2 Corinthians 1:1
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, To the church of God in Corinth, together with all the saints throughout Achaia:
An Apostle by the Will of GodJ.R. Thomson 2 Corinthians 1:1
By the WillR. Tuck 2 Corinthians 1:1
SaintsE. Hurndall 2 Corinthians 1:1
Paul to the CorinthiansA. Maclaren, D. D.2 Corinthians 1:1-2
SainthoodR. Sibbes, D. D.2 Corinthians 1:1-2
SalutationC. Lipscomb 2 Corinthians 1:1, 2
The Church Which is At CorinthAnthony Burgess.2 Corinthians 1:1-2
The Will of GodHomilist2 Corinthians 1:1-2

It is a greeting from Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus, and from "'Timothy our brother," instead of Sosthenes, as in the First Epistle. It is to the Church of God at Corinth, with all the saints in the whole of Achaia, all connected in the province with the central Church at Corinth. "Beginning at Jerusalem" - the holy city was to be the starting point. Antioch, Caesarea, Thessalonica, Corinth, Ephesus, Rome, were to be early reached by the gospel. Community centres were to become Church centres, so that the social idea of Christianity should have prompt and impressive development. As usual with St. Paul, "Grace be to you and peace," opening and closing with the word so comprehensive, so precious, "grace." - L.

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God.
Note —


1. He does not always bring his apostolical authority to mind at the beginning of his letters. In the loving letter to the Philippians he has no need to urge his authority. In Philemon friendship is uppermost.

2. "By the will of God" is at once an assertion of Divine authority, a declaration of independence, and a lowly disclaimer of individual merit. The weight he expected to be attached to his words was to be due entirely to their Divine origin. Never mind the cracked pipe through which the Divine breath makes music, but listen to the music.

II. THE IDEAL OF CHRISTIAN CHARACTER HERE SET FORTH. "Saints" — a word that has been woefully misapplied. The Church has given it as a special honour to a few, and decorated with it mainly the possessors of a false ideal of sanctity. The world uses it with a sarcastic intonation, as if it implied loud professions and small performances.

1. Saints are not people living in cloisters, but men and women immersed in the vulgar work of everyday life. The root idea of the word is not moral purity, but separation to God. Consecration to Him is the root from which the white flower of purity springs. We cannot purify ourselves, but we can yield ourselves to God, and the purity will come.

2. To thus devote ourselves is our solemn obligation, and unless we do we are not Christians. The true consecration is the surrender of the will, and its one motive is drawn from the love and devotion of Christ to us. All consecration rests on the faith of Christ's sacrifice.

3. And if, drawn by the great love of Christ, we give ourselves away to God in Him, then He gives Himself to us.


1. "Grace and peace" blend the Western and Eastern forms of salutation, and surpass both. All that the Greek meant by his "Grace," and all that the Hebrew meant by his "Peace" — the ideally happy condition which differing nations have placed in different blessings, and which all loving words have vainly wished for dear ones — is secured and conveyed to every poor soul who trusts in Christ.

2. Grace means —(1) Love in exercise to those who are below the lover or who deserve something else.(2) The gifts which such love bestows.(3) The effects of those gifts in the beauties of character and conduct developed in the receivers. So here are invoked the love and gentleness of the Father; and next the outcome of that love, which never visits the soul empty handed, in all varied spiritual gifts; and, as a last result, every beauty of heart, mind, and temper which can adorn the character and refine a man into the likeness of God.

3. Peace comes after grace. For tranquillity of soul we must go to God, and He gives it by giving us His love and its gifts. There must be first peace with God that there may be peace from God. Then, when we have been won from our alienation and enmity by the power of the Cross, and have learned to know that God is our Lover, Friend, and Father, we shall possess the peace of those whose hearts have found their home; the peace of spirits no longer at war within — conscience and choice tearing them asunder in their strife; the peace of obedience, which banishes the disturbance of self-will; the peace of security shaken by no fears; the peace of a sure future across the brightness of which no shadows of sorrow nor mists of uncertainty can fall; the peace of a heart in amity with all mankind. So, living in peace, we shall lay ourselves down and die in peace, and enter "that country afar beyond the stars" where "grows the flower of peace."

