen; that is, in moral worth or excellence of character; see the note at Rev_14:17. Are we the worse - Margin, “Have we the less.” Greek, Do we lack or want (ὑστερούμεθα  husteroumetha); that is, in moral worth or excellence.
***1 Corinthians 8:9 But take heed - Lest by frequenting such feasts and eating things offered to idols, under the conviction that an idol is nothing, and that you may eat those things innocently, this liberty of yours should become a means of grievously offending a weak brother who has not your knowledge, or inducing one who respects you for your superior knowledge to partake of these things with the conscience, the persuasion and belief, that an idol is something, and to conclude, that as you partake of such things, so he may also, and with safety. He is not possessed of your superior information on this point, and he eats to the idol what you take as a common meal.
1 Corinthians 8:10 For if any one see thee who hast knowledge - Whom he believes to have more knowledge than himself, and who really hast this knowledge, that an idol is nothing - sitting down to an entertainment in an idol temple. The heathens frequently made entertainments in their temples, on what hath been sacrificed to their idols. Will not the conscience of him that is weak - Scrupulous. Be encouraged - By thy example. To eat - Though with a doubting conscience.
***1 Corinthians 8:11 Shall the weak brother perish - Being first taught by thy conduct that there was no harm in thus eating, he grieves the Spirit of God; becomes again darkened and hardened; and, sliding back into idolatry, dies in it, and so finally perishes. For whom Christ died? - So we learn that a man may perish for whom Christ died: this admits of no quibble. If a man for whom Christ died, apostatizing from Christianity, (for he is called a brother though weak), return again to and die in idolatry, cannot go to heaven; then a man for whom Christ died may perish everlastingly. And if it were possible for a believer, whether strong or weak, to retrace his steps back to idolatry and die in it, surely it is possible for a man, who had escaped the pollutions that are in the world, to return to it, live and die in its spirit, and perish everlastingly also. Let him that readeth understand.
***1 Corinthians 8:12 But when ye sin so against the brethren - Against Christians, who are called by the Gospel to abhor and detest all such abominations. Ye sin against Christ - By sending to perdition, through your bad example, a soul for whom he shed his blood; and so far defeating the gracious intentions of his sacrificial death. This is a farther intimation, that a person for whom Christ died may perish; and this is the drift of the apostle’s argument.
1 Corinthians 8:13 If meat - Of any kind. Who will follow this example? What preacher or private Christian will abstain from any thing lawful in itself, when it offends a weak brother?

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commandments    *** Clarke’s Commandments    
All others by Wesley

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

1 Corinthians 7:25-40

1 Corinthians 7:25-40 

1. Verses 25-40 Who had received mercy of the Lord to be faithful? (25) Why?

What advice did Paul give the married Corinthian man? (27)

What advice did Paul give the unmarried Corinthian man? (27)

What does Paul mean in verse 27? What do you think about that?

What is Paul trying to spare the Corinthian church from? (28) What do you think about that?

What did Paul believe was short in this verse? (29)

The unmarried man careth for what? (32) What does this mean?

The married man careth for what? (33) What does this mean?

The married woman careth for what? (34) What does this mean?

Paul’s advice concerning marriage was spoken for their profit and not a snare so they could attend upon the Lord without what? (35) What do you think about that?

How long is a wife bound to her husband? (39) What does this mean?

With what restriction may a Christian widow marry? (39)

Discussion Questions
1. What does it mean to be faithful?
2. What should married and unmarried men be doing?
3. How long does a marriage last?

