Scandal: Sexual Immorality 6-24

1 Corinthians 5:1-8

Before we get started today we need to take a look at the difference between the ceremonial laws & moral laws God had, and has, for His people. In other words, which of the Old Testament/old covenant laws apply to us today and which do not?

In 1 Corinthians 9:21 there is a distinction made between the Jewish Law and the Law of Christ, the Law of Christ must include the command to love our neighbor and our enemies, “You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:43-45). And we are to stay away from idolatry, “what agreement does the temple of God have with idols? For we are the temple of the living God, as God said: I will dwell and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people” (2 Corinthians 6:16). 

Yet under the new covenant there is no circumcision and we are not under obligation to the laws about food. In the letter written from the apostles and elders to the Gentile believers, “For it was the Holy Spirit’s decision ​— ​and ours ​— ​not to place further burdens on you beyond these requirements: that you abstain from food offered to idols, from blood, from eating anything that has been strangled, and from sexual immorality. You will do well if you keep yourselves from these things” (Acts 15:28-29).

Vs. 1 – A man sleeping with His father’s wife – This is a sin, a moral sin. I highly suggest that you read it for yourself, and that you also read a few translations to really get the idea of how much God is against sexual immorality and that these laws still apply to His people today. 

It is Leviticus 18:8 that has Paul concerned with this person uncovering the nakedness of his father’s wife – step mother, sleeping with her, having relations… okay let’s be blunt; this person is involved in sexual immorality; in sin. The original word used for sexual immorality is porneia, the KJ translates it fortification – outside of marriage… 

What we know is that this was His father’s wife, according to what I can find out, most likely his step mother. And we can assume that his father was deceased as it is hard to imagine that he was still alive. Now, according to this the overall attitude of the congregation: pride or arrogance in what was going on. I am sure that had to puzzle Paul, because he even states that this sin was not tolerated among the Gentiles, unbelievers, those not a part of God’s Church, those outside the Israel of God. See Galatians 6:14-16

God’s word has a lot to say about pride and arrogance, Pride comes before destruction, and an arrogant spirit before a fall,” “the arrogant and proud person, named “Mocker,” acts with excessive arrogance” (Proverbs 16:18, Proverbs 21:24). And in James 4:6 we read that, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Any person that is arrogant, self-righteous, and always right in their own eyes should really stop to hear what is being said in that last verse! God is in opposition to you, He is against your attitude, your actions…

If a congregation is being arrogant or prideful would God be in opposition to them as well? Yes! 

Arrogance in any of us is not to be tolerated and should be called out especially when it comes to sexual immorality 

This person (actually it would have been people), whoever they were, were practicing sin and either assuming that God’s forgiveness covered this or, since they were not under the law, that their sinning was covered by grace.

Either way, they are being confronted, and again, I want to point out that all that is being said and done here is done out of love… done for their eternal souls. The leaven of wickedness and sin must be removed, arrogance had to go. Jesus died for you to walk in the light, don’t boast in the wickedness and deeds done in darkness.  

Digging Deeper

  • Do the sexually immoral have a place in the Kingdom of God? 
  • Do you believe that those living immorality should be disciplined by the Church?
  • How should you treat those that have repented and turned from their sin and back to God and His Church?

Further reading:

Leviticus 18, Matthew 5:28, 1 Corinthians 6:18, Galatians 5:19, Ephesians 5:3-5, Colossians 3:1-17 (5), 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5, Hebrews 13:4, Revelation 21:8


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