1 Corinthians 6 Commentary


1 CORINTHIANS - PROBLEMS OF A LOCAL CHURCH
Click chart to enlarge
Charts from Jensen's Survey of the NT - used by permission

FROM CHART: Note 2 major divisions:

  • FIRST DIVISION - Chapters 1-6 = Problems of Congregation - Divisions & Depravities,
  • SECOND DIVISION - Chapters 7-16 = Personal Problems, Worship Problems

1 Corinthians 6:1  Does any one of you, when he has a case against his neighbor, dare to go to law before the unrighteous and not before the saints?

Amplified - DOES ANY of you dare, when he has a matter of complaint against another [brother], to go to law before unrighteous men [men neither upright nor right with God, laying it before them] instead of before the saints (the people of God)?

Wuest's Paraphrase - Is anyone of you who has a case against another daring to be going to law before those who are unrighteous and not before the saints? (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:1 When any of you has a legal dispute with another, does he dare go to court before the unrighteous rather than before the saints?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:1 When one of you has a dispute with another believer, how dare you file a lawsuit and ask a secular court to decide the matter instead of taking it to other believers!

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:1 When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints?

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:1 If any of you has a dispute with another, dare he take it before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the saints?

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:1 Τολμᾷ τις ὑμῶν πρᾶγμα ἔχων πρὸς τὸν ἕτερον κρίνεσθαι ἐπὶ τῶν ἀδίκων καὶ οὐχὶ ἐπὶ τῶν ἁγίων;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:1 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:1 Dare any one of you, having a matter with the other, go to be judged before the unrighteous, and not before the saints?

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:1 Dare any of you, having a matter against his neighbor, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:1 If any of you has a legal dispute against another, do you dare go to court before the unrighteous, and not before the saints?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:1 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:1 When any of you has a grievance against another, do you dare to take it to court before the unrighteous, instead of taking it before the saints?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:1 How can any one of you with a case against another dare to bring it to the unjust for judgment instead of to the holy ones?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:1 Is one of you with a complaint against another so brazen as to seek judgement from sinners and not from God's holy people?

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:1 When one of you has a complaint against another, how dare you go to court to settle the matter in front of wicked people. Why don't you settle it in front of God's holy people?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:1 How is it, that if any one of you has a cause at law against another, he takes it before a Gentile judge and not before the saints?

  • when he has a case against his neighbor: Mt 18:15-17 Ac 18:14,15 19:38 
  • dare to go to law: 1Co 6:6,7 
  • the saints: 1Co 1:2 14:33 16:1,15 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries


Bema Seat in Nearby Athens


Bema Seat Ruins in Corinth

SUING EACH OTHER IN
SECULAR COURTS!

The law cases in Corinth would have been tried at the bema seat in the center of the busy agora (marketplace) where all the pagans would be entertained by the brethren litigating against each other! A very sad witness. Little wonder that Paul's first word in the Greek is DARE! (cf 1 Cor 6:1KJV more literal than NAS). 

Ray Stedman entitles 1 Cor 6:1-11 "The Wrong Way To Right Wrongs"

Keep the context in mind - Paul had just spoken of judgment of unbelievers in 1 Cor 5:13 - "those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES." In fact the "key word" in the preceding context (1 Cor 5:12-13+) is the word "judge" repeated three times (judging...judge....judges). So now Paul launches into the major teaching in the Bible on judging cases involving believers.  I have been in strong evangelical churches for over 35 years and sadly I have never heard of these passages being used in any of the churches I attended. It is possible that there were some instances, but I was generally in leadership and would have been aware of those instances. 

MacDonald - News had come to Paul that some Christians were going to law against their fellow believers—before the judges of this world. So he lays down these instructions of lasting value for the church. Note the repetition of the expression “Do you not know” (1 Cor 6:2, 3, 9, 15, 16, 19).

Paul Apple's introductory comments on chapter 6 - Remember the book written by Jay Adams, Competent to Counsel - that laid a lot of the groundwork for the basis for nouthetic counseling. Adams made the argument that believers would be wrong to submit to the counseling of unsaved psychologists. Instead believers have the resources they need to confront the most serious problems of life - the resources of the Word of God and the Spirit of God. In a similar vein, the Apostle Paul argues in this passage that the Church is Competent to Judge as well. Why would we ever consider taking a fellow believer to court and submit to the “wisdom” of unsaved judges? This would be damaging to the testimony of Christ. We live in a society that goes to court at the drop of a hat. Look at the number of lawyers ... the backlog of court cases ... the ridiculous amounts of some of the settlements for damages, etc. Look at how people demand that their “rights” be protected and have the expectation of compensation if they are wronged in any way. Look at how this contributes to the high cost of liability insurance. Some commentators want to temper Paul’s tone in this passage and say that believers should try to avoid suing fellow believers. But the clear import of the teaching is that believers should never sue fellow believers! Remember the context from chapter 5 where believers were reminded of their responsibility to judge among themselves. “Not only is the church to judge in matters of morality, but in other matters having to do with everyday life (civil situations).” (Gil Rugh) (1 Corinthians Commentary)

Craig Keener - Like modern North American society, Roman society was extremely litigious. Cases began to be heard at dawn and sometimes could be argued as late as sunset. Judges were always chosen from among the well-to-do, and most legal disputes revolved around money Members of the upper class received better treatment in the law courts; indeed, this preference was written into penalties prescribed in the laws. Further, social inferiors could not sue members of the upper class. But for Paul, even the lowliest believers are equipped to judge cases. (IVPBBCNT)

Does any one of you, when he has a case (pragma) against his neighbor - Young's Literal = "Dare any one of you, having a matter with the other, go to be judged before the unrighteous, and not before the saints?" The is a rhetorical question. Paul is of course not speaking of criminal cases like robbery, murder, etc. 

Schreiner has an insightful comment noting that "The first word in the Greek is the word dare, (see Young's Literal above) showing that appealing to the ‘unrighteous’ (adikos) to resolve a legal dispute (pragma) with another believer is outrageous. The case should be brought before the ‘saints’ (hagios). The use of the word ‘unrighteous’ is intentional since believers are acting unrighteously (adikeite, v. 8), acting like the ‘unrighteous’ (adikoi, ESV, v. 9) who will not enter the kingdom. On the other hand, the believers are God’s ‘saints’ (CSB; 1:2; 6:11), yet they are not acting like God’s holy people but like the people of the world. (TNTC-1 Cor)

Recall from the previous context there are some factors that might predispose these saints to lawsuits and petty legal squabbles. In 1 Cor 1:10+ we see they were have church divisions and in 1 Cor 3:3+ Pauls said " you are still fleshly. For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men?." Jealousy and strife among fleshly men would certainly predispose them to legal disagreements between members in the body at Corinth. 

Arnold - Surely the Apostle Paul did not mean that a Christian should never go to the secular law courts against unbelievers. If a lawsuit is brought against us by an unbeliever, it may be necessary for us to defend ourselves. Nor was Paul saying the Christian would not get justice before the secular courts because the courts were corrupt. Actually, the Romans as a whole had an excellent law system. Nor was he saying a Christian should never use the secular courts to defend his cause for even Paul himself said, "I appeal to Caesar". The thing Paul is critical of is Christians taking other Christians before the secular courts. He was stunned that one Christian would prosecute another before the secular courts  where an unbeliever was presiding. Even the Jews understood that disputes were to be settled among the brotherhood, for they had a maxim which said, "It is a statute which binds all Israelites, that if one Israelite has a cause against another, it must not be prosecuted before the Gentiles.” Yet these carnal Corinthians had not even reached the Jewish standards and it was a disgrace. Paul’s point was that all lawsuits between Christians should be handled by church courts within the local church and not in the secular courts.

Baker has an interesting note on a case against - means to bring a case or, as in the NLT, a lawsuit, against someone. The language makes it clear that this is not a criminal case but one involving property or perhaps business matters. In civil cases, such as these in Corinth, two citizens would have been appointed by the court to adjudicate the matter

Hodge - The third evil in the Corinthian church that the apostle endeavors to correct was taking lawsuits to heathen judges. There was no need for this. The Roman laws allowed the Jews to settle their disputes about property by arbitration among themselves. And the early Christians, who were not distinguished as a distinct class from the Jews, doubtless had the same privilege. It is not necessary, however, to assume that the apostle is referring to that privilege here. It was enough that these civil suits might be arranged without the disgraceful spectacle of Christian suing Christian before heathen magistrates. The rabbis say, “It is a statute that binds all Israelites, that if one Israelite has a case against another, it must not be brought before the Gentiles.”

Craig Keener has an interesting intro comment - Having advocated that the church act as a court with regard to sexual offenses (chap. 5), Paul now argues for the necessity of church courts in his society (6:1–8) and then returns to sexual offenses (6:9, 12–20). It is possible that the litigants of 6:1–8 are the father and son of 5:1; if so, such litigation would clearly be displaying the church’s dirty laundry before the world. “Defraud” (6:7–8) favors this suggestion (cf. 1 Thess 4:4–6); “why not be wronged?” (6:7) may be against it. Jewish communities throughout the Mediterranean world had their own courts in their synagogues. Bringing internal disputes of the Jewish or Christian communities before secular magistrates was a luxury these minority religions could ill afford; there was already too much slander against them in the broader society. (IVPBBCNT)

Dare to (present tense - continually) go to law before the unrighteous (adikos) and not before the saints - Dare is the verb tolmao (present tense = indicates the action was in process) which is used negatively with a component of boldness or insolence (like our phrase "how dare you!"). Literally "to be judged by the unjust one.” Clearly Paul is surprised about this practice among believers. Literally this reads "go to be judged before the unrighteous." Note the juxtaposition of unrighteous (unholy) with saints (holy). Unrighteous is used in this context as a synonym for an unbeliever (and again with same meaning as unrighteous in 1 Cor 6:9+) and not to mean that the judicial system/judges were not fair and just, but that they were not "justified by faith" so not believers. 

What is fascinating is where these cases were held -- the unbelieving judges would sit on the bema seat of the civil magistrate, which was located in the center of the Corinthian agora (marketplace) and was a place the Greeks would come for entertainment that might result from a good legal battle. One can imagine the "leaven" effect of two Christians going after each other, this word spreading throughout the entire city. One can imagine the call "Come on folks, we've got another great Jerry Springer show for today's entertainment!" And the Church of Jesus Christ is sullied! Sad! 

Hodge - What Paul was complaining of was not that the Corinthians could not get justice at the hands of heathen magistrates, but that they acted unworthily of their dignity as Christians in seeking justice from such a source. Paul himself appealed to Caesar. It was, therefore, no sin in his eyes to seek justice from a heathen judge when it could not be obtained in any other way. But it was a sin and a disgrace in his view for Christians to appeal to heathen magistrates to settle disputes among themselves.

Robertson -  The Jews held that to bring a lawsuit before a court of idolaters was blasphemy against the law. But the Greeks were fond of disputatious lawsuits with each other. Probably the Greek Christians brought cases before pagan judges.

Spurgeon - In those days, the courts of law were utterly unjust. It was all a matter of who could bribe the most, for he would gain the suit. I think that we cannot say that it is quite like this at the present time in our law courts, neither can this verse be strictly a rule for the guidance of men in these days, except that, in the spirit of Paul’s words, all lawsuits among Christians should be avoided if possible.

Dare (5111) tolmao rom tólma = courage in turn from tlao = to sustain, support, endure) means to have courage, to be bold, to dare to do something. To be courageous enough to try or to do something. Louw-Nida - "to be so bold as to challenge or defy possible danger or opposition." BDAG says tolmao means "to show boldness or resolution in the face of danger, opposition, or a problem." The meaning "dare" is used mostly in the negative, indicating the sense of "being unwilling to act through moral conviction, fear, or embarrassment." In order to avoid public humiliation, people often "dared not" ask Jesus any more questions. 

Go to law (go to be judged)(2919)(krino and its cognates [see below] is a root of English words like critic, critical [kritikos] = a decisive point at which judgment is made) primarily signifies to distinguish, to decide between (in the sense of considering two or more things and reaching a decision), to make up one's mind, to separate, to discriminate. to distinguish between good and evil, right and wrong, without necessarily passing an adverse sentence, although that is often what is usually involved.  The basic meaning of krino is to form an opinion after separating and considering the particulars in the case. Krino means to evaluate and determine what is right, proper, and expedient for correction. Wuest gives an excellent sense of the progression of meaning of this Greek word - The word krino meant originally to separate, then to distinguish, to pick out, to be of opinion, and finally, to judge. The act of judgment was therefore that of forming an accurate and honest opinion of someone, thus, appraising his character, and placing him in a certain position with respect to the law of God. The result of such a judgment is commonly condemnation.(Wuest Word Studies - Eerdman Publishing Company Volume 1Volume 2Volume 3 - used by permission)  Uses in the Corinthian letters  1 Co. 2:2; 1 Co. 4:5; 1 Co. 5:3; 1 Co. 5:12; 1 Co. 5:13; 1 Co. 6:1; 1 Co. 6:2; 1 Co. 6:3; 1 Co. 6:6; 1 Co. 7:37; 1 Co. 10:15; 1 Co. 10:29; 1 Co. 11:13; 1 Co. 11:31; 1 Co. 11:32; 2 Co. 2:1; 2 Co. 5:14

Unrighteous (unjust, wicked)(94adikos from a = without + dike = justice) is an adjective which in general generally describes that which is characterized by violation of divine law (USED AGAIN IN THIS CHAPTER IN 1 Cor 6:9+ = "do you not know that the unrighteous [adikos] shall not inherit the kingdom of God?"). It means acting in a way that is contrary to what is right (unjust, crooked) ultimately as defined by God. Adikos is what God is NOT (Heb 6:10+, Ro 3:5+). As in the Old Testament, the “unrighteous” (adikos) are a class of people who stand over against the “righteous,” or the people of God. The “righteous” will be “rescued” (cf. Ps 1:6,  Ps 18:48; 120:2; 140:1 and 2 Pe 2:9), while the “unrighteous” will be punished and judged (2 Pe 2:9+) Peter writes "For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;" (1 Pe 3:18+)

Adikos 12x in 11v - Mt. 5:45; Lk 16:10; Lk. 16:11; Lk. 18:11; Acts 24:15; Ro 3:5; 1 Co. 6:1; 1 Co. 6:9; Heb. 6:10; 1 Pet. 3:18; 2 Pet. 2:9

Case (matter) (4229) pragma from prásso = to do, perform where suffix –ma = the result of; English = pragmatic [dealing with things in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations: practical as opposed to idealistic]; Pragma - used 11x in NT - Mt. 18:19; Lk. 1:1; Acts 5:4; Ro 16:2; 1 Co. 6:1; 2 Co. 7:11; 1 Th 4:6; Heb. 6:18; Heb. 10:1; Heb. 11:1; Jas 3:16


J Vernon McGee -   First Corinthians 6:1–11 warns Christians not to go to court against each other. Is there ever a time when a Christian can sue another Christian?

Verse one says, “Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?” He does not say that Christians are not to go to law. If Christians did not use the benefit of the law, they would suffer great loss at the hands of the unsaved. He is saying that Christians should not go to law against each other—Christian against Christian. The differences between believers are not to be taken to a secular court; they should be settled by believers. This is something which churches and believers in general ignore today.

After I had come to Southern California as a pastor I was rather amazed one day when a man came in and wanted to bring a charge against an officer of the church. He claimed this man had cheated him in a business deal. He said, “Now I want you to bring him up before the board and make him settle with me.” I told him, “I think you are approaching this the right way. When can you appear before the board and make your charges?” “Oh,” he said, “I’ve told you about it. That is all that is necessary.” I pointed out to him that I had no way to verify the charge; both men would need to appear before the board. Then I asked him, “Would you be willing to accept the verdict of the board?” “Well,” he said, “it all depends on how they decided it. If they decided in my favor, I would accept it.” So then I asked him if he would accept the verdict if it were against him, and he assured me that he would not. Of course, I told him that we might as well forget the whole matter. I said, “You are not really willing to turn this issue over to the other believers for a verdict.”

Church fights should not be aired in state courts before unbelievers. Individual differences among Christians should be adjudicated by believers. It is bad enough when two Christians are divorced, but it is an extremely serious matter when Christians go before a secular court and air their differences before unbelievers. When a Christian couple comes to me and tells me they simply cannot get along, and I see there is no way of working out a reconciliation, I advise a legal separation, not a court trial.

Why should a believer let other believers be the judges rather than take his case to the unsaved world for their judgment? Again, this does not forbid a Christian from going to court with an unbeliever, but why should two believers bring their differences to be settled by other believers? Paul gives three reasons in 1 Corinthians 6 regarding the capabilities of believers to judge.

  •  Saints will judge the world. “Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?” (v. 2).
  •  Saints will judge angels. “Know ye not that shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?” (v. 3).
  •  Unrighteousness is not in the kingdom. “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God”(vv. 9–10). 

No secular judge or jury is equipped to make spiritual decisions because they do not comprehend spiritual principles. That is why court cases that pertain to churches and Christians go haywire the minute they hit the legal mills. A secular judge may know the material in the law books, but he knows nothing about spiritual decisions. He has no spiritual discernment.

Following a trial here in Southern California I looked at the jury shown on television and said to my wife, “I thank God my life is not in the hands of the twelve people I see there.” After the trial was over some of the jurors made statements for the television program which revealed that they were not capable of judging the case. Yet Christians will trust that crowd rather than take their cases to other believers who do have spiritual discernment. “I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren? But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers” (vv. 5–6). Of course not every Christian is a capable judge, but Paul is saying, “I speak to your shame; isn’t there a wise man among you?” When you go to a secular court, you are saying that none of the saints are capable of judging. Well, I know some dear brethren in the Lord with whom I would be willing to risk my life. I am confident they would render a just verdict.


William Ramsey -  LITIGATION IN THE CORINTHIAN CHURCH, 6:1–11

THE subject of chapter 6 had evidently been suggested, not by a formal question addressed to Paul by the Church, but by some information which reached him. For the reasons already stated, we may assume with every probability that the information came to him through Stephanas and his two companions.2 From them Paul learned that it was usual among the Corinthian Christians to take legal action against one another in the ordinary Pagan fashion, with Pagans to decide the points at issue, and that public feeling in the Church did not regard such procedure as unsuitable or unbecoming.

As before, the fault of the individual here springs from the tone of the Corinthian Church in general; and Paul’s remarks are directed more to produce a healthier tone in the community as a whole than to rebuke the action of individuals. In fact, his expression in 6:1 is put in such general and vague terms as to leave it uncertain “whether any particular case was in the apostle’s mind at the time.” Dare any of you, having a matter against his fellow-Christian,4 go to law before the unrighteous (i.e. the Pagans) instead of before the saints, the Christians?

Paul’s words have not been correctly understood by most commentators. Some seem to think that he orders the Corinthian Christians to appeal to Church courts instead of to the ordinary courts of law. But that is quite out of keeping both with his language here and with the whole tone of his teaching. He never expresses disrespect for the established institutions of the country and the empire, or advises that the Church should create a rival organization. He always teaches his converts to accept and make the best of existing institutions.

Others think that the alternatives in 6:1 are different in character, and that the process before the Christians would be in the form of arbitration, while before the heathen it would be according to the legal forms then prevailing. But the expressions describing the two alternatives are so exactly parallel—κρίνεσθαι ἐπὶ τῶν ἀδίκων καὶ οὐχὶ ἐπὶ τῶν ἁγίων, where both Pagans and Christians are designated by terms expressive of moral and religious character—that we cannot fairly think they describe different processes.

Paul here is not thinking of serious questions of crime and fraud so much as of the small matters, which persons of a litigious character—such as the Greeks were—are always ready to make into causes of disagreement and legal action. Now such small cases were ordinarily decided in Greece by umpires or arbiters chosen by the parties themselves. The expressions used throughout the passage suggest rather informal proceedings than formal trials on legal principles before judges (δικασταί). The terms used are κρίνω, κρίνομαι, κριτήριον, κρίμα, all of which are appropriate to cases tried according to the least strict procedure by umpires whom the parties select (αἱρετοὶ κριταί, διαιτηταί), and who decide, not according to formal written law (νόμος), but according to their own conception of right and wrong.

That Paul is not here thinking of serious and grave matters, is clear from 6:4, where, unfortunately, the Revised Version is far from good. (1) The subjects brought up for decision are called “matters of everyday life” (βιωτικά), the trumpery details of common life, which afforded many opportunities for the Corinthian Greeks to quarrel about prices and ownership and so on. (2) The litigants set any persons they please as arbitrators to judge the individual cases;2 the place where the arbitrator takes his position becomes the κριτήριον; the proceedings are ex tempore. Nothing suggests the “Public Arbitrators,” who were chosen by lot in Athens by the magistrate in court from the permanent Daitetai (κληρωτοὶ διαιτηταί).

Some commentators, who insist that Paul is here referring throughout to formal legal procedure before courts of law, maintain that the word κριτήριον in 6:2, 4 means “courts” or “tribunals.” That is inconsistent with 6:4, βιωτικὰ κριτήρια ἐὰν ἔχητε, where the nominative is the litigating parties—“If ye have matters of common life to set before a krites for decision, select as arbitrators persons of no account in the Church.”

But, Paul proceeds, 6:7–11, It is quite a fault in you to find provocation to suits among yourselves. You ought rather to acquiesce patiently in (what you consider to be) unfair treatment or inadequate recognition of your rights. And along with that fault there always goes the other fault of unwillingness to recognise adequately the rights of others: “ye yourselves act unfairly and defraud, and that your brethren” (6:8). In the preceding paragraph I bade you refuse to associate with any one guilty of crime (5:11). Now I remind you that all such are rejected by God. Those are the sins and faults of your former Pagan life; and in your new life you ought to have risen above them.

The fault to which the Greek nature was and is most prone is that which Paul calls πλεονεξία (rendered “covetousness” generally in the Revised Version, and identified with “idolatry” in Colossians 3:5), the tendency to insist on getting at least one’s full rights, and therefore often even more than one’s fair share. Carried to an extreme and combined with a low moral standard of action, it becomes that grasping, greedy, cunning kind of dealing which is, in modern estimation, associated unfairly with all Greeks, because it is a marked characteristic of some of the race. But even with a higher spirit and principles, the fault is not eliminated, and the Corinthian Christians had not shaken themselves free of it; they still, in their mutual dealings, were apt both to think that others were denying them a fair share, and, in their eagerness to get their full portion, to claim more from their neighbours than they had a right to.

In this passage it is clear that Paul is thinking rather of Greek than of Roman procedure. A similiar custom of using and choosing umpires to decide small cases existed originally in Rome; but in the more developed Rome procedure the umpires (judices, arbitri) were appointed by a magistrate, and even very simple cases involved a stage of formal legal procedure. Such was the almost universal rule under the empire wherever procedure was of the Roman type. But, as has elsewhere been pointed out, the Romans never tried to force their own system of law and society on the Eastern provinces, which had an old-standing civilization of their own; and doubtless even in Roman Coloniæ in the East procedure in unimportant civil cases was more Greek than Roman in the time of Paul. Just as in South Galatia we found that the law presupposed by Paul’s letter seemed to be of the Seleucid type (i.e. Greek modified by the conditions of an Oriental kingdom), so in Corinth we see that the law in private cases is of the Greek not the Roman character, freer and less formal. The people of Corinth would be likely to know more than most Greeks about Roman imperial law in great matters (see § XI.); but the ordinary life of the city at this time was evidently Greek rather than Roman (see § X.).


Croft Pentz - CHRISTIAN DEDICATION 1 Corinthians 6:1–20

 I.      THE PROBLEM—vv. 1–6
      1.      Confusion—v. 1. Settle problems out of court.
      2.      Control—vv. 2–3. How will Christians rule the world, if they can’t settle small problems.
      3.      Concern—v. 4. Having the court judge Christians?
      4.      Church—v. 5. Surely the Pastor and Christians can settle the problems, without the world knowing.
      5.      Complaint—v. 6. Suing Christians before sinners is a very poor Christian example.

II.      THE PUNISHMENT—vv. 7–8
      1.      Shame—v. 7. Better to suffer than to sue others.
      2.      Suffering—v. 8. It’s wrong to be against others, when you don’t live right yourself.

III.      THE PURITY—vv. 9–11
      1.      Separation—vv. 9–10. A long list of those, who cannot enter the kingdom of God.
      2.      Salvation—v. 11. Before salvation, like those in vv. 9–10. Now salvation cleanses us from these.

 IV.      THE PLEASING—vv. 12–20
      1.      Personal—vv. 12–13. Do as you please, but if it hurts others, it is a sin. Sexual sins separate from God.
      2.      Power—v. 14. Our bodies will be raised as Christ’s.
      3.      Purity—v. 15. Our bodies belong to God, therefore we should keep them clean and holy.
      4.      Problem—vv. 16–17. Others influence our living habits.
      5.      Purpose—v. 18. Don’t fight sexual sins—flee them! Trying to fight it will make us sink deeper into it.
      6.      Plan—v. 19. Bodies, Temples of the Holy Ghost.
      7.      Praise—v. 20. Bodies should bring praise to God. A sinful body brings shame to God.

1 Corinthians 6:2  Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?

Amplified - Do you not know that the saints (the believers) will [one day] judge and govern the world? And if the world [itself] is to be judged and ruled by you, are you unworthy and incompetent to try [such petty matters] of the smallest courts of justice?

Wuest's Paraphrase -  Or, do you not all know that the saints shall judge the world system [of evil]? And in view of the fact that the world system is being judged by you, are you those who are unfit to sit on the tribunal of a judge where trifling affairs are judged [forming courts yourselves to settle matters among yourselves]? (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you not competent to settle trivial suits?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:2 Don't you realize that someday we believers will judge the world? And since you are going to judge the world, can't you decide even these little things among yourselves?

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases?

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases?

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:2 ἢ οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι οἱ ἅγιοι τὸν κόσμον κρινοῦσιν; καὶ εἰ ἐν ὑμῖν κρίνεται ὁ κόσμος, ἀνάξιοί ἐστε κριτηρίων ἐλαχίστων;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:2 have ye not known that the saints shall judge the world? and if by you the world is judged, are ye unworthy of the smaller judgments?

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:2 Or know ye not that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world is judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:2 Or don't you know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest cases?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the holy ones will judge the world? If the world is to be judged by you, are you unqualified for the lowest law courts?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not realise that the holy people of God are to be the judges of the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you not competent for petty cases?

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:2 Don't you know that God's people will judge the world? So if you're going to judge the world, aren't you capable of judging insignificant cases?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:2 Is it not certain that the saints will be the judges of the world? if then the world will be judged by you, are you unable to give a decision about the smallest things?

  • the saints: Ps 49:14 149:5-9 Da 7:18,22 Zec 14:5 Mt 19:28 Lu 22:30 1Th 3:13 Jude 1:14-15 Rev 2:26-27 Rev 3:21 Rev 20:4 
  • the smallest: 1Co 6:4 2Co 4:18 1Jn 2:16,17 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages:

Jude 1:14-15+ It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones, (cf Rev 17:14+) 15 to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”

2 Ti 2:12+  If we endure, we will also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us

Revelation 2:26-27+ ‘He who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, TO HIM I WILL GIVE AUTHORITY OVER THE NATIONS; 27 AND HE SHALL RULE THEM WITH A ROD OF IRON, AS THE VESSELS OF THE POTTER ARE BROKEN TO PIECES, as I also have received authority from My Father;

Revelation 3:21+  ‘He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

Revelation 20:4+  Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

Matthew 19:28(12 APOSTLES WILL JUDGE 12 TRIBES OF ISRAEL) And Jesus said to them, “Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Luke 22:30+  (JESUS ADDRESSING 12 DISCIPLES) that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 

SAINTS JUDGE
IN THE "SUPREME" COURT

Hodge -  If Christians are destined to judge the world, and even angels, they may surely settle their worldly affairs among themselves (verses 2–3).

Or do you not know - Paul repeatedly (see below) used this phrase to bring to mind some truth that his readers knew but either forgot or more likely disregarded. Paul asks a question which expects an affirmative answer. So the believers were aware of this incredible to comprehend truth! 

Phrase - Do you not know  Gen. 44:15; Jdg. 15:11; 2 Sam. 2:26; 2 Sam. 3:38; 2 Chr. 13:5; 2 Chr. 32:13; Isa. 40:21; Isa. 40:28; Ezek. 17:12; Zech. 4:5; Zech. 4:13; Jn. 19:10; Rom. 6:3; Rom. 6:16; Rom. 7:1; Rom. 11:2; 1 Co. 3:16; 1 Co. 5:6; 1 Co. 6:2; 1 Co. 6:3; 1 Co. 6:9; 1 Co. 6:15; 1 Co. 6:16; 1 Co. 6:19; 1 Co. 9:13; 1 Co. 9:24; Jas. 4:4

Paul Apple says they DO KNOW -Reminder #1 - The Saints Will Ultimately Judge the World - Argument from the Greater (judge world) to the Lesser (judge saints). Statement of the Obvious - Doctrine 101 class “Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world?”This is a huge responsibility; clearly delineates a great chasm between believers and non-believers; speaking of responsibility of believers in coming kingdom

That the saints will judge (krino) the world? - This question expects an affirmative answer. Why is Paul asking this question? If he is calling on Christians to judge Christians, they might say "We've never been to law school. We are not competent or qualified to judge our brethren." Paul now reasons from their future position on a far higher "court," to show them they are fully qualified.  Paul had begun his letter referring to the Corinthians as saints (1 Cor 1:2) as those who were separated from the fallen world under the dominion of Satan and were consecrated to service of their Lord Jesus.

Saints will judge/rule the world because they are in covenant with Christ, in Him, one with Him, forever and ever and judging is only one of countless eternal benefits of being in Christ! Hallelujah! 

G Campbell Morgan - How great is God’s destiny for redeemed men and women! “Is there any statement in the apostolic writings in certain senses which has more definite and tremendous implication of the union of the saints with their Lord?” 

Daniel 7:22 until the Ancient of Days came, and judgment was given for the saints of the Most High, and the time came when the saints possessed the kingdom (Da 7:22ESV+)

Hodge on will judge the world - This does not mean that the time would come when Christians would become magistrates, nor that the conduct of the saints would condemn the world, as it is said the Queen of the South would condemn those who refused to listen to the words of Christ (Matthew 12:42). The context and spirit of the passage require that this should be understood of the future and final judgment. Saints are said to sit in judgment on that great day for two reasons. First, because Christ, who is to be the Judge, is the head and representative of his people, in whom they reign and judge. The exaltation and dominion of Christ are their exaltation and dominion. This is what Scripture constantly says (Ephesians 2:6). In Hebrews 2:5–9 the declaration that all things are subject to man is said to be fulfilled in all things being made subject to Christ. Second, because Christ’s people are to be associated with him in his dominion. They are joint heirs with him (Romans 8:17). If we suffer, we shall reign with him (2 Ti 2:12). Daniel 7:22 (KJV) predicted that judgment (the right and power to judge) would be given to the saints of the Most High. Compare Matthew 19:28; Luke 22:30; Revelation 2:26–27. If then, asks the apostle, such a destiny as this awaits you, are you unfit to decide the smallest matters?

Spurgeon - Sitting with Christ, at the last great day of judgment, we shall give our “Amen” to the condemnation of the fallen spirits.

If the world is judged (krino)  by you - IF marks this as a first class conditional sentence, which assumes that saints will participate in some way as judges in the end-time events.

Are you not competent (not worthy, unworthy)  to constitute the smallest law courts - Wuest- "are you those who are unfit to sit on the tribunal of a judge where trifling affairs are judged [forming courts yourselves to settle matters among yourselves]?" NLT = "And since you are going to judge the world, can't you decide even these little things among yourselves?" The answer is of course they are competent to serve as judges of their squabbles and potential suits. It they can judge the world, they can judge these smaller issues. Paul's point in reminding them of the high position in the future as judges of the world should show them that they are able to handle petty differences amongst them now.

Hodge on not competent - that is, of too little weight or value, having neither the requisite dignity nor ability—to judge trivial cases?

Utley on are you not competent - This is biting sarcasm directed to those who claimed to have superior wisdom! This same term (anaxios) is used of the inappropriate behavior of the Corinthian churches at the Lord’s Supper (cf. 11:27, 29). These immature believers, who claimed so much special spiritual insight, in reality did not know how to evaluate properly or act properly! The term “smallest” is the superlative form of mikros. Paul used it earlier in 1 Cor 4:3. Its use heightens the sarcasm.

Not competent (370)(anaxios from a= negative +  áxios = worthy)  is an adjective which means incompetent, unfit, ‘unworthy’, inadequate. Only used here in NT and in Lxx in Esther 8:12, Jer 15:18.  Paul uses the related adverb anaxios in 1 Cor 11:27 = "unworthy manner."  

