Not everyone trusts in Jesus and begins their Christian life at the same place ethically, cognitively, or spiritually. When God redeemed people in the Greco-Roman city of Corinth in the mid-first century through the ministry of the Apostle Paul, there were people in two categories. Devout Jews who had come to Christ there had prior knowledge of the One true God and their lives were, at least outwardly, representative of His morality. For them, trusting in Jesus was more of an inner transformation of mind and heart. For most other people in Corinth who believed and practiced Roman polytheism and morality, coming to believe in Jesus resulted in a thorough inner and outer makeover. Almost everything they believed and did would change as they grew in their fidelity to Christ.
Combining these two groups, ex-Jews and ex-pagans, into the new Christian fellowship at Corinth prompted fierce disagreements and relational conflict. Virtually every aspect of life had the potential to cause quarrels and division among them. Yet this situation benefitted all believers throughout history as it moved the Holy Spirit to write long letters of encouragement and instruction through the Apostle Paul which have helped God’s people know how to live and please Him. The conflicts in ancient Corinth are now a great blessing to us!