Heliopolis Seventh-Day Adventist Church
Heliopolis Seventh-Day Adventist Church
Cairo, Egypt
Cairo, Egypt

What does 1 Corinthians 16:2 mean?

What is the meaning of 1 Corinthians 16:2? “On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.”

Collections on the first day

This is the only reference to the first day of the week, Sunday, in all of Paul's letters. Reliable Bible scholars generally agree that the original meaning of this statement calls for the Corinthian believers to bring their bookkeeping up to date on the first day of each week and then in their own homes to set aside gifts for charity (the poor in Jerusalem) so that when Paul came to gather the gifts there would be no last-minute disorganized fund-collecting.

Browse: Was the Sabbath nailed to the cross?

Several translations read much as does Wey­mouth's translation of the New Testament: “On the first day of the week let each of you put by and keep any profit he may have made, so that there may be no collections made after I have come” (1 Corinthians 16:2).

No mention of Sunday worship

Paul wrote this letter about A.D. 59, yet this text at­tributes no sacredness to the first day, Sunday. The first-day is not called the Lord's day or the Sabbath. There was no law for observing the first day. Paul said nothing here about abstaining from work on Sunday, and He says nothing of the Lord's Supper. There was no mention of church, sacred service, custom, neither collection box nor plate.

The apostle Paul was collecting for the relief of the persecuted Christians at Jerusalem and his plea was that when church members reckoned up their week's profits on the first day (Sunday), they should systematically put aside such dona­tions as they desired to send to their afflicted brethren in Jerusalem.

Sunday, Wednesday or Saturday?

Honestly, would we use this text to support the keeping of Wednesday if it had read, "On the fourth day of the week"? Surely we would not. We must admit that the Bible never so much as hints at Sunday sacred­ness, nor does it command the observance of any day in commemoration of the resurrection of our Lord.

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