Courts (2922)(kriterion) (1) as a place where justice is carried out tribunal, law court ( James 2.6); (2) of a legal process case for judgment, lawsuit ( 1Cor 6.2, 4) Hodge says kriterion means 1. A criterion or test; a rule of judgment. 2. A tribunal or place of judgment, and then, the court of assembled judges (Exodus 21:6; Daniel 7:10; and in the New Testament, James 2:6). 3. The trial—that is, the process of judgment. 4. The cause itself, or the matter to be tried. This last sense is doubtful, although it is generally adopted here because it suits so well the fourth verse, where the same word occurs. The second sense would suit this verse. “If you are to sit with Christ on the seat of universal judgment, are you unworthy of the lowest judgment seats?” But the fourth verse is in favor of the explanation adopted in our version: “Are you unfit for the least causes?”

Henry Morris - The resurrected saints will apparently "judge the world" during the coming millennium when Christ reigns and His people reign with Him (Revelation 2:26; 3:21; 20:4).

Ryrie explains it this way - Because of our union with Christ, we will be associated with Him in this judgment (during the Millennium).


James Smith -  THINGS WE OUGHT TO KNOW 1 CORINTHIANS 6

At this time the Corinthian Church was unstable in doctrine and factious in fellowship. Some things are specially emphasised by the prefix: “Do you not know” or “Know ye not.” See what some of these things are. KNOW YE NOT that—

I. The Saints shall Judge the World (v. 2). Daniel, in his vision, saw the Ancient of Days come, and the time that the saints possessed the kingdom (Dan. 7:22), Jesus said: “Ye which have followed Me in the times of regeneration, when the Son of Man shall be enthroned, ye also shall sit upon thrones judging” (Matt. 19:28). They lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years (Rev. 20:4). It is a small matter for His saints to be judged of men now. Their day is coming.

II. Your Bodies are the Members of Christ (v. 15). “The body is for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (v. 13). Know ye not that these bodies of yours belong to Christ as really as your souls? The Lord is for your spirit, He also is for your body. Your body is a visible working member of Christ. The temptations of the Devil often come by way of the body. Keep it in subjection, lest by any means it might lead to uselessness (1 Cor. 9:27).

III. Your Body is the Temple of the Holy Ghost (v. 19) In Solomon’s Temple the glory of the Lord rested on the mercy seat, right in the centre of the Holy of holies, making the Temple a true witness to His Presence and power. The Church of God is also His temple. “Ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people” (2 Cor. 6:16). “Ye also are builded together for a habitation of God, through the Spirit” (Eph. 2:21, 22). We are all one in Christ, as a corporate body, it is the temple of God. But the body of each individual believer becomes a temple of the Holy Ghost. This is a more humbling, searching, and inspiring thought than that God dwells in His Church. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit Right in the centre of this temple, in the Holy of holies, the heart, the Holy Spirit broods and works, bringing comfort and guidance in life, and power for testimony. God in the midst.

IV. Ye are Not Your Own for Ye are Bought with a Price (vv. 19, 20). Is this freedom or bondage? It is both. It means the freedom of the sons of God, the liberty of the Spirit; and the bondage of a conquered love. Independence is an impossibility. To be independent we must be without a country, without a body, and without a God. “Ye are bought with a price.” A price which only God Himself could pay: the precious Blood of His own dear Son (1 Peter 1:18, 19). Christ is much more than an Example for us, He is our Ransom. Having been bought by His Blood, ye belong to Him; therefore, “ye are not your own,” and should “glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (v. 20). The love of Christ ought to constrain us, that we who live by His redeeming grace should not henceforth live unto ourselves, but unto Him who died for us and rose again (2 Cor. 3:14, 15), that we might show forth the praises of Him who hath called us out of darkness into His marvellous light (1 Peter 2:9).

Norman Geisler -  1 CORINTHIANS 6:2–3—How will the saints judge the world and angels?

PROBLEM: The Bible asserts that God is the judge of the world (Ps. 96:13; Acts 17:31; Rev. 20:11–15), including evil angels (2 Peter 2:4; Rev. 12:9). Why, then, does Paul affirm that Christians will be the judges of the world and angels?

SOLUTION: Obviously, God is the judge of wicked humans and angels in a different sense in which Christians will be. Whatever judgment we have will be as God’s delegates or representatives, not by any right we have inherent in ourselves. We are simply the instruments through which God executes His judgment. We do not make the ultimate decisions.

  It is not clear exactly what Paul envisioned in this passage, but we do know from other Scriptures that there are some legitimate senses in which it can be said that Christians will judge the world. First, during Christ’s reign, the apostles “will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel” (Matt. 19:28).

  Second, those who were faithful to Christ during the tribulation “reigned with Christ for a thousand years” (Rev. 20:4). John said, “I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them” (Rev. 20:4).

  Third, some believe that God will judge the godless by the godly conduct of believers. Jesus said even of the men of Nineveh that they “will rise in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented at the preaching of Jonah” (Matt. 12:41). Apparently, God will hold up repentant sinners as examples to those who did not repent, and those who did not repent will, therefore, be justly condemned by their own contemporaries. Likewise, the angels who sinned in the perfect environment of heaven will be judged on the basis of the conduct of humans who were saved in the imperfect environment of earth (cf. 2 Peter 2:4). (When Critics Ask)

1 Corinthians 6:3  Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

Amplified - Do you not know also that we [Christians] are to judge the [very] angels and pronounce opinion between right and wrong [for them]? How much more then [as to] matters pertaining to this world and of this life only!

Wuest's Paraphrase - Do you not know that we shall sit in judgment upon angels, to say nothing at all of judging the affairs of this life? (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? Why not ordinary matters!

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:3 Don't you realize that we will judge angels? So you should surely be able to resolve ordinary disputes in this life.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life!

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:3 οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι ἀγγέλους κρινοῦμεν, μήτιγε βιωτικά;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:3 have ye not known that we shall judge messengers? why not then the things of life?

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more, things that pertain to this life?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:3 Don't you know that we will judge angels-- not to mention ordinary matters?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels-- to say nothing of ordinary matters?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? Then why not everyday matters?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not realise that we shall be the judges of angels? - then quite certainly over matters of this life.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:3 Don't you know that we will judge angels, not to mention things in this life?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:3 Is it not certain that we are to be the judges of angels? how much more then of the things of this life?

  • judge: Mt 25:41 2Pe 2:4 Jude 1:6 
  • How much more matters of this life 1Co 6:4 Ps 17:14 Lu 8:14 21:34 2Ti 2:4 4:10 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages:

2 Peter 2:4  For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment;

Jude 1:6   And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,

SAINTS WILL 
JUDGE ANGELS

Do you not know that we will judge (krino) angels?  -  This question expects a positive answer. Which specific angels to be judged and when the judgment will occur is not stated and is not found in other passages. Paul uses another greater/lesser argument, so if we can judge angels, surely we can judge trivial cases! 

Utley - Believers are a higher spiritual order than the angels. It is hard for believers, trapped in this fallen world, to realize their true spiritual standing. Angels were created as servants of God and of redeemed humanity (cf. Heb. 1:14). It is humanity, not the angels, that is created in the image and likeness of God (cf. Gen. 1:26–27). It is for humanity, not the angels, that Jesus gave His life (cf. Heb. 2:14–16). Believers will one day judge the angels (rebellious angels, cf. Gen. 6; Matt. 25:41; 2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 6 or all angels as a metaphor of universal domination, Dan. 7:22, 27). According to rabbinical theology, the angels have always been jealous of God’s love, care, and provision for fallen humanity. The Jewish apocalyptic literature even asserts that Satan’s rebellion was related to God’s command to serve Adam’s race.

Baker explains it this way - Thiselton (2000:426–427) makes a strong case that Paul’s idea stems from his assumption that the resurrection of believers with Christ identifies them with him in such a way that they share corporately with his lordship over all—i.e., over all people who reject or embrace him, all angels, those who serve his kingdom well, and those who have worked against it. Others suggest that Paul was thinking of believers judging only condemned fallen angels—namely, Satan and his cohorts  (CBC-1 Cor)

Henry Morris  - The fallen angels are being "reserved unto judgment" (2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6), but it is doubtful that the saints will participate in that judgment, for all such are already destined for "everlasting fire" (Matthew 25:41). More likely, we shall have authority over the holy angels, for they were created for this very purpose, being "sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation" (Hebrews 1:14).

MacDonald explains that "We know from Jude 1:6 and 2 Peter 2:4, 9 that angels will be judged. We also know that Christ will be the Judge (John 5:22). It is because of our union with Him that we can be spoken of as judging angels in a coming day. If we are considered qualified to judge angels, we should be able to handle the everyday problems that arise in this life. (Believer's Bible Commentary)

How much more matters of this life - The phrase How much more adds emphasis and makes the sarcastic contrast more obvious. It also shows the argument is from greater to lesser (world/angel judgment versus judging believer differences).

Schreiner - We see a similar kind of argument in Hebrews 2:5–18, where rule of the coming world belongs to human beings and not to angels. This rule is given to believers because they belong to Jesus Christ, for Jesus will allow believers to sit on the throne with him to rule the world (Rev. 3:21), and this rule presumably includes rule over angels. If believers are going to rule over angels, they should be able to resolve disputes over matters of ordinary life. (Ibid)

Matters of this life (982)(biotikos from bios - possessions of life, life in its concrete outward manifestations) means anything that pertains to what is found in the ordinary course of life, everyday matters. It contrasts with zoe the life principle.

A Spanish proverb says, “The Jews ruin themselves at their passover; the Moors, at their marriages; and the Christians, in their lawsuits.”


Question: What does it mean that we will judge angels?

Answer: In his letter to the church in Corinth, the apostle Paul tells us that believers will not only judge the world but also judge angels: “Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world ... Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life” (1 Corinthians 6:2-3). Scripture teaches that the fallen angels will be judged by God (Isaiah 24:21-22; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 1:6; Revelation 21:10). But what does Paul mean when he says the saints will also judge angels?

What we can surmise from this 1 Corinthians passage is that we, as God’s children, will be given a higher position than the angels. We’re not only created in God’s image but redeemed by Christ (Galatians 3:13; 1 Peter 2:9; Luke 1:68; Ephesians 1:7). Angels are not created in God’s image and are not redeemed by Christ (Hebrews 1:14; 2:16). Also, God sends His angels to serve His saints, i.e., those who are to inherit eternal life (Hebrews 1:14; see also Psalm 34:7; Psalm 91:11).

Additionally, we know that the Greek word for “judge,” krino, also means “to rule or govern.” This strongly implies that we will have authority over the holy angels, for they have no sin for which to be “judged” in the sense of “condemned.” Most likely, the meaning of this passage is that believers in heaven will take part in the judgment of the fallen angels and exercise some authority over the holy angels. Christ has been exalted above all the angels (see Ephesians 1:20-23), and it seems reasonable that those who are in Him and made in His likeness (Romans 8:29; 1 Corinthians 15:49; Ephesians 4:24; 1 John 3:2) will share in His authority, including His authority over the angels (Matthew 19:28; 2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 20:4). GotQuestions.org

1 Corinthians 6:4  So if you have law courts dealing with matters of this life, do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church?

​​​​Amplified -If then you do have such cases of everyday life to decide, why do you appoint [as judges to lay them before] those who [from the standpoint] of the church count for least and are without standing?

Wuest's Paraphrase - Therefore, if you may be having courts [for the adjudication of your private matters], those who are least esteemed and of the most humble station in the local assembly, (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:4 So if you have ordinary lawsuits, do you appoint as judges those who have no standing in the church?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:4 If you have legal disputes about such matters, why go to outside judges who are not respected by the church?

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:4 So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church?

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:4 Therefore, if you have disputes about such matters, appoint as judges even men of little account in the church!

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:4 βιωτικὰ μὲν οὖν κριτήρια ἐὰν ἔχητε, τοὺς ἐξουθενημένους ἐν τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ, τούτους καθίζετε;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:4 of the things of life, indeed, then, if ye may have judgment, those despised in the assembly -- these cause ye to sit;

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:4 If then ye have to judge things pertaining to this life, do ye set them to judge who are of no account in the church?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:4 So if you have cases pertaining to this life, do you select those who have no standing in the church to judge?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:4 If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:4 If you have ordinary cases, then, do you appoint as judges those who have no standing in the church?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:4 If, therefore, you have courts for everyday matters, do you seat as judges people of no standing in the church?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:4 But when you have matters of this life to be judged, you bring them before those who are of no account in the Church!

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:4 When you have cases dealing with this life, why do you allow people whom the church has a low opinion of to be your judges?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:4 If then there are questions to be judged in connection with the things of this life, why do you put them in the hands of those who have no position in the church?

WHY LET SECULAR JUDGES
BE YOUR JUDGE

So if - This is a THIRD CLASS CONDITIONAL sentence, which means potential action. Amplified "If then you do have such cases of everyday life to decide." 

You have law courts dealing with matters of this life - NET = "So if you have ordinary lawsuits." Matters of this life (biotikos) means those things pertaining to ordinary, daily life and living. 

Do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church - NLT- "why go to outside judges who are not respected by the church?y,"  Paul implies that the least of Christians should be more competent in justice than the wisest of pagans. Paul is not dishonoring judges, but simply saying they have no part in the church and do not understand the relationship of one Christian to another as brethren, members of the same family of God.

MacDonald adds "Unsaved judges are not given places of honor or esteem by the local church. They are, of course, respected for the work they are doing in the world, but as far as church matters are concerned they do not have any jurisdiction. Thus Paul is asking the Corinthians:  When matters arise between you requiring the impartial judgment of some third party, do you go outside the confines of the church and set men to judge you who are not recognized by the church for spiritual discernment?" (Ibid)

Spurgeon - For they will be better judges than the best of worldly men. Do you set such people to judge your difficult matters? And if you do not, then why do you go to those who are even worse fitted to give a right decision?

Schreiner - In this verse Paul summons the church to action, though the precise course of action prescribed is debated. The KJV represents one interpretation, in which Paul calls upon social inferiors—those disrespected in the church—to resolve the matter: ‘set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church’. This reading is quite attractive, for once again Paul would be reminding the Corinthians that their pretensions for status are contrary to the cross. According to this reading, those of lower status in the church should adjudicate the issue before the church. It is more likely, however, that Paul asks a question here, which is reflected well by the NIV: do you ask for a ruling from those whose way of life is scorned in the church? This second option is more likely, since what concerns Paul in this paragraph is that the believers are taking their legal cases to unbelievers. The word for those … scorned (exouthenēmenous) is a strong one, and Paul uses it for shock effect. The social elite of the world, before whom the Corinthians act so obsequiously, are ‘despised’ before God. The term used here for unbelievers is rhetorical and hyperbolic, since the intent is to galvanize the church to rethink its ways and to resolve matters internally. (Ibid) 

No account  (1848)(exoutheneo  from ek = an intensifies + outhenéo = bring to naught) is a strong verb which means to despise someone or something on basis that it is worthless or of no value. To consider as nothing. 

Ryrie on appoint them - Better, are you appointing them . . . (expressing irony that believers would prefer to take their cases to unbelievers)? 

1 Corinthians 6:5  I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not among you one wise man who will be able to decide between his brethren,

Amplified -I say this to move you to shame. Can it be that there really is not one man among you who [in action is governed by piety and integrity and] is wise and competent enough to decide [the private grievances, disputes, and quarrels] between members of the brotherhood,

Wuest's Paraphrase - I am saying this to you with a view to arousing your sense of shame. Is it thus, that you do not have one among you who is wise, who will be able to arbitrate between brother and brother? (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to your shame! Is there no one among you wise enough to settle disputes between fellow Christians?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:5 I am saying this to shame you. Isn't there anyone in all the church who is wise enough to decide these issues?

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers,

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to shame you. Is it possible that there is nobody among you wise enough to judge a dispute between believers?

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:5 πρὸς ἐντροπὴν ὑμῖν λέγω. οὕτως οὐκ ἔνι ἐν ὑμῖν οὐδεὶς σοφός, ὃς δυνήσεται διακρῖναι ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ ἀδελφοῦ αὐτοῦ;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:5 I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:5 unto your shame I speak: so there is not among you one wise man, not even one, who shall be able to discern in the midst of his brethren!

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to move you to shame. What, cannot there be found among you one wise man who shall be able to decide between his brethren,

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to your shame! Can it be that there is not one wise person among you who is able to arbitrate between his brothers?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to decide between one believer and another,

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to shame you. Can it be that there is not one among you wise enough to be able to settle a case between brothers?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to make you ashamed of yourselves. Can it really be that it is impossible to find in the community one sensible person capable of deciding questions between brothers,

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:5 You should be ashamed of yourselves! Don't you have at least one wise person who is able to settle disagreements between believers?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to put you to shame. Is there not among you one wise man who may be able to give a decision between his brothers?

  • to your shame: 1Co 4:14 11:14 15:34 
  • there is not among you: 1Co 3:18 1 Cor 4:10 Pr 14:8 Jas 1:5 3:13-18 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

PAUL SHAMES THE
"WISE" CORINTHIANS!

I say this to your shame - Wuest = "I am saying this to you with a view to arousing your sense of shame" This statement (some see it as a question) is calculated to move the Corinthian saints to a state of humiliation. 

Schreiner - If Paul wrote earlier about not shaming them (1 Cor. 4:14), now he informs them that he writes about lawsuits to shame them. In an honour—shame society such a remark would wound deeply, but Paul is audacious enough to say this because he is scandalized by their lawsuits. He continues to reprove the Corinthians with another shaming remark (Ibid)

Shame (1791)(entrope from entrepo = put to shame) state of shame or humiliation as caused by a sense of failure. Only other use 1 Cor 15:34. 

Is it so (houtos) means something like "Has it come to this that,” “is it to such a degree true that?”

That there is not among you one wise (sophos) man who will be able (dunamai - have the inherent capability) to decide between (diakrino - judge between) his brethren - Paul is being sarcastic, tongue in cheek. Why so? What were the Corinthians so proud of in earlier chapters (cf 1 Corinthians 1:18–31+)? Their attainment of sophisticated wisdom (cf 1 Cor 4:18+). Paul is saying in essence "You have all this wisdom in your midst and they could not find even on wise man to judge! Shame on you!" 

Arnold - If a brother has wronged or defrauded you, then go to your elders and ask them to set up a court of law within the church to arbitrate the matter. This would have a phenomenal impact upon our society if Christians settled all their disputes between themselves in such a fashion. It can be documented that the early church did set up courts to arbitrate disputes between Christians. The courts were set up in the early part of the week. It was the elders or some particularly wise man who arbitrated in these sessions. By holding court in the early part of the week, decisions could be rendered before Sunday so that the fellowship of the assembly would not be disrupted and the parties could sit down together at the Lord’s Table. This practice stopped when Constantine made Christianity the official religion in Rome and church and state were wedded. The result was that the church thought they no longer needed to handle their own problems and turned over lawsuits to the state. ( The Case Against Lawsuits)

1 Corinthians 6:6  but brother goes to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?

Amplified -But brother goes to law against brother, and that before [Gentile judges who are] unbelievers [without faith or trust in the Gospel of Christ]?

Wuest's Paraphrase - But brother goes to law with brother, and this before unbelievers. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:6 Instead, does a Christian sue a Christian, and do this before unbelievers?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:6 But instead, one believer sues another-- right in front of unbelievers!

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:6 but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers?

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:6 But instead, one brother goes to law against another--and this in front of unbelievers!

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:6 ἀλλὰ ἀδελφὸς μετὰ ἀδελφοῦ κρίνεται καὶ τοῦτο ἐπὶ ἀπίστων;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:6 But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:6 but brother with brother doth go to be judged, and this before unbelievers!

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:6 but brother goeth to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:6 Instead, believer goes to court against believer, and that before unbelievers!

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:6 But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers!

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:6 but a believer goes to court against a believer-- and before unbelievers at that?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:6 But rather brother goes to court against brother, and that before unbelievers?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:6 and that this is why brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers?

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:6 Instead, one believer goes to court against another believer, and this happens in front of unbelievers.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:6 But a brother who has a cause at law against another takes it before Gentile judges.

  • brother: 1Co 6:1,7 Ge 13:7-9 45:24 Ne 5:8,9 Ps 133:1-3 Ac 7:26 Php 2:14,15 1Jn 2:9-11 3:11-15 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries


"Family Feud" between Christian Brethren in Corinth!

SAINTS SUE BEFORE
SECULAR JUDGES

but - Term of contrast. "Apparently not one such wise man was available, since a Christian brother was going to law against his own brother in Christ." (MacDonald)

brother (adelphos) goes to law (krino) with brother and that before unbelievers? - The Corinthians remind me of the old Television program "Family Feud". This is like having one's family quarrels out in a public place, so that all the lost can see the fleshly behavior of those who should by now be spiritual men (1 Cor 3:1)! What a poor testimony to the lord!  Family matters should have been resolved in the church family!

Guzik - By his actions, Paul showed he was not against all legal action. In Acts 22:25+ and Acts 25:10–11+, he appealed to Roman courts for his rights. However, Paul knew it was wrong when brother goes to law against brother. Paul does not say that Christians should have their own court system to handle criminal law. In Romans 13:3–4 Paul says that it is appropriate for the state to handle criminal cases. Christians should, however, be able to handle civil cases among themselves. “Those in a religious community who will not submit to a proper arbitration, made by persons among themselves, should be expelled from the Church of God.” (Clarke)

Unbelievers (571)(apistos from a = without + pistos = believing, faithful) means lacking in faith, without faith, disbelieving, unbelieving - in this context apistos is one who does not believe the Good News about Jesus Christ (1Ti 5:8, Titus 1:15, Rev 21:8) Uses in the letters to the Corinthians -  1 Co. 6:6; 1 Co. 7:12; 1 Co. 7:13; 1 Co. 7:14; 1 Co. 7:15; 1 Co. 10:27; 1 Co. 14:22; 1 Co. 14:23; 1 Co. 14:24; 2 Co. 4:4; 2 Co. 6:14; 2 Co. 6:15

1 Corinthians 6:7  Actually, then, it is already a defeat for you, that you have lawsuits with one another. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded?

Amplified - Why, the very fact of your having lawsuits with one another at all is a defect (a defeat, an evidence of positive moral loss for you). Why not rather let yourselves suffer wrong and be deprived of what is your due? Why not rather be cheated (defrauded and robbed)?

Wuest's Paraphrase - Nay! It is already a total [moral] defeat for you, having lawsuits with one another. Why do you not permit yourselves rather to be wronged? Why do you not permit yourselves rather to be defrauded? (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:7 The fact that you have lawsuits among yourselves demonstrates that you have already been defeated. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be cheated?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:7 Even to have such lawsuits with one another is a defeat for you. Why not just accept the injustice and leave it at that? Why not let yourselves be cheated?

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:7 To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded?

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:7 The very fact that you have lawsuits among you means you have been completely defeated already. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be cheated?

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:7 ἤδη μὲν [οὖν] ὅλως ἥττημα ὑμῖν ἐστιν ὅτι κρίματα ἔχετε μεθ᾽ ἑαυτῶν. διὰ τί οὐχὶ μᾶλλον ἀδικεῖσθε; διὰ τί οὐχὶ μᾶλλον ἀποστερεῖσθε;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:7 Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:7 Already, indeed, then, there is altogether a fault among you, that ye have judgments with one another; wherefore do ye not rather suffer injustice? wherefore be ye not rather defrauded?

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:7 Nay, already it is altogether a defect in you, that ye have lawsuits one with another. Why not rather take wrong? why not rather be defrauded?

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:7 Therefore, to have legal disputes against one another is already a moral failure for you. Why not rather put up with injustice? Why not rather be cheated?

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:7 Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:7 In fact, to have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:7 Now indeed (then) it is, in any case, a failure on your part that you have lawsuits against one another. Why not rather put up with injustice? Why not rather let yourselves be cheated?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:7 No; it is a fault in you, by itself, that one of you should go to law against another at all: why do you not prefer to suffer injustice, why not prefer to be defrauded?

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:7 You are already totally defeated because you have lawsuits against each other. Why don't you accept the fact that you have been wronged? Why don't you accept that you have been cheated?

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:7 More than this, it is not to your credit to have causes at law with one another at all. Why not put up with wrong? why not undergo loss?

  • Actually, then, it is already a defeat : Pr 2:5,8-10 Ho 10:2 Jas 4:1-3 
  • Why not rather Pr 20:22 Mt 5:39-41 Lu 6:29 Ro 12:17-19 1Th 5:15 1Pe 2:19-23 1Pe 3:9 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

A CALL TO DIE
TO SELF

Actually, then, it is already - Wuest = "Nay! It is already a total [moral] defeat for you" Young's Literal = "Already, indeed, then, there is altogether a fault (defeat) among you" -- "This phrase (ēdē men oun) implies that this church had already been doing these very things. They were already defeated!" (Utley)

Robertson - “Indeed therefore there is to you already (to begin with, [ēdē], before any question of courts) wholly defeat."

A defeat (hēttama) for you, that you (present tense - continually, active voice - willfully) have lawsuits (krima) with one another - Amplified = "Why, the very fact of your having lawsuits with one another at all is a defect (a defeat, an evidence of positive moral loss for you)." The word defeat (hettema) was used of a judicial defeat in court (Schlatter); here used of moral and spiritual defeat. One another here is the antithesis of what it should have been if they had (enabled by the Spirit) obeyed the One Another' Commands of Scripture

Robertson - [Nikē] was victory and [hēttama from hetton = less] defeat with the Greeks. It is defeat for Christians to have lawsuits (κριματα [krimata], usually decrees or judgments) with one another. This was proof of the failure of love and forgiveness (Col. 3:13+).

Schreiner comments on the irony in this passage - People engage in lawsuits to win, to be vindicated and to have their rights reasserted. But the very fact that the Corinthians have taken their cases to unbelievers, that they have gone to court, is ‘an utter failure’ (NKJV). Or, as the NIV felicitously puts it: "you have been completely defeated already." The believers were looking for a victory [Nikē]  in court, but Paul informs them that the very presence of lawsuits signals a stunning defeat [hēttama] and reversal. (Ibid)

Guzik - The Corinthians were just like modern Americans: addicted to their own “rights.” But in clinging to their rights so fiercely, they had already shown utter failure. Just by going to court against your brother, you already lose....There is no place for dishonest dealing by Christians; how much less place is there for dishonest dealing among Christians! Many have rejected the things of God and the fellowship of the saints because of dishonesty and cheating among Christians.

Arnold - To have an unbelieving judge arbitrate for two Christians is a defeat regardless of the verdict. No matter who wins the lawsuit, the cause of Christ suffers. People are turned off when they see believers fighting each other in an open, aggressive, hostile way. What lawsuits among Christians means to the watching world is that Christians are no better off than non-Christians. What have we to offer the unsaved world if we have to get unbelievers to settle our disputes?  For so many pastors and Christians it is a new revelation to learn that Christians are not to go to secular court against each other. They don’t understand that the early church never went to the secular courts to settle problems. 

Hodge - It was a great evil that they had such lawsuits. It would be better to submit to injustice

Ryrie on why it was a defeat - Going to court against a brother brings defeat (because greed or vengeance win) before the case is even heard. It is better to be wronged and take a loss. 

Why not rather be wronged (adikeo)? Why not rather be defrauded?  Amplified - "Why not rather let yourselves suffer wrong and be deprived of what is your due? Why not rather be cheated (defrauded and robbed)?" NLT - Why not just accept the injustice and leave it at that? Why not let yourselves be cheated?  Be wronged and be defrauded are both in the present tense, continually be wronged and defrauded! Woe! You had better be Spirit filled to obey this instruction! 

Robertson on be wronged...be defrauded - Better undergo wrong yourself than suffer defeat in the matter of love and forgiveness of a brother. (be defrauded =) Permissive middle again like [adikeisthe - be wronged]. Allow yourselves to be robbed (old verb to deprive, to rob) rather than have a lawsuit! 

Be wronged (injured, offended, treated unjustly) (91) see adikeo 

Defrauded) (91)(apostereo from apó = from + steréō = to deprive) means to be or become deprived of something by deceit, deception, trickery.  To wrong. To defraud. (1) active, as obtaining something by deceiving another - deprive, defraud, steal (1Cor 6.8); figuratively, of marital rights withhold, deprive (1Cor  7.5); (2) passive permit oneself to be defrauded; let oneself be robbed (1Cor 6.7).  BDAG - (1) to cause another to suffer loss by taking away through illicit means, rob, steal, despoil, defraud  (2) 2. to prevent someone from having the benefit of someth. (1 Cor 7:5) . Zodhiates - In the mid., aposteréomai, to suffer oneself to be defrauded, as spoken of persons (1 Cor. 6:7); to be kept back by fraud, as spoken of a thing (James 5:4, wages held back by fraud; Sept.: Deut. 24:16; Mal. 3:5). The pass. joined with a gen., to be destitute of, devoid of (1 Tim. 6:5, “defrauding themselves” [a.t.], i.e., “destitute of the truth” [cf. 1 Cor. 7:5 in respect to conjugal intercourse]).

Used 5x in NT - Mk. 10:19; 1 Co. 6:7; 1 Co. 6:8; 1 Co. 7:5; 1 Ti 6:5 Used in the Septuagint in Ex 21:10, Mal 3:5. 

Arnold - Deprive yourself of your right when wronged. When you consider the damage and injury that may be done to the body of Christ, you may decide to drop the lawsuit altogether. A Christian should voluntarily take wrong, even if he is right, rather than go to court (outside the church) against a brother. The Christian should voluntarily take wrong and say, "I leave it all with God. I'm not going to say anything about it. If they wrong me, You understand, 0 God.” Christians are to give way to any aggressive, self-centered attitudes, insisting upon their own rights at all cost.  Without complaint, gossiping, accusations or bitter spirit, an offended brother is to follow the example of Christ who, when wronged, gave up His rights, committing Himself to God who judges righteously. As Christians, we should never forget we are called to demonstrate a different lifestyle before the world, one in which we are ready to surrender our personal rights for the cause we serve. (THOUGHT - ONLY A SPIRIT FILLED AND EMPOWERED BELIEVER COULD TAKE THIS CHRIST-LIKE APPROACH!)

Zodhiates - In trying to redress the wrong, Paul points out that our own interests should not be the major consideration. He asks, "Why do you not rather take wrong? Why do you not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded?". The Greek word is adikeísthe, meaning "to suffer injustice" or "to be treated unjustly." Paul says that we must allow ourselves to suffer an injustice rather than cause someone else to become irreconcilable to virtue or to bring reproach upon the name of Jesus Christ. Our first concern in dealing with another's wrongdoing should be the advancement of God's kingdom and not our own personal interests.

Henry Morris - This principle is as relevant today as in Paul's days. Christians ought to love one another, not sue one another. Christians, like unbelievers, do unfortunately get into mundane arguments and disagreements with each other. However, they should be able to settle such arguments amicably as Christian brothers. If not, they should be willing to accept Christian mediation from objective fellow-Christians. Failing this, the more mature Christian should be willing simply to yield to the other, even if he is legally in the right. Above all, they should not take the matter to court, as this damages the testimony of the whole church.

ILLUSTRATION - Gandhi wrote - "I believe in the teachings of Christ, but you on the other side of the world do not, I read the Bible faithfully and see little in Christendom that those who profess faith pretend to see. The Christians above all others are seeking after wealth. Their aim is to be rich at the expense of their neighbors. They come among aliens to exploit them for their own good and cheat them to do so. Their prosperity is far more essential to them than the life, liberty, and happiness of others.The Christians are the most warlike people." 

1 Corinthians 6:8  On the contrary, you yourselves wrong and defraud. You do this even to your brethren.

Amplified - But [instead it is you] yourselves who wrong and defraud, and that even your own brethren [by so treating them]!

Wuest's Paraphrase - Why do you not permit yourselves rather to be defrauded? But, as for yourselves, you are committing wrong, and you are defrauding, and doing this to brethren. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:8 But you yourselves wrong and cheat, and you do this to your brothers and sisters!

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:8 Instead, you yourselves are the ones who do wrong and cheat even your fellow believers.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:8 But you yourselves wrong and defraud-- even your own brothers!

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:8 Instead, you yourselves cheat and do wrong, and you do this to your brothers.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:8 ἀλλὰ ὑμεῖς ἀδικεῖτε καὶ ἀποστερεῖτε, καὶ τοῦτο ἀδελφούς.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:8 Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:8 but ye -- ye do injustice, and ye defraud, and these -- brethren!

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:8 Nay, but ye yourselves do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:8 Instead, you act unjustly and cheat-- and you do this to believers!

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:8 No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren!

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:8 But you yourselves wrong and defraud-- and believers at that.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:8 Instead, you inflict injustice and cheat, and this to brothers.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:8 And here you are, doing the injustice and the defrauding, and to your own brothers.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:8 Instead, you do wrong and cheat, and you do this to other believers.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:8 So far from doing this, you yourselves do wrong and take your brothers' property.