1 Corinthians 7:25 Now concerning virgins - Of either sex. I have no commandment from the Lord - By a particular revelation. Nor was it necessary he should; for the apostles wrote nothing which was not divinely inspired: but with this difference, - sometimes they had a particular revelation, and a special commandment; at other times they wrote from the divine light which abode with them, the standing treasure of the Spirit of God. And this, also, was not their private opinion, but a divine rule of faith and practice. As one whom God hath made faithful in my apostolic office; who therefore faithfully deliver what I receive from him.
1 Corinthians 7:26-27 This is good for the present distress - While any church is under persecution. For a man to continue as he is - Whether married or unmarried. St. Paul does not here urge the present distress as a reason for celibacy, any more than for marriage; but for a man's not seeking to alter his state, whatever it be, but making the best of it.
***1 Corinthians 7:28 But, and if thou marry - As there is no law against this, even in the present distress, thou hast not sinned, because there is no law against this; and it is only on account of prudential reasons that I give this advice. And if a virgin marry - Both the man and the woman have equal privileges in this case; either of them may marry without sin. It is probable, as there were many sects and parties in Corinth, that there were among them those who forbade to marry, 1Ti 4:3, and who might have maintained other doctrines of devils besides. These persons, or such doctrines, the apostle has in view when he says, They may marry and yet not sin. Trouble in the flesh - From the simple circumstance of the incumbrance of a family while under persecution; because of the difficulty of providing for its comfort and safety while flying before the face of persecution. But I spare you - The evil is coming; but I will not press upon you the observance of a prudential caution, which you might deem too heavy a cross.
1 Corinthians 7:29 But this I say, brethren, the time is short,.... This is another reason, with which the apostle supports his advice to virgins, and unmarried persons, to remain so; since the time of life is so very short, and it is even but a little while to the end of the world, and second coming of Christ; and therefore seeing the marriage state is so full of care and trouble, and it affords still less time for the service of Christ and religion, he thought it most advisable for them to, continue in a single life, that they might be more at leisure to make use of that little time they had for their spiritual good and welfare, the edification of others, and the glory of Christ: unless it should be rather thought that the apostle is still enlarging upon the former argument, taken from the present time, being a time of distress and persecution; and so the phrase, "the time is short", or "contracted", and full of anguish and affliction, is the same with the present necessity, and trouble in the flesh; and since this was the case, he suggests again, that an unmarried state was most preferable: it remaineth that both they that have wives, be as though they had none: and as for the rest, they that were married, his advice to them was, that they should so behave as if they were not married; not that he would have them put away their wives, or fancy with themselves that they had none, or make no use of the marriage bed; but suggests a moderate use of it; he would not have them give up themselves to lasciviousness and carnal lusts and pleasures, even with their own wives, and spend their time altogether in their company and embraces: but since the time of life was short, and that full of troubles, they should spend it in the service and worship of God, private and public, as much as possible; and not in the indulging and satisfying of the flesh.
***1 Corinthians 7:30 They that weep, etc. - There will shortly be such a complete system of distress and confusion that private sorrows and private joys will be absorbed in the weightier and more oppressive public evils: yet, let every man still continue in his calling, let him buy, and sell, and traffic, as usual; though in a short time, either by the coming persecution or the levelling hand of death, he that had earthly property will be brought into the same circumstances with him who had none.
***1 Corinthians 7:31 And they that use this world - Let them who have earthly property or employments discharge conscientiously their duties, from a conviction of the instability of earthly things. Make a right use of every thing, and pervert nothing from its use. To use a thing is to employ it properly in order to accomplish the end to which it refers. To abuse a thing signifies to pervert it from that use. Pass through things temporal, so as not to lose those which are eternal.
For the fashion of this world - Το σχημα του κοσμον τουτου signifies properly the present state or constitution of things; the frame of the world, that is, the world itself. But often the term κοσμος, world, is taken to signify the Jewish state and polity; the destruction of this was then at hand, and this the Holy Spirit might then signify to the apostle.
1 Corinthians 7:32 Now I would have you - For this flying moment. Without carefulness - Without any incumbrance of your thoughts. The unmarried man - If he understand and use the advantage he enjoys - Careth only for the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord.
1 Corinthians 7:33 But the married careth for the things of the world - And it in his duty so to do, so far as becomes a Christian. How he may please his wife - And provide all things needful for her and his family.
1 Corinthians 7:34 There is a difference also between a wife and a virgin - Whether the church be under persecution or not. The unmarried woman - If she know and use her privilege. Careth only for the things of the Lord - All her time, care, and thoughts centre in this, how she may be holy both in body and spirit. This is the standing advantage of a single life, in all ages and nations. But who makes a suitable use of it?
1 Corinthians 7:35 Not that I may cast a snare upon you - Who are not able to receive this saying. But for your profit - Who are able. That ye may resolutely and perseveringly wait upon the Lord - The word translated wait signifies sitting close by a person, in a good posture to hear. So Mary sat at the feet of Jesus, Luk 10:39. Without distraction - Without having the mind drawn any way from its centre; from its close attention to God; by any person, or thing, or care, or incumbrance whatsoever.
1 Corinthians 7:36 But if any parent think he should otherwise act indecently - Unbecoming his character. Toward his virgin daughter, if she be above age, (or of full age,) and need so require, 1Co 7:9, let them marry - Her suitor and she.
1 Corinthians 7:37 Having no necessity - Where there is no such need. But having power over his own will - Which would incline him to desire the increase of his family, and the strengthening it by new relations.
**1 Corinthians 7:38 Doeth well - Does right; violates no law in it, and is not to be blamed for it. Doeth better - Does that which is on the whole to be preferred, if it can be done. He more certainly, in the present circumstances, consults her happiness by withholding her from the marriage connection than he could by allowing her to enter it.
1 Corinthians 7:39 Only in the Lord - That is, only if Christians marry Christians: a standing direction, and one of the utmost importance.
1 Corinthians 7:40 I also - As well as any of you. Have the Spirit of God - Teaching me all things This does not imply any doubt; but the strongest certainty of it, together with a reproof of them for calling it in question. Whoever, therefore, would conclude from hence, that St. Paul was not certain he had the Spirit of Christ, neither understands the true import of the words, nor considers how expressly he lays claim to the Spirit, both in this epistle, 1Co 2:16, 1Co 14:37, and the other. 2Co 13:3. Indeed, it may be doubted whether the word here and elsewhere translated think, does not always imply the fullest and strongest assurance. See 1Co 10:12.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke's Commentaries    
All others by Wesley

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

I Corinthians 7:1-24

I Corinthians 7:1-24

1. Verses 1-9 Paul wrote the Corinthians “It is good for a man not to touch what? (1) Why?

How does Paul advise the Corinthians on how to avoid fornication? (2) What is Paul saying?

What does the husband and wife, have not no power over their what? (4) What does this mean?

What two reasons did Paul give the husband and wife when it would be proper by mutual consent to deny each other their bodies? (4-5)

What do you think about that?

Paul didn't order the husband and wife to deny each other for fasting and prayer but spoke it by what? (5-6)

What does this mean?

What did Paul write to the unmarried and widows? (8) What is Paul saying?

According to Paul it is better to marry than what? (9) What does this mean?

2. Verses 10-16 Whose command is this “Let not the wife depart from her husband? (10)

If a brother has an unbelieving wife and she is pleased to dwell with him, what is he not allowed? (12)

If a sister has an unbelieving husband and he is pleased to dwell with her, what is she not allowed? (13)

If a believer remains married to an unbeliever what could happen? (14-16)

3. Verses 17-24 How are we to live? (17) What does that mean?

What is more important than circumcision? (19) Why write this?

What is a Christian freeman to the Lord? (22)

Paul said we are bought with a what? (23) What do we not want to become? (23)

What state should we remain? (24) What do you think about that?

