New Testament 2023
August 21–27. 1 Corinthians 1–7: “Be Perfectly Joined Together”

“August 21–27. 1 Corinthians 1–7: ‘Be Perfectly Joined Together,’” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: New Testament 2023 (2022)

“August 21–27. 1 Corinthians 1–7,” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: 2023

ancient Corinth

Corinth, Southern Greece, the Forum and Civic Center, painting by Balage Balogh/

August 21–27

1 Corinthians 1–7

“Be Perfectly Joined Together”

Record your impressions while you read 1 Corinthians 1–7. These impressions may include promptings to study an idea further, to share with others something you learn, or to make changes in your life.

Record Your Impressions

During the months that Paul spent in Corinth, “many of the Corinthians hearing [him] believed, and were baptized” (Acts 18:8). So it must have been heartbreaking for Paul to hear, just a few years later, that there were “divisions” and “contentions” among the Corinthian Saints and that in his absence they began to heed the “wisdom of this world” (1 Corinthians 1:10–11, 20). In response, Paul wrote the letter we now call 1 Corinthians. It is full of profound doctrine, and yet at the same time, Paul seemed disappointed that the Saints were not ready to receive all the doctrine he wanted to give them. “I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual,” he lamented, “for ye are yet carnal” (1 Corinthians 3:1–3). As we prepare to read Paul’s words, it might be helpful to examine our own readiness to receive truth—including our willingness to heed the Spirit and strive for unity within our families, with our fellow Saints, and with God.

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Ideas for Personal Scripture Study

1 Corinthians 1:10–17; 3:1–11

The members of Christ’s Church strive to be united.

We don’t know all the details about the lack of unity among the Corinthian Saints, but we do know about lack of unity in our own relationships. Think of a relationship in your life that could benefit from more unity; then look for what Paul taught in 1 Corinthians 1:10–17; 3:1–11 about lack of unity among the Corinthian Saints. What insights can you gain about how to develop greater unity with others?

See also Mosiah 18:21; 4 Nephi 1:15–17; Doctrine and Covenants 38:23–27; 105:1–5; Gospel Topics, “Unity,”

1 Corinthians 1:17–312

To accomplish God’s work, I need the wisdom of God.

While it’s good—even encouraged—to seek wisdom wherever we can find it (see 2 Nephi 9:29; Doctrine and Covenants 88:118), Paul gave some strongly worded warnings about flawed human wisdom, which he called “the wisdom of this world.” As you read 1 Corinthians 1:17–25, ponder what this phrase might mean. What do you think Paul meant by the “wisdom of God”? Why do we need God’s wisdom to accomplish God’s work?

In your efforts to fulfill your responsibilities in accomplishing God’s work, have you ever experienced the “fear, and … much trembling” that Paul felt when he taught the Corinthian Saints? (1 Corinthians 2:3). What do you find in 1 Corinthians 2:1–5 that gives you courage? Consider how you can show that you trust the “power of God” more than “the wisdom of men.”

See also Doctrine and Covenants 1:17–28.

1 Corinthians 2:9–16

I need the Holy Ghost in order to understand the things of God.

If you wanted to learn more about something like automotive mechanics or medieval architecture, how would you do it? According to 1 Corinthians 2:9–16, how is learning “the things of God” different from learning the “things of a man”? Why must we have the Holy Ghost in order to understand the things of God? After reading these verses, what do you feel you should do to understand spiritual things more fully? How could Paul’s words help someone who is struggling with his or her testimony?

1 Corinthians 6:13–20

My body is sacred.

Most people in Corinth felt that sexual immorality was acceptable and that their bodies were made primarily for pleasure. In other words, Corinth was not that different from the world today. What did Paul teach in 1 Corinthians 6:13–20 that could help you explain to others why you want to live a chaste life?

Like Paul, Sister Wendy W. Nelson encouraged Saints to be chaste; see her message “Love and Marriage” (worldwide devotional for young adults, Jan. 8, 2017, According to Sister Nelson, what blessings come from living the Lord’s standards concerning love and intimacy?

1 Corinthians 7:29–33

Did Paul teach that it is better to be unmarried than married?

Several verses in 1 Corinthians 7 seem to suggest that while marriage is acceptable, remaining single and abstaining completely from sexual relations is preferred. However, Joseph Smith Translation, 1 Corinthians 7:29–33 (in the Bible appendix) helps us understand that Paul was referring to those called to be full-time missionaries, observing that they were able to serve God better if they remained single during their missions. The Lord has taught through His servants, including Paul, that marriage is part of His eternal plan and necessary for exaltation (see 1 Corinthians 11:11; Doctrine and Covenants 131:1–4).

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Ideas for Family Scripture Study and Home Evening

1 Corinthians 1:10–17; 3:1–11.As your family members read these verses, invite them to find an insight that can help them be more unified.

1 Corinthians 3:1–2.Maybe you could read these verses while eating milk and meat. You could compare the way babies grow into adults with the way we grow spiritually.

1 Corinthians 3:4–9.Paul compared his missionary efforts to planting seeds. What does his comparison teach us about sharing the gospel?

1 Corinthians 6:19–20.Comparing our bodies to temples, as Paul did, can be an effective way to teach about the sacredness of our bodies. Perhaps you could show pictures of temples, such as those that accompany this outline. Why are temples sacred? How are our bodies like temples? What can we do to treat our bodies like temples? (See also the August 2020 special edition of the Ensign or Liahona about sexuality.)

For more ideas for teaching children, see this week’s outline in Come, Follow Me—For Primary.

Suggested song: “The Lord Gave Me a Temple,” Children’s Songbook, 153.

Improving Personal Study

Be patient with yourself. Paul taught that milk comes before meat when we are learning the gospel (see 1 Corinthians 3:1–2). If you find that some doctrines are difficult to understand now, be patient. Trust that answers will come as you have faith and diligently study.

four temples

Paul compared our bodies to the sacredness of the temple. Clockwise from upper left: Curitiba Brazil Temple, Mexico City Mexico Temple, Tokyo Japan Temple, Accra Ghana Temple.