  • Lev 19:13 Mic 2:2 Mal 3:5 *marg: Mk 10:19 Col 3:25 1Th 4:6 Jas 5:4 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passage:

Leviticus 19:13+  ‘You shall not oppress your neighbor, nor rob him. The wages of a hired man are not to remain with you all night until morning.

Malachi 3:5+  “Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress (NET = "exploit"; Lxx = same verb used here - apostereo) the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien and do not fear Me,” says the LORD of hosts.

Micah 2:2+ They covet fields and then seize them, And houses, and take them away. They rob a man and his house, A man and his inheritance. 

DEFRAUDING ONE'S 
BRETHREN!

On the contrary - (alla - strong adversative) - Instead of dying to self, they took the opposite stance (indulging self) which was even more deplorable.

You (emphatic!) yourselves wrong (adikeoand defraud (apostereo). You do this even to your brethren - Both wrong and defraud are in the present tense indicating this actually an ongoing problem in the saints at Corinth who were acting more like the "aint's" of the world!!! NLT = "But instead, you yourselves are the ones who do wrong and cheat even your own Christian brothers and sisters." Sadly instead of submitting to wrong or suffering wrong, they were committing wrong! Instead of submitting to being defrauded, they were willfully (active voice) continually seeking to defraud their brothers! What a witness to the world when acted out in front of non-believers! When the lost world sees our "dirty laundry" they usually unleash unmerciful mocking and scorn on our Savior Jesus Christ (for He is the Head of the Church when she is impugned or disparaged)  As discussed earlier, we should not be surprised by this statement because not only were the factions and divisions in the church (1 Cor 1:10+)  in 1 Cor 3:3+ Paul described them as "still fleshly (DOMINATED BY THE FLESH RATHER THAN THE HOLY SPIRIT). For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men?." Fleshly men would have a difficult time accepting being wronged and defrauded as Paul advised in 1 Cor 6:7! 

Utley on wrong and defraud - These are two PRESENT PASSIVE INDICATIVES. Believers’ individual rights are not as important as the reputation and mission of the church (AKA "THE REPUTATION OF CHRIST!"). Does any Christian win if the Kingdom loses? (Utley goes on to add an interesting comment) "The western church, with its emphasis on the individual, has skewed the gospel. We have missed its continual emphasis on the whole, the corporate, the body! We see Christianity as something for us individually instead of something for the gospel. We are saved (individually) to serve the body (cf. 1 Cor. 12:7). Believers must develop a NT world view, see the world through God’s eyes and corporate, global purposes." 

Here is what they should have been doing...

Romans 12:17+  Never pay back (present tense - just try to do this without depending on the Holy Spirit!)  evil for evil to anyone. Respect (present tense) what is right in the sight of all men.

1 Thessalonians 5:15+ See (present imperative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always seek after (present imperative) that which is good for one another and for all people.

Matthew 5:39+  “But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn (aorist imperative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) the other to him also.

Jack Arnold - These carnal Corinthians were not only not ready to suffer wrong, but Paul accused them of actively doing wrong to others. They were doing wrong to their brothers. Apparently they were not just going to court for damages but to make money. Greed became a factor. Christians should love all men but there is a special love for those who are brothers and sisters in Christ. This does not mean that it is alright to wrong people as long as they are not Christians. Paul is not saying we should take the shirt off an unbeliever’s back, but that we should show love for our Christian brothers and sisters....Notice carefully it nowhere says in this passage that a Christian is commanded not to go to a secular court against his brother. It is discouraged. It is belittled. It is made very clear it is not a wise course of action. Whatever else this teaches, it says that Christians are go to the church courts first before the secular route is even considered. If this were done, 95% of all disputes among Christians would be settled.

Schreiner offers these theological insights on 1 Cor 6:1-8 - For Paul, theology should lead to ethics: to a new way of life, one that is pleasing to God. Believers belong to the same kinship group—they are family—and it is intolerable to conceive of mistreating fellow family members. Far better to follow the way of Jesus and to surrender one’s rights for the sake of other believers. Paul is particularly concerned about the witness before the world, for unbelievers will see the truth of the gospel when believers love one another (John 13:34–35), and engaging in litigation against one another blatantly contradicts the call to sacrificial love. (Ibid) 

Wrong (injure, do harm, offend, treat unjustly) (91adikeo from  adikos = unjust) means do wrong Col 3:25; the evildoer Rev 22:11. Be in the wrong Acts 25:11. Do wrong to someone, cheat someone Mt 20:13; Ac 7:26; Gal 4:12; 2 Pt 2:13. Injure, harm, damage, spoil Rev 9:4, 10, 19; if he has caused you any loss Philemon 1:18. In classical Greek literature, adikeō’s usage includes “to do wrong,” “to injure or harm,” “to violate law or custom,” “to be in the wrong,” and “to be mistaken. Uses in the Corinthians letters - 1 Co. 6:7; 1 Co. 6:8; 2 Co. 7:2; 2 Co. 7:12; 

ILLUSTRATION (NEGATIVE) - A Christian friend of mine had a multimillion dollar business. One of his lesser partners who was also a professing Christian sought to steal the business from my friend. Through various manipulations, he stole the name of the company, took away a large number of employees, ran off good business and set up a competing company of his own in the same city. My friend lost close to a million dollars through it all which almost caused him to go bankrupt. These two Christians went to the same church. The whole situation was taken before the elders.  They heard the whole situation and the elders decided to do nothing. They told my friend just to suck it up and be willing to be cheated rather than go to the secular court. Easy to say if it is not your million dollars. This is one time I think a Christian had a right to take another Christian to the secular courts. Why? Because the church court did nothing. My friend lives in two realms. He is a citizen of heaven and citizen of the state. He may use the state if the church does nothing about his situation. However, if the church meets and makes a decision to arbitrate, then that decision is binding and there is no need to go to the secular courts.

ILLUSTRATION (POSITIVE) -  You know, I can say that this is a - a good thing, I guess. Maybe it’s good only in the sense that I’m ignorant, but the six-and-a-half years that I’ve been here, we have never had in our congregation that I know of a lawsuit that went into public courts, and I’m thankful to the Lord for that. None should, and we are ready and able and aware and set to be able to handle those kinds of problems if they come up within the church. Now, we have had occasion for a lawsuit between a Christian here and a Christian in another congregation. We arbitrated it by taking elders from their congregation, elders from ours, meeting together in private, praying over it, seeking the mind of the Holy Spirit, and deciding it, and it never got out of the - of the community of believers, and that’s exactly what the Bible says to do. I was talking to Sam Ericsson earlier this morning, who is an attorney and chairman of our board of elders, and he was saying that in the six years or so that’s he’s been involved in this, in the literally dozens and dozens and dozens and dozens of cases that he handles as an attorney, every time, he says 90 percent of the time, he can convince Christians who start this procedure in all the business that he does, and it’s - much of it is outside our community, our congregation, but he can convince Christians 90 percent of the time to follow the biblical pattern. And in every case, he says, without exception, they have been blessed. He said, “On the other hand, every single time I have ever seen them disobey Scripture, the result has been terrible. They are bitter. They are hateful. No matter what happens, they lose in the end. They - they don’t like their attorneys. They don’t like the way things were handled. They’re not happy with their money. They have a guilty conscience,” et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. That’s confirmation right from the people who know. And it simply says this, people. Do it God’s way and He blesses. I’d rather have God’s blessing than money, wouldn’t you? I’d rather not even get to court and have the blessing of God than try to fight for something that would be in violation of His principles. So we’ve endeavored to do this, and we’ve disposed of at least one case. I was in on that as one of the arbitrators, and it was an exciting thing to be able to settle it in the family. (Sermon from John MacArthur)

1 Corinthians 6:9  Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals,

Amplified  Do you not know that the unrighteous and the wrongdoers will not inherit or have any share in the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived (misled): neither the impure and immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor those who participate in homosexuality,

Wuest's Paraphrase - Or do you not know that unrighteous individuals will not inherit God’s kingdom? Stop being deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor those who are of a voluptuous nature, given to the gratification of sensual, immoral appetites, neither men who are guilty of sexual intercourse with members of their own sex,  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! The sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, passive homosexual partners, practicing homosexuals,

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:9 Don't you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don't fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality,

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:9 ἢ οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι ἄδικοι θεοῦ βασιλείαν οὐ κληρονομήσουσιν; μὴ πλανᾶσθε· οὔτε πόρνοι οὔτε εἰδωλολάτραι οὔτε μοιχοὶ οὔτε μαλακοὶ οὔτε ἀρσενοκοῖται

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:9 have ye not known that the unrighteous the reign of God shall not inherit? be not led astray; neither whoremongers, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor sodomites,

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:9 Or know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with men,

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:9 Don't you know that the unjust will not inherit God's kingdom? Do not be deceived: No sexually immoral people, idolaters, adulterers, or any kind of homosexual,

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! Fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, male prostitutes, sodomites,

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor practicing homosexuals

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not realise that people who do evil will never inherit the kingdom of God? Make no mistake -- the sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, the self-indulgent, sodomites,

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:9 Don't you know that wicked people won't inherit the kingdom of God? Stop deceiving yourselves! People who continue to commit sexual sins, who worship false gods, those who commit adultery, homosexuals,

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:9 Have you not knowledge that evil-doers will have no part in the kingdom of God? Have no false ideas about this: no one who goes after the desires of the flesh, or gives worship to images, or is untrue when married, or is less than a man, or makes a wrong use of men,

  • do you not know: 1Co 6:2,3,15,16,19 3:16 9:24 
  • unrighteous Ex 23:1 Lev 19:15,35,36 De 25:13-16 Pr 11:1 22:8 Isa 10:1,2 Isa 55:7 Zec 5:3 Ac 24:25 Ro 1:18 1Ti 1:9 
  • will not inherit the kingdom of God 1Co 6:10 15:50 Mt 19:29 25:34 Ga 5:21 
  • neither fornicators: 1Co 5:1,10 Ga 5:19-21 Eph 5:4,5 1Ti 1:9 Heb 12:14,16 13:4 Rev 21:8 Rev 22:15 
  • nor homosexuals: Ge 19:5 Lev 18:22 20:13 De 22:5 23:17 Jud 19:22 Ro 1:26,27 1Ti 1:10 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages:

Galatians 5:19-21+ Now the deeds of the flesh are evident (NOT SUBTLE!), which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice (present tense =  their continual lifestyle, their unabated practice) such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.


"KINGDOM OF GOD" PAST, PRESENT, FUTURE
FROM BIBLE.ORG

UNRIGHTEOUS DO NOT
ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD

OR (e) - BDAG says one use of this particle (e) is "to introduce and to add rhetorical questions (Just., D 2, 4 al.; Ath. 8:3 al.) "OR do you suppose that?" Mt 26:53., "OR is God the God of the Judeans alone?" Ro 3:29. = "OR do you not know?" (Ro 6:3; 7:1_;  also (AS IN OUR PASSAGE) "e ouk oidate" = "OR do you not know?" =  1 Cor 6:9, 16, 19; cp. 1 Cor 10:22;  2 Cor 11:7."  Paul is adding one of the most stunning rhetorical questions in all of Scripture! 

So what is the "OR" linking? What has Paul just said about the practice of the saints at Corinth (1 Cor 6:8)? They were continually doing wrong and cheating (defrauding) their own spiritual brothers! Unbelievable fleshly behavior! So Paul wants to bring them back to the Cross of Christ for that is where we receive the power of God (dispensed by the Spirit of God) (1 Cor 1:18+) to live an unleavened life (1 Cor 5:7-8+), a new life in Christ (2 Cor 5:17+), a transformed supernatural life that is the antithesis of fleshly, selfish, natural worldly life they had been groveling in! And so he begins with a poignant, pithy reminder of who they were outside of Christ and the power of the Cross (v9-10) and then he ascends the hill of Calvary to remind them of the work of amazing grace they each had experienced when the believed on Christ and He became their life (Col 3:4+) and bestowed on them the priceless, perpetual possession of citizenship in the Kingdom of God (cf Jn 3:3+, Php 3:20-21+, 1 Peter 1:3-5+). 

How does this section mesh with the overall context? Stedman: What ties this section with that which has gone before is found in the word in Verse 8, "But you yourselves wrong (adikeo)," and the word adikos in Verse 9, "Do you not know that the unrighteous (adikos) will not inherit the kingdom of God?" Those are the same basic root words. What Paul is really saying is, "Look, when you are so aggressive in defense of your own rights that you take another brother to law before a secular court, you are wronging that brother. Even though you may be right in your cause, you are wronging your brother, and that wronging, that unjust action, gives rise to the question, 'Have you yourself ever been justified before God?'" That is what Paul is saying. To treat another unjustly makes one ask if you have ever been justified, and he says the unjustified, the unrighteous, the unregenerate cannot inherit the kingdom of God if they are committed to these things that he lists as a lifestyle. Now he surely does not mean that those who have been involved in these things cannot be saved, for he goes on to say, "such were some of you"; they have come out of it. But what he is saying, very clearly, is that these things cannot be continued as a lifestyle for Christians. Conversion makes a visible difference, and if it does not, there is room to question whether there has ever been a conversion. (The Wrong Way To Right Wrongs)

Do you not know - This is a characteristic phrase used repeatedly by Paul to refer to things the believers should have known, things he had previously taught them, but which they apparently (because of their actions and attitudes) had forgotten or chosen to ignore.

That the unrighteous (adikos, cf use in 1 Cor 6:1+) will not inherit (kleronomeo) the kingdom of God- Paul uses this phrase Do you not know (repeatedly in this letter)  to remind them what they should have known because they had been previously taught by him and then by Apollos, two of the greatest teachers in the history of the church! The Corinthians had been taught that those who practice unrighteousness will earn the wages of sin which is eternal death (Ro 6:23+). Of course believers still possess the fallen flesh (Ro 7:18+, cf Gal 5:17, 16+) and so we can and do still (sadly) commit these sins. However these sins do not characterize their (OUR) lives as an unbroken pattern. When these sins are one's lifestyle, morning to evening, 24/7, then this "rotten fruit" (cf Gal 5:19-21+, Mt 7:17-20+) demonstrates that the person is not a citizen of the Kingdom of God. True believers who do sin are miserable creatures to be around, hate their sin and continually seek to gain and walk in victory over sin by learning to jettison self-effort and relying wholly on the power of the Holy Spirit. In one of the most important passages in Scripture regarding how the believer is to experience victory over the sin that so easily entangles him, Paul wrote these powerful words...

if you are (present tense - continually, habitually) living according to the flesh, you must die (NET, ESV, NLT, NIV = "YOU WILL DIE"); but if by the Spirit you are putting to death (present tense, active voice = continually, habitually killing sin and) the deeds of the body, you will live, 14 For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.. (Romans 8:13, 14+)

Ray Stedman offers an interesting illustration of the spiritual war involving the evil flesh and the Spirit of God - "At the close of World War II, a picture appeared in a magazine showing a soldier in conflict with a tank. I remember the picture vividly because it was in color and it showed a tremendously huge army tank bearing down on the tiny figure of the soldier, about to crush him. How frightened he was, as this massive tank was about to overwhelm him. The picture was designed to show the odds involved when a foot soldier with a rifle faced a tank. Then it showed what happened to that soldier's odds when the bazooka (a rocket launcher) was invented. It showed him standing with a bazooka in his hands. It was the same soldier, but he had a different weapon. The next picture showed the tank, shrunken in size, with the soldier at least equal in size, if not a little larger. This is what Paul is saying to us. WITHOUT THE POWER OF GOD released in our lives, we are like an infantry soldier in the presence of a tank. We cannot do a thing. It is too much for us. But, by trust in the power of the living God at work in us, we can rise up in the FACE OF TEMPTATION, and, armed with the BAZOOKA OF THE SPIRIT, we can say, "YES" to the Spirit and "NO" to the flesh -- and He will make it stick! We can turn and begin to live as God intended us to live." (Bolding added) (Note that the order is not by accident but is critical - First = "Yes" to the Spirit. Then = "No" to the flesh. Be careful not to reverse the order or you may find the "tank" runs you over!)

Charles Hodge writes Paul "solemnly assures them that the unjust or rapacious or corrupt will not inherit the Kingdom of God." 

Phrase - Do you not know  Gen. 44:15; Jdg. 15:11; 2 Sam. 2:26; 2 Sam. 3:38; 2 Chr. 13:5; 2 Chr. 32:13; Isa. 40:21; Isa. 40:28; Ezek. 17:12; Zech. 4:5; Zech. 4:13; Jn. 19:10; Rom. 6:3; Rom. 6:16; Rom. 7:1; Rom. 11:2; 1 Co. 3:16; 1 Co. 5:6; 1 Co. 6:2; 1 Co. 6:3; 1 Co. 6:9; 1 Co. 6:15; 1 Co. 6:16; 1 Co. 6:19; 1 Co. 9:13; 1 Co. 9:24; Jas. 4:4

We do not inherit the Kingdom of God by refraining from sin (WHICH OF COURSE WE ARE TO DO), but we prove that we are in the Kingdom of God and on our way to His Kingdom in Heaven  by the godly lives that we live, lives only possible by grace and the Spirit, for as Paul reminded the Galatians "Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?" (Gal 3:3+)

Kingdom of God - The OT taught again and again that the kingdom of God is a righteous kingdom (Ps 45:6,7), and Jesus affirmed it (Mt 6:33). In [1 Cor 4:20] the Kingdom of God is described as present, but in this verse and 1 Cor 15:50 it refers to the future Kingdom.  The KINGDOM OF GOD is the spiritual sphere of salvation where God rules as king over all who belong to Him by faith (Mt 5:3, 10). All believers are in that spiritual kingdom, yet are waiting to enter into the full inheritance of it in the age to come. 

Will inherit (2816) see below on kleronomeo

Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals - Do not be deceived is a present imperative with a negative  (see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) which means stop being deceived. The Corinthians were continually wronging and defrauding their brethren (1 Cor 6:8) and in so doing were in effect continually being deceived by Sin (deceived is passive voice indicating a power working on them from without) (see Hebrew 3:13+ and topic Deceitfulness of Sin) It would seem that there were some in the Corinthian assembly who have professed Christianity as a system of doctrine, but not as a rule of life. The apostle warns that this is a fatal mistake. No one who can allow themselves to continually indulge in sin and thing they are going to Heaven This passage proves that “Paul and James are in basic agreement. Both affirm that genuine faith produces good works (cf. Ep 2:8-9, 10+), and that the absence of good works indicates the lack of faith (cf. Jas 2:14-26+).” Stop being continually led astray by their specious arguments and rationalizations to cover up sin as animal behavior. One cannot wantonly sin (lifestyle) and  pretend to call themselves a "Christian", a new creature in Christ (2 Co 5:17+). Profession is not possession (Titus 1:16+). 

John has some sobering words regarding living an unabated lifestyle of sin

Everyone who practices sin also (present tense - continually) practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that He (Jesus) appeared in order to take away sins (cf 2 Ti 1:10+, Titus 2:11-14+ = "to redeem us from every lawless deed,"); and in Him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in Him (present tense - continually) sins; no one who (present tense - continually) sins has seen Him or knows Him. 7 Little children, make sure no one deceives you (same verb as in 1 Cor 6:9 planao in present imperative with a negative); the one who (present tense - continually) practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; 8 the one who (present tense - continually) practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. 9 No one who is born of God (present tense - continually) practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God (BELOVED READ THAT LAST VERSE AGAIN - JOHN COULD NOT HAVE BEEN ANY CLEARER!). (1 John 3:4-9+)

Comment - Be aware that some well known commentators teach that John is not describing unbelievers but believers who had made a profession of faith in Christ, and the then went the rest of their life living in sin, without evidence of either holiness or fruit (which is completely counter to the lives of those who have a holy power source within them, the Holy Spirit)! Do not be deceived by this dangerous teaching. If you made a profession of faith (say at a youth camp) and thereafter experienced no change whatsoever in your patterns of behavior (you continued living unabated in a worldly manner)

Jesus gave a somber warning to all who continue to practice sin and think they will go to Heaven declaring in Mt 7:21-23+.

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who (present tense - continually) does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. ("DOING" GOD'S WILL DOES NOT SAVE US, BUT IT IS STRONG EVIDENCE WE ARE TRULY SAVED) 22 “MANY will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never (STRONG NEGATIVE, NEVER AT ANY TIME) knew you; DEPART (aorist imperative) FROM ME, YOU WHO (present tense - continually) PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’

Be deceived (be misled, be led astray)(4105)(planao from plane which describes "a wandering" and gives us our English word "planet") means literally made to wander and so to go (active sense) or be led (passive sense as of sheep in Mt 18:12-13) astray. Note that in this passage planao is in the passive voice which indicates an outside force or influence (e.g., the unregenerate heart in unbelievers in this context aka Sin) is causing the deception that leads one down the wrong path. Scripture teaches us that various things or classes of people can deceive a person including the following…

  • Signssorcerypretenders coming in Jesus' name (Mt 24:4, 5, Mark 13:5, 6, Luke 21:8),
  • False teachers (1 Jn 2:26, 3:7),
  • False Christs and false prophets (Mt 24:11,24, see note on Jezebel the false prophetess Re 2:20-note),
  • Not understanding the Scriptures or the power of God (Mt 22:29, Mark 12:24),
  • One's own self (evil flesh) ("self deception" 1Co 6:9, 1Co 15:33, Gal 6:7, Titus 3:3-note1 John 1:8)
  • One's heart (synonymous with evil flesh - Hebrews 3:10-note)
  • Evil men and imposters (2Ti 3:13-note),
  • The devil (Rev 12:9-note, Rev 20:3-note; Re 20:8-note;Re 20:10-note),Rev 20:3; 20:8; 20:10),
  • Babylon (Revelation 18:23-note)
  • The Antichrist's false prophet (Rev 13:14-note, Re 19:20-note)

Henry: "Men are very much inclined to flatter themselves that God is such a one as themselves, and that they may live in sin and yet die in Christ, may lead the life of the devil’s children and yet go to heaven with the children of God. But this is all a gross cheat. Note, It is very much the concern of mankind that they do not cheat themselves in the matters of their souls. We cannot hope to sow to the flesh and yet reap everlasting life."

Paul is not saying that a single infraction or even a "season" of sin will cause a person to lose his salvation, for one who is truly born again cannot be "unborn!". He is saying that people who continue to lead a life of sin, who are habitual thieves, who intentionally go on committing one or more of the four enumerated varieties of sexual immorality, who refuse to give up the other egregious sins named, show by their behavior that they are not part of God’s people (cp 1 Jn 3:9+). Mere mental assent to doctrines or to the fact of Yeshua’s Messiahship is not sufficient for salvation, for “faith without works is dead.” (Jas 2:26+). 

Related Resources: 

Jewish NT commentary: "The idea that a person can profess belief in...Yeshua and still highhandedly go on sinning is repugnant to the writers of Scripture. Overly easygoing congregations bring shame on the Messianic Community by soft pedaling the need for believers to change their lifestyles. Such congregations produce complacent pseudo-believers. Some take advantage of the notion that God is gradually changing them, thereby justifying continued indulgence in their sins. God, who has made his will clear, has provided through the power of the Lord Yeshua the Messiah and the Spirit of our God everything needed to overcome known grievous sins like the ones named in these verses. We are not to presume on God’s patience (Ro 2:3-6)."

Charles Hodge: "The tendency to divorce religion from morality has manifested itself in all ages of the world and under all forms of religion. The pagan, the Jew, the Muslim, the nominal Christian have all been exact in the performance of religious services and zealous in the assertion and defense of what they regard as religious truth, even while unrestrained in the indulgence of every evil passion. This arises from looking upon religion as an outward service and God as a being to be feared and propitiated, but not to be loved and obeyed. According to the Gospel, all moral duties are religious services; and piety is the conformity of the soul to the image and will of God. So, to be religious and yet immoral is, according to the Christian system, as palpable a contradiction as to be good and wicked. In the Bible, believers are often called heirs. Their inheritance is a kingdom—the kingdom that God has established and that is to be consummated in heaven (Lu12:32; Mt25:34; etc.). From this inheritance all the immoral will be excluded, no matter how zealously they may profess the truth or how assiduously they may perform religious services. Let it also be remembered that immorality, according to the Bible, does not consist exclusively in outward sins, but also in sins of the heart such as greed, malice, envy, pride, and such like (Ga5:19-21). No wonder that the disciples, on a certain occasion, asked their Master, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” or that the Lord answered them by saying, “Small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Lu13:23; Mt7:14).

MacArthur: The application to believers is clear. “Why, then,” Paul asks the Corinthians, “do you keep living like the unsaved, the unrighteous? Why do you keep falling into the ways of your old life, the life from which Christ has saved you? Why are you following the old standards, and having the old selfish, ungodly motives? You are to be separated from the world’s ways, not following them. And specifically, why are you taking your problems to the world’s courts?” A believer is a new creation (2Co 5:17), with a new inner person-hood made after God’s own person (2 Pe 1:4+), and there is no longer unbroken unrighteousness. But the flesh can become dominant in the disobedient Christian, so that he may take on the appearance of an unbeliever (cf 1 Cor 3:1-3+)."

Neither fornicators, (Heb 13:4, Rev 21:7-8; Rev 22:14-15) - There was a great deal of sexual laxity in the cesspool called Corinth. It was a permissive society with a depraved philosophy similar to America where sex is a normal physical function, so why not use it as you please? Paul pointed out that God created sex when He made the first man and woman, and therefore He has the right to tell us how to use it. The Bible is the “owner’s manual” and it must be obeyed. God condemns sexual sins; Paul named some of them in 1Co 6:9. In that day, idolatry and sensuality went together. In 1Co 6:10, Paul pointed his finger at the members guilty of sins of the spirit, those suing each other because of their covetous attitude.

Fornicators (4205)(pornos from pernáo = sell [as those who sell their bodies for lust] in turn from peráō = to pass thru, as a merchant would do, passing thru and then coming to mean to sell) (see also study of related word porneia) means a fornicator, one who is sexually immoral or who commits sexual immorality. Pornos originally meant a "male prostitute" but came to be used in the universal meaning of "fornicator" or one who engages in sexual immorality, whether a man or a woman. A pornos in secular Greece was a person who prostituted themselves for gain. The KJV translates pornos as “whoremonger”, which describes one who consorts with whores (a lecher). One can carry on the life of a "whoremonger" in "private" on the internet's plethora of sleazy porn sites, in filthy magazines at the newsstand (or even at the checkout stand at the grocery store!), or at the movies (unfortunately even PG Rated can be contaminated with pornos). In our local cable listings in Austin, Texas (Summer, 2008) there are some 5-10 channels devoted solely to pornography (I don't subscribe to any of them by the way). America is in very serious trouble beloved. Let us pray for revival (2Chr 7:13,14, 6:37, 38, 39) Here are the 10 uses of pornos in the NT - 1Cor 5:9, 10, 11; 6:9; Eph. 5:5-+; 1Ti 1:10; describing Esau = Heb 12:16+; describing those who defile the marriage bed = Heb 13:4-note; describing those who will not be in heaven = Rev 21:8-+; Re 22:15+.

The NAS translates pornos as fornicators(2), immoral(2), immoral men(1), immoral people(2), immoral person(1), immoral persons(2). 1 Co. 5:9; 1 Co. 5:10; 1 Co. 5:11; 1 Co. 6:9; Eph. 5:5; 1 Tim. 1:10; Heb. 12:16; Heb. 13:4; Rev. 21:8; Rev. 22:15 The KJV as noted translates pornos with the word whoremonger (5 times). Pornos is not found in the non-apocryphal Septuagint.

Nor idolaters, A comparison of this list with those of the other epistles suggests the greater debauchery and sensuality of Corinth. Barclay adds that "The greatest building in Corinth was the Temple of Aphrodite, the goddess of love, where idolatry and immorality flourished side by side. Idolatry is a grim example of what happens when we try to make religion easier. An idol did not begin by being a god; it began by being a symbol of a god; its function was to make the worship of the god easier by providing some object in which his presence was localized. But very soon men began to worship not the god behind the idol but the idol itself. It is one of the chronic dangers of life that men will come to worship the symbol rather than the reality behind it."

Idolaters (1496) eidololatres from eidolon = idol, image, a phantom or likeness [from eidos = form, appearance, literally that which is seen from eido = to see] + látris = servant, worshiper) (see study of eidololatreia) (See multiple Bile dictionary articles on idolatry) is literally an image worshipper or one who serves idols or images representative of false gods. Idolatry is the worship of something created which is in direct opposition to the worship of the Creator Himself. Ultimately it is placing anything in the place of God, Who alone deserves the right to be number one in our focus. Originally, a physical idol helped visualize the god it represented but later people worshipped the physical object itself (Ro 1:19; 20; 21; 22; 23 see notes Ro 1:1920212223).

Nor adulterers - The Greek word is moichos (3432) (cf moichalis = adulteress) describes one who is unfaithful to a spouse. Figuratively, moichos describes one who is faithless toward God.

nor effeminate (NIV - male prostitutes) God’s unique creation, those created in His own image, were created “male and female” (Ge 1:27), and the Lord strictly forbids the two roles to be blurred, much less exchanged. “A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God” (Deut. 22:5). The Hebrew terms in that verse indicate more than clothing, and include any tool, implement, or apparatus.

nor homosexuals - KJV has "nor abusers of themselves with mankind."  Barclay writes: "This sin had swept like a cancer through Greek life and from Greece, invaded Rome. We can scarcely realize how riddled the ancient world was with it. Even so great a man as Socrates practised it; Plato’s dialogue The Symposium is always said to be one of the greatest works on love in the world, but its subject is not natural but unnatural love. Fourteen out of the first fifteen Roman Emperors practised unnatural vice. At this very time Nero was emperor. He had taken a boy called Sporus and had him castrated. He then married him with a full marriage ceremony and took him home in procession to his palace and lived with him as wife. With an incredible viciousness, Nero had himself married a man called Pythagoras and called him his husband. When Nero was eliminated and Otho came to the throne one of the first things he did was to take possession of Sporus. Much later, the Emperor Hadrian’s name was associated with a Bithynian youth called Antinous. He lived with him inseparably, and, when he died, he deified him and covered the world with his statues and immortalised his sin by calling a star after him. In this particular vice, in the time of the Early Church, the world was lost to shame; and there can be little doubt that this was one of the main causes of its degeneracy and the final collapse of its civilization.

College Press Commentary - Generally speaking pederasty was a widespread phenomenon in Greek and later Roman society. These sexual experiences were a typical part of a young boy’s education and were practiced by leading thinkers such as Plato as well as later by many Emperors of the Roman Empire. Even though this type of relationship had both pedagogical and emotional facets, it would be exceedingly anachronistic to think that these homoerotic relationship and experiences with boys were based upon “Platonic love.” The classical scholar K.J. Dover makes this very point in a candid observation when he remarked, "It was taken for granted in the Classical period that a man was sexually attracted by a good-looking younger male, and no Greek who said that he was ‘in love’ would have taken it amiss if his hearers assumed without further enquiry that he was in love with a boy and that he desired more than anything to ejaculate in or on the boy’s body. I put the matter in these coarse and clinical terms to preclude any misapprehension arising from modern application of the expression ‘Platonic love’ or from Greek euphemism."

Barclay: After this dreadful catalogue of vices, natural and unnatural, comes Paul’s shout of triumph “and such were some of you.” The proof of Christianity lay in its power. It could take the dregs of humanity and make them into men. It could take men lost to shame and make them sons of God. There were in Corinth, and all over the world, men who were living proofs of the re-creating power of Christ.

Seneca, a contemporary of Paul, cries out that what men want is “a hand let down to lift them up.” “Men,” he declared, “are overwhelmingly conscious of their weakness in necessary things.” “Men love their vices,” he said with a kind of despair, “and hate them at one and the same time.” He called himself a homo non tolerabilis, a man not to be tolerated. Into this world, conscious of a tide of decadence that nothing could stop, there came the radiant power of Christianity, which was triumphantly able to make all things new.

Henry has some excellent comments on these 1 Cor 6:9-11):

The Corinthians are warned against many great evils, of which they had formerly been guilty. There is much force in these inquiries, when we consider that they were addressed to a people puffed up with a fancy of their being above others in wisdom and knowledge. All unrighteousness is sin; all reigning sin, nay, every actual sin, committed with design, and not repented of, shuts out of the kingdom of heaven. Be not deceived. Men are very much inclined to flatter themselves that they may live in sin, yet die in Christ, and go to heaven. But we cannot hope to sow to the flesh, and reap everlasting life. They are reminded what a change the gospel and grace of God had made in them. The blood of Christ, and the washing of regeneration, can take away all guilt. Our justification is owing to the suffering and merit of Christ; our sanctification to the working of the Holy Spirit; but both go together. All who are made righteous in the sight of God, are made holy by the grace of God. 