Discussion Questions

1. Why is it better to abstain from immorality?

2. What did Paul mean when he said that he spoke by permission or consent and not by commandment?

3. Is passion the same as lust? Should we marry in lust?

1 Corinthians 7:1 It is good for a man - Who is master of himself. Not to touch a women - That is, not to marry. So great and many are the advantages of a single life.
1 Corinthians 7:2 Yet, when it is needful, in order to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife. His own - For Christianity allows no polygamy.
***1 Corinthians 7:3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence - Την οφειλομενην ευνοιαν· Though our version is no translation of the original, yet few persons are at a loss for the meaning, and the context is sufficiently plain. Some have rendered the words, not unaptly, the matrimonial debt, or conjugal duty - that which a wife owes to her husband, and the husband to his wife; and which they must take care mutually to render, else alienation of affection will be the infallible consequence, and this in numberless instances has led to adulterous connections. In such cases the wife has to blame herself for the infidelity of her husband, and the husband for that of his wife. What miserable work has been made in the peace of families by a wife or a husband pretending to be wiser than the apostle, and too holy and spiritual to keep the commandments of God!
**1 Corinthians 7:4 The wife hath not power ... - By the marriage covenant that power, in this respect, is transferred to the husband, And likewise, also, the husband - The equal rights of husband and wife, in the Scriptures, are everywhere maintained. They are to regard themselves as united in most intimate union, and in most tender ties.
**1 Corinthians 7:5 Defraud ye not ... - Of the right mentioned above. Withdraw not from the society of each other. Except it be with consent - With a mutual understanding, that you may engage in the extraordinary duties of religion; compare Exo_19:15. And come together again ... - Even by mutual consent, the apostle would not have this separation to be perpetual, since it would expose them to many of the evils which the marriage relation was designed to avoid. That Satan ... - That Satan take not advantage of you, and throw you into temptation, and fill you with thoughts and passions which the marriage compact was designed to remedy.
1 Corinthians 7:6 But I say this - Concerning your separating for a time and coming together again. Perhaps he refers also to 1Co_7:2.
1 Corinthians 7:7 For I would that all men were herein even as I - I would that all believers who are now unmarried would remain "eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake" St. Paul, having tasted the sweetness of this liberty, wished others to enjoy it, as well as himself. But every one hath his proper gift from God - According to our Lord's declaration, "All men cannot receive this saying, save they," the happy few, to whom it is given," Mat_19:11.
1 Corinthians 7:8 It is good for them if they remain even as I - That St. Paul was then single is certain and from Act_7:58, compared with the following parts of the history, it seems probable that he always was so. It does not appear that this declaration, any more than 1Co_7:1, hath any reference at all to a state of persecution.
**1 Corinthians 7:9 But if they cannot contain - If they have not the gift of continence; if they cannot be secure against temptation; if they have not strength of virtue enough to preserve them from the danger of sin, and of bringing reproach and scandal on the church. It is better - It is to be preferred. Than to burn - The passion here referred to is often compared to a fire; see Virgil, Aeneas 4:68. It is better to marry, even with all the inconveniences attending the marriage life in a time of distress and persecution in the church 1Co_7:26, than to be the prey of raging, consuming, and exciting passions.
1 Corinthians 7:10 Not I - Only. But the Lord - Christ; by his express command, Mat_5:32.
1 Corinthians 7:11 But if she depart - Contrary to this express prohibition. And let not the husband put away his wife - Except for the cause of adultery.
1 Corinthians 7:12 To the rest - Who are married to unbelievers. Speak I - By revelation from God, though our Lord hath not left any commandment concerning it. Let him not put her away - The Jews, indeed, were obliged of old to put away their idolatrous wives, Ezr_10:3; but their case was quite different. They were absolutely forbid to marry idolatrous women; but the persons here spoken of were married while they were both in a state of heathenism.
***1 Corinthians 7:13 And the woman - Converted from heathenism to the Christian faith; which hath a husband, who still abides in heathenism; if he be pleased to dwell with her, notwithstanding she has become a Christian since their marriage; let her not leave him because he still continues a heathen.
1 Corinthians 7:14 For the unbelieving husband hath, in many instances, been sanctified by the wife - Else your children would have been brought up heathens; whereas now they are Christians. As if he had said, Ye see the proof of it before your eyes.
1 Corinthians 7:15 A brother or a sister - A Christian man or woman. Is not enslaved - is at full liberty. In such cases: but God hath called us to peace - To live peaceably with them, if it be possible.
***1 Corinthians 7:16 For what knowest thou, O wife - You that are Christians, and who have heathen partners, do not give them up because they are such, for you may become the means of saving them unto eternal life. Bear your cross, and look up to God, and he may give your unbelieving husband or wife to your prayers.
1 Corinthians 7:17 But as God hath distributed - The various stations of life, and various relations, to every one, let him take care to discharge his duty therein. The gospel disannuls none of these. And thus I ordain in all the churches - As a point of the highest concern.
***1 Corinthians 7:19 Circumcision is nothing - Circumcision itself, though commanded of God, is nothing of itself, it being only a sign of the justification which should be afterwards received by faith. At present, neither it nor its opposite either hinders or furthers the work of grace; and keeping the commandments of God, from his love shed abroad in a believing heart, is the sum and substance of religion.
1 Corinthians 7:20 In the calling - The outward state. Wherein he is - When God calls him. Let him not seek to change this, without a clear direction from Providence.
1 Corinthians 7:21 Care not for it - Do not anxiously seek liberty. But if thou canst be free, use it rather - Embrace the opportunity.
1 Corinthians 7:22 Is the Lord's freeman - Is free in this respect. The Greek word implies one that was a slave, but now is free. Is the bondman of Christ - Not free in this respect; not at liberty to do his own will.
1 Corinthians 7:23 Ye are bought with a price - Ye belong to God; therefore, where it can be avoided, do not become the bondslaves of men - Which may expose you to many temptations.
1 Corinthians 7:24 Therein abide with God - Doing all things as unto God, and as in his immediate presence. They who thus abide with God preserve an holy indifference with regard to outward things.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke's Commentaries    
All others by Wesley 

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

I Corinthians 6:1-20

I Corinthians 6:1-20

1. Verses 1-11 Before whom should saints go, when they have a matter against a brother? (1) Why?

Who will judge the world in this verse? (2) What does this mean?

Who shall judge the Angels in this verse? (3)

Who should be available to judge between brethren? (5)

Before whom were the brethren at Corinth going to law? (6)

According to Paul it would be better for the church to take wrong and suffer defraud than to do what? (7)

The unrighteous shall not inherit what? (9-10) What do you think about that?

