Summary of 1 Corinthians 5:
Paul to the Corinthians says there is a report of sexual immorality amongst you or a man with his father’s wife of which the Corinthians are proud of! Paul says they should be filled with grief and put the man out of fellowship the man who did this. Paul says this is what he would have done in his judgment. This man needed to be pushed out into the world of Satan so that his spirit will be saved on the day of the Lord.
The boasting is a sign that this immorality could spread amongst them. (A rotten apple spoils the bunch). Act as if it is always Passover and eat the bread of sincerity and truth. Be what you are.
Paul clarifies a previous point in a previous letter (lost to us) that he is not saying to not associate with sinners of this world. That would be impossible. He is saying to not associate with Christians who are sinning and know they are sinning regularly. Committing sins repeatedly that they can turn from.
For it is a Christians’ business to judge those within the Church but not outside the Church (i.e. believers and non-believers) and expel the wicked amongst you.
BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 22, Day 2: 1 Corinthians 5
3) Paul instructs the Corinthians to hand over to Satan any man who sleeps with his step-mother.
4a) Paul was concerned that the man’s actions would rub off on the others, that they would think that sexual immorality was ok, and that they would be tempted to do it themselves. The Corinthians were proud that they accepted the man. This thinking could not be tolerated.
b) Personal Question. My answer: You have to hold fellow Christians accountable for their sins, and if they choose to continue in sin, then you need to disassociate from them.
5a) God and Jesus cannot tolerate sin, and thus, neither should we.
b) Christians should not judge those outside the church because they are not held to a higher standard like Christians are.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 22, Day 2: 1 Corinthians 5
BSF combined 1 Corinthians 5 & 6 in one lesson last go around. I wrote a blog post on faith HERE
End Notes BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 22, Day 2: 1 Corinthians 5
The term sexually immorality is the ancient Greek word “porneia.” It broadly refers to all types of sexual activity outside of marriage (including homosexuality).
Originally, “porneia” just referred to visiting prostitutes; but before New Testament times, the Jewish community used the word to refer to any kind of extramarital sex, including homosexuality. This is its sense in the New Testament.
As bad as the sin itself was, Paul was more concerned that the Corinthian Christians seemed to take the sin lightly. Leviticus 18:8 expressly forbids a man to have sex with his stepmother (The nakedness of your father’s wife you shall not uncover),
Paul being there in spirit means he’s there in the letter.
You can judge, just not be hypocritical about it.
Paul says that as they put him out, the man will be given over to the sinful consequences of his flesh, and the hope is that by wallowing in the results of his sin, the sinful impulse of the flesh in this particular area will be destroyed.
Battle With the Flesh
As Christians, we do continual battle with the flesh, because though the old man is dead, having been crucified with Christ (Romans 6:6), the flesh lives on, having been “educated” in sin by the old man, the devil, and the worldly culture around us. God now calls us to crucify the flesh (Galatians 5:24). Paul hopes that putting this man out of the fellowship of the Corinthian Christians will lead him to crucify the flesh with its passions and desires.
The goal of the discipline is to being about the man’s salvation, that he will turn again to Christ.
The leaven mentioned isn’t merely yeast, but a pinch of dough left over from the previous batch. A little pinch of dough from the old lump could make a whole new lump of dough rise and “puff up.” In this way the work of leaven was thought to illustrate the work of sin and pride. The presence of a little can corrupt a large amount.
At the Passover feast, all leaven was to be removed from the house, and nothing with leaven in it was to be eaten for a whole week. Paul says that just as the Jews were concerned to remove all leaven from their midst, so the church should have a concern to remove such notorious, unrepentant sinners from their midst.
Our Christian lives are to be marked by the same things which characterized Passover: salvation, liberation, joy, plenty, and purity from leaven.
“Salvation in sin is not possible, it must always be salvation from sin.” (Spurgeon)
In the culture of that day (and in many cultures today), eating with someone is an expression of friendship and partnership. In some cultures, if a man eats at your table, you are bound to regard him as a friend and a partner. Paul warns the Corinthian Christians they cannot continue in Christian fellowship with a notorious sinner who calls himself a Christian.
Unfortunately, too many Christians are busy judging those outside of the church (which is God’s job only) and are neglecting purity within the church.
The Corinthian Christians were failing to judge where they should have made judgment.
We must remember both reasons why it was important to deal with this sinning man among the Corinthian Christians: for the sake of purity in the church and for the sake of the man’s own salvation (1 Corinthians 5:5).