D L Moody - IT is clear that idolaters are not going to enter the kingdom of God. I may make an idol of my business; I may make an idol of the wife of my bosom; I may make idols of my children. I do not think you need go to heathen countries to find men guilty of idolatry. Anything that comes between me and God is an idol—anything, I don’t care what it is; business is all right in its place, and there is no danger of my loving my family too much if I love God more; but God must have the first place; and if He has not, then the idol is set up......NOTICE that the covetous are named between thieves and drunkards. We lock up thieves, and have no mercy on them. We loathe drunkards, and consider them great sinners against the law of God as well as the law of the land. Yet there is far more said in the Bible against covetousness than against either stealing or drunkenness.


Rob Morgan - New Man in Her Life October 26
She felt important only when she had men’s attention. Brooke Ball cooked for them, hung to their every word, bought them presents, and followed them “like a well-trained puppy.” But a series of affairs and broken relationships left her asking, “Why do the people I love leave me?”

One day she was sitting in the park, feeling depressed, making a gift for yet another marginally-interested man. A friend approached, one she hadn’t seen in years. As we talked, my troubles became obvious to her. She knew God could help me and suggested I attend a Bible conference in a nearby city with her.

Brooke attended the conference, though with a defiant attitude. And yet one message sank in. I don’t recall the exact words; I only remember the teacher talked about immorality and God’s disapproval of it. “Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, or homosexuals, nor sodomites … will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Cor. 6:9–10).

Brooke gave her heart to Jesus Christ, and He gradually helped her change her unhealthy habits. One day, after I had been wearing a tight T-shirt and short shorts, the thought came to me: “If you want to be treated like a lady (which I did), then you should dress like one.” It was a gentle and sensible thought that I knew came from Jesus. Imagine the God of the universe caring about what I wore!

Besides changing my attire, Christ began changing my desires about men. Instead of wanting to follow a man, I want to follow Christ. On a date with one handsome man, for instance, I was tempted to be immoral again. This time, however, I said no.

As I made more choices like that, an unexpected thing happened: I gained dignity and self-respect. Living life as God meant it to be protected me from being used and rejected.

Because of the love Christ showed me, I learned to like myself.  (From this Verse)


Question - What does it mean that a person will not inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)?

Answer: The first mention of not inheriting the kingdom of God is found in Paul’s first letter to the church at Corinth. “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

By saying the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God, Paul is stating that the wicked are not children of God, nor are they heirs of eternal life (Romans 8:17). This does not mean that anybody who has ever committed one of these sins will be denied entrance to heaven. What differentiates a Christian’s life from that of a non-Christian is the struggle against sin and the ability to overcome it. A true Christian will always repent, will always eventually return to God, and will always resume the struggle against sin. But the Bible gives no support for the idea that a person who perpetually and unrepentantly engages in sin can indeed be a Christian. (ED: SEE DISCUSSION OF FALSE DOCTRINE OF SO-CALLED CARNAL CHRISTIAN) The 1 Corinthians passage lists sins that, if indulged in continuously, identify a person as not being redeemed by Christ.

The Christian’s response to sin is to hate it, repent of it, and forsake it. We still struggle with sin, but by the power of the Holy Spirit Who lives in us, we are able to resist and overcome sin (Ro 8:13+) The hallmark of a true Christian is the decreasing presence of sin in his life. As Christians grow and mature in the faith, sin has less and less of a hold on us. Of course, sinless perfection is impossible in this life (1 Jn 1:8+), but our hatred for sin becomes greater as we mature. Like Paul, we are distressed that sin still exists in our flesh, causing us at times to do what we don’t want to do and looking to Christ for relief from this “body of death” (Romans 7:18-25+).

If a person actively, perpetually, and unrepentantly lives a homosexual lifestyle, the lifestyle of a thief, a greedy lifestyle, a drunken lifestyle, etc., that person is showing himself to be unsaved, and such a person will definitely not inherit the kingdom of God. GotQuestions.org

1 Corinthians 6:10  nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.

Amplified - Nor cheats (swindlers and thieves), nor greedy graspers, nor drunkards, nor foulmouthed revilers and slanderers, nor extortioners and robbers will inherit or have any share in the kingdom of God.

Wuest's Paraphrase -nor thieves, nor those who are always greedy to have more than they possess, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit God’s kingdom.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

BGT  1 Corinthians 6:10 οὔτε κλέπται οὔτε πλεονέκται, οὐ μέθυσοι, οὐ λοίδοροι, οὐχ ἅρπαγες βασιλείαν θεοῦ κληρονομήσουσιν.

NET  1 Corinthians 6:10 thieves, the greedy, drunkards, the verbally abusive, and swindlers will not inherit the kingdom of God.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:10 or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people-- none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:10 οὔτε κλέπται οὔτε πλεονέκται, οὐ μέθυσοι, οὐ λοίδοροι, οὐχ ἅρπαγες βασιλείαν θεοῦ κληρονομήσουσιν.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, the reign of God shall inherit.

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:10 no thieves, greedy people, drunkards, verbally abusive people, or swindlers will inherit God's kingdom.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:10 thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers, robbers-- none of these will inherit the kingdom of God.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:10 thieves, misers, drunkards, slanderers and swindlers, none of these will inherit the kingdom of God.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:10 or thieves, those who are greedy or drunk, who use abusive language, or who rob people will not inherit the kingdom of God.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:10 Or is a thief, or the worse for drink, or makes use of strong language, or takes by force what is not his, will have any part in the kingdom of God.

  • nor thieves,,: Ps 50:17,18 Isa 1:23 Jer 7:11 Eze 22:13,27,29 Mt 21:19 Mt 23:14,33  Joh 12:6 Eph 4:28 1Th 4:6 1Pe 4:15 
  • nor the covetous,: 1Co 5:11 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries


"KINGDOM OF GOD" PAST, PRESENT, FUTURE
FROM BIBLE.ORG

LIST OF SINS THAT KEEP
ONE OUT OF THE KINGDOM

Ryrie draws an important general conclusion on this list of sordid sins - People whose lifestyles exhibit wickedness, not fruit, show they are unsaved and will, therefore, not inherit the kingdom of God. 

MacArthur - The point is that in unbelievers there is an unbroken pattern of sinning that cannot be restrained. In believers that unbroken pattern is broken, the frequency and totality of sin is changed. Righteousness and goodness find a place and the life manifests virtue. Because of our humanness, however, sin will sometimes break the pattern of righteousness. If persisted in, it establishes a sinful pattern, interrupting the manifestations of holiness coming from the new nature. That is why there are so many commands and calls to obedience and to church discipline. The believer will never become totally sinful, but may be sinful enough at certain points in his life to be characterized as an unbeliever.

Nor thieves - Barclay says that "The ancient world was cursed with them. Houses were easy to break into. The robbers particularly haunted two places—the public baths and the public gymnasia where they stole the clothes of those who were washing or exercising themselves. It was common to kidnap slaves who had special gifts. The state of the law shows how serious this problem was. There were three kinds of theft punishable by death: (i) Theft to the value of more than 50 drachmae, that is, about £2. (ii) Theft from the baths, the gymnasia and the ports and harbours to the value of 10 drachmae, that is about 40 pence. (iii) Theft of anything by night. The Christian lived in the middle of a pilfering population."

Thieves (2812)(kleptes from  klepto = steal; kleptomaniac) is a stealer or thief who acts with stealth or subterfuge. The kleptes steals by fraud and in secret (Mt 24:43; Jn 12:6) whereas the robber or lestes steals by violence and openly. The NT uses kleptes in a figurative sense to describe the false teachers and deceivers who "steal" men away from the truth. In the present context kleptes is used as a figure of speech ("like a thief" - see term of comparison = simile) to describe the sudden and unexpected appearance of the Day of the Lord.

Nor the covetous - This was a component of the "leaven" in 1 Cor 5:10-11+ which was to be removed from the congregation (1 Cor 5:13+). The idea of the word is  rapacious = excessively grasping. The Greeks defined it as “the spirit which is always reaching after more and grabbing that to which it has no right.” It is aggressive getting. It is not the miser’s spirit, for it aimed to get in order to spend, so that it could live in more luxury and greater pleasure; and it cared not over whom it took advantage so long as it could get. 

Covetous (4123pleonektes from pleonekteo = to be covetous in turn from pleíon = more + écho = have) describes one who is "grasping", one who wants more, one who is always eager for more and especially for what belongs to someone else. Greedy for gain. One who desires to have more than is due. The Greeks defined pleonektes as “the spirit which is always reaching after more and grabbing that to which it has no right.” It is aggressive getting. It is not the miser’s spirit, for it aimed to get in order to spend, so that it could live in more luxury and greater pleasure and it cared not over whom it took advantage so long as it could get.  Morris writes that here is "Another surprising revelation is that a "covetous man" is equivalent to an "idolater." In fact, "Thou shalt not covet" is the last of God's ten commandments (Ex 20:17), whereas the first two are commands against idolatry (Ex 20:3, 4, 5). Covetousness, in God's sight, is equivalent to the worship of the creation rather than the Creator (Ro 1:25-note), the same as the worship of other aspects of nature as personified in various gods and goddesses. The god of money and material things is mammon, and Jesus stressed that "ye cannot serve God and mammon" (Mt 6:24-note). (Defenders Study Bible)

There are only 4 uses in the NT -

1 Corinthians 5:10 I did not at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and swindlers, or with idolaters; for then you would have to go out of the world.

1 Corinthians 5:11 But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he should be an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler-- not even to eat with such a one.

1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:5+ For this you know with certainty (PAUL IS NOT VACILLATING!), that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, (HE IS SPEAKING OF THOSE WHO MAKE THIS THEIR LIFESTYLE) has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.

Related ResourceCovetousness - Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology

Nor drunkards Barclay says "The word used comes from a word (methos) which signifies uncontrolled drinking. Even little children in ancient Greece drank wine; the name for breakfast is akratisma and it consisted of bread dipped in wine. The universality of wine drinking was of course due to the inadequate water-supplies. But normally the Greeks were sober people, for their drink was three parts of wine mixed with two of water. But in luxury-loving Corinth uncontrolled drunkenness abounded."

Drunkard (3183)(methusos) drunkard (used of both men and women); drunken, intoxicated: 

Only 2x in NT 1 Co. 5:11; 1 Co. 6:10

Nor revilers Revilers are those who destroy with their tongues; they wound with words. God does not consider their sin to be mild, because it comes from hearts full of hate and causes misery, pain, and despair in the lives of those it attacks.

Revilers  (3183)(loidoros - see verb loidoreo) as one who intentionally abuses another with speech - reviler, slanderer, abusive person. TDNT -  This common word group has the secular sense of reproach, insult, calumny, and even blasphemy. In the LXX it carries the nuance of wrangling, angry remonstrance, or chiding as well as the more usual calumny. Philo has it for mockery or invective. In the NT the verb occurs four times and the noun and adjective twice each. "It means to go behind somebody’s back with a rumor or a lie and tear down their reputation to somebody else." (Barber)

Only 3x in NT 1 Co. 5:11; 1 Co. 6:10

Nor swindlers - Swindlers are thieves who steal indirectly. They take unfair advantage of others to promote their own financial gain. Extortioners, embezzlers, confidence men, promoters of defective merchandise and services, false advertisers, and many other types of swindlers are as common to our day as to Paul’s.

Swindlers (727) harpax from harpazo - to seize, catch away, word for the "rapture") means grasping, violently greedy, robber, swindler. One who uses force and violence in stealing. In some contexts it means ravenous (Mt 7:15+, Lxx Gen 49:27). Swindlers were prohibited in the 10 Commandments (Ex 20:15) Robbers did this to people and so did the tax collectors, but the Pharisees did this, too. They would pressure those who were weak or widows to surrender their possessions through ruthless, scheming tactics (see Mt 23:14). "The word “swindler” means to seize. It’s one who secretly steals from another. The word picture is of a wolf that preys upon other animals. That’s the kind of mind-set. Somebody always preying on somebody to see if he can get a buck out of them or to swindle them in some way."(Wayne Barber) 

Harpax - ravenous(1), swindler(1), swindlers(3) -  Matt. 7:15; Lk. 18:11; 1 Co. 5:10; 1 Co. 5:11; 1 Co. 6:10

Will inherit the kingdom of God - The Kingdom of God implies a King and His Name is Jesus (Rev 19:16+) and in all who placed their faith in Him, He is to reign over their lives (May our daily prayer be Lord reign in me. Amen), their will being surrendered to and encompassed by His will, which is good and acceptable and perfect (Ro 12:2+). So Paul again repeats this phrase for emphasis enclosing his vice list in "bookends." Then he goes to the next shelf of the "divine library" and explains the victory in Christ over the vice list! Hallelujah! Thank You Jesus our Savior forever! Amen. 

A T Robertson: "All these will fall short of the kingdom of God. This was plain talk to a city like Corinth. It is needed today. It is a solemn roll call of the damned even if some of their names are on the church roll in Corinth whether officers or ordinary members."

Will inherit (2816)(kleronomeo from kleros = First a pebble, piece of wood used in casting lots as in Acts 1:26+ then the allotted portion or inheritance, and so a lot, heritage, inheritance + nemomai = to possess; see Kleronomos) means to receive a lot or share of an inheritance, inherit a portion of property or receive a possession as gift from someone who has died. Kleronomeo means "to receive the portion assigned to one, receive an allotted portion, receive as one's own or as a possession; to become partaker of, to obtain" (Thayer) Paul later writes "Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable." (1 Co. 15:50) Noah Webster 1828 ed on Inherit - To take by descent from an ancestor; to take by succession, as the representative of the former possessor; to receive, as a right or title descendible by law from an ancestor at his decease. To receive by nature from a progenitor. To possess; to enjoy; to take as a possession, by gift or divine appropriation; as, to inherit everlasting life; to inherit the promises. 

In the NT kleronomeo is used to describe inheriting -- "the earth" (for those who are gentle, i.e., believers) (Mt 5:5), "many times more" (than a believer has given up in this present life) (Mt 19:29), "the Kingdom" (of God - referring to believing Gentiles who aid Jews) (Mt 25:34), "eternal life" (Mk 10:17, Lk 10:25, 18:18), "the kingdom of God" (not given to the unrighteous - 1Co 6:9, 10, cp Gal 5:21 = those who practice unrighteous behavior; Not to "flesh and blood" 1Co 15:50), "a more excellent name" (of Jesus better than angels, Heb 1:4), "salvation" (speaking of believers who have angelic assistance in this life, Heb 1:14), "the promises" (which include the promises of salvation = He 6:12), "the blessing" (which was Esau's "lot", one he traded for food, He 12:17), "a blessing" (the lot of believers 1Pe 3:9), the things of heaven and eternity in the presence of God (Rev 21:7).

Kleronomeo - 17v in NT - Matt. 5:5; Matt. 19:29; Matt. 25:34; Mk. 10:17; Lk. 10:25; Lk. 18:18; 1 Co. 6:9; 1 Co. 6:10; 1 Co. 15:50; Gal. 4:30; Gal. 5:21; Heb. 1:4; Heb. 1:14; Heb. 6:12; Heb. 12:17; 1 Pet. 3:9; Rev. 21:7

1 Corinthians 6:11  Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Amplified - And such some of you were [once]. But you were washed clean (purified by a complete atonement for sin and made free from the guilt of sin), and you were consecrated (set apart, hallowed), and you were justified [pronounced righteous, by trusting] in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the [Holy] Spirit of our God.

Wuest's Paraphrase - And these things you were, certain ones of you. But you bathed yourselves clean [from sin in the fountain filled with blood drawn from Immanuel’s veins], but you were set apart for God, but you were made righteous in the Name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission)

NET  1 Corinthians 6:11 Some of you once lived this way. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:11 Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:11 καὶ ταῦτά τινες ἦτε· ἀλλὰ ἀπελούσασθε, ἀλλὰ ἡγιάσθητε, ἀλλὰ ἐδικαιώθητε ἐν τῷ ὀνόματι τοῦ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ ἐν τῷ πνεύματι τοῦ θεοῦ ἡμῶν.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:11 And certain of you were these! but ye were washed, but ye were sanctified, but ye were declared righteous, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and in the Spirit of our God.

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye were washed, but ye were sanctified, but ye were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:11 And some of you used to be like this. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:11 And this is what some of you used to be. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:11 That is what some of you used to be; but now you have had yourselves washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:11 Some of you used to be of that kind: but you have been washed clean, you have been sanctified, and you have been justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and through the Spirit of our God.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:11 That's what some of you were! But you have been washed and made holy, and you have received God's approval in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you; but you have been washed, you have been made holy, you have been given righteousness in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

  • Such were some of you: 1Co 12:2 Ro 6:17-19 Eph 2:1-3 4:17-22 5:8 Col 3:5-7 Tit 3:3-6 1Pe 4:2,3 
  • but you were washed: Ps 51:2,7 Pr 30:12 Isa 1:16 Jer 4:14 Eze 36:25 Joh 13:10 Ac 22:16 Eph 5:26 Tit 3:5 Heb 10:22 1Pe 3:21 Rev 1:5 7:14 
  • you were sanctified 1Co 1:2,30 Ac 26:18 Ga 5:22,23 2Th 2:13 Heb 2:11 1Pe 1:2,22 
  • you were justified: Isa 45:25 53:11 Lu 18:14 Ac 13:39 Ro 3:24,26-30 4:5 5:1,9 Ro 8:30,33 Ga 2:16 3:8,11,24 Tit 3:7 Jas 2:21-26
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries 

THE DIVINE
"BEFORE/AFTER"

Such were some of you - And such were some of you reading (and this one who is writing)! Utterly dead in trespasses and sins (Eph 2:1+), having no hope (Eph 2:12+), and otherwise ultimately destined for wrath (had we not received the good news - 1 Th 5:9+).  

Morris - Any man or woman, no matter how wicked, can be saved and transformed through faith in Christ. 1 Corinthians 6:9,10 list several flagrant sins from which Christ can set converts free.

But: Paul uses but (alla, the strongest Greek adversative particle) three times to indicate the contrast of the Christian life with the worldly life he has just been describing. We were made new in "triplicate!" Glory! Hallelujah!

As discussed below were washed, were sanctified, were justified are all in historical aorist tense pointing to a past completed even when they heard and accepted the Gospel of salvation and were deliver from danger and enslavement to sexual sins and made into new creatures in Christ. The implication is that because of all that God had done for them, they had an obligation to God to use their bodies for His service and His glory. And in context not to take each other to court (but he quickly moves to the body and immorality in 1 Cor 6:12-20). They were different now and should show it.

You were washed - The historical aorist tense indicates this was a past tense, completed supernatural event. While the middle voice could be translated "you washed yourself", the context indicates that this was a supernatural "bath" and thus the only way it could have transpired would have been by grace through faith and the supernatural work of the Holy Word and the Holy Spirit. Some have referred to it as the permissive middle or middle with a passive meaning since the word in the NT only occurs in middle voice. And so it conveys the sense of the passive voice it would be synonymous with the so-called divine passive. God carried out this action of washing from their moral pollution and made them "white as snow." (Isaiah 1:18+)

Paul alludes to washing in Titus 3 writing 

Titus 3:5-7+  He saved (sozo) us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration (paliggenesia) and renewing (anakainosis) by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that being justified (dikaioo) by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Hodge: "They had put off the old nature and put on the new. Their sins, considered as filth, had been washed away; considered as pollution, they had been purged or purified; considered as guilt, they had been covered with the righteousness of Christ (Ro 1:17+, cf 1 Cor 1:30+)"

What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

 Oh! precious is the flow
That makes me white as snow;
No other fount I know,
  Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

For my cleansing this I see—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus!
For my pardon this my plea—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus!

Nothing can my sin erase
Nothing but the blood of Jesus!
Naught of works, ’tis all of grace—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus!

This is all my hope and peace—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus!
This is all my righteousness—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus

John MacArthur favors washed signifies regeneration - "Refers to new life, through spiritual cleansing and regeneration (cf. Jn 3:3-8; 2Co 5:17; Ep 2:10; Titus 3:5+)"

Nelson's Study Bible agrees "Washed means spiritually cleansed by God"

William MacDonald "They had been washed from their sin and impurity through the precious blood of Christ, and they were being continually washed from defilement through the word of God." 

Ryrie on washed =  regenerated (Titus 3:5+).Personal salvation is not achieved through good deeds but through the cleansing of the new birth. renewing by the Holy Spirit means either the initial act of conversion or, possibly, continual renewing by the Spirit throughout the life of the believer. In any case, salvation is God's gracious work, not a reward for man's worthwhile acts. 

Hodge: To “wash” means to purify and is frequently used in Scripture to express moral or spiritual purification: “Wash and make yourselves clean” (Isaiah 1:16); “Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow” (Psalm 51:7); “Wash the evil from your heart and be saved” (Jeremiah 4:14). In these and many other passages the word expresses general purification, without exclusive reference to guilt or to pollution. There is no reason why it should not be taken in this general sense here, and the phrase may be translated either “You have purified yourselves” or “You are purified.” The reference that so many assume to be to baptism does not seem to be authorized by anything in the context."

Were washed (628)(apolouo from apo = away from +  louo = to wash, literally to bathe, figuratively - spiritual cleansing - Jn 13:10) literally is to wash away as dirt, but only figuratively in the NT means to be or to become forgiven (by God) which is pictured as having one's sins washed away. It means to to wash thoroughly, the preposition "apo--" in the compound points to the complete washing away and the aorist tense refers to a decisive action. (Related - Is baptismal regeneration sound doctrine or false teaching? | GotQuestions.org)

Apolouo - 2x in NT - 1 Co. 6:11 Acts 22:16+ = "Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name." The idea here would be to now live as one whose sins have been washed away by the cleansing blood of Jesus. See Gerald Cowen's excellent comment on that passage which unfortunately is used to support the false belief that the literal act of water baptism has supernatural salvific effect.

But you were sanctified -  Note the historical aorist tense indicates this was a past tense, completed supernatural event and in the passive voice is the so-called divine passive. God carried out this action of setting them apart from the profane and unto the holy when they (we) believed. They were consecrated (dedicated to a specific given goal or purpose!), set apart to do God’s special service (each saint being a "minister" or diakonos and each saint having at least one spiritual gift, cf 1 Pe 4:10-11+) In such an exalted position, it seems incredible that such people would find it necessary to go before an inferior human law courts to arbitrate their disputes.  In Scripture, anything is said to be sanctified that is devoted to God’s service. Thus, God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it (Ge 2:3KJV). Moses sanctified the people (Ex 19:14KJV+).

In his opening words, Paul had reminded the saints in Corinth of their privileged position in Christ writing

To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who have been sanctified (hagiazo in the perfect tense = set apart in past and now their continuing state) in Christ Jesus, saints (hagios by calling, with all who in every place call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours: (1 Corinthians 1:2+)

Ryrie notes that sanctified means "set apart for God's use. There are three aspects to sanctification: (1) positional sanctification, possessed by every believer from the moment of his conversion (his perfect standing in holiness, Acts 20:32+; 1 Cor. 1:2+); (2) progressive sanctification, the daily growth in grace, becoming in practice more and more set apart for God's use (John 17:17, 2 Cor 3:18+, 1 Cor 1:18+); and (3) ultimate sanctification, (ED: AKA GLORIFICATION) attained only when we are fully and completely set apart to God in heaven (1 Th 5:23). . (See also the Three Tenses of Salvation)

Were sanctified (37hagiazo from hagios = holy, set apart) means to set apart for God, to consecrate, to sanctify, to make a person or thing (in the OT altars, days, priests, etc were set apart) the opposite of koinos, which means profane or common. Wuest Word Studies writes that hagiazo does not mean "merely “to set apart,” but in the case of the pagan word, “to set apart for the gods,” and in the case of the Christian word “to set apart for God.” The worshipper of the pagan god acquired the character of that pagan god and the religious ceremonies connected with its worship. The Greek temple at Corinth housed a large number of harlots who were connected with the worship of the Greek god. Thus, the set-apartness of the Greek worshipper was in character licentious, totally depraved, and sinful. The believer in the Lord Jesus is set apart for God by the Holy Spirit, out of the First Adam with the latter’s sin and condemnation, into the Last Adam with the latter’s righteousness and life (cf 1Cor 15:22,45). Thus, the worshipper of the God of the Bible partakes of the character of the God for Whom he is set apart (ED: cf 2 Pe 1:4+ = "partakers of the divine nature"). This is positional sanctification, an act of God performed at the moment a sinner puts his faith in the Lord Jesus (1Cor 1:2+)."

Hagiazo in the NT 25v - Matt. 6:9; Matt. 23:17; Matt. 23:19; Lk. 11:2; Jn. 10:36; Jn. 17:17; Jn. 17:19; Acts 20:32; Acts 26:18; Rom. 15:16; 1 Co. 1:2; 1 Co. 6:11; 1 Co. 7:14; Eph. 5:26; 1 Thess. 5:23; 1 Tim. 4:5; 2 Tim. 2:21; Heb. 2:11; Heb. 9:13; Heb. 10:10; Heb. 10:14; Heb. 10:29; Heb. 13:12; 1 Pet. 3:15; Rev. 22:11

But you were justified - Note the historical aorist tense indicates this was a past tense, completed supernatural event and in the passive voice is the so-called divine passive. God carried out this action of justification when they (we) believed. You were declared righteous, placed into a new right standing before God, in which now and forever clothed in the righteousness of Christ (1Co 1:30+). In His death, the believer’s sins were put on Christ's account and He suffered for them (Isa 53:5-6+), so that His righteousness might reckoned to them. (Ro 3:26+;  Ro 4:22-25+; 2Co 5:21+; Php 3:8-9+; 1 Pe 3:18+). 

Ryrie on justified - To justify was a legal term meaning to secure a favorable verdict, to acquit, to vindicate, to declare righteous (Deut. 25:1). as a gift. I.e., "without a cause" to be found in us (same word is in John 15:25). by His grace. Unmerited favor. It is an act of God (8:33), who takes the initiative and provides the means through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus. The sinner who believes in Christ receives God's gift of righteousness (5:17), which then enables God to pronounce him righteous. 

Each of these verbs were washed, were sanctified, were justified refer to the same thing with differing emphases (think of a multifaceted diamond - Paul is just turning it from one side to another and different hues of brilliant light come cascading through the diamond of salvation in Christ), the one stressing the believer’s complete cleansing, the next the believer’s new holy calling, and the final one the believer’s new right standing before a Holy God. Justified stands last, as a fitting climax to the argument about seeking justice before the unjust or unrighteous pagan judges (1 Cor 6:1-8).

Were justified (1344dikaioo from dike = right, expected behavior or conformity, not according to one’s own standard, but according to an imposed standard with prescribed punishment for nonconformity) primarily means to deem to be right. To cause someone to be in a proper or right relation with someone else. Dikaioo describes the act by which a man is brought into a right state of relationship to God. Dikaioo is a legal term having to do with the law and the the courtroom, where it represented the legally binding verdict of the judge. This is the sense in which Paul uses dikaioo in this section in Romans (Ro 3:21-5:11) in which he unfolds the doctrine of justification. ( What is justification? What does it mean to be justified? | GotQuestions.org)

Dikaioo in the Corinthians letters -1 Co. 4:4; 1 Co. 6:11; 

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God - The preposition IN introduces us to the so-called "locative of sphere" (see note). The name of is often another way of saying God or Christ himself. To call upon the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ is to call on God. Similar uses of  Name in the context of salvation in that Name are found in Jn 20:31, John writing “that by believing you may have (eternal, supernatural, abundant, real) life in His Name”; In Acts 10:43+ “everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through His Name.” So those Corinthians who had entered the kingdom of God had been reckoned righteous (justified) before God on the basis of the work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross ast their substitutionary Sacrificial "Lamb" (Jn 1:29+), had been transferred from the kingdom of darkness under the dominion of Satan (Col 1:13+, Acts 26:18+), out of the position "in Adam" and now and forever in Christ Jesus Who is their "righteousness and sanctification, and redemption," (1Co 1:30+). In Galatians we see a "commentary" on in the Spirit of our God (notice the Trinity in this passage), Paul writing "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us–for it is written, “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE” (THAT IS, "in the Name of the Lord Jesus  Christ")– in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (THAT IS "in the Spirit of our God.") (Gal 3:13-14+). Notice God is OUR GOD. By a supernatural act of amazing grace, we now can call God our own "Possession." That is mind boggling (or should be). The Spirit is the gracious Gift of both the Father and the Son  (see John 14:26, 15:29). 

What is Paul’s argument here? It is simply this, as expressed by Godet: “Such a fathomless depth of grace is not to be recrossed.” Once a person enters the kingdom of God, they are forever kingdom citizens (cf eternal security). 


Richard Hawker - 1 Cor. 6:11.

It is profitable at times to see our mercies, and to trace them to their source, by considering what we once were, the better to apprehend what we now are. Such, the apostle saith, when speaking of the vilest of the vile, “were some of you:” dead in trespasses and sins, hateful, and hating one another. But now, being washed from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, there is a justification by Christ, and a sanctification in Christ; and by the effectual work of God the Spirit in the heart, the believer stands complete before God, in the name of the Lord Jesus. This is a blessed testimony to the soul of the poor sinner, whom the Holy Ghost hath convinced of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. For God the Father gave the promise, in the Old Testament scripture, that he would sprinkle clean water upon the people, and they should be clean. And here, in the New Testament dispensation, the fountain is opened by which it is to be accomplished, and they are said to be clean; yea, “both washed and justified, and sanctified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” So that all the persons of the Godhead are engaged in this glorious act, to render it secure and certain to the believing soul. See to it, then, my soul, that this be thy privilege, and that from long tried and approved experience, thou canst take home this sweet scripture to thyself, as “both washed, justified, and sanctified,” and set to thy seal that God is true. Oh! for grace to live in the daily exercise of faith upon it, until faith be swallowed up and lost in sight; and amidst the throng of the redeemed in glory, thou shalt live at the fountain-head of enjoyment, with those that have “washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb!” (Poor Man's Evening Portion)


My Kind Of People

Such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus. — 1 Corinthians 6:11

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Years ago in a worship service, pastor Ray Stedman stepped to the pulpit and read the text for the day: “Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God. Some of you were once like that” (1 Cor. 6:9-11 nlt).

Then he looked up, a bemused smile on his face, and said, “I’m curious: How many of you have one or more of these sins in your background? If so, will you stand?”

There was a young man there who had never been in a church before. He had recently been saved at a Billy Graham crusade and came with fear and trembling to church that Sunday, not knowing what he would find. He later told me that when he heard the pastor’s question, he looked around to see if anyone would stand. At first no one did, but then most of the congregation was on their feet. He said to himself, “These are my kind of people!”

We can all find ourselves in Paul’s list in 1 Corinthians. But when we confess our sin and accept the gift of eternal life paid for by the death of Jesus, we become a new creation saved by grace (Rom. 6:23; 2 Cor. 5:17). By:  David H. Roper (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)


Evangelical Review of Theology II. 1 CORINTHIANS 6:11

One of the matters Paul had to deal with in 1 Corinthians was that some Christians were bringing their disputes before heathen judges (6:1–11). Against such a practice of law-suits, one of the arguments Paul employs is that they should live as those who have been redeemed, with their past put behind them (verses 9–11). In the verse before us, Paul flatly declares that some among the Corinthian believers had been such as could never inherit the kingdom of God, but he immediately follows this with a triple ἀλλά, which sharply contrasts their present state and their seamy past.

In ἀπελούσασθε we probably have not the middle used for the passive so that the sense is “you were washed,” but a genuine middle with some such sense as “you got (or allowed) yourselves (to be) washed.” It suggests that baptism is in mind; but, as C. K. Barrett observes, the use of the non-technical word instead of the more technical ἐβαπτίσθητε shows that Paul attaches importance to the inward meaning rather than the outward circumstances of the rite. The reference, it would seem, is to a spiritual cleansing from sin which is “sacramentally signified in baptism.”26 The two succeeding aorist verbs probably refer to the same event of baptism as is reflected in ἀπελούσασθε. Ἡγιάσθητε represents the Corinthians’ sanctification as a definite act; in contrast to 1:30, here “sanctification is not moral action on the part of man, but a divinely effected state.” But if the word ἁγιάζειν itself does not here signify practical holiness on the part of the Corinthians, yet in view of the paraenetic nature of the context we may believe that Paul thinks at the same time of the ethical consequences which result from their state of being consecrated to God. And since, in point of fact, being relationally consecrated to God means being separated to holiness of life, consecration (in the relational sense) may be regarded as but the commencement of sanctification (considered as a process of ethical transformation).