What shows that persons who are guilty of gross immoral sins can be forgiven and set free? (11)

2. Verses 12-20 Why may it not be wise to do some things even though they are lawful? (12)

What is being said here? What do you think about that?

Who and what is your body for? (13,19) Why? What do you think about that?

What fact is given by Paul to the Corinthians as proof that God will raise them by his own power? (14)

What does Paul say about the flesh and the Spirit in verses sixteen and seventeen? (16-17)

What short imperative does Paul give regarding sexual immorality? (18) What is Paul saying?

Why do you think he is saying this?

Why are you not your own? (19-20) What does this mean?

Because we are bought with a price, what should we do with our body? (20)

What do you think about that?

Discussion Questions
1. How should disputes between church members be settled?
2. When if ever should the dispute be taken to law?
3. Why are sins of immorality so serious?

1 Corinthians 6:1 The unjust - The heathens. A Christian could expect no justice from these. The saints - Who might easily decide these smaller differences in a private and friendly manner.
1 Corinthians 6:2 Know ye not - This expression occurs six times in this single chapter, and that with a peculiar force; for the Corinthians knew and gloried in it, but they did not practise. That the saints - After having been judged themselves. Shall judge the world - Shall be assessors with Christ in the judgment wherein he shall condemn all the wicked, as well angels as men, Mat_19:28; Rev_20:4.
***1 Corinthians 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? - Dr. Lightfoot observes that “the apostle does not say here, as he said before, the saints shall judge the angels, but We shall judge them. By angels, all confess that demons are intended; but certainly all saints, according to the latitude with which that word is understood, i.e. all who profess Christianity, shall not judge angels. Nor is this judging of angels to be understood of the last day; but the apostle speaks of the ministers of the Gospel, himself and others, who, by the preaching of the Gospel, through the power of Christ, should spoil the devils of their oracles and their idols, should deprive them of their worship, should drive them out of their seats, and strip them of their dominion. Thus would God subdue the whole world under the Christian power, so that Christian magistrates should judge men, and Christian ministers judge devils.”
1 Corinthians 6:4 Them who are of no esteem in the church - That is, heathens, who, as such, could be in no esteem with the Christians.
***1 Corinthians 6:5 Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? - Have you none among yourselves that can be arbitrators of the differences which arise, that you go to the heathen tribunals?
**1 Corinthians 6:6 But brother ... - One Christian goes to law with another. This is designed as a reproof. This was wrong: (1) Because they ought rather to take wrong and suffer themselves to be injured 1Co_6:7; (2) Because they might have chosen some persons to settle the matter by arbitration without a formal trial; and, (3) Because the civil constitution would have allowed them to have settled all their differences without a lawsuit. Josephus says that the Romans (who were now masters of Corinth) permitted the Jews in foreign countries to decide private affairs, where nothing capital was in question, among themselves. And Dr. Lardner observes, that the Christians might have availed themselves of this permission to have settled their disputes in the same manner. Credibility, vol. 1:p. 165.
1 Corinthians 6:7 Indeed there is a fault, that ye quarrel with each other at all, whether ye go to law or no. Why do ye not rather suffer wrong - All men cannot or will not receive this saying. Many aim only at this, "I will neither do wrong, nor suffer it." These are honest heathens, but no Christians.
*1 Corinthians 6:8 Nay, you do wrong and defraud,.... So far were they from taking and acting up to the advice given, that instead of taking wrong, they did wrong; and instead of suffering themselves to be defrauded, they defrauded others:  and that your brethren; that were of the same faith, of the same religion, and in the same church and family: in short, neither party, not the plaintiff, nor the defendant, sought anything more or less than to wrong, trick, and defraud each other; such a sad corruption and degeneracy prevailed among them: hence the apostle thought to deal plainly and closely with them, as in the following verses.
1 Corinthians 6:9 Idolatry is here placed between fornication and adultery, because they generally accompanied it. Nor the effeminate - Who live in an easy, indolent way; taking up no cross, enduring no hardship. But how is this? These good - natured, harmless people are ranked with idolaters and sodomites! We may learn hence, that we are never secure from the greatest sins, till we guard against those which are thought the least; nor, indeed, till we think no sin is little, since every one is a step toward hell.
1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed - From those gross abominations; nay, and ye are inwardly sanctified; not before, but in consequence of, your being justified in the name - That is, by the merits, of the Lord Jesus, through which your sins are forgiven. And by the Spirit of our God - By whom ye are thus washed and sanctified.
1 Corinthians 6:12 All things - Which are lawful for you. Are lawful for me, but all things are not always expedient - Particularly when anything would offend my weak brother; or when it would enslave my own soul. For though all things are lawful for me, yet I will not be brought under the power of any - So as to be uneasy when I abstain from it; for, if so, then I am under the power of it.
1 Corinthians 6:13 As if he had said, I speak this chiefly with regard to meats; (and would to God all Christians would consider it!) particularly with regard to those offered to idols, and those forbidden in the Mosaic law. These, I grant, are all indifferent, and have their use, though it is only for a time: then meats, and the organs which receive them, will together moulder into dust. But the case is quite otherwise with fornication. This is not indifferent, but at all times evil. For the body is for the Lord - Designed only for his service. And the Lord, in an important sense, for the body - Being the Saviour of this, as well as of the soul; in proof of which God hath already raised him from the dead.
***1 Corinthians 6:14 And God hath both raised up the Lord - He has raised up the human nature of Christ from the grave, as a pledge of our resurrection; and will also raise us up by his own power, that we may dwell with him in glory for ever.
***1 Corinthians 6:17 Is one spirit - He who is united to God, by faith in Christ Jesus, receives his Spirit, and becomes a partaker of the Divine nature. Who can change such a relationship for communion with a harlot; or for any kind of sensual gratification? He who can must be far and deeply fallen!
1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee fornication - All unlawful commerce with women, with speed, with abhorrence, with all your might. Every sin that a man commits against his neighbour terminates upon an object out of himself, and does not so immediately pollute his body, though it does his soul. But he that committeth fornication, sinneth against his own body - Pollutes, dishonours, and degrades it to a level with brute beasts.
1 Corinthians 6:19 And even your body is not, strictly speaking, your own even this is the temple of the Holy Ghost - Dedicated to him, and inhabited by him. What the apostle calls elsewhere "the temple of God," 1Co_3:16-17, and "the temple of the living God," 2Co_6:16, he here styles the temple of the Holy Ghost; plainly showing that the Holy Ghost is the living God.
1 Corinthians 6:20 Glorify God with your body, and your spirit - Yield your bodies and all their members, as well as your souls and all their faculties, as instruments of righteousness to God. Devote and employ all ye have, and all ye are, entirely, unreservedly, and for ever, to his glory.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke’s Commentaries    
All others by Wesley 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