(A. Maclaren, D. D.)

I. THE SUPREME LAW. "By the will of God."

1. God has a will. He is, therefore, an intelligent, free personality. His will explains the origin, sustenance, and order of the universe; His will is the force of all forces, and law of all laws.

2. God has a will in relation to individual men. He has a purpose in relation to every man's existence, mission, and conduct. His will in relation to moral beings is the standard of all conduct and the rule of all destiny. Love is its mainspring.


1. The apostolic spirit involves subjection to Christ. "An apostle of Jesus Christ." Christ is the moral Master, he the loyal servant.

2. The apostolic spirit is that of special love for the good. He calls Timothy his "brother," and towards "the Church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia," he glows with loving sympathy. Love for souls, deep, tender, overflowing, is the essential qualification for the ministry.


1. Here is the highest good. "Grace and peace."

2. Here is the highest good from the highest source. "From our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ."


Unto the Church of God which is at Corinth
Corinth is notable for its learning, wealth, and lasciviousness.

I. THAT EVEN AMONGST THE MOST PROFANE AND UNLIKELIEST PEOPLE GOD MAY SOMETIMES GATHER A CHURCH TO HIMSELF. The reason why God may build His house of such crooked timber, and make His temple of such rough stones, may be to show the freeness of His grace and the efficacy of it.

II. THAT A CHURCH MAY BE A TRUE CHURCH ALTHOUGH IT BE DEFILED WITH MANY CORRUPTIONS. As a godly man may be truly godly and yet subject to many failings, so a Church yet not perfect. This truth is worthy of note, because many, out of a tenderness and misguided zeal, may separate from a Church because of this; but a particular Christian is not to excommunicate a Church till God hath given a bill of divorce to it.

1. The soundness and purity of Churches admits of degrees. As one star doth excel another in glory, yet both are stars, so one Church may greatly transcend another in orthodoxy and purity, and yet both be Churches.

2. When we speak of a Church being God's true Church, though greatly corrupted, we must take heed of two extremes —(1) That of those who would have no reformation, though there be never so many disorders, but say, "It is prudence to let all things be." The apostle doth far otherwise to this Church; though he calls it the Church of God, yet his Epistle is full of sharp reproof. He is very zealous that they become a new lump — that they be made, as it were, a new Church. God takes notice, and is very angry with all these disorders and great neglect.(2) That of those who, because of the corruptions that are in a Church, are so far transported with misguided zeal as to take no notice of the truth of a Church. Some are apt so to attend to a true Church that they never matter the corruptions of it. Others, again, so eye the corruptions that they never regard the truth of it; but it is good to avoid both these extremes.

3. Though that Church be a true Church where we live, yet, if many corruptions do abound therein, we must take heed that we do not pollute ourselves thereby, or become partakers of any sin indulged amongst them.

(Anthony Burgess.)

With all the saints
To the constitution of a true saint there is —

I.A SEPARATION. Not locally, but in regard of intimate friendship.



IV.A NEW CONVERSATION. The Christian carries himself even like to Him that "hath called him out of darkness into marvellous light."

(R. Sibbes, D. D.)

Corinthians, Paul, Silas, Silvanus, Timotheus, Timothy
Achaia, Asia, Corinth, Judea, Macedonia
Achaia, Acha'ia, Apostle, Assembly, Brother, Christ, Church, Corinth, God's, Greece, Paul, Purpose, Saints, Throughout, Timotheus, Timothy
1. Paul salutes the Corinthians;
3. he encourages them against troubles,
5. by the comforts and deliverances which God had given him,
8. so particularly in his late danger in Asia.
12. And calling both his own conscience and theirs,
15. he excuses his not coming to them, as proceeding not of lightness,
23. but of his care for them.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
2 Corinthians 1:1