To the acts of cleansing and sanctification Paul adds ἐδικαιώθητε. It has been suggested that 1 Corinthians 6:11 is to be regarded as a statement of early Christian baptismal instruction, which understood justification, not yet in the Pauline sense of justification by faith, but as forgiveness of sins on the ground of Christ’s atoning death. But it is hard to think that Paul could speak of justification in a sense that is unrelated to its characteristic meaning. It has also been maintained, in view of the position of ἐδικαιώθητε (coming after the other two verbs), that it has a causative sense, but this is not a necessary conclusion. We are probably not intended to take the three verbs in any chronological order at all (cf. the order in 1:30), since the aorists are best taken as denoting coincidental action; and the order of the verbs is perhaps best explained in terms of the apostle’s sequence of thought, as O. Pfleiderer suggested: in contrast to the Corinthians’ sinful past, the sanctifying effect of their conversion is described first in negative and then in positive terms (ἀπελούσασθε, ἡγιάσθητε), and ἐδικαιώθητε is added “because it was a necessary part of the full statement of the effects of God’s favour.”

The two prepositional phrases which follow are naturally (especially in view of the threefold ἀλλά) to be taken as qualifying all three verbs, and are thus related to the baptismal event as a whole. If here Paul apparently presents the three coincident actions as occurring at baptism, this may be due to the fact that since “baptism is the visible sign of visible incorporation into the visible church” it can be more effectively appealed to than faith as marking the believers’ decisive break with the past. Hence, although formally Paul’s statement is a reference to baptism, yet substantially it is really a description of what, in strict analysis, lies behind baptism, viz. the believers’ (in this case, the Corinthians’) conversion-experience.33 On this showing, ἐν τῷ ὀνόματι κτλ. indicates the work of God in Jesus Christ which is the basis of the work of grace experienced by the Corinthian Christians, while ἐν τῷ πνεύματι κτλ. reflects the work of the Spirit who brings the believer into relation with Christ (cf. 1 Cor. 12:3, 13) and both separates him to God (cf. 2 Thess. 2:13) and leads him in the life of progressive sanctification (cf. 2 Cor. 3:18; Rom. 8:13–14; Gal. 5:17–18, 22–25). If this be the case, then we have in the three verbs of our text not three steps or stages of Christian experience, but different aspects of the Spirit’s action or, to state it from the recipient’s standpoint, of the believer’s union with Christ.

Thus we find presented here in juxtaposition cleansing, sanctification and justification as different aspects of a single act of grace at the outset of the Christian life, as coincident facts of the believer’s one experience of union with Christ. Since faith is implied both in ἀπελούσασθε and in the confession of the name of the Lord in baptism (cf. Rom. 10:10), it is implied that justification is by faith. The phrase ἐν τῷ ὀνόματι κτλ. also implies that justification is based on the work of Christ. On all these points, there is complete consistency between this passage and what we have found in 1:18–31

1 Corinthians 6:12  All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything.

Amplified Everything is permissible (allowable and lawful) for me; but not all things are helpful (good for me to do, expedient and profitable when considered with other things). Everything is lawful for me, but I will not become the slave of anything or be brought under its power.

Wuest All [good] things are under my power of choice to be doing, but all things are not profitable. All things are under my power of choice, but I will not be brought under the power of any one of them. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:12 "All things are lawful for me"– but not everything is beneficial. "All things are lawful for me"– but I will not be controlled by anything.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:12 You say, "I am allowed to do anything"-- but not everything is good for you. And even though "I am allowed to do anything," I must not become a slave to anything.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:12 "All things are lawful for me," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be dominated by anything.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:12 "Everything is permissible for me"--but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible for me"--but I will not be mastered by anything.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:12 Πάντα μοι ἔξεστιν ἀλλ᾽ οὐ πάντα συμφέρει. πάντα μοι ἔξεστιν ἀλλ᾽ οὐκ ἐγὼ ἐξουσιασθήσομαι ὑπό τινος.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful to me, but all things are not profitable; all things are lawful to me, but I -- I will not be under authority by any;

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful for me; but not all things are expedient. All things are lawful for me; but I will not be brought under the power of any.

ICB  "I am allowed to do all things." But all things are not good for me to do. "I am allowed to do all things." But I must not do those things that will make me their slave.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:12 "Everything is permissible for me," but not everything is helpful. "Everything is permissible for me," but I will not be brought under the control of anything.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:12 "All things are lawful for me," but not all things are beneficial. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be dominated by anything.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:12 "Everything is lawful for me," but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is lawful for me," but I will not let myself be dominated by anything.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:12 'For me everything is permissible'; maybe, but not everything does good. True, for me everything is permissible, but I am determined not to be dominated by anything.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:12 Someone may say, "I'm allowed to do anything," but not everything is helpful. I'm allowed to do anything, but I won't allow anything to gain control over my life.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:12 I am free to do all things; but not all things are wise. I am free to do all things; but I will not let myself come under the power of any.

  • All things are lawful: 1Co 10:23 Ro 14:14 
  • not all things are profitable 1Co 8:4,7-13 9:12 10:24-33 Ro 14:15-23 2Th 3:9 
  • but I will not be mastered by anything 1Co 9:27 Ro 7:14 Heb 12:15,16 Jude 1:12 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages: 

Romans 6:14+  For sin shall not be master (kurieuo) over you, for you are not under law but under grace. 

Psalm 19:13+  Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins; Let them not rule over (Lxx = katakurieuo = become master, gain dominion over) me; Then I will be blameless, And I shall be acquitted of great transgression. 

1 Corinthians 9:27+  but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

Galatians 5:1+  t was for freedom (eleutheria) that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

Galatians 5:13 For you were called to freedom (eleutheria), brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 

Romans 6:7+ -for he who has died is freed from sin. (made free from sin's control.)

John 8:36 So if the Son makes you free (eleutheroo), you will be free (eleutheros) indeed.

1 Peter 2:16+ Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God.

Proverbs 6:26+ (ON HOW UNPROFITABLE SEXUAL IMMORALITY WAS) For on account of a harlot one is reduced to a loaf of bread, And an adulteress hunts for the precious life. 

PAUL'S FREEDOM
IN CHRIST

Notice the flow of Paul's letter -- In 1 Cor 6:9 he had just given a list of sins when practiced would keep one out of the kingdom of God and he listed the sexual sins first which gives them prominence, which would be appropriate in a city that had coined the verb "to corinthianize" meaning to live a promiscuous life. This was the "baggage" that probably quite a few of the saints had brought over into their new life in Christ. And so given the Corinthian culture of sexual license, the saints would have been continually tempted to backslide into their old ways of immoral behavior. 

 This verse is not a license to live a sinful or worldly lifestyle!

Glenn Spencer introduces this last section - Corinth was a wicked city full of luxury and vice. Prostitutes were available in large numbers and all types of sex perversion was openly practiced there. The immorality of Corinth was largely promoted by pagan religion and practices. Corinth was the center for worship of the goddess Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, whose worship practices were immoral and wicked. The temple of Aphrodite was serviced by a thousand temple prostitutes where men could come and satisfy their lustful desires in the name of religion. The Greeks of Paul’s day thought the soul to be of some value but considered the body to be a necessary evil. They had a proverbial saying, "The body is a tomb." Epictetus, the Greek philosopher said, "I am a poor soul shackled to a corpse." As a result of their foolish philosophy they were either ascetic, denying and punishing their bodies or extremely licentious and involved in all types of fornication and filth. Here comes Paul preaching and winning men and women to Christ. The Word of God always confronts and opposes corrupt culture. G. Campbell Morgan said: "The whole trouble can be summarized by saying that the spirit of the city had infected the church. That is always a peril. The Church ’s business is not to catch the spirit of the age, but to correct it. When the Church of God knows its own business, and is living in accordance with its own mighty laws of life, she is a perpetual rebuke to the things that are merely of the passing and ephemeral age." Paul certainly corrected the spirit of the age when he pointed out the sanctity of the believer’s body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. This was the opposite of the worldly philosophy of Corinth that had infiltrated the Church. (Expository Pulpit Series)

Hodge introduces 1 Cor 6:12-20 entitling it "The abuse that some people had made of the principle, “All things are lawful."

In 1 Cor 6:12-20 Paul proceeded to expose the error in the Corinthian Christians’ rationalization that they were free to sin, because now their sins were covered by God’s grace. They were like those in Jude who were in effect turning the grace of God into licentiousness (Jude 1:4+). They were continuing in sin (simply doing what they had done prior to conversion as Paul described in 1 Co 6:9+) that grace might abound (Ro 6:1+). And even Paul's words in 1 Cor 6:9 that "fornicators...adulterers" would not inherit the Kingdom of God should have been a warning shot over the bow of their boat, so to speak. Some had come out of those practices, but this section indicates that these sins were still a significant problem in the Christian community in Corinth. In fact, one wonders if it is not this fact that many in the church were still trapped in immorality themselves, that they did not condemn the man committing incest with his stepmother. To condemn him would have been hypocritical. 

Charles Hodge adds that "In the preceding paragraph the apostle had declared that the immoral cannot inherit the kingdom of God; he had given special prominence to sins against the seventh commandment. In this paragraph he comes to consider the basis on which the violations of that commandment were defended or palliated. That basis was a gross perversion of the principle of Christian liberty Paul was accustomed to say in reference to the ceremonial or positive enactments of the Jewish law, and especially in reference to the distinction between clean and unclean meats, “All things are permissible for me.” As the Greeks and Romans generally regarded sexual immorality as not immoral in themselves, it is not surprising that some of the Corinthians educated in that belief should retain and act on the principle even after their profession of Christianity. They reasoned from analogy. As it is right to eat all kinds of food that are suitable for the stomach, so it is right to gratify any other natural propensity. Paul has two answers to this argument. First, he shows that the principle of Christian liberty is to be restricted in its application; and, second, there is no analogy between the cases mentioned. Food is something not immoral in itself, whereas sexual immorality is in its own nature a profanation and a crime. (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

All things are lawful (allowed, permitted) for me but not all things are profitable - NIV = "Everything is permissible for me" NLT = "You may say, "I am allowed to do anything." Did you notice that the NET, NLT, ESV, NIV, CSB. NRSV all put the phrases "all things are lawful for me" in quotation marks? They did this because these versions all assumed that these were common sayings by the Corinthian saints and Paul was simply quoting them to lay a common ground from which he would make to make his argument against their loose living sexually. Thus All things are lawful may have been used by the saints to justify various sinful behaviors, (and from the context) especially promiscuous sexual behavior. If so, Paul agrees with them by saying as far as it speaks to Christian freedom all things are lawful, but then he adds two significant qualifiers to balance this statement on Christian liberty. Note that when he says all things obviously he is not saying all things without exception, for murder or stealing  would not be lawful. Or as Robertson says "Paul limits the proverb to things not immoral, things not wrong per se." Wuest paraphrases it "All [good] things are under my power of choice to be doing." Also Paul is speaking in context of spiritual things (or physical things which affect the spiritual aspect of man). Some among the Corinthians seem to have been ready to say, 'All things are lawful for me and this justifies my immoral behavior'.

And so the phrase All things are lawful generally speaks of his freedom or liberty in Christ and more specifically in this context the freedom he had in the use of his own body. Beginning in the next verse to the end of this chapter the word body is used 8 times in 6 verses and clearly is a key word in this section. So while agreeing with the basic premise of freedom, Paul gives two qualifying statements regarding things that are lawful in Christ or for a Christian. First he says they should be things that are profitable, things that confer a benefit, things that are useful and to one's advantage. 

Spencer -  This verse is not a license to live a sinful or worldly lifestyle. Paul statement here is based on the fact that he is no longer under the mosaic law, but under grace. When he was a Pharisee he lived according to a system of do’s and don’ts. Did Paul believe that everything and anything was lawful and legal for the Christian? Absolutely not! When Paul said, all things are lawful unto me, he was in no way referring to things that were sinful and ungodly. We already know certain things to be unlawful and forbidden. Paul wanted the Corinthians to understand that the things he was about to say was not from some religious list of do’s and don’ts designed to destroy their liberty and make them self-righteous. Paul’s righteousness was no longer one that he was striving to reach, but one that was imputed to him. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21) Now Paul could say: ...not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. (Philippians 3:9) Paul was teaching them that real liberty is in Jesus Christ. Christian liberty means that the believer is liberated from his sin. And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free ... If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. (John 8:32, 36) Liberty is not freedom to sin, but freedom from sin. Some of the Corinthians were still living as slaves to sin although they had been set free. Liberty without Lordship is out of balance. The Christian is not free to do as he pleases, but free from the power of Satan and sin to serve the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the essence of Christian liberty. For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. (Galatians 5:13) Liberty that leads to looseness is not the liberty of the Bible. Liberty is never a license to live an unrestrained life. It is an incentive to live holy to the glory of God. Paul’s life was now governed by the same grace that saved him. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. (Galatians 2:20-21) (Expository Pulpit Series)

Spurgeon - So, on the one hand, do not make too much of abstaining from this or that, for these things, after all, are but small matters to glory in; but, on the other hand, let no man ever call himself a Christian while he is a slave to any evil habit. What says Paul? “God shall destroy both it and them.” In the previous verse, he says, “I will not be brought under the power of any.” The immortal spirit under the power of materialism? ay, that must never be.

NET Note - All things are lawful for me. In the expressions in vv. 12–13 within quotation marks, Paul cites certain slogans the Corinthians apparently used to justify their behavior. Paul agrees with the slogans in part, but corrects them to show how the Corinthians have misused these ideas.

Ryrie on are lawful - Apparently some of the Corinthians were trying to use their Christian freedom to justify their sins. Paul here insists that Christian liberty is limited by two considerations: Is the practice expedient (helpful) and will it enslave? 

Hodge on is it profitable - The first limitation of the principle is expediency. Not all permissible things are expedient. It is both absurd and wicked to do anything that is injurious to ourselves or others simply because it is not sinful in its own nature. The apostle enforces this principle of expediency at length in Romans 14:15–23 and 1 Corinthians 8:7–13 and 10:23–33. 

Glenn Spencerall things are not expedient. (1 Corinthians 6:12KJV) The word expedient means "beneficial, profitable and advantageous." Webster says, "that which serves to promote or advance." It comes from the word expedite and carries the idea of "hastening forward toward a destination." The thought is that of going on a trip. When we leave our place of departure we move forward toward our destination. Therefore, we utilize the thing that help us along the way—a road map, gas, etc. These are things that expedite our trip and help us to move "forward toward a destination." The same principle is true in the Christian life. We have a destination. The destination of every believer is to be like Christ—to be conformed to His image (Romans 8:29). Therefore, anything that does not serve to make us more like Christ and move us forward in His service should be off limits. The real issue is not, is it lawful, but is it expedient? Will it move me forward for the cause of Christ? There are many things, though lawful, they are not beneficial to our Christian life. (ED: COMPARE - "lay aside every encumbrance" - Hebrews 12:1+).

Arnold - While a Christian does have liberty within the area of questionable practices, the exercise of that liberty may not always be profitable or beneficial.
Even Christian liberty when taken to extremes can be hurtful. The moment the use of our Christian liberty begins to hurt us or someone else, we have fallen off into license, and we are as bad off as the legalist. The key word in Christian liberty is balance. Some things may not be wrong in themselves but it may not be wise for one’s body, social life or spiritual life to practice them. For instance, a Christian is free to eat anything he wants and as much as he wants and whenever he wants, but that freedom may cause great hurt and not be beneficial. If a person has a sickness, it may not be good for him to eat sugar, although he is free to do so. If we are concerned about our health and the use of our bodies for God, then it is not wise to eat whatever and whenever we want. Just because we have Christian liberty does not mean we insist upon using that liberty. Christians willingly and gladly set aside their liberty to have a positive testimony before the unsaved world and to keep a brother or sister in Christ from stumbling. The mature Christian is never thinking about himself only but also about the winning of people to Christ and the spiritual growth of the church.

Lawful (permitted)(1832)(exesti from from ek = out + eimí = to be) is an impersonal verb, signifying "it is permitted, it is lawful" (or interrogatively, "is it lawful?"). Exesti occurs most frequently in the synoptic Gospels and the Acts, especially in Jesus' conflicts with the Pharisees over His actions (and those of His disciples) on the Sabbath (Matt. 12:2; 12:4; 12:10; 12:12, etc). BDAG - 1. to be authorized for the doing of something - it is right, is authorized, is permitted, is proper. 2. to be within the range of possibility, it is possible (Acts 2:29) TDNT on exesti - “It is free,” denoting a. an action that is possible because there is occasion for it or no obstacle to it,  b. an action that is not prevented by a higher norm or court, and c. an action to which there is no psychological or ethical block.  Uses in the Corinthian letters - 1 Co. 6:12; 1 Co. 10:23; 2 Co. 12:4

Profitable (good, advantage, expedient)(4851) sumphero from sún = together + phéro = bring) means literally to bring together (literally - as in Acts 19:19+). Then sumphero means bears together for good and thus worthwhile, to confer a benefit, to be profitable, to be advantageous (Mt. 5:29, 30; Mt 18:6; Mt 19:10; John 11:50; Jn 16:7) or useful. The idea is to bring together for the benefit, profit or advantage of another. And so in Heb 12:10 sumphero describes the dividends of discipline, aka "the profit of punishment!" Paul uses sumphero to describe another advantage of discipline declaring that "when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord in order that we may not be condemned along with the world. (1Co 11:32+) Sumphero - 15v in NT - Mt. 5:29; Mt. 5:30; Mt. 18:6; Mt. 19:10; Jn. 11:50; Jn. 16:7; Jn. 18:14; Acts 19:19; Acts 20:20; 1 Co. 6:12; 1 Co. 10:23; 1 Co. 12:7; 2 Co. 8:10; 2 Co. 12:1; Heb. 12:10

Alan Redpath - “All things are lawful unto me,” writes Paul, “and there is not a single faculty or appetite of the body which is not for me to use lawfully.” But because we are Christians there are two things we must bear in mind as we exercise our liberty. The first is this: “All things are not expedient.” That word means “bearing together,” “helping together.” Paul is saying, therefore, that he no longer lives to himself; as a Christian he is one of a fellowship, and he can only use the appetites of the body so long as he is not hurting another. He is governed by the effect upon other people, not upon himself. Not only that, says Paul, but “I will not be brought under the power [authority] of any.” If through the unrestrained use of the body he is mastered by these things, then he is denying the right of Jesus Christ to the sovereignty of his life.

All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything - Amplified = "I will not become the slave of anything or be brought under its power." NET = "I will not be controlled by anything." Paul repeats the statement that alludes to Christian freedom, and gives his second qualification regarding all things. So now he says that the all things should not only be profitable (primarily in a spiritual sense), but also things that do not master him, things that do not make him a slave, that do not exert authority over him. In other words whatever things he chooses should not be such that it brings him under the power of that particular thing. While this could refer to a number of things, in context it clearly refers to illicit sex. If one experiences sex the way God intended it to be used, it is profitable and it does not bring a person into bondage to sexual sin. However, if one flaunts his or her Christian freedom in this area of sexual activity, the experience, while momentarily gratifying, eventually brings untoward consequences that are not beneficial ("euphemism!"), but in fact are detrimental and even destructive, to one's body, one's relationships and one's overall spiritual well-being. Paul implies that sinful sex will master you "hook, line and sinker," like a fish who takes the bait that hides the hook and ends up on as the evening meal. Given the fact that the sex drive in human beings is one of the strongest drives of all, once a person begins to capitulate to the sin of immorality (in manifold forms from mistresses to internet pornography), they will be mastered by this seductive, ensnaring sin (cf Romans 6:14+ Psalm 19:13+) ! 

Christian liberty treated as license
Leads to sin becoming one's lord!

Hodge on not be mastered by anything - The second limitation of our liberty is self-respect. Because it is permissible to eat, that is no reason why I should make myself a slave to my appetite. “I will not be brought under the power of anything,” says Paul. “I will not make myself its slave.” It is of great importance to the moral health of the soul that it should preserve its self-control and not be in subjection to any appetite or desire, however innocent that desire may be in itself. This is a scriptural rule that Christians often violate. They are slaves to certain forms of indulgence, which they defend on the basis that they are not wrong in themselves, forgetting that it is wrong to be in bondage to any appetite or habit.

In qualifying  the phrase all things are lawful with the addendums (so to speak) of profitable and mastered by, Paul was taking dead aim at the sexual immorality in the saints at Corinth who said they could practice it because "all things are lawful." The Corinthians did not understand how harmful immorality was to everyone involved (i.e., it was NOT profitable), and they did not understand how immorality will gains control over those who practice it (i.e, they would BE mastered by it). 

ILLUSTRATION - Sex outside of marriage is like a man robbing a bank who gets money, but it is not his and he will eventually have to pay the consequences for robbing the bank, consequences that are anything but gratifying! Conversely, healthy, normal sexual relations in the covenant of marriage are like putting money into a bank where it will be safe and will earn interest (at least when the interest rates were higher). 

Gilbrant adds this note on lawful - "If the Christian is free to do all things, he is still not free to sin. Limitations to a Christian's liberty are set by consequences and what is right." 

Robertson - Paul is determined not to be a slave to anything harmless in itself. He will maintain his self-control. He gives a wholesome hint to those who talk so much about personal liberty.

Spencer - This is where many Christians fail when it comes to liberty. The phrase brought under the power carries the idea of being under the rule of or enslaved by. Paul said: Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. (Romans 6:12) As a result of practicing a loose liberty many end up under the reign of the flesh—they are brought under the power of their practices. That which starts out as a weight can easily become a sin. Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us. (Hebrews 12:1) The runners in Olympic games would often wear training weights to help them prepare for upcoming races. However, when the time came to run they did not run with the weights—they laid them aside. The weights weren’t bad in themselves but would have hindered them in their desire to win. What an illustration of the Christian’s race. We are in a Marathon and we have a destination. Therefore, we must lay aside the weights of life and run whole-heartedly for Christ. At the point that a Christian cannot lay aside his weight it becomes a sin. Many times, it starts out as something perfectly innocent and harmless. But after a while it begins weighs us down. It distracts us from the things of God and redirects our attention onto temporal things. It robs us of our time, drains our energy, dampens our zeal for the things of God. That is when a weight becomes sin. Anything that enslaves the Christian is sin. Even lawful appetites and desires can easily become our masters and we their slaves. Dear child of God, lets enjoy our liberty, but may we determine as Paul did that we will not be brought under the power of any.

Writing to the Galatians Paul declared "For you were called to freedom (eleutheria) , brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity (aphorme - literally starting point or base of operations for an expedition) for the flesh (sinful flesh), but through love serve one another." (Gal 5:13+) This is a description of Christian freedom being abused and is likely a good description of what the saints at Corinth were doing, justifying their immorality by saying they were now no longer under the law and were free in Christ. The problem was they had allowed the truth of their freedom become the "base of operations" for their immoral behavior.

Freedom is not the power to do as you please, but the power to do as you should. 

FREEDOM OUT OF CONTROL IS BONDAGE!

Arnold - Paul taught liberty in questionable practices, but he also taught the Christian should never allow himself to be a slave to any fleshly appetite. Things that are doubtful are often things which become enslaving. Yet, a Christian is not to be brought under the power of anything. The things which hurt us often have a tendency to be habit forming. They are harmful because they give us a certain degree of pleasure which makes us not mind the hurt so much, but that degree of pleasure is habit forming, either physically or emotionally

THOUGHT - One practical application is that every action having to do with ALL THINGS, is  that we should test the things with at least two questions, (1) Is this THING profitable in the eternal scheme of things? and (2) Will this THING overpower and enslave me and have a detrimental effect on the church and my testimony for Christ? Sin has power and no sin is more enslaving than sexual sin, Solomon writing in the context of warnings against the "strange woman" that "His own iniquities will capture the wicked, And he will be held with the cords of his sin." (Pr 5:22) Jesus said "Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits (present tense) sin is the slave of sin." (Jn 8:34) Peter wrote that "by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved." (2 Pe 2:19) Ro6:16, cp Ps 19:13). While SEXUAL SIN can never be the unbroken pattern of a true believer’s life, it can be the recurring habit that saps joy, peace, usefulness and brings divine chastening (cp esp Samson's sad life Jdg 13-16) and even church discipline (cf. 5:1ff.). SEXUAL SIN controls, so the believer must never allow sin to have that control, but must master it in the Lord’s strength (1 Cor 9:27, Ro 8:13, Php 2:12,13). 

Mastered (1850exousiazo from exousia = the right and the might) means to exercise authority over others. The idea is that one who has the right or power and thus is able to do with something or someone as he sees fit. In 1 Co. 6:12 it refers to Christians giving up their rights. Although "all things are lawful," there are limitations, so that what is possible, is not necessarily best. Only 3 uses in the NT - Lk. 22:25; 1 Co. 6:12; 1 Co. 7:4

Henry Morris - On decisions dealing with doubtful things, see the notes on Romans 14. The principle given here is to steer clear of any involvement with drugs, intoxicating drink, smoking, gambling or any other behavior that might become addictive.

Vincent - There is a play between this word and ἐξουσιασθήσομαι be brought under the power, which can hardly be accurately conveyed to the English reader. The nearest approach to it is: “all things are in my power, but I shall not be brought under the power of any.”


David E O'Brien - Question 101 Didn’t Paul say everything was lawful for the Christian? If so, isn’t it legalistic to judge other believers for things they’ve done if the Lord doesn’t convict them (1 Corinthians 6:12)?

Legalism has been a curse among the religious since before the Pharisees. We need to be on guard that legalism doesn’t define our practice of the Christian faith, but first we need to know what legalism is and isn’t.

Trying to live a godly life is not legalistic. As we attempt to fit our faith into the world, we sometimes find things we must abstain from. It’s not legalistic for me, for example, to abstain from the recreational use of mood altering drugs. It is one example of my understanding of what it means to live a holy life before the Lord.

Recognizing when another Christian slips into a style of life that violates clear biblical commands and prohibitions is not legalistic. The one who’s been caught by sin needs our concern and our correction (Galatians 6:1–2). It’s not legalistic to give it.

Going to Scripture to find God’s way for our lives is not legalistic.

Trying to win God’s favor by adopting and living by a set of rules carried out without love is legalistic. Legalists lick their chops at the chance to condemn sin in another. The sense of hurt that comes when a loved one falls is seldom felt by the legalist.

The difference in attitude can be characterized this way.

If a brother in Christ falls, we recognize that we are capable of the same sin. If we live by godly precepts we respond with sorrow and a powerful desire to see him brought back into fellowship with the Lord and His church.

If we live by the codes of legalism, we respond with outrage, because our law is more important than the people who break it. Unable to see ourselves in the place of the fallen one, we point an accusing finger and demand the person’s removal to avoid contamination.

Paul railed against the legalism, and he was not soft on sin. His letters are filled with help for believers who had fallen into sin. It wasn’t just the Corinthians, it was everybody. Paul might not have written more than a handful of letters if there hadn’t been so many sinners in his churches.

His dealing with them, though, was instructive. He pointed first to their shared faith in Christ and the life their faith called them to live. Then he called them back to living it.

The man who refused to acknowledge his sin of living with his mother-in-law was treated sternly, but notice the purpose for the harsh treatment: “so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 5:5). The punishment was to be redemptive.
Was Paul afraid to tell people what was right and what was wrong? No.

Would the man who wrote so extensively to correct errors in thought and behavior have written, “All things are lawful”? No.

But the Corinthians would have. Remember the letter Paul quoted from? Remember the delegation from Chloe’s household? They both contained serious questions about the lifestyle and teaching of various factions at Corinth.

One of those factions shouted slogans to prove they could live any way they chose. “All things are lawful” (1 Corinthians 6:12). “Food for the stomach, the stomach for food” (1 Corinthians 6:13).

Sounds contemporary, doesn’t it? This faction seemed to wave these slogans like red flags of revolution, declaring their freedom from the law. Paul quoted the sayings, but didn’t agree with them. Paul wasn’t a bull. He didn’t paw and snort and bellow. He didn’t attack blindly. Doing so would have destroyed other believers. He could have said, “That is the dumbest slogan I ever heard.” Instead, he qualified it.

“Maybe so,” he said, “but certainly not everything is useful.”

“Maybe so,” he continued, “but you wouldn’t want to become the slave of any of these things you’re using to flaunt your freedom. Yes, food was made to fill the stomach, and the stomach was made to receive the food. But you must remember that these are temporary.” Here’s a lesson for all of us. Paul knew he could catch more flies with honey than vinegar. He began his response tactfully and gently. It didn’t take long for him to get at the heart of the matter, though.

The Corinthians weren’t really talking about food at all. They were talking, in a way that’s painfully reminiscent of the sexual revolution of the sixties, about continuing the immorality they had practiced before they knew Christ. Paul zeroed in on sexual immorality almost immediately.
Was he legalistic about it?

No. He simply called it sin and condemned it as unworthy of one who had become a new creation in Christ.

Today, as in Paul’s day, we need to be brought back to the Bible and reminded that our salvation puts us under obligation to our Savior. We are, after all, not our own. We’ve been bought, and what a price was paid for us. To say that people bought by the blood of Christ should live up to the price paid for them is the furthest thing from legalism.


BRUCE GOETTSCHE Walking Through Life With Jesus -

First, though we are free, not everything is profitable.  Even though we have been set free in Christ, some behaviors are still wrong.  These things lead to painful consequences and erect a barrier between us and God. Though you certainly can do whatever you want with your body, why would you do things that were actually harmful to that body? Paul implies that we need to always ask: “Is this profitable?” before we do it. though we are free, we must continue to be on guard against being enslaved again. 

Second, though we are free, we must continue to be on guard against being enslaved again.  In the careless exercise of our freedom we may actually end up in bondage. Let’s illustrate this:

  • You might like to go shopping.  There is nothing wrong with that as long as you can afford it.  However, if you don’t show restraint you can start to feel that you “need to buy something” in order to be happy.  You can become enslaved to debt or that constant feeling that you need more.
  • You like to eat.  That’s natural and good.  However, if you can’t control your eating you can do harm your body by eating too much or eating the wrong foods.
  • It is good to have a desire to look good but if that desire gets out of control, you may end up with an eating DIS-order and do harm to yourself.
  • There is nothing wrong with taking medication but the overuse of medication results in you become “addicted” which is just another word for enslaved.
  • You may enjoy sporting events.  However, if these events begin to control your life or if they get you too worked up (they are just games, afterall), it is no longer a good thing.  It has caught you in its snare.

Enjoyment Or Addiction?

All things are not helpful. . . . I will not be brought under the power of any. — 1 Corinthians 6:12

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

With the growing use of computers and on-line services, an increasing number of people are withdrawing into cyberspace. Despite eye and wrist strain, and complaints from their families and employers, they continue to spend hours a day browsing bulletin boards and visiting discussion groups on the Internet.

How can we tell when something legitimate has moved from enjoyment to addiction? Dr. Joseph Gerstein, a Massachusetts physician, says, “When people cling to activities despite negative effects, it generally indicates addictive behavior.”

As the apostle Paul addressed the danger of excusing sin under the guise of Christian liberty, he wrote, “All things are not helpful. . . . I will not be brought under the power of any” (1 Cor. 6:12). His words can guide us in evaluating those gray areas that the Bible does not specifically label as sin.

Has a friend or family member recently spoken to us about overindulgence in some area of our life? A defensive attitude may indicate that it’s time to step back and view ourselves through the eyes of those who love us.

It takes humility to admit that our enjoyment has become addiction and to seek God’s help to break free.By:  David  C. McCasland (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Think It Over
What sins did Paul mention in 1 Corinthians 6:12-20?
How can legitimate activities become sinful? (v.12).
Has something good become a sin in your life?

To gain self-control, give Christ control.


Pure Love

If they cannot exercise self-control, let them marry. — 1 Corinthians 7:9

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:18–7:9

A situation that once was viewed by most people as unacceptable and immoral has become commonplace. According to the National & International Religion Report, before the majority of American marriages take place, the man and woman have already been living together.

The report goes on to point out that this practice has devastating effects. “Marriages that are preceded by living together have 50 percent higher disruption (divorce or separation) rates than marriages without premarital cohabitation.”

Even among Christians there is no shortage of those who think they can violate God’s moral standards.

The temptations were similar in the first century. That’s why Paul had to make it clear to the believers at Corinth that they had no business being involved in sexual immorality. He said that if they found their passions becoming so strong that they could not control their sexual desires, there was an answer. It was not found in an immoral relationship; it was found in marriage.

In a day when immorality continues to devour people, let’s do all we can to promote the joys and privileges of love that is honoring to God—the love that is shared in marriage. There is no substitute for pure love. By:  Dave Branon (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Those who feed their passion
Outside God’s holy plan
Forsake the loving pattern
He has designed for man.
—K. DeHaan

Saving yourself for marriage will help to save your marriage.


Question - What does it mean that “all things are lawful unto me” (1 Corinthians 6:12; 10:23)?

Answer: Twice in his first letter to the Corinthian church, Paul uses the statement “all things are lawful unto me” (KJV), once in 1 Corinthians 6:12 and again in 1 Corinthians 10:23. In both instances, the apostle is warning the church against misusing Christian liberty. We’ll take a look at both passages in their immediate context.

