Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

The early church in Corinth often is described as a troubled church. We see this in Paul’s letters, in which he dealt with many foundational issues such as the unity of the Body, the Lord’s Supper, marriage, the resurrection, and spiritual gifts.

But Paul also commended them for one key attribute: They were “zealous.” These were people who burned with zeal. In particular, they were passionate about their faith and the things of the Lord. And they were “eager to have the special abilities the Spirit gives” (NLT).

We can imagine the questions the Corinthian believers must have asked Paul. Among these men and women, there may have been abuses or mistakes. Yet they still desired to go deeper in the Lord. To know more.

This reference to zeal took place in the midst of Paul’s teaching about spiritual gifts. This suggests that they hungered to experience more of these gifts. To understand more about how to flow in the Spirit.

They wanted to do things right and were eager to defend the Gospel against all who would attack. They just needed clarification, correction, and greater understanding. And they needed to remember to seek to “strengthen the whole church” (NLT).

Zeal also was a characteristic of Jesus and His ministry. When His disciples reflected on His life, they remembered that it had been written that “zeal for Your house will consume me” (John 2:17).

This is the kind of zeal that we should have. For God. For His Word. For the Gospel. We, too, should be zealous for the things of the Lord. We should always seek greater understanding of spiritual truths, always crave deeper things of the Spirit, always want the gifts that God has made available to us, and always seek first His Kingdom.