The First Epistle to the Corinthians

The First Epistle to the Corinthians

The First Epistle to the Corinthians

The First Epistle to the Corinthians


This landmark commentary, originally published in 1987, has been lauded as the best study available of Paul's theologically rich first letter to the Corinthians. Writing primarily for pastors, teachers, and students, Gordon Fee offers a readable exposition of 1 Corinthians that clearly describes the meaning of Paul's ideas and their larger theological relevance.

Fee's revised edition is based on the improved, updated (2011) edition of the NIV, and it takes into account the considerable scholarship on 1 Corinthians over the past twenty-five years. Fee has also eliminated "chapter and verse" language -- totally foreign to Paul's first-century letter -- relegating the necessary numbers for "finding things" to parentheses.


As Acts tells the story, the Lord choreographed an encounter between Philip and an Ethiopian eunuch on the road from Jerusalem to Gaza. This Ethiopian had a copy of at least some of the Scriptures and was reading from the prophet Isaiah. Hearing him read, Philip inquired, “Are you really grasping the significance of what you are reading?” the Ethiopian responded, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” the result is that Philip shared the good news about Jesus with him and the Ethiopian was baptized as a new Christ-follower (Acts 8:26-40).

It is difficult to imagine a more pressing mandate for the work of a commentary than this: to come alongside readers of Scripture in order to lead them so that they can grasp the significance of what they read — and to do so in ways that are not only informative but transformative. This has been and remains the aim of the New International Commentary on the New Testament. the interpretive work on display in this volume — and, indeed, in this commentary series — can find no better raison d’être and serve no better ambition.

What distinguishes such a commentary?

First and foremost, we are concerned with the text of Scripture. This does not mean that we are not concerned with the history of scholarship and scholarly debate. It means, rather, that we strive to provide a commentary on the text and not on the scholarly debate. It means that the centerpiece of our work is a readable guide for readers of these texts, with references to critical issues and literature, and interaction with them, all found in our plentiful footnotes. Nor does it mean that we eschew certain critical methods or require that each contributor follow a certain approach. Rather, we take up whatever methods and pursue whatever approaches assist our work of making plain the significance of these texts.

Second, we self-consciously locate ourselves as Christ-followers who read Scripture in the service of the church and its mission in the world. Read-

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