I Corinthians 5:1-13

I Corinthians 5:1-13

1. Verses 1-8 What sin in the church is dealt with in this chapter? (1) How did Paul find out?

What woman is the guilty fornicator? (1) What do you think about that?

What was the Corinthians attitude toward this sin of fornication in the Church? (2)

What is being said?

How should the brethren at Corinth have felt about fornication in the Church? (2) Why?

What had Paul already done when he wrote the Corinthians about the fornicator? (3)

When the Corinthians met to deliver the fornicator whose spirit would be there? (4) Why?

What further effect was sought in delivering the fornicator? (5) What do you think about that?

What did Paul think of the Corinthians glorying in the fornicator? (6) Why would they do that?

According to Paul who is our Passover? (7) What is the Passover?

Paul advised the Corinthians to keep the feast with unleavened bread of sincerity and truth and not with old leaven. What does the old leaven contain? (8) What is being said?

2. Verses 9-13 Was this Paul’s first time writing to this church and the issue of fornication? (9)

What do you think about that?

To avoid fornicators, covetous, extortioners and idolaters altogether in this world, what would one need to do according to Paul? (10) What do you think about that?

What jurisdiction does Paul have over “outsiders” of the church at Corinth? (12)

How or by whom will the “outsiders” of the church at Corinth be judged? (13)

Discussion Question
1. What were Paul’s motives when he gave the commands regarding the Corinthian and the fornicator that was called a brother?

2. What should we do in regards of who we hang out with?

1 Corinthians 5:1 Fornication - The original word implies criminal conversation of any kind whatever. His father's wife - While his father was alive.
1 Corinthians 5:2 Are ye puffed up? Should ye not rather have mourned - Have solemnly humbled yourselves, and at that time of solemn mourning have expelled that notorious sinner from your communion?
***1 Corinthians 5:3 Absent in body, but present in spirit - Perhaps St. Paul refers to the gift of the discernment of spirits, which it is very likely the apostles in general possessed on extraordinary occasions. He had already seen this matter so clearly, that he had determined on that sort of punishment which should be inflicted for this crime.
1 Corinthians 5:4 And my spirit - Present with you. With the power of the Lord Jesus Christ - To confirm my sentence.
1 Corinthians 5:5 To deliver such an one - This was the highest degree of punishment in the Christian church; and we may observe, the passing this sentence was the act of the apostle, not of the Corinthians. To Satan - Who was usually permitted, in such cases, to inflict pain or sickness on the offender. For the destruction - Though slowly and gradually. Of the flesh - Unless prevented by speedy repentance.
1 Corinthians 5:6 Your glorying - Either in your gifts or prosperity, at such a time as this, is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven - One sin, or one sinner. Leaveneth the whole lump - Diffuses guilt and infection through the whole congregation.
***1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven - As it is the custom of the Jews previously to the passover to search their houses in the most diligent manner for the old leaven, and throw it out, sweeping every part clean; so act with this incestuous person. I have already shown with what care the Jews purged their houses from all leaven previously to the passover; see the note on Exo_12:8-19 (note), and on the term passover, and Christ as represented by this ancient Jewish sacrifice; see on Exo_12:27
1 Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast - Let us feed on him by faith. Here is a plain allusion to the Lord's supper, which was instituted in the room of the passover. Not with the old leaven - Of heathenism or Judaism. Malignity is stubbornness in evil. Sincerity and truth seem to be put here for the whole of true, inward religion.
1 Corinthians 5:9 I wrote to you in a former epistle - And, doubtless, both St. Paul and the other apostles wrote many things which are not extant now. Not to converse - Familiarly; not to contract any intimacy or acquaintance with them, more than is absolutely necessary.
1 Corinthians 5:10 But I did not mean that you should altogether refrain from conversing with heathens, though they are guilty in some of these respects. Covetous, rapacious, idolaters - Sinners against themselves, their neighbour, God. For then ye must go out of the world - Then all civil commerce must cease. So that going out of the world, which some account a perfection, St. Paul accounts an utter absurdity.
**1 Corinthians 5:11 “But now.” In this Epistle. This shows that he had written a former letter. I have written to you. - Above. I have designed to give this injunction that you are to be entirely separated from one who is a professor of religion and who is guilty of these things. Not to keep company - To be wholly separated and withdrawn from such a person. Not to associate with him in any manner. If any man that is called a brother - Any professing Christian; any member of the church. Be a fornicator ... - Like him who is mentioned, 1Co_5:1. Or an idolater - This must mean those persons who, while they professed Christianity, still attended the idol feasts, and worshipped there. Perhaps a few such may have been found who had adopted the Christian profession hypocritically. Or a railer - A reproachful man; a man of coarse, harsh, and bitter words; a man whose characteristic it was to abuse others; to vilify their character, and wound their feelings. It is needless to say how much this is contrary to the spirit of Christianity, and to the example of the Master, “who when he was reviled, reviled not again.” Or a drunkard - Perhaps there might have been some then in the church, as there are now, who were addicted to this vice. It has been the source of incalculable evils to the church; and the apostle, therefore, solemnly enjoins on Christians to have no fellowship with a man who is intemperate. With such an one no not to eat - To have no contact or fellowship with him of any kind; not to do anything that would seem to acknowledge him as a brother; with such an one not even to eat at the same table. A similar course is enjoined by John; 2Jo_1:10-11. This refers to the contact of common life, and not particularly to the communion. The true Christian was wholly to disown such a person, and not to do anything that would seem to imply that he regarded him as a Christian brother. It will be seen here that the rule was much more strict in regard to one who professed to be a Christian than to those who were known and acknowledged pagans. The reasons may have been: (1) The necessity of keeping the church pure, and of not doing anything that would seem to imply that Christians were the patrons and friends of the intemperate and the wicked. (2) in respect to the pagan, there could be no danger of its being supposed that Christians regarded them as brethren, or showed to them any more than the ordinary civilities of life; but in regard to those who professed to be Christians, but who were drunkards, or licentious, if a man was on terms of intimacy with them, it would seem as if he acknowledged them as brethren and recognized them as Christians. (3) this entire separation and withdrawing from all communion was necessary in these times to save the church from scandal, and from the injurious reports which were circulated. The pagan accused Christians of all manner of crime and abominations. These reports were greatly injurious to the church. But it was evident that currency and plausibility would be given to them if it was known that Christians were on terms of intimacy and good fellowship with pagans and intemperate persons. Hence, it became necessary to withdraw wholly from them to withhold even the ordinary courtesies of life; and to draw a line of total and entire separation. Whether this rule in its utmost strictness is demanded now, since the nature of Christianity is known, and since religion cannot be in “so much” danger from such reports, may be made a question. I am inclined to the opinion that the ordinary civilities of life may be shown to such persons; though certainly nothing that would seem to recognize them as Christians. But as neighbors and relatives; as those who may be in distress and want, we are assuredly not forbidden to show toward them the offices of kindness and compassion. Whitby and some others, however, understand this of the communion of the Lord’s Supper and of that only.
1 Corinthians 5:12 I speak of Christians only. For what have I to do to judge heathens? But ye, as well as I, judge those of your own community.
1 Corinthians 5:13 Them that are without God will judge - The passing sentence on these he hath reserved to himself. And ye will take away that wicked person - This properly belongs to you.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke's Commentaries    
All others by Wesley 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

