Every good letter eventually has to come to an end. Here in chapter 16, Paul covers three major things:
First, Paul addresses what needs to happen regarding a relief offering that is being collected for the believers in Jerusalem. To me, this shows how important generosity is to the successful functioning of the church. If a body of believers isn’t generous, I honestly question whether Christ is among them because giving is so close to his heart.
Second, Paul speaks of a future visit to the Corinthian church. He also speaks to the possibility of other preachers / teachers coming to visit them. I think this type of intentional, missional travel is important to the successful functioning of the church as well. I’m not saying everyone needs to go on a mission trip(s), but I am saying visiting other churches, potentially in other cities and states, and seeing the larger body of Christ–outside your denomination–is important. Of course, if it’s possible to do international travel to visit churches or believers in other countries, that’s awesome too. You’ll learn a ton any time you get outside of your normal group.
Lastly, Paul gives encouragements and greetings. He greets quite a few groups and expresses his appreciation for those people. Showing gratitude for others is so important to the successful functioning of the church. We exist in community. As for the encouragements Paul gives, they are many. But I want to leave you with this specific one, which reads:
Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got, be resolute, and love without stopping.
I’m going to work on living this out, as I take a short pivot away from this blog to work on a book project. The project is a devotional of sorts. A commentary with humor. Perhaps, the first of its kind. Excited to see what you think!