     1651   numbers, 1-2
     5109   Paul, apostle
     5391   letters
     5661   brothers
     7120   Christians
     7709   apostles, authority

2 Corinthians 1:1-2

     5328   greeting

June the Eighteenth the Benefitted as Benefactors
"Who comforteth us ... that we may be able to comfort." --2 CORINTHIANS i. 3-7. And how does the Lord comfort us? He has a thousand different ways, and no one can ever tell by what way the comfort will come to his soul. Sometimes it comes by the door of memory, and sometimes by the door of hope. Sometimes it is borne to us through the ministry of nature, and at other times through the ministry of human speech and kindness. But always, I think, it brings us the sense of a Presence, as though we
John Henry Jowett—My Daily Meditation for the Circling Year

Corinthians. God's Yea; Man's Amen
'For how many soever be the promises of God, in Him is the yea: wherefore also through Him is the Amen.'--2 COR. i. 20 (R.V.). This is one of the many passages the force and beauty of which are, for the first time, brought within the reach of an English reader by the alterations in the Revised Version. These are partly dependent upon the reading of the text and partly upon the translation. As the words stand in the Authorised Version, 'yea' and 'amen' seem to be very nearly synonymous expressions,
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

Anointed and Stablished
'Now He which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God.'--2 COR. i. 21. The connection in which these words occur is a remarkable illustration of the Apostle's habit of looking at the most trivial things in the light of the highest truths. He had been obliged, as the context informs us, to abandon an intended visit to Corinth. The miserable crew of antagonists, who yelped at his heels all his life, seized this change of purpose as the occasion for a double-barrelled charge.
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

Seal and Earnest
'Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.'--2 COR. i. 23. There are three strong metaphors in this and the preceding verse--'anointing,' 'sealing,' and 'giving the earnest'--all of which find their reality in the same divine act. These three metaphors all refer to the same subject, and what that subject is is sufficiently explained in the last of them. The 'earnest' consists of 'the Spirit in our hearts,' and the same explanation might have been appended to both
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

Consolation Proportionate to Spiritual Sufferings
There are four things in my text to which I invite your attention: the first is the sufferings to be expected--"The sufferings of Christ abound in us;" secondly, the distinction to be noticed--they are the sufferings of Christ; thirdly, a proportion to be experienced--as the sufferings of Christ abound, so our consolations abound; and fourthly, the person to be honored--"So our consolation aboundeth by CHRIST." I. Our first division then is, THE SUFFERINGS TO BE EXCPECTED. Our holy Apostle says "The
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 1: 1855

The Tenses
"Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us."--2 Corinthians 1:10. WHEN children are learning their grammar, they have to pay particular attention to the tenses of the verbs; and it is important for Christians also to remember their tenses,--to recollect the past, the present, and the future. Our text brings all three very vividly before us, and reminds us that God hath delivered, doth deliver, and will yet deliver. First, let us think for
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 47: 1901

Eighth Day for the Spirit on all Christian Workers
WHAT TO PRAY.--For the Spirit on all Christian Workers "Ye also helping together on our behalf; that for the gift bestowed upon us by means of many, thanks may be given by many on our behalf."--2 COR. i. 11. What multitudes of workers in connection with our churches and missions, our railways and postmen, our soldiers and sailors, our young men and young women, our fallen men and women, our poor and sick. God be praised for this! What could they accomplish if each were living in the fulness of
Andrew Murray—The Ministry of Intercession