I Corinthians 4:1-21

I Corinthians 4:1-21

1. Verses 1-5 What was Paul a steward of and who did he say that they were ministers of? (1)

What does this mean?

It is required in stewards that a man be found how? (2) What is Paul saying?

Who said, “yea, I judge not mine own self in this verse? (3) Why say this?

Upon whom does the final judgment wait? (5)

When the Lord comes what will He bring to light? (5) What will the Lord manifest when He comes?

2. Verses 6-13 Paul advised the Corinthians not to be puffed up one against whom? (6) Why?

The Corinthians had nothing they had not received from God. What questions does Paul ask them? (7)

Paul wrote the Corinthians that they were full, rich, and reigned as what? (8)

Where does Paul think God has set the apostles? (9) What does this mean?

What did the apostles do to support themselves besides preaching? (12)

What was the attitude of the apostles toward persecutions? (12) What do you think about that?

Who was made as filth of the world? (13)

Who was the off scouring of all things? (13) What do you think about that?

3. Verses 14-21 What kind of sons were the Corinthians to Paul? (14)

Through what means had Paul begotten the Corinthians in Jesus Christ? (15)

Who does Paul beseech the Corinthians to follow? (16) Why?

Who did Paul send to Corinth in this verse? (17)

Paul said the Kingdom of God is not in word, but of what? (20)

Paul asked “Shall I come unto you in love and in the spirit of meekness or with what? (21)

