Summary: Message 15 in our exposition of Paul's first letter to the Corinthians. This is the second of three messages dealing with perversion in the church
Chico Alliance Church
Pastor David Welch
“Holy God Healthy Church” 1 Corinthians 5:1-13
Opening Address and Introduction 1:1-9
I. Reproof for fleshly behavior 1-6
A. Reproof for a divided church 1-4
B. Reproof for a defiled church 5
In this chapter Paul tackles the churches response to sin within the church.
How should we deal with known sin in the church?
What should the attitude and actions of the church be in the face of sin?
?Paul’s reproof in this chapter unpacks as follows.
• Paul concisely exposed the obvious sin 5:1-2
• Paul clearly explained the godly response 5:3-13
o He severely judged the erring believer
o He soundly admonished the erring church
1. Paul concisely exposed the sin
a) Sin in the church - immorality
It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and immorality of such a kind as does not exist even among the Gentiles, that someone has his father's wife. 1 Cor. 5:1
Paul came right to the point
It was an established fact that the whole community knew that there was immorality among them.
He specifically and publicly identified the sin because it was already public.
Basically he said, “I can’t believe the reports of immorality I am hearing.”
b) Sin of the church -- arrogance
Paul confronted the sin of the church as well as the sin of the incestuous member
You have become arrogant and have not mourned instead, so that the one who had done this deed would be removed from your midst. 1 Cor. 5:2
Paul came right to the point.
Actually he told them they were continually being arrogant, puffed up.
They prided themselves with their noble tolerance toward sin within the church.
They not only failed to deal with the sin but they failed to even mourn over the situation.
Instead they maintained a spiritual air about themselves.
They were proud of their “spirituality” in spite of the fact that unspeakable sin was happening among them.
Somehow they divorced their theology from actual behavior.
That is why there were divisions and strife.
The fact they were fighting with each other exposed their spiritual immaturity (you are babies) but in their mind they felt spiritually superior perhaps even to the poor apostles.
Rather than proud mediocrity they should have demonstrated humble mourning.
The word used by Paul for mourning is a gut wrenching emotional response to a life-altering event.
Recall some of the pictures after 9/11 that captures the depth of emotion stirred by the event.
?James 4:8-10 called for those sinning to mourn.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.
This is the reaction the Corinthians should have had toward this unspeakable sin.
This is the reaction we should have regarding any sin that defiles the church of Christ.
How callous we have become to sin.
Because it is surrounded by a laugh track and bouncy music we become unaware of its ture nature.
It is what nailed Jesus to the cross.
It is what destroys lives.
Hollywood sanitizes the consequences.
All they show is the early snapshots.
You have to go to the hospitals and mental wards and cemeteries to get the rest of the picture for all sin destroys and eventually leads to death.
Unfortunately over the years the pendulum seems to swing back and forth in reference to the church’s response to sin.
Truth and love swing out of balance.
Paul spent far less time addressing the sin of the individual than the proud indifference of the church toward sin.
If they had a true perception of God’s holiness they would have lovingly addressed this situation rather than ignore it and continue to assert their great “spirituality”.
They would have mourned over the offense to God, the damage to the temple of God, the damage to the reputation of the church in the community and the spiritual and physical welfare of the ones sinning.
Every action of an individual family member affects the rest of the family.
One member’s actions can through the whole family into turmoil.
Pollution brought into the church by individual body members affects the rest of the body and the head of the Church.
A stab to the body is a stab to the head.
Contamination to the body is contaminating Christ.
Infecting the body with disease infects Christ.
Once we realize the awfulness of undressed sin and its affects on the whole, we can understand better the necessity to deal with it Biblically.
Having exposed the immorality within the church and the arrogance of the church, Paul clearly explained the godly response to the sin.