"Now the End of the Commandment," &C.
1 Tim. i. 5.--"Now the end of the commandment," &c. We come now, as was proposed, to observe, Thirdly,(474) That faith unfeigned is the only thing which gives the answer of a good conscience towards God. Conscience, in general, is nothing else but a practical knowledge of the rule a man should walk by, and of himself in reference to that rule. It is the laying down a man's state, and condition, and actions beside the rule of God's word, or the principles of nature's light. It is the chief piece
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Of the Wonderful Power of the Divine Love
I bless Thee, O Heavenly Father, Father of my Lord Jesus Christ, for that Thou hast vouchsafed to think of me, poor that I am. O, Father of Mercies and God of all comfort,(1) I give thanks unto Thee, who refreshest me sometimes with thine own comfort, when I am unworthy of any comfort. I bless and glorify Thee continually, with thine only begotten Son and the Holy Ghost, the Paraclete, for ever and ever. O Lord God, Holy lover of my soul, when Thou shalt come into my heart, all my inward parts
Thomas A Kempis—Imitation of Christ

St. Malachy's Apostolic Labours, Praises and Miracles.
[Sidenote: 1140, October] 42. (23). Malachy embarked in a ship, and after a prosperous voyage landed at his monastery of Bangor,[576] so that his first sons might receive the first benefit.[577] In what state of mind do you suppose they were when they received their father--and such a father--in good health from so long a journey? No wonder if their whole heart gave itself over to joy at his return, when swift rumour soon brought incredible gladness even to the tribes[578] outside round about them.
H. J. Lawlor—St. Bernard of Clairvaux's Life of St. Malachy of Armagh

Seventh Day for the Power of the Holy Spirit on Ministers
WHAT TO PRAY.--For the Power of the Holy Spirit on Ministers "I beseech you that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me."--ROM. xv. 30. "He will deliver us; ye also helping together by your supplication on our behalf."--2 COR. i. 10, 11. What a great host of ministers there are in Christ's Church. What need they have of prayer. What a power they might be, if they were all clothed with the power of the Holy Ghost. Pray definitely for this; long for it. Think of your own minister,
Andrew Murray—The Ministry of Intercession

Twenty-Sixth Day for the Holy Spirit on Young Converts
WHAT TO PRAY.--For the Holy Spirit on Young Converts "Peter and John prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost; for as yet He was fallen upon none of them: only they had been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus."--ACTS viii. 15, 16. "Now He which establisheth us with you in Christ, and anointed us, is God; who also gave us the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts."--2 COR. i. 21, 22. How many new converts who remain feeble; how many who fall into sin; how many who backslide
Andrew Murray—The Ministry of Intercession

Fifteenth Lesson. If Two Agree
If two agree;' Or, The Power of United Prayer Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my Name, there am I in the midst of them.--Matt. xviii. 19, 20. ONE of the first lessons of our Lord in His school of prayer was: Not to be seen of men. Enter thy inner chamber; be alone with the Father. When He has thus taught us that the
Andrew Murray—With Christ in the School of Prayer

PAUL ENTIRELY SANCTIFIED. I might urge a great many other considerations, and as I have said, fill a book with scriptures, and arguments, and demonstrations, of the attainability of entire sanctification in this life. But I forbear, and will present only one more consideration--a consideration which has great weight in some minds. It is a question of great importance, whether any actually ever did attain this state. Some who believe it attainable, do not consider it of much importance to show that
Charles Grandison Finney—Systematic Theology

Epistle Xlv. To Theoctista, Patrician .
To Theoctista, Patrician [153] . Gregory to Theoctista, &c. We ought to give great thanks to Almighty God, that our most pious and most benignant Emperors have near them kinsfolk of their race, whose life and conversation is such as to give us all great joy. Hence too we should continually pray for these our lords, that their life, with that of all who belong to them, may by the protection of heavenly grace be preserved through long and tranquil times. I have to inform you, however, that I have
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

Concerning Baptism.
Concerning Baptism. [967] As there is one Lord, and one faith, so there is one baptism; which is not the putting away the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience before God, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. And this baptism is a pure and spiritual thing, to wit, the baptism of the Spirit and Fire, by which we are buried with him, that being washed and purged from our sins, we may walk in newness of life: of which the baptism of John was a figure, which was commanded for a time,
Robert Barclay—Theses Theologicae and An Apology for the True Christian Divinity