Discussion Questions

1. How do you deal with the problem of pride in your life?

2. What is the difference between an instructor and a father?

1 Corinthians 4:1 Let a man account us, as servants of Christ - The original word properly signifies such servants as laboured at the oar in rowing vessels; and, accordingly, intimates the pains which every faithful minister takes in his Lord's work. O God, where are these ministers to be found? Lord, thou knowest. And stewards of the mysteries of God - Dispenseth of the mysterious truths of the gospel.
*1 Corinthians 4:2 Moreover, it is required in stewards,.... Upon mentioning that part of the character of Gospel preachers, as stewards, the apostle is put in mind of, and so points out that which is principally necessary in such persons: as,
that a man be found faithful; to the trust reposed in him; to his Lord and master that has appointed him to this office; and to the souls that are under his care: and then may a minister be said to be so, and which is his greatest glory, when he preaches the pure Gospel of Christ without any human mixtures, the doctrines and inventions of men; and the whole Gospel, declaring all the counsel of God, keeping back nothing which may be profitable to souls; when he seeks not to please men, but God; and not his own glory, and the applause of men, but the honour of Christ, and the good of souls: and such a faithful steward was the apostle himself.
1 Corinthians 4:3 Yea, I judge not myself - My final state is not to be determined by my own judgment.
1 Corinthians 4:4 I am not conscious to myself of anything evil; yet am I not hereby justified - I depend not on this, as a sufficient justification of myself in God's account. But he that judgeth me is the Lord - By his sentence I am to stand or fall.
1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time - Appointed for judging all men. Until the Lord come, who, in order to pass a righteous judgment, which otherwise would be impossible, will both bring to light the things which are now covered with impenetrable darkness, and manifest the most secret springs of action, the principles and intentions of every heart. And then shall every one - Every faithful steward, have praise of God.
***1 Corinthians 4:6 These things - Which I have written, 1Co 3:5, etc. I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos - I have written as if myself and Apollos were the authors of the sects which now prevail among you; although others, without either our consent or knowledge, have proclaimed us heads of parties. Bishop Pearce paraphrases the verse thus: “I have made use of my own and Apollos’ name in my arguments against your divisions, because I would spare to name those teachers among you who are guilty of making and heading parties; and because I would have you, by our example, not to value them above what I have said of teachers in general in this epistle; so that none of you ought to be puffed up for one against another.” Doubtless there were persons at Corinth who, taking advantage of this spirit of innovation among that people, set themselves up also for teachers, and endeavored to draw disciples after them. And perhaps some even of these were more valued by the fickle multitude than the very apostles by whom they had been brought out of heathenish darkness into the marvellous light of the Gospel. I have already supposed it possible that Diotrephes was one of the ringleaders in these schisms at Corinth. See on 1Co 1:14 (note).
1 Corinthians 4:7 Who maketh thee to differ - Either in gifts or graces. As if thou hadst not received it - As if thou hadst it originally from thyself.
***1 Corinthians 4:8 Now ye - Corinthians are full of secular wisdom; now ye are rich, both in wealth and spiritual gifts; (1Co 14:26): ye have reigned as kings, flourishing in the enjoyment of these things, in all tranquillity and honor; without any want of us: and I would to God ye did reign, in deed, and not in conceit only, that we also, poor, persecuted, and despised apostles, might reign with you. - Whitby. Though this paraphrase appears natural, yet I am of opinion that the apostle here intends a strong irony; and one which, when taken in conjunction with what he had said before, must have stung them to the heart. It is not an unusual thing for many people to forget, if not despise, the men by whom they were brought to the knowledge of the truth; and take up with others to whom, in the things of God, they owe nothing. Reader, is this thy case?
1 Corinthians 4:9 God hath set forth us last, as appointed to death - Alluding to the Roman custom of bringing forth those persons last on the stage, either to fight with each other, or with wild beasts, who were devoted to death; so that, if they escaped one day, they were brought out again and again, till they were killed.
1 Corinthians 4:10 We are fools, in the account of the world, for Christ's sake, but ye are wise in Christ - Though ye are Christians, ye think yourselves wise; and ye have found means to make the world think you so too. We are weak - In presence, in infirmities, in sufferings. But ye are strong - In just opposite circumstances.
1 Corinthians 4:12 We bless - suffer it - intreat - We do not return revilings, persecution, defamation; nothing but blessing.
1 Corinthians 4:13 We are made as the filth of the world, and offscouring of all things - Such were those poor wretches among the heathens, who were taken from the dregs of the people, to be offered as expiatory sacrifices to the infernal gods. They were loaded with curses, affronts, and injuries, all the way they went to the altars; and when the ashes of those unhappy men were thrown into the sea, these very names were given them in the ceremony.
**1 Corinthians 4:14 To shame you - It is not my design to put you to shame by showing you how little you suffer in comparison with us. This is not our design, though it may have this effect. I have no wish to make you ashamed, to appear to triumph over you or merely to taunt you. My design is higher and nobler than this. But as my beloved sons - As my dear children. I speak as a father to his children, and I say these things for your good. No father would desire to make his children ashamed. In his counsels, entreaties, and admonitions, he would have a higher object than that. I warn you - I do not say these things in a harsh manner, with a severe spirit of rebuke; but in order to admonish you, to suggest counsel, to instil wisdom into the mind. I say these things not to make, you blush, but with the hope that they may be the means of your reformation, and of a more holy life. No man, no minister, ought to reprove another merely to overwhelm him with shame, but the object should always be to make a brother better; and the admonition should be so administered as to have this end, not sourly or morosely, but in a kind, tender, and affectionate manner.
1 Corinthians 4:15 I have begotten you - This excludes not only Apollos, his successor, but also Silas and Timothy, his companions; and the relation between a spiritual father and his children brings with it an inexpressible nearness and affection.
1 Corinthians 4:16 Be ye followers of me - In that spirit and behaviour which I have so largely declared.
1 Corinthians 4:17 My beloved son - Elsewhere he styles him "brother," 2Co 1:1; but here paternal affection takes place. As I teach - No less by example than precept.
1 Corinthians 4:18 Now some are puffed up - St. Paul saw, by a divine light, the thoughts which would arise in their hearts. As if I would not come - Because I send Timothy.
1 Corinthians 4:19 I will know - He here shows his fatherly authority Not the big, empty speech of these vain boasters, but how much of the power of God attends them.
1 Corinthians 4:20 For the kingdom of God - Real religion, does not consist in words, but in the power of God ruling the heart.
1 Corinthians 4:21 With a rod - That is, with severity.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke's Commentaries    
All others by Wesley

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

I Corinthians 3:1-23

I Corinthians 3:1-23

1. Verses 1-4 Who does Paul call “babes in Christ?” (1) Why?

What does Paul feed the brethren at Corinth instead of meat? (2)

Can you name the three things that Paul found in the church at Corinth? (3) What is he saying?

What do you think about that?

2. Verses 5-17 Who planted the seed,watered the Gospel and increased the gospel at Corinth? (6)

Which is greater, the one who plants, or the one who waters? (7) Why?

What basis will each man be rewarded on? (8) What do you think about that?

Who does Paul say is God’s husbandry as well as God’s building? (9) What does this mean?

Who considered himself as a wise master builder? (10) What warning does Paul give?

What do you think about that?

Who is the only true foundation? (11) What is being said?

What shall every man’s work be tried with? (13) What does that mean?

What do you think about that?

If a man’s work abides on which he built upon it, what will he receive from God? (14)

If any man’s work shall be burned, what will happen to him and his works? (15)

Paul said that they were a temple of God, what did he say dwells in this temple? (16)

What does this mean?

3. Verses 18-23 The wisdom of this world is what with God? (19) Read Job 5:13

In what are we not to glory according to Paul? (21) What do you think about that?

What is the mutual relation between the Corinthians and God? (23) What does this mean?

Discussion Questions
1. In your opinion what kind of works are wood, hay, and stubble?

