1 Corinthians 6:1-11
- Christians should not take their grievances against one another to the public courts
- Instead, someone inside the church should judge the matter
- Paul says a day will come when Christians will be the judges of the world
- Because of this we should be qualified to judge small matters in the church
- He also says that Christians will judge the angels, and because of this we should be able to judge matters in this life
- The law courts of this world e not as qualified as Christians to judge matters in the church
- There should be at least one qualified to judge between Christians without Christians making Christ look bad in a public court of law
- It would be better to be wronged without getting justice than drag the matter before a secular court
- It is wrong that there is even such grievances among Christians
- For those who live like the world will not inherit God’s kingdom
- Christians were once like that but there should be a difference now
- Because of Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit we were washed of our sins, made right before God, and now stand as blameless before Him.
- Just because something is technically legal doesn’t mean it is spiritually appropriate
- Don’t let anything master you, even if it may be in the “grey” area
- We live not to feed our desires but to please the Lord
- God didn’t just raise Jesus from death but us as well
- Our bodies belong to God, so why would we give what is God’s to a prostitute?
- For the scriptures say that when you lay with another you become one flesh with them
- If we follow Jesus we are one with Christ
- So we are to flee immorality because we aren’t just sinning with our bodies but sinning against our very souls which are joined to another’s in sexual immorality
- Don’t you know that God, the Holy Spirit, lives in you just like God lived in the Temple
- Your body isn’t yours any more but belongs to Jesus because He paid for it with the sacrifice of His own body
- Therefore, do what is holy with your body.
Paul is not condemning courts of law (see Rom 13), for the government is instituted by God for our good. But matters between believers must not be exposed before unbelievers, and certainly an unsaved judge lacks the spiritual understanding to deal with spiritual matters. By dragging one another to court, the church members at Corinth were ruining the testimony of the church and disgracing the name of the Lord.
How should Christians settle personal differences? They must first have the right spiritual values. How trivial these personal disputes become when compared to the great eternal matters we will decide in glory! The church is going to judge the world and the angels! This realization makes worldly disputes rather insignificant. Too many Christians have warped values; the things of this world (especially money) are more important to them than the glory and praise of God.
Matters between Christians should be settled quietly according to the principles of Matt 18:15-17 and 1 Cor 6:5. If the two parties cannot reach an agreement, then they should invite some spiritual believers to meet with them and help decide. If the matter becomes known to the church (or outside the church), the members should appoint a group to examine the matter and give spiritual counsel.
Paul stressed that there is no kind of sin that cannot be forgiven. When the Corinthians received Jesus Christ, they were washed. This refers to a cleansing process that had washed away their sins through the blood of Jesus. They were sanctified, meaning that they had been set apart by God. And they were justified, meaning that God had declared that these believers were righteous and just in his sight. Believers are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. The "name" refers to the character and nature of the One who justifies — he was perfect and sinless. Because Jesus took their punishment, sinners are able to come to God.
While Christ has taken away sin, this does not mean that everything is beneficial and that believers can do what they know is wrong. The New Testament specifically forbids many sins (see 6:9-10) that were originally prohibited in the Old Testament (see Rom 12:9-21; 13:8-10); however, not every possible sin is recorded. While some actions may not be specifically forbidden in Scripture, believers should know that these actions and their results would not be beneficial to themselves or to the church. Believers should be using their Christian freedom to share the gospel and show love for others instead of looking for ways to gratify themselves.
Some actions are not sinful in themselves, but they are not appropriate because they can control believers' lives and lead them away from God. Believers should not do these actions because they do not want to be mastered by anything.
Freedom is a mark of the Christian faith — freedom from sin and guilt, and freedom to use and enjoy all things that come from God. But Christians should not abuse this freedom and hurt themselves or others. Drinking too much leads to alcoholism, gluttony leads to obesity. But we can also be mastered (enslaved or empowered) by money, sports, television, or any one thing that controls our life or robs our devotion to Christ or service to others. Many people have misinterpreted the phrase today to mean, "I will not be mastered by any rule of ethics, law, or Bible principle," rather than, "I will not be mastered by any besetting sin." Christians who have been in the church for many years can easily excuse sins such as gossip, bitterness, an unforgiving spirit, lust, or withholding money from God's work. We must be on alert for those desires that can master us. What God has allowed his children to enjoy must not grow into a bad habit that controls them.
Much of this application was taken from the Life Application Commentary Series
God forgive me for defaming you when I attack other Christians before a world that doesn’t know You. Help me put Your kingdom and ways above my own. Also forgive me for playing the game of “how much can I get away with before it is really sin.” I know that Christ paid a heavy price to redeem me, and all I am I owe to Him. By the power of the Holy Spirit within me, guide me to Your ways rather than feeding the desires of my flesh. In Jesus name I pray, AMEN.
Posted on Tue, September 19, 2017
by joel king