Concerning the Power of the Civil Magistrate in Matters Purely Religious, and Pertaining to the Conscience.
Concerning the Power of the Civil Magistrate in Matters purely Religious, and pertaining to the Conscience. Since God hath assumed to himself the power and Dominion of the Conscience, who alone can rightly instruct and govern it, therefore it is not lawful [1226] for any whosoever, by virtue of any authority or principality they bear in the government of this world, to force the consciences of others; and therefore all killing, banishing, fining, imprisoning, and other such things which are inflicted
Robert Barclay—Theses Theologicae and An Apology for the True Christian Divinity

Vanity of Human Glory.
"The world knoweth us not, because it knew Him not."--1 John iii. 1 Of St. Simon and St. Jude, the Saints whom we this day commemorate, little is known[1]. St. Jude, indeed, still lives in the Church in his Catholic epistle; but of his history we only know that he was brother to St. James the Less, and nearly related to our Lord and that, like St. Peter, he had been a married man. Besides his name of Jude or Judas, he is also called Thaddaeus and Lebbaeus in the Gospels. Of St. Simon we only
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VIII

Christ all and in All.
(Colossians iii. 11.) Christ is all to us that we make Him to be. I want to emphasize that word "all." Some men make Him to be "a root out of a dry ground," "without form or comeliness." He is nothing to them; they do not want Him. Some Christians have a very small Saviour, for they are not willing to receive Him fully, and let Him do great and mighty things for them. Others have a mighty Saviour, because they make Him to be great and mighty. If we would know what Christ wants to be to us, we
Dwight L. Moody—The Way to God and How to Find It

Epistle vii. To Peter, Domitian, and Elpidius.
To Peter, Domitian, and Elpidius. Gregory to Peter, Domitian, and Elpidius, Bishops [1688] . I rejoice exceedingly that you welcomed with great joy the ordination of the most holy Cyriacus, my brother and fellow-priest. And since we have learnt from the preaching of Paul the apostle that If one member rejoice, all the members rejoice with it (1 Cor. xii. 26), you must needs consider with how great exultation I rejoice with you in this thing, wherein not one member, but many members of Christ have
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

Epistle xxxix. To Anastasius, Bishop .
To Anastasius, Bishop [1602] . Gregory to Anastasius, Bishop of Antioch. Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to men of good will (Luke ii. 14), because that great river which once had left the rocks of Antioch dry has returned at length to its proper channel, and waters the subject valleys that are near, so as also to bring forth fruit, some thirty-fold, some sixty-fold, and some an hundred-fold. For now there is no doubt that many flowers of souls are growing up in its valleys, and that
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

Letter xvi to Rainald, Abbot of Foigny
To Rainald, Abbot of Foigny Bernard declares to him how little he loves praise; that the yoke of Christ is light; that he declines the name of father, and is content with that of brother. 1. In the first place, do not wonder if titles of honour affright me, when I feel myself so unworthy of the honours themselves; and if it is fitting that you should give them to me, it is not expedient for me to accept them. For if you think that you ought to observe that saying, In honour preferring one another
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux—Some Letters of Saint Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux

How the Obstinate and the Fickle are to be Admonished.
(Admonition 19.) Differently to be admonished are the obstinate and the fickle. The former are to be told that they think more of themselves than they are, and therefore do not acquiesce in the counsels of others: but the latter are to be given to understand that they undervalue and disregard themselves too much, and so are turned aside from their own judgment in successive moments of time. Those are to be told that, unless they esteemed themselves better than the rest of men, they would by no
Leo the Great—Writings of Leo the Great

Why all Things Work for Good
1. The grand reason why all things work for good, is the near and dear interest which God has in His people. The Lord has made a covenant with them. "They shall be my people, and I will be their God" (Jer. xxxii. 38). By virtue of this compact, all things do, and must work, for good to them. "I am God, even thy God" (Psalm l. 7). This word, Thy God,' is the sweetest word in the Bible, it implies the best relations; and it is impossible there should be these relations between God and His people, and
Thomas Watson—A Divine Cordial

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