Re:Verse reading–1 Corinthians 15 (day seven)
“the gospel. . .by which you are saved, if you hold fast. . .unless you believed in vain.”–v 1-2.
Paul is concerned. The Corinthian church is a mess. Early on, they made a great start in faith, but stumbled badly soon after. He is concerned that they “believed in vain.”
The word means empty. Empty of power. Of value. It describes the dangerous possibility of a person “believing” the gospel, but at such a superficial level that it does not save or rescue or transform.
What are the danger signals? Denial of doctrine (see this whole discussion in chapter 15). Unrepentant immoral behavior (see chapter 6) Strife, lack of love (see chapter 11 and 13).
Notice how Paul returns to this subject in v 58? “Your toil is NOT in VAIN”. The proof of true faith is perseverance. Steady. Immovable. Abounding in the work of the Lord. Paul wanted this for the people of Corinth. The Lord wants it for us.