1 Corinthians 6:1-11
Not only were the Corinthian Christians compromising with worldliness, but they were also in danger of tarnishing their testimony before a watching world (6). Let’s always remember that we live our lives in front of unbelievers! (6). We are being scrutinised. When we identify with Christ eyes are upon us. The people of the world are in the front row. We would be better to just let certain things go (7) than bring God’s Name, and our witness, into disrepute.
Warren Wiersbe points out (With the Word, p.747) that Paul repeatedly asks: Do you not know? (2, 3, 15, 16, 19). He states that the Corinthians were ignorant of some basic truths of the Christian life, and mentions three of them in chapter 6. We will look at the first two today, and deal with the third next time.
1. We will judge angels (1-8): It has to be admitted that we do not fully know all that will be involved in our judging the world and angels, but Paul clearly believed that this would happen, and he made a logical application of the principle to the current disputes in the Corinthian church, which had been brought to his attention.
And how dare you take each other to court! When you think you have been wronged, does it make any sense to go before a court that knows nothing of God’s ways instead of a family of Christians? The day is coming when the world is going to stand before a jury made up of Christians. If someday you are going to rule on the world’s fate, wouldn’t it be a good idea to practice on some of these smaller cases? The Message.
If you’re going to one day work on the greater, wouldn’t it be a good idea to start now with the lesser? Have a run out on the ‘nursery slopes.’
2. We have been changed (9-11): We have been utterly transformed. We are not what we once were, so why should we live as we once lived? Warren W. Wierbe. There is something very powerful about the statement: And that is what some of you were. But… (11). You will see in these words that the sexual standards of God’s Kingdom are radically different from those of the world. Not all expressions of human sexuality are equally valid and legitimate. There are certain practices that people need to repent of and be delivered from. They need to be removed to the past tense of their lives as the individuals become new in Christ and are indwelt by the Spirit of God. Every Christian can say: I’m not what I want to be; I’m not what I’m going to be; but praise God, I’m not what I once was. Of course there is much more to sin than sexual sin, but Corinth was a notoriously immoral city, so it is not surprising that such sins figure prominently in this list. In those days there was a saying: ‘to Corinthianize’ or ‘to play the Corinthian’, and it meant to live immorally. Corinth was a moral sewer, but so many had been salvaged from it. It’s a wonderful thought. And our Lord still meets people in the gutter and lifts them up.