by Jerry Vines

I Corinthians 11:2-16
Dr. Jerry Vines
That has to be one of the strangest passages in all of the Bible.
It also has to be one of the most difficult passages to understand in
all of the Bible. I think there are several reasons why this is such a
strange and difficult passage to us. One of the things is that you and
I are living in an altogether different culture from those who are
living in the days of the Apostle Paul. We are two thousand years
removed from the time these verses were written and we are living in a
culture that is totally and completely different. Keep in mind, when
you come to passages like this, that are addressed to specific problems
in those days that Paul is writing in a particular cultural setting and
atmosphere. This passage just dripped with oriental customs. It is
just filled with a far-eastern flavor that is altogether strange and
different from anything you or I know anything about. You also have to
keep in mind that Paul is dealing with a specific church situation in
the Corinthian congregation. He is dealing with a group of people who
have just come out of deep sin. They have come out of paganism, they
are now in the family of God and they do not understand how to conduct
themselves. So, Paul is writing to deal with them. It is a carnal
congregation. They are worldly believers. The church is filled with
all kinds of division and that carnality and division has spilled over
into the worship services. If you should have attended the worship
service in the church of Corinth in the time of Paul you would have
witnessed a very unusual situation. It was totally out of order. There
was no organization to it. There was no sense of cohesiveness to it at
all. It would be like witnessing a three-ring circus. Keep that in
mind when you try to understand this passage. Also, you have to keep in
mind that you and I are living in a day where certain influences have
swayed our thinking. ...

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