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1 Corinthians 16:18

ESV for they refreshed my spirit as well as yours. Give recognition to such people.
NIV For they refreshed my spirit and yours also. Such men deserve recognition.
NASB For they have refreshed my spirit and yours. Therefore acknowledge such men.
CSB For they have refreshed my spirit and yours. Therefore recognize such people.
NLT They have been a wonderful encouragement to me, as they have been to you. You must show your appreciation to all who serve so well.
KJV For they have refreshed my spirit and yours: therefore acknowledge ye them that are such.

What does 1 Corinthians 16:18 mean?

Coming to the end of his letter, Paul has been praising Stephanas and his household to the rest of the Christians in Corinth. Stephanas and two other men, perhaps servants from his household, came to visit Paul in Ephesus. Most likely, these men brought the letter Paul has been responding to in this epistle (1 Corinthians 7:1). He may have sent what we now know as 1 Corinthians back with these three men.

In the previous verse, Paul wrote that their arrival has made up for the absence of the Corinthians. By this, he seems to have meant that he has been missing his friends in Corinth and these men helped him feel better about that. Now he adds that they refreshed his spirit. They have truly been encouraging to him.

Paul has urged the Corinthians in verse 16 to put themselves under the authority of servant-leaders such as Stephanas and now he commands them to give recognition to such people. Clearly, Paul cared deeply for Stephanas. It's also possible that Stephanas represented those among the Corinthians on the correct right side of the doctrines Paul had written about in this letter. If so, Paul may be telling the others to side with Stephanas on those issues.
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