Summary: Sowing discord among the bretheren is the sin God hates most of all;is caused by pride; and is seen in the church at Corinth.

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Let me ask you a question: “Have you ever found a Christian group that doesn’t have any problems?” If so, don’t join it—you’ll ruin everything. Every person has their own weaknesses and faults; and since a church is made up of imperfect people, every church will have problems. The church at Corinth whom the Apostle Paul addresses in his First Epistle to the Corinthians had several problems.

However, before we look at this letter to the Corinthians, I would like you to turn to Proverbs 6.

These verses contain a list of the seven sins God most detests.

“These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: a proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, an heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among the brethren" (Proverbs 6:16-19).

As we now turn to 1 Corinthians 1, I want you to think of these sins which God hates most; and, as we read verses 10-13, I want you to notice which of these sins were being committed by the Corinthian believers.

1 Corinthians 1:10-13

1 Now I beseech you [I exhort you (NASB); I appeal to you (NIV); I do beg of you (PH); I urge . . . you (AMP); I plead with you (NKJV)], brethren [Notice the significant way Paul addresses them as brethren. He is about to exhort them to unity, which is characteristic of brethren in Christ. The very title “brethren” is an argument for unity.], by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ [by all that our Lord Jesus Christ means to you (PH)], that ye all speak the same thing and that there be no divisions among you [The word for divisions is schisma. It means there should be no open break, no fracturing of the church, which is done by fighting, by gossip, criticism, hatred, or bitterness.] but that ye be perfectly joined together [The words “perfectly joined together” are translated from only one Greek word. The word is katartizo. This word could also be translated “united” (NIV) or “made complete” (NASB). This word is used in three other important New Testament passages: (1) “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God . . .” (Heb. 11:3). Here the word katartizo is translated “framed.” (2) “Wherefore when he cometh into the world he saith, sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me” (Heb. 10:5). Here the word is translated “prepared.” (3) “And going on from thence, he saw . . . James . . . and John his brother in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets” (Matt. 4:21). In this final passage the word is translated “mending.” God desires that church believers be joined together as perfectly as the sun, moon, and stars fit together, as perfectly as God formed the body for Jesus to use, and as perfectly as a mended net is. Souls are not saved in a church plagued with problems simply because the net is broken and they get away.] in the same mind and in the same judgement [The “mind,” within, refers to things to be believed; the “judgment” is displayed outwardly in things to be done. So in all that a church believes and does, there is to be unity].

11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions [quarrels (NIV); factions (AMP)] among you.

We do not know who the people were who belonged to the “house of Chloe,” but we commend them for their courage and devotion. They did not try to hide the problems. They were burdened about them; they went to the right person with them; and they were not afraid to be mentioned by Paul.

J. Vernon McGee tells of an incident that happened in one of his pastorates. A man came to him and said, “I want to tell you about a certain situation.” He told him about a certain man who was involve in a particular sin. The man wanted to do something about it. He said, “You ought to bring this up before the board, and if they can’t handle it, then it should be brought before the church.” McGee answered, “Fine, that is the way it should be done. What night can you come?” “Oh!” the man said, “I don’t intend to come. You’re the pastor, you are the one to handle it.” McGee answered, “You are right, I am the one to handle it. I am the pastor. However, you will need to be present to make the charge.” “Oh,” he said, “I won’t do that.” So McGee told him. “If you are not willing to sign you name to the charge, we will forget it.” And they forgot it, because the man refused to back up the charge with his name.

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