In 1 Corinthians 6, Paul is finishing up his address of several specific sins the Corinthian believers were tolerating: some church members were taking advantage of each other in court (verses 1–8), and others were practicing immorality (verses 12–20). In this context, the apostle says, “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any” (verse 12, KJV). In this verse, Paul seems to be anticipating an argument from those who justified their sin in the name of “Christian liberty.” His point is that liberty has limitations. He moves right into proofs that sexual immorality is at odds with the Christian life, and no amount of “Christian liberty” can excuse it.

The NIV translation of 1 Corinthians 6:12 brings out more clearly the idea that Paul is quoting those who objected to his reprimand: “‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but I will not be mastered by anything.” It seems that some within the Corinthian church were using “I have the right to do anything” as a mantra, repeating it whenever they were questioned about their behavior. Paul responds to their mantra by adding his own clauses: “but not everything is beneficial” and “but I will not be mastered by anything.” Even if all things were lawful, not everything should be done, and nothing should be allowed to enslave us as a sinful habit.

In 1 Corinthians 10, the issue is eating meats offered to idols. Paul again turns to the mantra of the Corinthians: “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not” (verse 23, KJV). He then goes on to make the case that eating meat sold in the marketplace is not wrong in itself; however, if eating meat offered to idols caused anyone to stumble, then that activity becomes wrong.

The NIV words 1 Corinthians 10:23 this way: “‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but not everything is constructive.” So, Christian liberty is limited by at least two considerations: 1) what is the effect of this action upon oneself? and 2) what influence will this action have on “Jews, Greeks or the church of God” as a whole (verse 32)? Our goal must be to seek “the good of others” (verse 24), not just our own good (cf. verse 33).

Christian liberty was a major theme of Paul’s (see Galatians 5:1). So it is quite possible that the Corinthians’ mantra, “All things are lawful unto me,” was originally Paul’s teaching to that church. But the church was ignoring the limitations that love for others and holiness before God place on liberty. The Christian cannot live in sin and, when confronted, shrug and say, “All things are lawful unto me, because Paul said so.” No believer has the right to knowingly cause someone to fall into sin and excuse it with the catchphrase “I have the right to do anything.” Christian liberty ceases to be “Christian” and becomes libertinism when we engage in acts of immorality or fail to truly love one another. GotQuestions.org


Question:  Christian liberty – what does the Bible say?

Answer: Christian liberty is found in the Bible in several concepts. For example, liberty for the Christian can mean that he or she has been freed from the penalty of sin by faith in Jesus Christ (John 8:31-36; Romans 6:23). Also, Christian liberty can refer to being freed from the power of sin in one’s life by daily faith in Jesus Christ as Lord of one’s character and conduct (Romans 6:5-6, 14). In addition, Christian liberty can mean that Christians are freed from the Jewish Law of Moses in that the Law only "exposes" sin in one’s life but cannot "forgive" sin (Romans 3:20-22).

Finally, Christian liberty can mean that Christians are freed in respect to such activity that is not expressly forbidden in the Bible. Therefore one can feel free to engage in such activity as long as it doesn’t "stumble" or "offend" another Christian (Romans 14:12-16). Most of these activities revolve around social "dos" and "don’ts, such as whether or not to wear certain kinds of clothes, make-up, jewelry, tattoos, piercings, and/or practicing certain things, such as smoking, social drinking, recreational gambling, dancing, or viewing movies or videos. As the passage in Romans 14 says, these things may not be strictly prohibited by God’s Word, but they can be bad for one’s spiritual growth or Christian testimony and can cause other Christians to stumble.

Furthermore, Christians who tend to vigorously promote such liberties can sometimes fall into a loose lifestyle of undisciplined living, while, on the other hand, Christians who tend to vigorously limit such liberties can sometimes fall into a legalistic lifestyle of being defined by what they are "against." So, it is wise to seek God in prayer and His Word to determine whether or not a particular activity is actually forbidden in Scripture. If it is, it should be avoided. If it is not forbidden, then we should seek to determine how the activity reflects on our reputation as Christians and whether it will help us or hinder us in representing Jesus to unbelievers around us, whether it edifies them or not.

The ultimate goal for the Christian should be to glorify God, edify fellow believers, and have a good reputation before unbelievers (Psalm 19:14; Romans 15:1-2; 1 Peter 2:11-12). "For you brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another" (Galatians 5:13).GotQuestions.org


Watch What You Watch

Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things. —Psalm 119:37

Is your living room the site of daily murders? Do you routinely entertain guests who swear at you and make fun of your faith? Have you ever had somebody drop by and try to convince you that sexual sin is a joking matter and that violence is entertaining?

You’ve had all these things happen in your house if you’ve watched many of the programs on TV. This is not late-breaking news. The moral content of television has been on the decline for years. But that doesn’t mean we have to go down with it.

The psalmist, who knew as much about TV as most of us know about tending sheep, said, “Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things” (Ps. 119:37). That’s a good verse to post over our TV set.

For the most part, the entertainment world is serious about casting off restraints. Just as seriously, we should protect our minds. These guidelines can help:

  • Avoid jokes about sex (1 Cor. 6:18; Eph. 5:3-4,12).
  • Don’t listen to vulgar language (Eph. 5:4).
  • Don’t let ads cause you to covet (Ex. 20:17; Col. 3:5).
  • Don’t let your eyes cause you to sin (Mt. 18:9).

Honor God with your viewing habits. When it comes to entertainment, watch what you watch. (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Temptation's face is young and soft
And smooth in its appeal;
But when it's through it ruins lives
With velvet fists of steel. —Gustafson

Use self-control with your remote control.

1 Corinthians 6:13  Food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food, but God will do away with both of them. Yet the body is not for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body.

Amplified - Food [is intended] for the stomach and the stomach for food, but God will finally end [the functions of] both and bring them to nothing. The body is not intended for sexual immorality, but [is intended] for the Lord, and the Lord [is intended] for the body to save, sanctify, and raise it again].

Wuest - The various kinds of food are for the stomach, and the stomach is for these various kinds of food. But God will abolish both it and them. But the body is not for fornication but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food, but God will do away with both." The body is not for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:13 You say, "Food was made for the stomach, and the stomach for food." (This is true, though someday God will do away with both of them.) But you can't say that our bodies were made for sexual immorality. They were made for the Lord, and the Lord cares about our bodies.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food"-- and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food for the stomach and the stomach for food"--but God will destroy them both. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:13 τὰ βρώματα τῇ κοιλίᾳ καὶ ἡ κοιλία τοῖς βρώμασιν, ὁ δὲ θεὸς καὶ ταύτην καὶ ταῦτα καταργήσει. τὸ δὲ σῶμα οὐ τῇ πορνείᾳ ἀλλὰ τῷ κυρίῳ, καὶ ὁ κύριος τῷ σώματι·

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:13 the meats are for the belly, and the belly for the meats. And God both this and these shall make useless; and the body is not for whoredom, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body;

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall bring to nought both it and them. But the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body:

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food for the stomach and the stomach for food," but God will do away with both of them. The body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:13 Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food," and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is meant not for fornication but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:13 "Food for the stomach and the stomach for food," but God will do away with both the one and the other. The body, however, is not for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body;

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:13 Foods are for the stomach, and the stomach is for foods; and God will destroy them both. But the body is not for sexual immorality;

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:13 Food is for the stomach, and the stomach is for food, but God will put an end to both of them. However, the body is not for sexual sin but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:13 Food is for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will put an end to them together. But the body is not for the desires of the flesh, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body:

  • Food is for the stomach: Mt 15:17,20 Mk 7:19 Ro 14:17 
  • but God will do away with both of them: 1Co 10:3-5 Joh 6:27,49 Col 2:22,23 
  • but for the Lord,: 1Co 6:15,19 3:16 Ro 6:12 7:4 12:1 14:7-9 2Co 5:15 11:2 Eph 5:23 1Th 4:3-7 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Ruins of City with Acrocorinth Location of Immoral Temple of Aphrodite

SEGUE TO SINS
OF THE BODY

The second saying the Corinthian used to support their immorality was, “Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats”. In other words they treated sex as an appetite to be satisfied and not as a gift to be cherished and used carefully. Sensuality is to sex what gluttony is to eating; both are sinful and both bring disastrous consequences. Just because we have normal desires, given by God at Creation, does not mean that we must give in to them and satisfy them in ungodly ways. Sex outside of marriage is destructive, while sex within marriage is beautiful. 

NET Note - There is debate as to the extent of the Corinthian slogan which Paul quotes here. Some argue that the slogan is only the first sentence—“Food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food”—with the second statement forming Paul’s rejoinder, while others argue that the slogan contains both sentences (as in the translation above). The argument which favors the latter is the tight conceptual and grammatical parallelism which occurs if Paul’s response begins with “The body is not for sexual immorality” and then continues through the end of v. 14. For discussion and diagrams of this structure, see G. D. Fee, First Corinthians (NICNT), 253–57.

Food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food, but God will do away with both of them - NLT = You say, "Food is for the stomach, and the stomach is for food." This is true, though someday God will do away with both of them." When will God do away with both of them? When our body is glorified, when we are like Christ our Lord (1 Jn 3:2+). John goes on to add this future hope ("hope sure" NOT "hope so"!) should motivate us in the present life, for "everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure." (1 Jn 3:3+). 

Robertson says this is "Another proverb about the adaptation of the belly (κοιλια [koilia]) and food (βρωματα [brōmata], not just flesh), which had apparently been used by some in Corinth to justify sexual license (fornication and adultery). These Gentiles mixed up matters not alike at all (questions of food and sensuality)"

Dave Roper - "Food is for the stomach and the stomach for food"--another contemporary saying in Corinth. They were saying that nature demands satisfaction. If you're hungry, you go buy a hamburger. That is a perfectly legitimate position. But you cannot infer from it that because you have a sexual drive you must immediately fulfill it. Because both food and the stomach are temporary, but the body is not. The body is not for immorality. God has a higher purpose for it. "The body is for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body." Just as a perfect body was created for Jesus Christ and became an instrument through which he displayed the character of the Father, so a body is given to us to be used not as a plaything, not as an object for self-gratification, but as an eternal instrument through which we can declare the glory of Jesus Christ.

Hodge on food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food - The one is evidently designed for the other. It is a legitimate inference from this that it is permissible to eat, and to eat everything suitable for food. But this is a mere temporary arrangement.

Redpath of food is for the stomach  - We need food for our physical appetite, but a day is coming when God is going to destroy both. That does not mean the body will be destroyed. That will mark the end of its physical desires and physical limitations, the end of its demand for physical satisfaction. 

Hodge on God will do away with both of them - The time will come when people will no longer be sustained by food but will be like the angels of God (Mk 12:25+). The fact that the body’s present constitution is temporary is a proof that foods belong to the category of things that are not important in themselves. They can have no influence on the eternal destiny of the body. This is not true with regard to sexual immorality. The body was never designed for promiscuous living. Such a use of it is inconsistent with the design of its creation and with its future destiny.

Arnold - This apparently was another expression of the Corinthians and it sounded very impressive. The argument was the stomach is designed for food, and it is perfectly natural and right to satisfy one’s need for food whenever it arises. Eating is a natural function, and the Corinthians concluded one body function is much like another. Fulfilling the sexual desire is as natural as eating a steak because nature demands satisfaction.

Ryrie on food - Some were saying that just as food and the stomach necessarily go together, so the body and sexual indulgence go together. Not so, says Paul. Rather, the body should always glorify the Lord. 

Spencer - Having dealt with Christian liberty Paul now deals with the real purpose of the Christian’s body. Some people in Corinth were foolishly claiming that the body was designed for sex just like the belly was designed for food. The idea they were promoting was, just as one must eat to satisfy his hunger, it is just as natural to do whatever necessary to satisfy his sexual appetite. Paul opposed their argument by pointing out the difference between the temporal and the eternal. The belly serves a temporary purpose for this life only. However, the Christian’s body will exist for all eternity. In eternity, when we have our glorified bodies, there will be no life sustaining quality to food. The belly will lose its purpose as we know it now, but the body will continue to exist as God raises it as he raised the body of Jesus. Paul’s argument is strong here. Food has only temporal significance. However, sexual immorality has eternal consequences. But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. (Proverbs 6:32) Paul makes it clear that our bodies belong to the Lord. They are on loan to us for the purpose of serving and glorifying Him. A believer who is engaged in sinful practices does not glorify God. It is absolutely impossible to engage in sinful practices and glorify the Lord at the same time. (Ibid)

Do away with (2673)(katargeo from kata = intensifies meaning + argeo = to be idle or inactive from argos = ineffective, idle, inactive from a = without + érgon = work) literally means to reduce to inactivity. The idea is to make the power or force of something ineffective and so to render powerless, reduce to inactivity. To do away with. To put out of use. To cause to be idle or useless. To render entirely idle, inoperative or ineffective. Cause something to come to an end or cause it to cease to happen. To abolish or cause not to function. To free or release from an earlier obligation or relationship. To no longer take place.

Uses of katargeo in the Corinthians letters - 1 Co. 1:28 = "so that He may nullify the things that are"; 1 Co. 2:6 = "this age, who are passing away"; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 13:8; 1 Co. 13:10; 1 Co. 13:11; 1 Co. 15:24; 1 Co. 15:26; 2 Co. 3:7; 2 Co. 3:11; 2 Co. 3:13; 2 Co. 3:14;

Yet the body is not for immorality, but for the Lord - Amplified - "The body is not intended for sexual immorality, but [is intended] for the Lord." Body (soma) is clearly a key word in this last section (1 Cor 6:12-20) occurring 8x in 6 verses. This emphasis on the body is of course because the saints in Corinth were misusing their bodies for "unlicensed" gratification by committing acts of immorality. Their (our) body is not to be used for sinful purposes but for the Owner, the Lord Jesus Christ (for the Lord). As the Westminster Shorter Catechism in answering question #1 says "Man's chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever." And so the chief end of our body now in this short life is to glorify God, not gratify self! 

MacArthur says for the Lord means "The body is to be the instrument of the Lord, for His use and glory." 

Robertson - Paul here boldly shows the fallacy in the parallel about appetite of the belly for food. The human body has a higher mission than the mere gratification of sensual appetite. Sex is of God for the propagation of the race, not for prostitution. Paul had already stated that God dwells in us as the sanctuary of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 3:16f.). This higher function of the body he here puts forward against the debased Greek philosophy of the time which ignored completely Paul’s idea, “the body for the Lord and the Lord for the body” (dative of personal interest in both cases). “The Lord Jesus and πορνεια [porneia] contested for the bodies of Christian men; loyal to him they must renounce that, yielding to that they renounce him” (Findlay).

Alan Redpath - Now, in what sense is the body for the Lord? It is not only that it is going to be transformed into His likeness, but that we will be held responsible before the judgment seat of Christ, as Paul himself tells us, for the deeds done in this body. That will put discipline and restraint into life. It will mean that certain habits must stop because I am a Christian. Certain practices that the world may consider “the thing to do” are going to have no part in my life, because I am a Christian.

Barton - Many of the world’s religions teach that the soul or spirit is important but not the body; Christians have sometimes been influenced by these ideas. In truth, however, Christianity takes very seriously the realm of the physical. God created a physical world and pronounced it good. He promises a new earth where real people have transformed physical lives. At the heart of Christianity is the story of God himself taking on flesh and blood and coming to live with people, offering both physical healing and spiritual restoration. (Life Application Commentary)

Lord (Master, Owner)(2962kurios from kuros = might or power, related to kuroo = to give authority) primarily means the possessor, owner, master, the supreme one, one who is sovereign and possesses absolute authority, absolute ownership rights and uncontested power. DOES THAT DESCRIBE WHO JESUS IS TO YOU? IT SHOULD BELOVED, FOR YOU ARE NOT YOUR OWN BUT HIS! There are 4 uses of kurios in this last section dealing with immorality - 1 Co. 6:11; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 6:14; 1 Co. 6:17;

Kurios in the Corinthians letters - 1 Co. 1:2; 1 Co. 1:3; 1 Co. 1:7; 1 Co. 1:8; 1 Co. 1:9; 1 Co. 1:10; 1 Co. 1:31; 1 Co. 2:8; 1 Co. 2:16; 1 Co. 3:5; 1 Co. 3:20; 1 Co. 4:4; 1 Co. 4:5; 1 Co. 4:17; 1 Co. 4:19; 1 Co. 5:4; 1 Co. 5:5; 1 Co. 6:11; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 6:14; 1 Co. 6:17; 1 Co. 7:10; 1 Co. 7:12; 1 Co. 7:17; 1 Co. 7:22; 1 Co. 7:25; 1 Co. 7:32; 1 Co. 7:34; 1 Co. 7:35; 1 Co. 7:39; 1 Co. 8:5; 1 Co. 8:6; 1 Co. 9:1; 1 Co. 9:2; 1 Co. 9:5; 1 Co. 9:14; 1 Co. 10:9; 1 Co. 10:21; 1 Co. 10:22; 1 Co. 10:26; 1 Co. 11:11; 1 Co. 11:23; 1 Co. 11:26; 1 Co. 11:27; 1 Co. 11:32; 1 Co. 12:3; 1 Co. 12:5; 1 Co. 14:21; 1 Co. 14:37; 1 Co. 15:31; 1 Co. 15:57; 1 Co. 15:58; 1 Co. 16:7; 1 Co. 16:10; 1 Co. 16:19; 1 Co. 16:22; 1 Co. 16:23; 2 Co. 1:2; 2 Co. 1:3; 2 Co. 1:14; 2 Co. 2:12; 2 Co. 3:16; 2 Co. 3:17; 2 Co. 3:18; 2 Co. 4:5; 2 Co. 4:14; 2 Co. 5:6; 2 Co. 5:8; 2 Co. 5:11; 2 Co. 6:17; 2 Co. 6:18; 2 Co. 8:5; 2 Co. 8:9; 2 Co. 8:19; 2 Co. 8:21; 2 Co. 10:8; 2 Co. 10:17; 2 Co. 10:18; 2 Co. 11:17; 2 Co. 11:31; 2 Co. 12:1; 2 Co. 12:8; 2 Co. 13:10; 2 Co. 13:14

Body (4983soma is the body as a whole, the instrument of life, whether of man living, e.g., Mt 6:22, or dead, Mt 27:52; or in resurrection, 1Co 15:44. The word soma was used by Homer (about ninth century B.C.) for a dead body (Mt 14:12, 27:59 Mk 15:43, 45 Lk 17:37 He 13:11). But beginning with Hesiod (eighth century B.C.) it came to be employed for living bodies, whether of animals or men (Mt 5:29, 30, 6:22, 23 25, Jn 2:21 Ro 1:24 Ro 8:10 Jas 3:3 1Co 6:18). 

All uses of soma in the Corinthian letters -  1 Co. 5:3; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 6:15; 1 Co. 6:16; 1 Co. 6:18; 1 Co. 6:19; 1 Co. 6:20; 1 Co. 7:4; 1 Co. 7:34; 1 Co. 9:27; 1 Co. 10:16; 1 Co. 10:17; 1 Co. 11:24; 1 Co. 11:27; 1 Co. 11:29; 1 Co. 12:12; 1 Co. 12:13; 1 Co. 12:14; 1 Co. 12:15; 1 Co. 12:16; 1 Co. 12:17; 1 Co. 12:18; 1 Co. 12:19; 1 Co. 12:20; 1 Co. 12:22; 1 Co. 12:23; 1 Co. 12:24; 1 Co. 12:25; 1 Co. 12:27; 1 Co. 13:3; 1 Co. 15:35; 1 Co. 15:37; 1 Co. 15:38; 1 Co. 15:40; 1 Co. 15:44; 2 Co. 4:10; 2 Co. 5:6; 2 Co. 5:8; 2 Co. 5:10; 2 Co. 10:10; 2 Co. 12:2; 2 Co. 12:3

Immorality (4202porneia from root verb pernao = to sell, porneuo = to play the harlot; pornos = male prostitute) originally referred to any excessive behavior or lack of restraint. Porneia originally was used especially to describe the practice of consorting with prostitutes (porneis = “prostitute”) and eventually came to mean “habitual immorality.” Porneia in the Scripture describes any illicit sexual activity outside of the divine bounds established by marriage and thus includes the ideas of unlawful sexual intercourse, unchastity and fornication (including but not limited to adultery, premarital sex, homosexuality, bestiality, incest, and prostitution). As an aside, while porneia refers primarily to sins of the flesh, those sins can never be divorced from the sins of the mind or heart, because all sin is related. Sin in one area always makes us more susceptible to sin in other areas. Nowhere does Scripture sanction the commitment of any form of extramarital sexual activity, a far cry from our modern American culture! Sex was often linked to pagan religious practices (both male and female prostitutes), with the idolatrous worship of false gods (idolatry and immorality are commonly described together in the Bible). Porneia  gives us our English word pornography.   Porneia is the opposite of the Greek word enkrateia/egkrateia (literally "holding oneself in"), which usually referred to sexual self-control (see Acts 24:25+)

Porneia is found in 24v in NT - fornication(4), fornications(2), immoralities(1), immorality(16), sexual immorality(1), unchastity(1). Matt. 5:32; Matt. 15:19; Matt. 19:9; Mk. 7:21; Jn. 8:41; Acts 15:20; Acts 15:29; Acts 21:25; 1 Co. 5:1; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 6:18; 1 Co. 7:2; 2 Co. 12:21; Gal. 5:19; Eph. 5:3; Col. 3:5; 1 Thess. 4:3; Rev. 2:21; Rev. 9:21; Rev. 14:8; Rev. 17:2; Rev. 17:4; Rev. 18:3; Rev. 19:2

And the Lord is for the body - NLT = "(Bodies) were made for the Lord, and the Lord cares about our bodies." So our Master, our Owner, our Possessort is not indifferent towards our the bodies but cares about them and "puts a premium on" how we make use of our bodies (which are in fact His bodies!) It is almost like our Lord has given us a stewardship over our bodies, since they are really His possession and as all stewards must do, we will give an account for how we handled His possession, so to speak! He makes the body His temple (6:19). He is "for the body" -- not against it, and not indifferent to it. And He has plans for this body as Paul explains in the next verse stating that this body will be resurrected. 

Robertson - Paul here boldly shows the fallacy in the parallel about appetite of the belly for food. The human body has a higher mission than the mere gratification of sensual appetite. Sex is of God for the propagation of the race, not for prostitution. Paul had already stated that God dwells in us as the sanctuary of the Holy Spirit (3:16f.). This higher function of the body he here puts forward against the debased Greek philosophy of the time which ignored completely Paul’s idea, “the body for the Lord and the Lord for the body” (dative of personal interest in both cases). “The Lord Jesus and πορνεια [porneia] contested for the bodies of Christian men; loyal to him they must renounce that, yielding to that they renounce him” (Findlay). (1 Corinthians 6 Word Pictures)

Albert Barnes - The Lord is in an important sense for the body, that is, he acts, and plans, and provides for it. He sustains and keeps it; and he is making provision for its immortal purity and happiness in heaven. It is not right, therefore, to take the body, which is nourished by the kind and constant agency of a holy God, and to devote it to purposes of pollution.” (Commentary)

Wayne Barber - I want to tell you something, folks. If you’ve taken your suspenders and hooked them over on the sin of immorality, you better get it off quick, because those suspenders that were meant to hold you up may drag you under. You make sure you’re attached to the right person. Yes, you’re free but not to do as you please. You’re free to do as you should, enabled by His grace.

Hodge The body is … for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. The one stands in intimate relationship to the other. The body is designed to be a part of Christ and is the place where his Spirit lives. And Christ regards it as such, redeeming it with his blood, uniting it to himself as a part of his mystical body, making it an instrument of righteousness for holiness. The sin in question is absolutely incompatible with this and destroys the relationship that the body has with the Lord.

Corinthian culture misunderstood and misused sexual freedom, and the result was that they dishonored God in their bodies. But we struggle with the same temptations today. People live wrongly because they believe wrongly.  Read that again. What we believe (really believe), should radically effect our behavior. Truth should transform our thinking and be extension our behaving (Ro 12:1-2+ - note body and mind in these passages). Our 21st century American "Corinthian" culture doesn't have a clue about the eternal truth that there are spiritual principles pertaining to sexuality that apply to all of us, no matter what our age or our marital status. Sadly, just as the "leaven" of the corrupt Corinthian culture had crept into the Corinthian church, the same "unholy leaven" has slowly crept into the evangelical church in America! Let's face it beloved, the Church of Jesus Christ in America is in a precarious state! (I am writing in March, 2021). 

Barton - DESTRUCTIVE POWER Paul challenges us to a higher purpose than merely fulfilling our sexual desires. Sexual immorality is a temptation that is always before us. In movies and on television, sex outside marriage is treated as a normal, even desirable, part of life, while marriage is often shown as confining and joyless. People can even be looked down on by others if they are suspected of being pure. But God does not forbid sexual sin just to be difficult. He knows its power to destroy a person physically and spiritually. No one should underestimate the power of sexual immorality. It has devastated countless lives and destroyed families, churches, communities, and even nations. God wants to protect us from damaging ourselves and others, and so he offers to fill us—our loneliness, our desires—with himself. (Life Application Commentary)


BRUCE GOETTSCHE 1 Corinthians 6:12-20 Walking Through Life With Jesus

I believe Paul argues that there is no such thing as “casual sex”. It is not simply a detached act. Sex outside of the marriage relationship has consequences.

  • It creates a unique bond with a person who is not your spouse. In verse 16 Paul said, “Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.” The act of sexual union requires a vulnerability that joins a person physically, mentally, and spiritually.  
  • Takes something from your present or future spouse. When we are sexually “active” we are giving a part of ourselves to others that we will never be able to give to our spouse.
  • It destroys marriages and families
  • Diminishes our respect for others.  When we begin to view people as “objects of gratification” our view of all people is diminished.
  • It opens the doors to disease

Rod Mattoon - Beloved, the glamor of immorality eventually leads to guilt and gloom. The consequences of sexual corruption are camouflaged until your life crashes in upon you and the damage has been done. Sinful living never profits you. It always leads to a loss. The pleasure and sweetness that are promised by immorality lead to misery and bitterness. Sins sweetness soon sours. The consequences of immorality are damaging and severe. The Bible paints a pretty accurate picture of its destructiveness.

1. Immorality Debases a Person, Making Them Resemble a Beast
The Bible describes the person as a horse neighing.

* Jeremiah 5:8—They were as fed horses in the morning: every one neighed after his neighbour's wife.

2. Immorality Can Lead to Death
In Bible times, adultery was a capital offense, usually by stoning. The Saxons dealt with this sin by burning the adulterers. The Romans cut their heads off. Today, a jealous wife or husband may end up killing the unfaithful spouse or the other lover. Adultery is dangerous.

* Leviticus 20:10—And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.

3. Immorality Stains a Person's Reputation and Robs a Person of Honor
Honor is found in the wounds of a soldier or a martyr for Christ. The adulterer gets wounds in his name but there is no honor. They get wounds of a reputation that no doctor can heal. When the adulterer dies, his shame continues to live. When his body rots underground, his name continues to rot above ground.

* Proverbs 6:32-33... But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. 33 A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away.

4. Immorality Pollutes and Consumes the Body
The harlot is a walking dunghill infested with disease.

* Proverbs 5:11—And thou mourn at the last, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed.

* Proverbs 7:22-23... He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks; 23 Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it is for his life.

Sexual diseases syphon the moisture of the body and bones. They rot the skull and eat the beauty of the face. Sinful living ages people. As the flame wastes the candle, so the fire of lust consumes the bones and countenance. I've seen folks in their 20's and 30's who look like they are in their 40's because their sinful life has taken its toll on their health.

The body is consumed mentality and emotionally too because your soul and spirit are affected by this sin. You become one flesh with the person. When the relationship ends, it has devastating effects on your health, your emotions, and your mind.

5. Immorality Incurs the Wrath of God and Destroys the Soul.
* Hebrews 13:4—Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.

* Revelation 21:8—But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

The only hope for deliverance is to repent of this sin. If you have never been saved, then trust Christ as your Savior.

6. Immorality Drains the Purse or the Billfold Until It Is Empty
* Proverbs 6:26—For by means of a whorish woman a man is brought to a piece of bread: and the adulteress will hunt for the precious life.

* Proverbs 5:10—Lest strangers be filled with thy wealth; and thy labours be in the house of a stranger;

Immorality can lead to the loss of your job. The expense of covering up this sin or maintaining the immoral relationship can drain you financially. When King Edward III lay dying in his bed, his concubine got all that she could from him, plucking his rings from his fingers.

7. Immorality Is Like a Scorpion, Carrying a Sting in Its Tail
* Proverbs 5:3-5... For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: 4 But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell.

The sweetness of sin soon sours. Lust makes a joyful entrance, but leaves a person in misery. Individuals who engage in sexual acts with someone outside of their marriage, often experience high levels of anxiety and depression once they have indulged in this sin. This level of stress not only impacts the mind in a psychological way; it also affects the physiological make up and parts of the person. By engaging in this act, one may start to experience difficulties in relationships, work, school, and many other areas.

A man named Causinius speaks of a tree that grows in Spain. It has a sweet smell and taste, but the juice is poisonous. This is the emblem of a harlot, perfumed with powders, fair to look upon, but poisonous to the soul.

* Proverbs 7:26—For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong men have been slain by her.

8. Immorality Breaks Down the Moral Principles in a Family
David's lust for women affected his son Solomon and grandson Reheboam. David's adulterous night of pleasure with Bathsheba became a nightmare of pain and a bad example for his family in the years to come. God judged David and his house. His sin set a precedent for his family that affected them for years.

* 2 Samuel 12:10-12... Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. 11 Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun. 12 For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.

Beloved, the lesson for us from all these principles about immorality is this,
"Don't pollute the palace!"


Related Resources:


A Man Named "Large"

thians 6:12-20

A man dubbed the King of Franks downed 20 hot dogs in 12 minutes of Coney Island competition. The man, whose nickname is “Large,” devoured his competition in the process, and then boasted that he was off to a barbecue. His nearest challenger consumed only 15 dogs.

Large complained that the humidity kept him from matching his record meal of 21 franks the year before, but said he relishes the chance to break his record next year.

Large was interviewed later as he took a break from cooking some of his winnings—365 hot dogs. He quipped, “I feel a little tired, but I’ll probably eat something a bit later.”

It seems that Large lives to eat. We too can choose to live for food, drink, or any other kind of pleasure, but overindulged appetites will consume us in the process. Our bodies were not made to be served; they were designed to serve the Lord.

Eating contests can be fun, but not when they become a way of life. Only when we realize that our bodies are temples (1 Cor. 6:19), made to be filled and controlled by the Spirit of God, will we find what quiets the hunger within. We won’t find true satisfaction until we are filled with the Lord, who made us for Himself. By:  Mart DeHaan (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

God gave me a life in this body of mine
To have and to use for a specified time;
So I must be careful of life, for you see
My body does not belong to me.
—Anon.

We all must eat to live, but some just live to eat.


Norman Geisler -  1 CORINTHIANS 6:13—If God is going to destroy the body, then how can it be resurrected?

PROBLEM: Paul said, “Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods; but God will destroy both it and them” (1 Cor. 6:13). On this basis, some argue that the resurrection body will not have the anatomy or physiology of the pre-resurrection body. On the other hand, Paul inferred that we would recognize our loved ones in heaven (1 Thes. 4:13–18).

SOLUTION: The body that goes into the grave is the same body, made immortal, that comes out of it. This is proven by the fact that Jesus’ tomb was empty, He had the crucifixion scars in His body (John 20:27), that His body was “flesh and bones” (Luke 24:39), that people could and did touch it (Matt. 28:9), and that He could and did eat physical food (Luke 24:40–42).

As for 1 Corinthians 6:13, a careful study of the context here reveals that, when Paul says God will destroy both food and the stomach, he is referring to the process of death, not to the nature of the resurrection body. For he refers to the process of death by which “God will destroy both it and them” (v. 13). Further, while the resurrection body may not have the need to eat, it does, however, have the ability to eat. Eating in heaven will be a joy without being a need. So, the body that death “destroys” (decays), is the same one that resurrection restores. To argue that there will be no resurrection body because the stomach will be “destroyed” is tantamount to claiming that the rest of the body—head, arms, legs, and torso—will not be resurrected because death will also turn them into dust. (When Critics Ask)

1 Corinthians 6:14  Now God has not only raised the Lord, but will also raise us up through His power.

Amplified - And God both raised the Lord to life and will also raise us up by His power.

Wuest -  And God raised up the Lord and will also raise us up through His power.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:14 Now God indeed raised the Lord and he will raise us by his power.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God will raise us from the dead by his power, just as he raised our Lord from the dead.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:14 By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:14 ὁ δὲ θεὸς καὶ τὸν κύριον ἤγειρεν καὶ ἡμᾶς ἐξεγερεῖ διὰ τῆς δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:14 and God both the Lord did raise, and us will raise up through His power.

