Useful Bible Studies > 1 Corinthians Commentary > chapter 4

How Christians should behave when other people are cruel to them

1 Corinthians 4:12-13

The Ďweí in this passage means the apostles (the first Christian leaders). Paul seems to refer to himself especially at the start of 1 Corinthians 4:12 (see 1 Thessalonians 2:9).

However, it is clear that Paul does not only intend these words for himself and the other apostles. Soon, Paul will tell the Christians in Corinth to imitate his behaviour (4:16).

So, this is how all Christians should behave. They are Godís people. They should always do what is right, good and proper in this evil world. They should show love and kindness to their enemies. Paulís words here are much like Jesusí words in Matthew 5:43-45 and Luke 6:27-28.

People may use cruel and bitter words to insult Christians. But a Christian should not reply in the same manner. Instead, a Christianís words should be full of goodness, even in that difficult situation. Christians pray for their enemies.

People may act in a cruel manner towards Christians. And perhaps they may continue to act in that manner for a long time. But even when that happens, a Christian should not allow his relationship with God to become weak. In fact, that Christian should trust God even more strongly because of those troubles.

Evil people deal with Christians as if the life of a Christian has no value. These people care about rubbish more than they care about Christians! But as those people try to fill the world with their evil deeds, Godís people still serve him loyally. By their own good actions, Christians constantly remind other people that God is good.

Next part: Paulís love for the Christians in Corinth (1 Corinthians 4:14-15)

 

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© 2014, Keith Simons.