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Passage: 1 Corinthians 16:1-4

1 Corinthians 16:1-4 – Providing for the Poor in Jerusalem

Summary

Paul advises the Corinthians to set aside money each week so that they can contribute substantially to a collection that his Gentile churches are taking up for the mostly Jewish church in Jerusalem.

Analysis

In Romans, Paul writes that he hopes to visit Rome, but first he must go to Jerusalem to deliver a monetary gift collected from churches in Macedonia and Achaia. Corinth was in Achaia. Both in 1 Corinthians and in 2 Corinthians, Paul mentions the collection and asks his readers to participate generously. In the Corinthian correspondence, he does not say why he is taking up such a collection. In Romans, however, he writes that the gift is for "the poor among the saints in Jerusalem" (Romans 15:26). He explains further that it is right for the Jewish Christian Jerusalem church to benefit from the generosity of his Gentile congregations in Asia minor, "for if the Gentiles have come to share in their spiritual blessings, they ought also to be of service to them in material things" (Romans 15:27b).