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:14 and God both raised the Lord, and will raise up as through his power.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:14 God raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God raised the Lord and will also raise us by his power.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:14 God raised the Lord and will also raise us by his power.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:14 it is for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body. God raised up the Lord and he will raise us up too by his power.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:14 God raised the Lord, and by his power God will also raise us.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:14 And God who made the Lord Jesus come back from the dead will do the same for us by his power.

  • Now God: 1Co 15:15-20 Ac 2:24 Acts 17:31 Ro 6:4-8 Ro 8:11 2Co 4:14 Php 3:10,11 1Th 4:14 
  • will also raise us up through His power.: Joh 5:28,29 John 6:39-40 John 11:25,26 Eph 1:19-20 Php 3:20-21

Related Passages:

John 5:28; 29  “Do not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, 29 and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment. 

Romans 8:11+  But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. 

1 Cor 15:20+ But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep.

2 Corinthians 4:14  knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and will present us with you.

ANOTHER MOTIVATION TO HOLINESS:
OUR FUTURE RESURRECTION BODY

Why should we not commit immorality? Why should we not treat it as a temporal biological function? Because our body will re resurrected and will enter into eternity even as Jesus Christ is now present in bodily form in Heaven. Amazing truth! 

Now - Note how Paul sets the temporal things like the food and stomach in marked contrast to fact that the fate of the body does not end with this life, thus emphasizing the importance of our bodies -- they will enter a grave one day, and will decay, but will not be destroyed but resurrected to be used throughout eternity. 

This life is not all there is!

Goettsche - Our society encourages us to “live for the moment”, to “grab the gusto” and to immerse ourselves fully into this life.  Paul says that is very short-sighted.  (Walking Through Life With Jesus)

God has not only raised (egeiro) the Lord, but will also raise us up (exegeiro) through His power - Why does Paul begin speaking about the resurrection and by implication about our new immortal, imperishable resurrection bodies? The body (soma) in the context of Paul's discussion about sexuality meant more than the physical frame. It referred to the whole person, composed of flesh (the material) and spirit (immaterial; cf. 2 Co 2:13 with 2 Cor 7:5). Paul's point then is that the bodies of believers and the Lord have an eternal relationship that will never perish.  On the destiny of the body, see also Ro 8:11; 2 Co 4:14; 1 Th 4:14. So in other words the body will never lose its importance. It may decay for a season in the grave, but it will be raised and restored. God gave Jesus a resurrection body and God will give us a resurrection body. The resurrection is God's final declaration that He is for the body

There is a subtle point in the Greek for the first raised (egeiroand the second raised us up (exegeiro) is about which Plummer and Robertson state (and Vine also suggests this) - The compound may be used to mark the future raising as not less sure than the one which is past, and it is well to mark the difference."

Plummer and Robertson on now God -  ὁ δὲ Θεός. This is parallel to ὁ δὲ Θεός in 1 Cor 6:13, and puts the contrast between the two cases in a very marked way. In the case of the κοιλία (stomach), and the βρώματα (food) to which it is related, God will reduce both of them to nothingness. In the case of the σῶμα (soma body), and the Κύριος (Lord) to which it is related, God has raised the Κύριος, and will raise up the σῶμα of every one who is a member of Him. The contrast between the two cases in complete.  (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

Charles Hodge - The destiny of the body being what is stated in the preceding verse, it is not to perish, but is to share in the resurrection of Christ. “He who raised Christ from the dead shall also quicken our mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in us,”* Rom. 8:11. This verse is parallel to the second clause of v. 13. Of the stomach and meats, it is said, God will destroy both it and them; of the Lord and the body it is said, As he raised up the one, he will also raise up the other. The cases, therefore, are widely different. The relation between our organs of digestion and food is temporary; the relation between Christ and the body is permanent. What concerns the former relation is a matter of indifference; what concerns the other touches the groundwork of our nature and the design for which we were created. (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

John MacArthur - Our bodies are designed not only to serve in this life but in the life to come. They will be changed bodies, resurrected bodies, glorified bodies, heavenly bodies—but they will still be our own bodies. The stomach and food have only a horizontal, temporal relationship. At death the relationship ceases. But our bodies are far more than biological. For believers they also have a spiritual, vertical relationship. They belong to God and they will forever endure with God. (MNTC-1 Cor)

W E Vine - The mention of it (Resurrection) here anticipates the fuller treatment in chapter 15. Here the moral aspect is stressed, the resurrection being regarded as the assured consummation toward which the present use of the body is to be directed. (Collected Writings)

In Philippians Paul alludes to our future resurrection and the power of the Lord... 

For our citizenship is in heaven (Kingdom of God future), from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; Who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory (Our body will be glorified), by the exertion of the power (dunamis) that He has even to subject all things to Himself. (Php 3:20-21+)

Redpath on raise us up -  Although this thing (BODY) in which we live may be put in a grave, one day it will be raised and transformed into the likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ. The body is not finished when it is put into a coffin; it is to be brought into the very presence of God. This body is for the Lord, for His use and not for mine. That gives us a new slant on the problem of sex, an attitude peculiarly Christian, rooted in the fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ as the “firstfruits of them that sleep.” It is based on the reality of eternity; we were not created only to live down here. Our body is God’s, and we cannot play fast and loose with it, because it is for His use. We have Christian liberty, but only in consideration of others and in carefulness with regard to the damage we might do. Our liberty is only within the fellowship of God’s people and under the authority of the Lord Jesus. The body is not to be played with; it is for Him.

Albert Barnes - This is the “second” argument against indulgences in this sin. It is this. “We are united to Christ. God has raised him from the dead, and made his body glorified. Our bodies will be like his (compare Philippians 3:21); and since our body is to be raised up by the power of God; since it is to be perfectly pure and holy, and since this is to be done by his agency, it is wrong that it should be devoted to purposes of pollution and lust.” (Commentary)

Through His power - How sure is our resurrection? It is as sure as the resurrection of Christ, for the same surpassing power (cf Eph 1:18-21+) will raise our dead bodies from the grave that we might enter into eternity with our previously resurrected Lord Jesus. Paul alludes to God's power and our resurrection in  2 Cor 13:4 writing "For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you." 

Power (1411)(dunamis) speaks of Inherent power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature, in this context the "nature" is the omnipotence of Christ the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe! Our word “dynamite” is the transliteration of this Greek word but not its translation. Dunamis does not refer to an explosive powder. The Greeks knew nothing about gunpowder. Although in the sense that a stick of dynamite contains the inherent power to effect results it would be a reasonable picture of the Greek word. 

Uses in the Corinthian letters 1 Co. 1:18; 1 Co. 1:24; 1 Co. 2:4; 1 Co. 2:5; 1 Co. 4:19; 1 Co. 4:20; 1 Co. 5:4; 1 Co. 6:14; 1 Co. 12:10; 1 Co. 12:28; 1 Co. 12:29; 1 Co. 14:11; 1 Co. 15:24; 1 Co. 15:43; 1 Co. 15:56; 2 Co. 1:8; 2 Co. 4:7; 2 Co. 6:7; 2 Co. 8:3; 2 Co. 12:9; 2 Co. 12:12; 2 Co. 13:4;

Lord (Master, Owner)(2962) see kurios

1 Corinthians 6:15  Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take away the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? May it never be!

Amplified - Do you not see and know that your bodies are members (bodily parts) of Christ (the Messiah)? Am I therefore to take the parts of Christ and make [them] parts of a prostitute? Never! Never!

Wuest - Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Having taken then the members of Christ, shall I make them members of a harlot? Let not such a thing take place.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Should I take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never!

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:15 Don't you realize that your bodies are actually parts of Christ? Should a man take his body, which is part of Christ, and join it to a prostitute? Never!

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never!

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never!

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:15 οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι τὰ σώματα ὑμῶν μέλη Χριστοῦ ἐστιν; ἄρας οὖν τὰ μέλη τοῦ Χριστοῦ ποιήσω πόρνης μέλη; μὴ γένοιτο.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:15 Have ye not known that your bodies are members of Christ? having taken, then, the members of the Christ, shall I make them members of an harlot? let it be not!

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:15 Know ye not that your bodies are members of Christ? shall I then take away the members of Christ, and make them members of a harlot? God forbid.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:15 Don't you know that your bodies are a part of Christ's body? So should I take a part of Christ's body and make it part of a prostitute? Absolutely not!

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not!

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Should I therefore take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never!

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take Christ's members and make them the members of a prostitute? Of course not!

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not realise that your bodies are members of Christ's body; do you think one can take parts of Christ's body and join them to the body of a prostitute? Out of the question!

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:15 Don't you realize that your bodies are parts of Christ's body? Should I take the parts of Christ's body and make them parts of a prostitute's body? That's unthinkable!

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:15 Do you not see that your bodies are part of the body of Christ? how then may I take what is a part of the body of Christ and make it a part of the body of a loose woman? such a thing may not be.

  • your bodies are members of Christ 1Co 6:19 1 Cor 11:3 1 Cor 12:27 Ro 12:5 Eph 1:22-23 4:12,15,16 Eph 5:23,29-30 Col 2:19 
  • May it never be: Ge 44:17 Lu 20:16 Ro 3:3,4,6,31 6:2,15 7:7,13 Ga 2:17 3:21 Ga 6:14 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

OUR PHYSICAL BODY
MEMBERS OF CHRIST

Hodge on vv 15-16 - The design of these verses is to establish two points. First, that the relation between our bodies and Christ is of the intimate and vital character which had just been stated. And second, that the sin in question was inconsistent with that relation, and incompatible with it.

Arnold on vv 15-17, 19-20 - Paul gives three cogent arguments as to why Christians should not get involved in any wanton, illicit sex. He could have said that we should abstain from sexual immorality to protect our bodies, for today we live in an epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases. (What Every Christian Should Know About Illicit Sex But Doesn't!)

MacDonald - To further emphasize the need for personal purity in our lives and for guarding our bodies from impurity, the apostle reminds us that our bodies are members of Christ.

Do you not know - This is a characteristic phrase used repeatedly by Paul to refer to things the believers should have known, things he had previously taught them, but which they apparently (because of their actions and attitudes) had forgotten or chosen to ignore.

Phrase - Do you not know  Gen. 44:15; Jdg. 15:11; 2 Sam. 2:26; 2 Sam. 3:38; 2 Chr. 13:5; 2 Chr. 32:13; Isa. 40:21; Isa. 40:28; Ezek. 17:12; Zech. 4:5; Zech. 4:13; Jn. 19:10; Rom. 6:3; Rom. 6:16; Rom. 7:1; Rom. 11:2; 1 Co. 3:16; 1 Co. 5:6; 1 Co. 6:2; 1 Co. 6:3; 1 Co. 6:9; 1 Co. 6:15; 1 Co. 6:16; 1 Co. 6:19; 1 Co. 9:13; 1 Co. 9:24; Jas. 4:4

That your bodies are members of Christ? - Paul's rhetorical question emphasizes that the Corinthians knew that their bodies were members of Christ even their (immoral) behavior belied their belief! You can know the truth but fail to act on it and that was the case with these fleshly saints who were acting like spiritual babies (cf 1 Cor 3:1-3+).This passage also now reinforces the principle that the body is for the Lord as he had stated in 1 Cor 6:13 The important truth is that our spirituality and our sexuality are mysteriously intertwined. Our bodies are members of Christ himself. These three verses describe the mystery of our union with Christ as a result of being in covenant oneness with Him. Jesus alluded to this oneness in Jn 15:4: "Abide in Me, and I in you." Paul described this union with Christ in Col 1:27+, as "Christ in you, the hope of glory." When we believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior (Ro 10:9-10+), we are joined in spirit with Jesus. He takes up residence in our mortal body, and whatever we do with our body implicates our resident Lord Jesus. You can see where Paul is going with this line of reasoning. The Corinthians were taking their bodies into the brothels and pagan temples (Aphrodite) and in so doing were taking the Lord Jesus Christ into these polluted places! Perish the thought! 

Plummer and Robertson - He presses home the principle that ‘the body is for the Lord.’ By virtue of that principle every Christian, and every one of his members, is a member of Christ. The higher heathen view was that man’s body is in common with the brutes, τὸ σῶμα κοινὸν πρὸς τὰ ζῶα, and only his reason and intelligence in common with the gods (Epict. Dissert. 1. iii. I); but the Christian view is bodies are members of Christ. (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

S Lewis Johnson - By reason of the believer’s union with Christ (cf. 1 Cor 12:12-27), fornication robs the Lord of that which is his.

Jack Arnold - At the moment of conversion the Christian was spiritually and organically united to the person of Jesus Christ who is the Head of the Church. Believers make up the body of Christ, the Church. The Christian’s body has become a part of Christ's body. This is what makes sexual vice so obnoxious for a Christian; it is actually taking Christ into our illicit sex lives. When you go to bed with a person in an immoral union, you are actually taking Christ into that situation. ( What Every Christian Should Know About Illicit Sex But Doesn't!)

Robertson (Word Pictures) - The body is not only adapted for Christ (verse 13), but it is a part of Christ, in vital union with him. Paul will make much use of this figure further on (12:12–31; Eph. 4:11–16; 5:30).

MacArthur - Christ is “head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all” (Eph. 1:22–23). “We, who are many, are one body in Christ” (Rom. 12:5). We are, in this age, the living spiritual temple in which Christ lives. We are His body, the incarnation of His person in the church.

Paul used this same word members in his command to the Romans which relates to believers not indulging in immorality

Even so consider (present imperative  see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.  12 Therefore do not let sin (Sin = Principle) reign (present imperative with a negative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, 13 and do not go on presenting (present imperative with a negative) the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.(Ro 6:11-13+)

Comment - In this passage we see that our mortal enemy that seeks continually to be our king and master is Sin = Principle which indwells us and impels us would it not be for the supernatural power of the indwelling Spirit (see Gal 5:16-17+)

Hodge - This is a conceded and familiar point of Christian doctrine, one with which they were supposed to be acquainted; and which proved all that the Apostle had said of the relation between the body and Christ. Our bodies are the members of Christ, because they belong to him, being included in the redemption effected by his blood; and also because they are so united to him as to be partakers of his life. It is one of the prominent doctrines of the Bible that the union between Christ and his people includes a community of life; and it is clearly taught that this life pertains to the body as well as to the soul, Rom. 8:6–11; Eph. 2:6, 7, 5:30. This is the truth which the Apostle recalls to the minds of the Corinthians, and makes it the ground of his indignant condemnation of the sin of which he is speaking.  (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

Albert Barnes -  This is the third argument against licentiousness. It is, that we as Christians are united to Christ (compare the notes at John 15:1 ff); and that it is abominable to take the members of Christ and subject them to pollution and sin. Christ was pure - wholly pure. We are professedly united to him. We are bound therefore to be pure, as he was. Shall that which is a part, as it were, of the pure and holy Saviour, be prostituted to impure and unholy embraces? (Commentary)

W E Vine - this is an additional thought to the truth in verse 13 that the body is for the Lord. It not only is for His use but is united to Him. This part of our personality is a member of Christ. For the doctrine that every believer is a member of the body of which Christ is Head, see chapter twelve and Romans 12 in regard to the local assembly, and Ephesians 4:15, 16 and Eph 5:30 in regard to the whole Church. The believer’s relationship with Christ involves the fact that his body is the instrument through which the Lord acts in all the ministry and activities committed to him for His service and glory. The body, as a member of Christ, is a living organism fitted to carry out His purpose through grace. How then can the believer “take away” (note the R.V.) that which is united to Christ and belongs to Him, and devote it to the purposes of not only an unlawful but of an unholy union, thus robbing the Lord of that through which He designs to manifest Himself? All sin is a contravention of spiritual union with Christ, but the sin here mentioned is infamous, and is a direct denial of the principle that the body is for the Lord. Unlike holy matrimony, which does not involve the taking away of a member of Christ, it is a thorough degradation of the high object for which our being has been redeemed, and cannot fail to involve the most terrible consequences in this life, with eternal loss in the future. (Collected Writings)

Vincent - The body is not only for the Lord (1 Cor 6:13), adapted for Him: it is also united with Him. See Eph. 4:16+.

Members (3196melos) refers to a limb or member of the body and in the plural (and in the context of the present verse) refers to the members of body as the seat of the desires and passions. Melos is literally any part of the human body. In James 3:5+ melos is singular (most of us have only one tongue, although some of us to often speak with a "forked tongue!") In the plural melos was used to describe the members of the body as the seat of the desires and passions (Ro 6:13, 19; Ro 7:5, 23; 1 Cor. 6:15; Col. 3:5; James 4:1). Figuratively melos of one who belongs to the Christian community as the body of Christ (Ro 12:5; 1 Cor 6:15; 1 Cor 12:27; Eph 5:30). In classical Greek the primary meaning of melos is “limb” or “part” of the body.

Shall I then take away (airo "snatch, carry off like Latin rapio our rape" - ATR) the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute?- "To ask the question is to answer it, as Paul does with an indignant Certainly not!" (MacDonald) Our Union with Christ extends to our physical bodies so defling our bodies (with immoral acts) should be unthinkable! Believers’ lives are greatly altered when they are joined to Christ. The union affects both the believer and Christ. When a believer commits immorality, he or she is dragging the union with Christ into the illicit relationship! This should give any reasonable person pause to consider his or her actions. 

The believer’s body is not only for the Lord here and now (v14) but is of the Lord, a part of His body, the church (Eph 1:22, 23). The Christian’s body is a spiritual temple in which the Spirit of Christ lives (1 Cor 12:3; Jn 7:38, 39; 20:22; Acts 1:8; Ro 8:9; 2 Co 6:16); therefore, when a believer commits a sexual sin, it involves Christ with a harlot. 

Vincent - The union of man and woman, whether lawful or unlawful, confers a double personality. Fornication effects this result in an immoral way.

Oster - When the Lord brought Adam and Eve together, they entered into a sexual relationship that involved them as both physical beings and spiritual beings. And you can't tear those two things apart. D. S. Bailey describes sexual intercourse as "an act which by reason of its very nature engages and expresses the whole personality in such a way as to constitute a unique mode of self-disclosure and self-commitment." There is no such thing as casual sex or inconsequential sex or recreational sex.The horror of deliberately taking “members of Christ” and making them “members of a harlot” in an actual union staggers Paul and should stagger us.  That sexual immorality is incompatible with the relationship of the bodies of believers to Christ arises out of the special nature of that sin. The parties to it share a common life. Whether we can understand this or not, it is the doctrine of the Bible. In the matter of prostitutes, the prevailing cultural views (ED: = what was right in their own eyes, cp Jdg 21:25) which were brought into the church of God by pagan converts and against which Paul is arguing in this section are encapsulated in a statement by a leading Roman politician and philosopher of the first century b.c. Cicero wrote: "Mind you, if there is anyone who thinks that young men ought not to visit prostitutes, he is certainly narrow-minded (no doubt about it), and completely out of step with our present liberal thinking. In fact, he has nothing in common with the customs and behaviour of previous generations, who were quite broadminded on the subject." As is often the case, the “free love” attitudes found among some in the Roman world involved a double standard. Immoral sex was tolerated much more if committed by men than by women, and of course there were certain societal norms which were suppose to be observed. As is recorded in the works of one Roman author, “Provided you keep away from married women, virgins, young innocents, and children of respectable families, love anyone you want.”  To have sexual relations with a prostitute was so common in Corinth that the practice came to be called ''Corinthianize.'' Many believers had formerly been involved in such immorality, and it was hard for them to break with the old ways and easy to fall back into them (cf Backsliding) Houses of prostitution were widespread in the Greco-Roman world and were generally looked upon as a social necessity indicating had depraved and distorted their godless minds had become! The venerable Roman leader Cato was supposed to have congratulated a young man he saw departing from a brothel. When your sexual passions are strong, he told the young man, it is better to have sex with a prostitute than another man’s wife. Like much of 21st century paganism that affirms that men’s and women’s sexual activity should be based upon personal choice and inalienable rights (AND EVEN MAKES IT THE LAW OF THE LAND WHICH TRAGICALLY HAS OCCURRED IN AMERICA!) and that argues that their bodies are their own private property, so also most ancient pagans did not correlate the satisfaction of bodily sexual appetites with a view of divine ownership of their bodies. This is one reason Paul is emphasizing the point in this section that the body of a believer is not his or her body to do with as they please. For the most part neither ancient religions nor ancient philosophies affirmed anything like the Biblical view that the divine creation of mankind (with its sensual appetites) placed mankind’s sexual expressions and activities under divine authority and legislation. The Biblical view simply stated is that mankind is, was, and will always be creation and will never evolve into the status of the Creator. As such, the creations of God are subject to God’s laws and his divine ordering of creation. Humans are never wise enough or holy enough to guide their own steps. (Note most of the preceding is from 1 Corinthians Commentary

Robertson - The horror of deliberately taking “members of Christ” and making them “members of a harlot” in an actual union staggers Paul and should stagger us

Spencer - At the very moment of salvation we are Spiritually joined to Christ—we become part of Him. This is the privilege of every child of God.
For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. (1 Corinthians 12:13) Upon conversion we become: ... partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Peter 1:4) The believer is eternally united with Christ. We are part the body of Christ. This is a power analogy. If my body belongs to Christ, and I am part of the body of Christ, how awful the thought of taking my body and joining it with that of a harlot. In the strongest language possible Paul said, God forbid.

May it never be! - Me genoito - "the aorist optative of ginomai (I am, become) in the optative mood with the negative particle μή expresses a negative wish in the form of a prayer: “May it not be so!”" (Hendricksen) The strongest negative in the Greek which expresses Paul's horror at the thought! ‘Away with so dreadful a thought  ‘May it not happen!’ Let not such a thing take place. Never! Never! Absolutely not. The difficult to comprehend albeit horrible picture Paul paints in this verse alone should serve as a strong motivation to not indulge our bodies in sexual immorality!  For a person joined to Christ through the resurrection, it is unthinkable that he should be taken away from the body of Christ and joined to the body of a prostitute!

Albert Barnes Me genoito  expresses the deep abhorrence of the apostle at the thought. It needed not argument to show it. The whole world revolted at the idea; and language could scarcely express the abomination of the very thought.(Commentary)

Paul's uses of may it never be (me genoito) - Rom. 3:4; Rom. 3:6; Rom. 3:31; Rom. 6:2; Rom. 6:15; Rom. 7:7; Rom. 7:13; Rom. 9:14; Rom. 11:1; Rom. 11:11; 1 Co. 6:15; Gal. 2:17; Gal. 3:21; Gal. 6:14

Oster - Paul’s declaration that sexual immorality is unacceptable was addressed to those who had a choice about the matter. It must be kept in mind that large numbers of boys and girls and men and women, especially slaves, had little choice about their sexual involvement. The Roman author Seneca the Elder once commented that:“Losing sexual purity was a crime if you were a freeborn.” “Losing sexual purity was a necessity if you were a slave.”  “Losing sexual purity was a duty if you were a freedman.”


Rod Mattoon - Sexual intimacy with another person has a huge impact on you mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. It involves the entire being of a person. That is why it is so destructive when your intimacy is with someone who is not your spouse. The sexual relationship becomes a burden instead of a blessing. It brings guilt instead of glee. Such behavior leaves the person feeling cheapened or used, which in turn, leads to depression.

In two full pages of advertisement printed in 1995, the Japanese government declared its desire to right the wrongs committed in World War II. The Asian Women's Fund, led by former Japanese Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama, placed the ads to announce the offer of atonement payments to "comfort women."
During the war women were forced to provide sexual services to members of Japan's wartime military. In an effort to make atonement, the organization sent donations, messages, and a letter of apology from the Prime Minister to hundreds of former "comfort women."
The advertisement stated: "The problem of the so-called wartime comfort women is one such scar, which, with the involvement of the Japanese military forces of the time, seriously stained the honor and dignity of many women. This is entirely inexcusable. I offer my profound apology to all those who, as wartime comfort women, suffered emotional and physical wounds that can never be closed."
Murayama said: "We hope these projects have helped to remove at least some portion of the permanent scars these women bear. I consider it essential that we Japanese maintain a firm conviction that we must never violate the dignity of women again, as we did in our treatment of 'comfort women.'" Sexual immorality has a price that scars people for years.
A man may become "one flesh" with a harlot, but this does not mean he becomes married to her because marriage is a covenant relationship based on commitment. This does not exist with a relationship with a harlot. The relationship with a harlot is totally different than the relationship a believer has with Christ. The believer's relationship with Jesus Christ is characterized by permanence, love, trust, edification, obedience, and purity. On the other hand, the relationship between a man and a prostitute is momentary, without love, devoid of responsibility, mutually destructive, decidedly egocentric, and shamefully immoral. This is why you don't want to pollute the palace.

On April 14, 2003, the Rolling Hills, California City Council voted to repeal a 46 year-old ban on immorality. The repeal allows adultery within the city limits. The repeal also gives teenagers of the town legal freedom—at least on a municipal level—to engage in premarital sex.
A resident of the city of 1,900 spotted the law while perusing the municipal code and mentioned it at a city council meeting. City Attorney Mike Jenkins says he wasn't even aware of that particular law. He said, "Why this particular law has been dormant and allowed to remain on the books all these years is anyone's guess." Jenkins recommended removing the ordinance.
The statute was the second statue adopted by the city when it incorporated in 1957. It prescribed a $250 fine and/or three months in jail for violators. Council members claimed they were not endorsing the breaking of the seventh commandment. They said they were simply doing away with an archaic, unenforceable law. Before the meeting, Councilor James Black joked, "So this is a pro-adultery thing? Good for us!"

Beloved, immorality creates a mess that cannot be cleaned up. The consequences or effects stay with you for the rest of your life. There is nothing good, nothing funny or cute about sexual sin, no matter what the world thinks or no matter how much they mock God's standards of righteousness.

1 Corinthians 6:16  Or do you not know that the one who joins himself to a prostitute is one body with her? For He says, "THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH."

Amplified - Or do you not know and realize that when a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? The two, it is written, shall become one flesh. 

Wuest - Or, do you not know that he who joins himself with his harlot is one body [with her]? For they shall become, He says, these two, one flesh.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or do you not know that anyone who is united with a prostitute is one body with her? For it is said, "The two will become one flesh."

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:16 And don't you realize that if a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? For the Scriptures say, "The two are united into one."

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, "The two will become one flesh."

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:16 Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, "The two will become one flesh."

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:16 [ἢ] οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι ὁ κολλώμενος τῇ πόρνῃ ἓν σῶμά ἐστιν; Ἔσονται γάρ, φησίν, οἱ δύο εἰς σάρκα μίαν.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:16 have ye not known that he who is joined to the harlot is one body? 'for they shall be -- saith He -- the two for one flesh.'

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or know ye not that he that is joined to a harlot is one body? for, The twain, saith he, shall become one flesh.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:16 Don't you know that anyone joined to a prostitute is one body with her? For Scripture says, The two will become one flesh.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For "the two," He says, "shall become one flesh."

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:16 Do you not know that whoever is united to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For it is said, "The two shall be one flesh."

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:16 (Or) do you not know that anyone who joins himself to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For "the two," it says, "will become one flesh."

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or do you not realise that anyone who attaches himself to a prostitute is one body with her, since the two, as it is said, become one flesh.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:16 Don't you realize that the person who unites himself with a prostitute becomes one body with her? God says, "The two will be one."

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:16 Or do you not see that he who is joined to a loose woman is one body with her? for God has said, The two of them will become one flesh.

  • the one who joins himself to a prostitute: Ge 34:31 38:15,24 Jud 16:1 Mt 21:31,32 Heb 11:31 
  • For He says Ge 2:24 Mt 19:5,6 Mk 10:8 Eph 5:31 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

THE PRINCIPLE OF
"ONE FLESH"

Or do you not know that the one who joins (kollao) himself to a prostitute is one body with her - Another rhetorical question speaking to a truth that the Corinthians should have know. The verb joins is used in Ge 2:24 clearly speaks of the mystical relationship of husband and wife. It is also used of man’s relationship to God (Dt 10:20; 11:22; Jer 13:11). See the verb "kollao" used in the LXX of 2Ki 18:6 describing Hezekiah who "clung to Jehovah". Note that the same verb kollao is used both times in the Greek, describing the oneness that believers have with the Lord who is spirit

Hodge - That fornication is incompatible with the relation of the bodies of believers to Christ, arises out of the peculiar nature of that sin. The parties to it become partakers of a common life. Whether we can understand this or not, it is the doctrine of the Bible. Therefore as we cannot be partakers of the life of Christ, and of the life of Belial, so neither can our bodies be the members of Christ, and at the same time have a common life with “one who is a sinner,” in the scriptural sense of that phrase.  (1 Corinthians 6 Commentary)

Johnson - Not only is the Lord robbed, but a new union takes place (cf. v. 15; Gen 2:24).

Plummer and Robertson - The Apostle assumes that union with a harlot, unlike union with a lawful wife, robs Christ of members which belong to Him. Union with Christ attaches to our body through the spirit (v. 17), and sin is apostasy from the spiritual union with Christ. This is true of all sin, but πορνεία is a peculiarly direct blow at the principle τὸ σῶμα τῷ Κυρίῳ. (body of the Lord). 

How can we be joined to Christ and joined to sin at the same time? Such a horrible thought should cause us to be very careful how we walk, not as unwise but as wise. Sadly some of the Corinthians saw no harm in visiting the temple prostitutes (there were 1,000 of them at the temple of Aphrodite!) and committing fornication. 

Vincent on joins - He that is joined. See on Luke 15:15 (The verb means to glue or cement.). Compare Aeschylus: “The family has been glued (κεκόλληται) to misfortune” (“Agamemnon,” 1543). The verb is used Ge 2:24, Sept., of the relation of husband and wife: shall cleave. In Deut. 10:20; 11:22; Jer. 13:11, of man’s cleaving to God.

Joins (2853)(kollao from kolla = glue) means literally to glue, cement, join or fasten together and thus to unite (someone with or to someone or some thing). To fasten firmly together. Kollao is used to describe joining oneself to a harlot in a sexual union in (1Co 6:16). Kollao - 12v - Mt. 19:5; Lk. 10:11; Lk. 15:15; Acts 5:13; Acts 8:29; Acts 9:26; Acts 10:28; Acts 17:34; Ro 12:9; 1 Co. 6:16; 1 Co. 6:17; Rev. 18:5. The Septuagint uses the derivative verb proskollao in Genesis 2:24 "shall leave his father and his mother and be joined (proskollao) to his wife...."

Vincent on a prostitute -  Lit., the harlot. The article is significant: his harlot, or that one with whom he is sinning at the time.

Prostitute (4204)(porne from perano - to sell. Porno-, as prefix in pornographic) is a woman who practices sexual immorality as a profession. BDAG adds it can be used figuratively of " a political entity hostile to God, prostitute, whore, fig. ext. of 1 (Isa 1:21; Isa 23:15f; Jer 3:3; Ezk 16:30-31, 35) as the designation of a government that is hostile to God and God’s people Rv 17:15-16."  Babylon is called pórnē, the great harlot, being the chief seat of idolatry since porneía is symbolic of idolatry (Rev. 17:1, 5, 15, 16; 19:2).  What is the whore of Babylon / mystery Babylon? | GotQuestions.org

Porne - 17v  - Matt. 21:31; Matt. 21:32; Lk. 15:30; 1 Co. 6:15; 1 Co. 6:16; Heb. 11:31; Jas. 2:25; Rev. 17:1; Rev. 17:5; Rev. 17:15; Rev. 17:16; Rev. 19:2

Porne in Septuagint - Gen. 34:31; Gen. 38:15; Gen. 38:21; Gen. 38:22; Lev. 21:7; Lev. 21:14; Deut. 23:2; Deut. 23:17; Deut. 23:18; Jos. 2:1; Jos. 6:17; Jos. 6:23; Jos. 6:25; Jdg. 11:1; Jdg. 16:1; 1 Ki. 3:16; 1 Ki. 12:24; 1 Ki. 21:19; 1 Ki. 22:38; Prov. 5:3; Prov. 6:26; Prov. 29:3; Isa. 1:21; Isa. 23:15; Isa. 23:16; Isa. 57:3; Jer. 3:3; Jer. 5:7; Ezek. 16:30; Ezek. 16:31; Ezek. 16:35; Ezek. 23:43; Ezek. 23:44; Hos. 4:14; Joel 3:3; Nah. 3:4;

MacArthur - Sexual relations involve a union; the man and woman become one flesh. This indicates that the most essential meaning of the phrase one flesh (see Gen. 2:24; etc.) is sexual union. In his Screwtape Letters C. S. Lewis says that each time a man and a woman enter into a sexual relationship a spiritual bond is established between them which must be eternally enjoyed or eternally endured. God takes sexual sin seriously because it corrupts and shatters spiritual relationships, both human and divine.

