“Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live” (1 Corinthians 8:6 NIV)
Corinth was a port city sitting in the path of all traffic for commerce in and out of Greece. It was now held by Rome, but its roots were in Greek polytheism. They worshiped many gods, and commerce was lord too. It was a very hedonistic society notorious for its depravity; a cross between Las Vegas of today and Port Royal of the 17th century. In addition, Corinth had natural seaport facilities and a strategic location that made it a thriving shipping center. Most east-west traffic came to the city either to save time or to avoid a long and dangerous journey around the treacherous waters of southern Greece.
Paul was dealing with many issues in Corinth. Immorality, quarreling, and divorce were a few. But most of all he was dealing with a deeper issue, the issue of truly knowing God and His love for us and others. The church at Corinth came from a culture of many gods to now worshiping the one true God, and this is what Paul writes about here.
I have seen many tigers in my life, some on TV, some in zoos, but all were at some distance which made them seem less. One day I was at a park that had tigers that were used in a show. I was fortunate, because of the way they had the viewing, to stand within inches of one of the massive cats. Mind you these few inches were made of very strong plexiglass, but still standing there just a few inches away I could see the massive size of him. His paws were bigger than my head and his head the size of my body. I felt like if he really wanted to, he could come right through that few inches without difficulty. The majesty and might of the real thing made me tremble in awe and fear. There is no mistaking this was a TIGER not just a tiger. Just as Paul conveyed to the church at Corinth, there is no mistaking the one true GOD for any ordinary god.
One true God from which all life came and because of which we live: "from whom all things came and for whom we live”! God, the life giver cannot compare to a deity carved from stone. Our God the Creator of all and Christ though which all is created, cannot be compared to some domesticated god in a zoo. Maybe this is why Jesus Christ is called the Lion of Judah.
How does our God compare to the gods of the world today?
Does He make you tremble in awe and fear?
Resources: Beacon Bible Commentary, Volume 8: Romans Through 1 and 2 Corinthians (Kindle Locations 5008-5010). Beacon Hill Press. Kindle Edition
Beacon Bible Commentary, Volume 8: Romans Through 1 and 2 Corinthians (Kindle Locations 4988-4990). Beacon Hill Press. Kindle Edition.