2. Will there be different rewards in heaven?

1 Corinthians 3:1 And I, brethren - He spoke before, 1Co_2:1, of his entrance, now of his progress, among them. Could not speak to you as unto spiritual - Adult, experienced Christians. But as unto men who were still in great measure carnal, as unto babes in Christ - Still weak in grace, though eminent in gifts, 1Co_1:5.
**1 Corinthians 3:2 I have fed you with milk - Paul here continues the metaphor, which is derived from the custom of feeding infants with the lightest food. Milk here evidently denotes the more simple and elementary doctrines of Christianity - the doctrines of the new birth, of repentance, faith, etc. The same figure occurs in Heb_5:11-14; and also in Classical writers. See Wetstein. And not with meat - “Meat” here denotes the more sublime and mysterious doctrines of religion. For hitherto - Formerly, when I came among you, and laid the foundations of the church. Not able to bear it - You were not sufficiently advanced in Christian knowledge to comprehend the higher mysteries of the gospel. Neither yet now ... - The reason why they were not then able he proceeds immediately to state.
1 Corinthians 3:3 For while there is among you emulation in your hearts, strife in your words, and actual divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk according to men - As mere men; not as Christians, according to God.
1 Corinthians 3:4 I am of Apollos - St. Paul named himself and Apollos, to show that he would condemn any division among them, even though it were in favour of himself, or the dearest friend he had in the world. Are ye not carnal - For the Spirit of God allows no party zeal.
1 Corinthians 3:5 Ministers - Or servants. By whom ye believed, as the Lord, the Master of those servants, gave to every man.
***1 Corinthians 3:6 I have planted - I first sowed the seed of the Gospel at Corinth, and in the region of Achaia. Apollos watered - Apollos came after me, and, by his preachings and exhortations, watered the seed which I had sowed; but God gave the increase. The seed has taken root, has sprung up, and borne much fruit; but this was by the especial blessing of God. As in the natural so in the spiritual world; it is by the especial blessing of God that the grain which is sown in the ground brings forth thirty, sixty, or a hundred fold: it is neither the sower nor the waterer that produces this strange and inexplicable multiplication; it is God alone. So it is by the particular agency of the Spirit of God that even good seed, sown in good ground, the purest doctrine conveyed to the honest heart, produces the salvation of the soul.
1 Corinthians 3:7 God that giveth the increase - Is all in all: without him neither planting nor watering avails.
***1 Corinthians 3:8 He that planteth and he that watereth are one - Both Paul and Apollos have received the same doctrine, preach the same doctrine, and labor to promote the glory of God in the salvation of your souls. Why should you be divided with respect to Paul and Apollos, while these apostles are intimately One in spirit, design, and operation? According to his own labor - God does not reward his servants according to the success of their labor, because that depends on himself; but he rewards them according to the quantum of faithful labor which they bestow on his work. In this sense none can say, I have labored in vain, and spent my strength for nought.
1 Corinthians 3:9 For we are all fellowlabourers - God's labourers, and fellowlabourers with each other. Ye are God's husbandry - This is the sum of what went before: it is a comprehensive word, taking in both a field, a garden, and a vineyard. Ye are God's building - This is the sum of what follows.
1 Corinthians 3:10 According to the grace of God given to me - This he premises, lest he should seem to ascribe it to himself. Let every one take heed how he buildeth thereon - That all his doctrines may be consistent with the foundation.
***1 Corinthians 3:11 Other foundation can no man lay - I do not speak particularly concerning the foundation of this spiritual building; it can have no other foundation than Jesus Christ: there cannot be two opinions on this subject among the true apostles of our Lord. The only fear is, lest an improper use should be made of this heavenly doctrine; lest a bad superstructure should be raised on this foundation.
1 Corinthians 3:12 If any one build gold, silver, costly stones - Three sorts of materials which will bear the fire; true and solid doctrines. Wood, hay, stubble - Three which will not bear the fire. Such are all doctrines, ceremonies, and forms of human invention; all but the substantial, vital truths of Christianity.
1 Corinthians 3:14 He shall receive a reward - A peculiar degree of glory. Some degree even the other will receive, seeing he held the foundation; though through ignorance he built thereon what would not abide the fire.
1 Corinthians 3:15 He shall suffer loss - The loss of that peculiar degree of glory.
***1 Corinthians 3:16 Ye are the temple of God - The apostle resumes here what he had asserted in 1Co_3:9 : Ye are God’s building. As the whole congregation of Israel were formerly considered as the temple and habitation of God, because God dwelt among them, so here the whole Church of Corinth is called the temple of God, because all genuine believers have the Spirit of God to dwell in them; and Christ has promised to be always in the midst even of two or three who are gathered together in his name. Therefore where God is, there is his temple.
1 Corinthians 3:17 If any man destroy the temple of God - Destroy a real Christian, by schisms, or doctrines fundamentally wrong. Him shall God destroy - He shall not be saved at all; not even as through the fire."
1 Corinthians 3:18 Let him become a fool in this world - Such as the world accounts so. That he may become wise - In God's account.
1 Corinthians 3:19 For all the boasted wisdom of the world is mere foolishness in the sight of God. He taketh the wise in their own craftiness - Not only while they think they are acting wisely, but by their very wisdom, which itself is their snare, and the occasion of their destruction. Job_5:13.
***1 Corinthians 3:20 The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise - They are always full of schemes and plans for earthly good; and God knows that all this is vain, empty, and unsatisfactory; and will stand them in no stead when he comes to take away their souls. This is a quotation from Psa_94:11. What is here said of the vanity of human knowledge is true of every kind of wisdom that leads not immediately to God himself.
***1 Corinthians 3:21 Let no man glory in men - Let none suppose that he has any cause of exultation in any thing but God. All are yours; he that has God for his portion has every thing that can make him happy and glorious: all are his.
1 Corinthians 3:23 And ye are Christ's - His property, his subjects. his members. And Christ is God's - As Mediator, he refers all his services to his Father's glory.

* Gills Commentaries    ** Barnes Commentaries    *** Clarke’s Commentaries    
All others by Wesley