The Carnal Church
Poor Paul. He was so discouraged. At Philippi he had a promising beginning smashed by the opposition of fanatical Jews. The same thing had happened at Thessalonica and at Beroea. In Athens he had little success. Small wonder that when he came to busy, proud, intellectual Corinth, he came "in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.(Cor. 2:3) And his preaching did not prove acceptable to the Jews at Corinth either. Paul went to preach Jesus in the synagogue and they threw him out. He might would have abandoned the city entirely, and gone on to Ephesus except for a special revelation of encouragement from the Lord. In Acts 18 we are told that after Paul was turned away from the synagogue, "he entered a certain man's house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue."
This must have been a tremendously humiliating experience for the apostle Paul, to be cast out as it were from, from the church, thrown out of the synagogue, and rejected by organized religion. He is now compelled to hold meetings in a house. Next door to the synagogue. Undoubtedly his enemies took this as a sign of defeat, and it greatly troubled Paul. The record seems to suggest that this greatly discouraged him, and he was ready to give up in Corinth, for verse 9 in Acts 19 says, " Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace. For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have many people in this city. And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them."
It is interesting to note how, when Paul is rejected by the religionists in the synagogue and compelled to hold meetings in a private home, that it is only then that the Lord appears to Paul in revelation. It reminds us of the blind man in John 9, who also was cast out of the synagogue, and then Jesus found him. This experience has been ...
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