Summary: Paul’s instructions to the church at Corinth are relevant to the promiscuous church of our day that allows all sorts of spiritual & sensual fornication without condemning it.
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Pastor James May
FORNICATION IN THE CHURCH
1 Corinthians 5:9-13, "I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner: with such a one no not to eat. For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? Do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person."
Paul knew the weaknesses of men and women and their capacity to fall quickly back into sin after having been saved and becoming members of the church. The world, then and now, has such powerful drawing and deceiving forces that it will draw aside even the strongest Christian who begins to gaze upon the world to follow the desires of his own heart.
It seems that the Corinthian church had become infested with those who were involved in committing fornication. This fornication was not just one of fleshly lust and desire for sensual gratification; it went far deeper than that. Every facet of life carries with it the potential for being unfaithful to our commitment to Christ.
When we make a decision to follow Christ as one of His disciples, we promise to keep ourselves to Him only. Just as the marriage vows of a couple who are getting married contain promises and vows one to another of a lifetime of devotion, love, and faithfulness in every circumstance until death do them part; the commitment we make to Jesus is a life-long commitment to remain faithful and true to Him. We become a part of the body of Christ and one with Him.
Jesus used the analogy of marriage to explain his relationship to the church in Ephesians 5:25, 30-32, when He said, "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; …For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church."