Utley -  Physical intimacy is a strong bonding experience. It has an appropriate, God-ordained place in life. Like all of God’s gifts, it can be abused and taken beyond God-given bounds.

Jack Arnold -  This quote comes from Genesis 2:24 which is in the context of marriage, obviously referring to two becoming one flesh in the sex act. This being the case, any man who unites himself to a harlot by that sexual act becomes one body with her. What the Apostle is saying is that something goes on in the act of sex which creates a union far deeper than merely the passing pleasure of the moment. The Corinthians had not realized the implications of their sexual laxity. This becoming one body is a universal principle whether it is illicit sex between believer and believer, believer and unbeliever or unbeliever and unbeliever.  Yet, the Christian who commits illicit sex has greater problems because of his rebellion to truth and ensuing Holy Spirit conviction. Sex involves two people sharing in a mystery and it is not just an animal act. There is an intimacy which can never be forgotten and will always be stamped on a person’s mind to some degree.....What this verse does say is there is an emotional, psychological and spiritual impact in illicit sex which leaves its mark on every person who gets involved in it, and this act has profound ramifications to one’s normal adjustments in marriage. ( What Every Christian Should Know About Illicit Sex But Doesn't!)

Blomberg - "In countless ways, women and men defy God and confidently proclaim that they can have sex without that commitment and without any destructive side-effects. Time and time again, they regret those choices. But this is not a sin we can test and then back off from; we must trust that God knows best. Once a person yields to temptation, in little or big ways, there are mental and emotional scars that may never entirely disappear, even though God’s grace can bring substantial healing” (NIV Application Commentary)

Spencer - We are so much a part of Christ that for a Christian to commit fornication with a harlot is to unite the body of Christ with the harlot. Oliver B. Greene wrote: This Scripture teaches that if illicit sex practice is carried on between two individuals, they become one body, one flesh; and that which God intended to be high, noble, and beautiful becomes low, ugly, and degrading. There is nothing that will destroy an individual so quickly as promiscuous sex practice, whether it be fornication or adultery. The Holy Spirit here warns-not only the believers in Corinth but all believers even unto this present hour and until we are caught up into Paradise to be with Jesus. When an individual Christians commits fornication, he disgraces the whole body of Christ. Because he is a member of Christ’s body he links Christ to his immorality. Think about this way. When a Christian commits fornication, he illegally takes what belongs to God and gives it to someone else. (Ibid) 

For He says, "THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH" - Paul referred to the Creation account (Ge 2:24) to explain the seriousness of sexual sin. When a man and woman join their bodies, the entire personality is involved. There is a much deeper experience, a “oneness” that brings with it deep and lasting consequences. Paul warned that sexual sin is the most serious sin a person can commit against his body, for it involves the whole person (1Co6:18). Sex is not just a part of the body. Being “male” and “female” involves the total person. Therefore, sexual experience affects the total personality. 

Paul did not suggest that being joined to a harlot was the equivalent of marriage, for marriage also involves commitment. The man and woman leave the parental home to begin a new home. This helps us to understand why sex within marriage can be an enriching experience of growth, because it is based on commitment. When two people pledge their love and faithfulness to each other, they lay a strong foundation on which to build. Marriage protects sex and enables the couple, committed to each other, to grow in this wonderful experience. Stated another way, adultery creates a union but not a marriage. 

Given the sexual promiscuity that characterized large segments of pagan society, Paul wanted to emphasize that more takes place during sexual intercourse than the mere fulfillment of animal urges. Even though we cannot fully understand this principle, there is a oneness that occurs that has profound implications for the believer’s relationship with the Lord.

1 Corinthians 6:17  But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him.

Amplified - But the person who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him.

Wuest - But he who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit [with Him]. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:17 But the one united with the Lord is one spirit with him.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:17 But the person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with him in spirit.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:17 ὁ δὲ κολλώμενος τῷ κυρίῳ ἓν πνεῦμά ἐστιν.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:17 And he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit;

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:17 But anyone joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:17 But anyone united to the Lord becomes one spirit with him.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:17 But whoever is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:17 But anyone who attaches himself to the Lord is one spirit with him.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:17 However, the person who unites himself with the Lord becomes one spirit with him.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:17 But he who is united to the Lord is one spirit.

Related Passages:

John 17:21-23  that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.

Ephesians 4:3-4  being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling;

Ephesians 5:30  because we are members of His body.

COVENANT ONENESS
WITH CHRIST

But the one who joins (kollaohimself to the Lord is one spirit with Him - This first part of this verse (one who joins himself) parallels the first part of the preceding verse.This passage speaks of the mystical union of a believer with the Lord Jesus Christ. "With the Lord, the inner vital spiritual union with the Lord Jesus (Eph. 4:4; Eph 5:30)." (ATR) Joins in essence means to be glued to someone! This speaks of the union and unity that exists between a Christian and the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Hendricksen on joins...one spirit - The relationship is as close as two pieces of glass lying on top of each other; it is impossible to lift the one piece from the other because the air pressure glues them together, as it were. That is the relationship a Christian should have with the Lord. Already Paul noted that our bodies are members of Christ (v. 15) and thus stressed the uniqueness of our physical frame. Now he mentions the close relationship of our spirit that is joined to Christ.....Clinging to a prostitute constitutes degradation and brings disrepute; clinging to the Lord signifies exaltation and results in esteem.(1 Corinthians - NTC)

Hodge - "That is, has one Spirit with him. This does not mean has the same disposition or state of mind, but the same principle of life, v. 12, the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is given without measure unto Christ, and from him is communicated to all his people who are thereby brought into a common life with him, Rom. 8:9, 10; 1 Cor. 12:13; John 17:21, 23; Eph. 4:4, 5:30. This being the case, it imposes the highest conceivable obligation not to act inconsistently with this intimate and exalting relationship."

W E Vine - this spiritual union is what the Lord declared to the disciples in John 14:20 and 15:4, 5 and expressed in His prayer in 17:21–23. The realization of this union with Christ, maintained by the indwelling Spirit of God, makes our thoughts, aims and activities conform to the mind and will of Christ. (Collected Writings)

Jack Arnold -   The Christian is one spirit with Christ and it is impossible to separate this union. You cannot divide a spirit. There is a oneness of spirit between the believer and the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, the spirit union is higher than the body union, and higher unions ought to govern lesser unions. What one does with or in his body ought always to be governed by the higher union, for we are spiritually united to Christ. There is absolutely nothing which wrecks one’s spiritual life like illicit sex. More men and women tune out in their spiritual lives over passion for illegal sex than for any other reason. ( What Every Christian Should Know About Illicit Sex But Doesn't!)

Utley on the one who joins himself to the Lord  -  This is a spiritual analogy drawn from Gen. 2:24. As a man and wife become one flesh physically, the believer and his Lord become one spiritual entity (cf. John 17:11, 23; Gal. 2:20; Eph. 5:21–33). This is exactly parallel to 6:16.

Joins (2853) see kollao

Further strengthening the point, Paul affirms that all sex outside of marriage is sin; but illicit relationships by believers are especially reprehensible because they profane Jesus Christ with Whom believers are ONE (Jn14:18-23; 15:4, 7; 17:20-23; Ro12:5). The oneness with the Lord takes place, however, in the realm of  Spirit. Nevertheless there is a bodily connection with the Lord since the believers’ bodies are now members of Christ (6:15) This argument should make such sin unthinkable.

Lord (Master, Owner)(2962) see kurios

Spirit (breath, wind)(4151)(pneuma from pneo = to breath) - Pneuma originally meant “wind” or “breath” and continued to have these meanings into the New Testament (Jn 3:8; 2 Th 2:8; Rev 11:11; 13:15). Because the breath of an individual was the sign of life, pneuma came to include the meaning of the “spirit” that gives life to the body. 

Alan Redpath - Here is the issue from the moment of our birth until the moment when we meet God face to face: either the Spirit of God is to triumph and the life of the flesh die out, or that which is of sin and of the flesh will control us that the Spirit of God ceases to speak. That tremendously solemn alternative faces everyone. Everything is lawful for the child of God, but only under the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. What He permits, I will do; what He refuses, I will reject. What His Word tells me is right, I will accept; what His Word tells me is wrong, I will refuse. This is the battleground where you and I fight every day.

Hendricksen on the striking contrasts in the preceding passages - Striking indeed is the contrast between the person who clings to a prostitute and the one who adheres to Christ. (1) For instance, the relationship between a man and a prostitute is momentary, without love, devoid of responsibility, mutually destructive, decidedly egocentric, and shamefully immoral. Conversely, the believer’s relationship with Jesus Christ is characterized by permanence, love, trust, edification, obedience, and purity. (2) Prostitution makes one prone to disease and is degrading, sinful, and damaging to one’s soul. However, Christ exalts a person, encourages wholesome living, instructs him or her in the law of love for God and one’s fellow human being, and refreshes the believer’s spirit. (3) An immoral person fails to enjoy matrimonial bliss, experiences failure in personal intimacy, substitutes sex for service to God, and indulges in vulgarity, obscenity, and sensuality. But a Christian builds loving and lasting companionship with his spouse, seeks fulfillment in serving others, loves his Lord, joyfully worships God, cultivates wholesome speech, promotes decency, and exemplifies virtue. “Thus we can understand why the Ephesian letter [Eph. 5:21–33] emphasizes that Christ and his church, as the bridegroom and the bride, constitute the union that is normative for marriage.”

ILLUSTRATION - Jack Hyles was asked by a girl in college to go to a dance. His reply is classic. He said, "I'd love to go to the dance with you, but I can't." When asked why, he said, "I have no feet." The girl was quick to see that he really did have feet with which he could have danced and told him so. He simply told her that when he got saved, he lost control of those feet and that now he didn't have any feet to use for dancing. His feet had become God's feet.

1 Corinthians 6:18  Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body.

Amplified - Shun immorality and all sexual looseness [flee from impurity in thought, word, or deed]. Any other sin which a man commits is one outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.

Wuest - Be fleeing from fornication. Every act of sin which a man may do is outside of his body, but he who commits fornication is sinning against his own body.  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee sexual immorality! "Every sin a person commits is outside of the body"– but the immoral person sins against his own body.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:18 Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:18 φεύγετε τὴν πορνείαν. πᾶν ἁμάρτημα ὃ ἐὰν ποιήσῃ ἄνθρωπος ἐκτὸς τοῦ σώματός ἐστιν· ὁ δὲ πορνεύων εἰς τὸ ἴδιον σῶμα ἁμαρτάνει.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:18 flee the whoredom; every sin -- whatever a man may commit -- is without the body, and he who is committing whoredom, against his own body doth sin.

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:18 Run from sexual immorality! "Every sin a person can commit is outside the body." On the contrary, the person who is sexually immoral sins against his own body.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:18 Shun fornication! Every sin that a person commits is outside the body; but the fornicator sins against the body itself.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:18 Avoid immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the immoral person sins against his own body.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:18 Keep away from sexual immorality. All other sins that people may commit are done outside the body; but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:18 Stay away from sexual sins. Other sins that people commit don't affect their bodies the same way sexual sins do. People who sin sexually sin against their own bodies.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:18 Keep away from the desires of the flesh. Every sin which a man does is outside of the body; but he who goes after the desires of the flesh does evil to his body.

  • Flee immorality Ge 39:12-18 Pr 2:16-19 5:3-15 6:24-32 7:5-23,24-27 9:16-18 Ro 6:12,13 2Ti 2:22 Heb 13:4 1Pe 2:11 
  • Every other sin that a man commits: Ro 1:24 1Th 4:5 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages:

Job 31:1+; Matthew 5:28+; Romans 6:16+; 1 Corinthians 6:18; Colossians 3:5+; Hebrews 13:4+; 1 Peter 2:11+; 2 Peter 2:19+

NOTE: THESE ARE ONLY ABBREVIATED COMMENTS - CLICK IN DEPTH COMMENTS ON 1 CORINTHIANS 6:18. 

COMMAND AND REASON 
TO FLEE IMMORALITY

NET Note - It is debated whether this ("Every sin a person commits is outside of the body") is a Corinthian slogan. If it is not, then Paul is essentially arguing that there are two types of sin, nonsexual sins which take place outside the body and sexual sins which are against a person’s very own body. If it is a Corinthian slogan, then it is a slogan used by the Corinthians to justify their immoral behavior. With it they are claiming that anything done in the body or through the body had no moral relevance. A decision here is very difficult, but the latter is to be preferred for two main reasons. (1) This is the most natural understanding of the statement as it is written. To construe it as a statement by Paul requires a substantial clarification in the sense (e.g., “All other sins …” [NIV]). (2) Theologically the former is more difficult: Why would Paul single out sexual sins as more intrinsically related to the body than other sins, such as gluttony or drunkenness? For these reasons, it is more likely that the phrase in quotation marks is indeed a Corinthian slogan which Paul turns against them in the course of his argument, although the decision must be regarded as tentative.

Flee (pheugo) immorality - Amplified - "Shun immorality and all sexual looseness [flee from impurity in thought, word, or deed]." That is a good paraphrase for we not only have to flee literally and physically (like Joseph) but we first have to flee mentally (thoughts precede actions)! Flee is a command (present imperative  see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) to continually keep fleeing until the danger is past. When we are in danger of immorality, do not argue or debate or explain, and do not rationalize.

It is no accident that the imperative form of the verb “flee” is used once in 1 Corinthians with immorality and once with idolatry (1 Cor 10:14+) as these two sins characterized the pagan world and from OT times these two sins tended to "traffic together". (cp Nu 25:1-3). Idolatry is equated with greed or covetousness () and immorality is basically coveting someone else's wife or a woman that is not your wife! Do not to consider immorality a spiritual challenge to be met, but a spiritual trap to be escaped. We should get away as fast as we can.

Sexual lusts drive men (and women) like no other impulse and when fulfilled affects the body like no other sin. It has a way of internally destroying a person that no other sin has. Because sexual intimacy is the deepest uniting of two persons (1 Cor 6:16,17), its misuse corrupts one on the deepest human level. That is not a psychological analysis but a divinely revealed fact. Sexual immorality is far more destructive than alcohol, far more destructive than drugs, far more destructive than crime.

Spencer -  Paul continues to press the point that illicit sexual behavior is a sin against the Christian relationship because he takes that which belongs to Christ and gives it to another. Therefore, Paul concludes that believers are to flee from fornication. There is an urgency about the word flee. Webster defines it as meaning, To run with rapidity, as from danger; to attempt to escape; to hasten from danger or expected evil ... To avoid; to keep at a distance from. Paul counseled Timothy, a young preacher to: Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:22) Joseph is a good example to follow (Genesis 39:10-12). When tempted he fled. David, however, is an example of the failure to flee (2 Samuel 11:1-4). David committed adultery with Bathsheba and he paid dearly for it. Dear Christian, we must learn and practice the discipline of putting on Christ and fleeing when it comes to temptation. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. (Romans 13:14) Here is a problem that leads to failure. Paul said, make not provision for the flesh. If we would simply practice this command, we would avoid a lot of sin and failure.

Joseph fled

(JOSEPH WHEN TEMPTED BY POTIPHAR'S WIFE) There is no one greater in this house than I, and he has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do this great evil and sin against God?”....She (POTIPHAR'S WIFE) caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me!” And he left his garment in her hand and fled (Lxx = pheugo = same verb in 1 Cor 6:18!), and went outside.(Ge 39:9, 12)

Comment - It was not the time for argument or explanation but for flight. When we unavoidably get caught in such a situation, the only sensible thing to do is to get away from it as quickly as we can. Passion is not rational or sensible, and sexually dangerous situations should be avoided  or fled, not debated. (Ro 13:12-14)

Moses made a choice based on his faith in God...

By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy ( apolausis) the passing pleasures of sin, (Hebrews 11:24-25+)

Solomon writes 

Keep (Command in Hebrew; ) your way far from her and do not go near the door of her house, (Proverbs 5:8+)

Deliver (Command in Hebrew; Lxx = sozo in present tense - "save yourself" and keep saving yourself!) yourself like a gazelle from the hunter’s hand (Lxx = brochos = a noose = used in hunting for catching prey!) And like a bird from the hand of the fowler. (Proverbs 6:5)

In Colossians Paul writes

Therefore (CONCLUSION BASED ON Col 3:1-4+, especially Col 3:4+consider the members of your earthly body as dead (aorist imperative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) to immorality (porneia), impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed (covetousness - pleonexia = state of desiring to have more than one’s due), which amounts to idolatry (eidololatreia = literally worship of images) (Col 3:5+)

Writing to the saints at Ephesus (most of whom were Gentiles who had come out of pagan idolatry and immorality)

immorality (porneia) or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; (Eph 5:3+)

In his parting words to his young disciple Timothy Paul commanded

Now flee (present imperative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) from youthful lusts (epithumia) and pursue ((present imperative see our need to depend on the Holy Spirit to obey) righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. (2 Ti 2:23+)

Flee (escape) (5343)(pheugo) means to flee away in the sense of to take to flight in order to seek safety. To flee in the sense of to escape something, being made safe from danger by eluding or avoiding it (He 11:34+, Mt 3:7, Acts 27:30). To flee in the sense of to avoid, shun (Webster = to avoid deliberately and especially habitually), have nothing to do with (1Co 6:18). To vanish or disappear (Re 16:20+, Re 20:11+). Webster defines flee as to run away often from danger or evil or to hurry toward a place of security. Pheugo is the root of our English word "fugitive" defined as one who escapes from something or someone.

Pheugo - 29v in NT - Mt. 2:13; Mt. 3:7; Mt. 8:33; Mt. 10:23; Mt 23:33; Mt. 24:16; Mt. 26:56; Mk. 5:14; Mk. 13:14; Mk. 14:50; Mk. 14:52; Mk. 16:8; Lk. 3:7; Lk. 8:34; Lk. 21:21; Jn. 10:5; Jn. 10:12; Acts 7:29; Acts 27:30; 1 Co. 6:18; 1 Co. 10:14; 1 Ti 6:11 = "flee (p from these things"; 2 Ti 2:22; Heb. 11:34; Jas. 4:7; Rev. 9:6; Rev. 12:6; Rev. 16:20; Rev. 20:11

Immorality (4202porneia from root verb pernao = to sell, porneuo = to play the harlot; pornos = male prostitute) originally referred to any excessive behavior or lack of restraint. Porneia originally was used especially to describe the practice of consorting with prostitutes (porneis = “prostitute”) and eventually came to mean “habitual immorality.” Porneia in the Scripture describes any illicit sexual activity outside of the divine bounds established by marriage and thus includes the ideas of unlawful sexual intercourse, unchastity and fornication (including but not limited to adultery, premarital sex, homosexuality, bestiality, incest, and prostitution). As an aside, while porneia refers primarily to sins of the flesh, those sins can never be divorced from the sins of the mind or heart, because all sin is related. Sin in one area always makes us more susceptible to sin in other areas. Nowhere does Scripture sanction the commitment of any form of extramarital sexual activity, a far cry from our modern American culture! Sex was often linked to pagan religious practices (both male and female prostitutes cf "priestesses" [aka prostitutes] in Temple of Aphrodite), with the idolatrous worship of false gods (idolatry and immorality are commonly described together in the Bible). Porneia gives us our English word pornography.   Porneia is the opposite of the Greek word enkrateia/egkrateia (literally "holding oneself in"), which usually referred to sexual self-control (see Acts 24:25+)

Porneia is found in 24v in NT - fornication(4), fornications(2), immoralities(1), immorality(16), sexual immorality(1), unchastity(1). Matt. 5:32; Matt. 15:19; Matt. 19:9; Mk. 7:21; Jn. 8:41; Acts 15:20; Acts 15:29; Acts 21:25; 1 Co. 5:1; 1 Co. 6:13; 1 Co. 6:18; 1 Co. 7:2; 2 Co. 12:21; Gal. 5:19; Eph. 5:3; Col. 3:5; 1 Thess. 4:3; Rev. 2:21; Rev. 9:21; Rev. 14:8; Rev. 17:2; Rev. 17:4; Rev. 18:3; Rev. 19:2

"Sexual immorality" has a peculiar effect upon the body. The sole purpose of this sin is the gratification of the strong desires (lust) inherent in the flesh (Old Man) and, therefore, it is probably the most selfish of all sins.

J C Ryle: The violation of the seventh commandment is the sin above all others, that, as Hosea says, "takes away the understanding" (Ho4:11). It is the sin that leaves deeper scars upon the soul than any other sin that a man can commit. It is a sin that destroys thousands of young men in every age, and has even overthrown a few of the saints of God in the past. Samson and David are fearful proofs. It is the sin that man dares to smile at, and smooths over using the terms:thrills, love, uncontrollable passions, and natural desires. But it is the sin that the devil rejoices over, for he is the "unclean spirit;" and it is the sin that God abhors, and declares He "will judge" (Heb13:4). Young men, "Flee from sexual immorality" (1Co6:18) if you love life. "Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient" (Ep5:6). Flee from the opportunity of it--from the company of those who might draw you into it--from the places where you might be tempted to do it. Read what our Lord says about it in (Mt5:28). Be like the holy servant Job (who feared God & so turned away from evil Job1:1): (Job 31:1). Flee from talking about it. It is one of the things that ought not even be hinted about in conversation. You cannot even touch black grease without getting your hands dirty. Flee from the thoughts of it; resist them, destroy them, pray against them--make any sacrifice rather than give way to them. Imagination is the hotbed where this sin is too often hatched. Guard your thoughts (Pr4:23), and there will be little fear about your actions.

Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body,  Every sin that a man does is outside the body may have been another slogan used by the Corinthians to justify their immorality. Paul pointed out that the opposite is true: sexual sin is done against the body, not outside of it.  Sexual sin is not the worst possible sin, but it is the most unique in its character. It comes from inside the body, it's bent on personal gratification, and it drives us like no other impulse. And when it's fulfilled, it does have a way of internally destroying a person that no other sin has. Because sexual intimacy is the deepest uniting of two persons, its misuse corrupts on the deepest human level.

but the immoral man sins against his own body There is a sense in which sexual sin destroys a person like no other, because it is so intimate and entangling, corrupting on the deepest human level. Not to mention venereal disease, prevalent and devastating even in Paul's day. No sin has greater potential to destroy the body. None of the other sins that Paul has mentioned elsewhere in 1 Corinthians (5:11) actually create a bodily union with a prostitute.  To be sure, drunkenness can exclude one from the kingdom of God (6:10) and can cause physical harm to one’s body. Nevertheless, even those sins which can physically harm the body do not, as it were, contaminate the body by a unification with immorality. It is exactly this unique nature and capacity of the body to be both united with Christ and with a prostitute that is illuminated by the Scripture citation of Genesis. 

A glance is unavoidable.
A gaze is avoidable.

Staton - Paul does not mean by this that other sins do not harm the self, but no other sin is so filled with the giving of self as this sin. This affects the total self more evidently than other sins. All other sins against the body come from outside the body, but this one begins from inside. All other sins involve the use of something that is external to the body such as drink or food, but this sin involves what is the body.

If you linger,
You will lust!

Related Resource:

  • See Job 31:1 Commentary “I have made a covenant with my eyes; How then could I gaze at a virgin? 

Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry (1 Cor 10:14+) - Flee is not a suggestion but a command in present imperative calling for us to continually depend on the Holy Spirit to obey. This is the second "Flee Command" in this letter, the first being to "Flee Immorality" (also present imperative) (1 Cor 6:18), which is more than a coincidence. Why do I say that? If you scan the Scriptures, you will find that immorality is often closely linked with idolatry (e.g., in the OT read Nu 25:1-3+  = "When Israel lived in Shittim, the people began to commit sexual immorality with the daughters of Moab. These women invited the people to the sacrifices of their gods; then the people ate and bowed down to their gods.Nu 25:1-2NET, in the NT read Rev 2:20+ = "they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols." ) . Idolatry puts something else in place of God and immorality puts self in place of God. Instead of seeking to please God the immoral man or woman in effect worships (commits idolatry) at their own little shrine (their own body) by committing sexual immorality. (See excerpt below)

Steve Gallagher describes "sexual idolatry" writing - Deeply embedded within the heart of man is a spiritual altar. Every human has the capacity—no, the need—to worship. The objects of that worship are the things or persons which have taken the preeminent position of importance in the person’s life. Whatever they may be, they cast their looming shadow over all of the other aspects of his life.

It is this position in the human heart that God demands to occupy. Jesus said as much when He cited Deuteronomy 6:5 as being the greatest commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37) This intimate relationship with Him was to form the basis of all religion.

Unfortunately, in his fallen spiritual condition, man’s natural tendency is to give that affection to something else. People prostrate themselves before all kinds of things in this earthly life: careers, homes, personal attractiveness, other people, food, entertainment, sports, drugs, etc. Truth be known, most people have acquired several idols. Even churchgoers crowd God into a secondary or even nonexistent position in their lives. Jesus rightly said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:21)

For many, the powerful human drive for sex becomes the overriding passion of life. Kept in its proper place, sex is a marvelous means for a married couple to physically express their love to each other. However, when a person begins to indulge in some form of illicit sexual behavior, this passion can quickly get out of control.

As the neighborhood drug pusher entices someone with free marijuana in order to lead him into hard core drugs, so will Satan subtly lure an unwitting victim into bondage with a few satisfying sexual experiences. Gradually the object of the person’s fantasy—whether it be some particular act (oral sex, orgies, exhibitionism, etc.) or a specific type of person (blonde girl, men, children, etc.)—grows into a monstrous idol which lodges itself within his heart.

Over time this ravenous beast takes over and begins to drive the person’s life. Eventually he loses control of how often, with whom, and under what circumstances he will engage in sex. He has become addicted to the euphoria associated with sexual activity in much the same way others become addicted to the high of alcohol or drugs. Thus, his sexuality and capacity to worship become fused into a corrupted, nearly irresistible drive to worship at the altar of sexual idolatry. (At the Altar of Sexual Idolatry - recommended resource if you are wrestling with this "idol") 

 


HE SEES US! - In this age of electronics, we have all become aware of bugging devices. A person's office, hotel room, or telephone can be monitored so that every sound is picked up. This is accomplished through highly sensitive microphones that are so small they can easily be hidden. Heads of state, government officials, and business people in strategic positions must be exceedingly careful of what they say, especially when entering a strange setting. The awareness that they might be overheard is sure to make them think twice before they speak. Did you ever stop to think that God sees everything we do and hears everything we say every moment of the day? Heb 4:13-note says that "all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account." This truth is both comforting and sobering–comforting because God stands ready to deliver us when we are in trouble (Ps 33:18-19-note), and sobering because "the eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good" (Pr 15:3-note). What a profound effect this should have on the way we live! The next time you are tempted or in trouble, remember that God is watching and listening. –R W De Haan(Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

There is no time of day or night,
No place on land or sea
That God, whose eye is never dim,
Does not see you and me.
–DJD

To know that God sees usv brings both conviction and comfort.


Here is a song every man needs to listen to at least once (and watch the accompanying video)...

Slow Fade by Casting Crowns

Be careful little eyes what you see
It's the second glance that ties your hands as darkness pulls the strings
Be careful little feet where you go
For it's the little feet behind you that are sure to follow
It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It's a slow fade, it's a slow fade

Be careful little ears what you hear
When flattery leads to compromise, the end is always near
Be careful little lips what you say
For empty words and promises lead broken hearts astray
It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day

The journey from your mind to your hands
Is shorter than you're thinking
Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking
It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
Daddies never crumble in a day
Families never crumble in a day

Oh be careful little eyes what see
Oh be careful little eyes what you see
For the Father up above is looking down in love
Oh be careful little eyes what you see


COVENANT WITH MY EYES - Our friend is a computer “techie.” One night when our family was at his house, I noticed a verse taped to his monitor: “I have made a covenant with my eyes” (Job 31:1). Evidently, he understood the potential danger of spending hours alone in front of a computer with easy access to indecent images.

Our friend’s “reminder verse” is a quote from Job, and it continues, “Why then should I look upon a young woman?” Like many of us, Job had promised himself to stay free of lust. Reflecting on that oath, he said, “Does [God] not see my ways, and count all my steps?” (Job 31:4, cp Pr 15:3-note, 1Pe 1:17-note). The Bible assures us that God does (Heb 4:13-note), and that we are accountable to Him. This is why believers must “abstain from sexual immorality” (1Th. 4:3-note). While some want to debate the boundaries of morality, the Bible says, “Whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Mt 5:28-note).

If you have made a covenant with your eyes, consider how Scripture might help you keep this pledge. Post a verse on your computer screen, television, or the dashboard of your car, and remember, “God did not call us to uncleanness” but to holiness (1Th. 4:7-note). -- February 11, 2012 — by Jennifer Benson Schuldt (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

When lustful thoughts assail your mind
To play with immorality,
Remember that God’s will for you
Is holiness and purity.
—Sper

A look that lingers can lead to lust.


The cartoon depicted a frustrated father changing a flat tire in the rain. His two children were peering out the car window. In response to their complaining, he said, "Don't you understand? This is life. This is what's happening. We can't switch to another channel!" Television and reality—does the former distort the latter? After 10 years of research, media analyst Kenneth Curtis measured TV's impact on society. He concluded that the omnipresent, flickering screen constantly tries to tell us what behavior and attitudes are desirable. He described the effect of TV as a subtle process that has become a significant force in defining reality. If this is true, we had better be careful about what we watch. The networks are not committed to portraying Christian values. Many things that are presented as acceptable are in fact dangerous. Furthermore, watching TV makes us passive observers rather than active participants in solving life's problems. The violence, sex, and materialism on TV can make us insensitive to our calling as Christians to be salt and light in a sinful world. Only as we meditate on God's Word (Psalm 1:2) can we have the right perspective. To avoid a distorted view of life, we must allow God's truth to define reality. —MRD II (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Our thoughts are shaped by what we see,
And thoughts affect our soul;
So if we'd profit from TV,
We must be in control.
—DJD

The Bible is the best TV (INTERNET) guide.


Flee!

Submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. —James 4:7+

Today's Scripture: James 4:1-10

I didn’t see the movie The Exorcist, but I do recall its impact on my community. It left a lasting impression on many people about Satan’s power. Even many Christians began to live in fear, swayed by the vivid images of evil. It seemed as if the devil was almost as powerful as God.

Is this perspective biblically sound? Of course not. God is the Creator, and all others, including demons, are just created beings. Only God is almighty.

It’s easy to blame the devil when things go wrong. Although he does propagate wickedness and sin, we must be careful not to conclude that we are powerless against him. We are told in the Bible that the Holy Spirit within us “is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4+).

The Bible also says we have a role to play in overcoming evil and doing what is good. We are to “flee sexual immorality” (1 Corinthians 6:18-20), “flee from idolatry” (1 Cor 10:14+), “flee” from the love of money (1 Timothy 6:10-11+), and “flee also youthful lusts” (2 Timothy 2:22+).

James said that our attitude toward the devil should be to “resist” him (James 4:7+). How do we do this? By submitting ourselves to God, allowing Him to direct our lives. Then it will be the devil who will flee from us. By:  Albert Lee (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

When Satan launches his attack,
We must take heart and pray;
If we submit ourselves to God,
He'll be our strength each day.
—Sper

To defeat Satan, surrender to Christ.


Flee Lust

"Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body," but he who sins sexually sins against his own body."—1 Corinthians 6:18

Dr. C. Everett Koop was Surgeon General of the United States from 1981 to 1989. In the Report on AIDS from the Surgeon General Koop writes: "The AIDS virus attacks a person's immune system and damages his/her ability to fight other disease. Without a functioning immune system to ward off other germs, he/she now becomes vulnerable to becoming infected by' bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and other viruses and malignancies, which may cause life-threatening illness... " Dr. Koop stresses that to control the spread of AIDS, "People must be responsible about their sexual behavior."

Dr. Koop also wrote an article tided "God's Sovereignty Remains My Greatest Comfort." Though he does not directly address the area of sexual conduct Koop says this about the Christian's reliance on God's will: "But in a time of adversity or trouble, the Christian has the opportunity to know God in a special and personal way. Indeed, it necessitates acknowledging our own inability to cope. It is then that we learn we must rely completely on the grace and mercy of a loving God. And how wonderful to know we have a Lord who knows the end from the beginning!"

The sovereign God created sex and sexual desire but He has placed restrictions on it for our own benefit. Sexual immorality is not something to toy with. Are you tempted to engage in sex outside of marriage? Today in prayer ask for the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ to flee from sexual immorality.

"There's a word for those folks who linger and try to reason with lust: victim."—Charles Swindoll (from Generation to Generation - Peter Kennedy)


HOW TO TRAP AN ERMINE - The ermine is a little animal that is used to make fur coats, because they have a coat that is snow white. Trappers find the ermine's hole (home) knowing he would run there to hide. The hunters would smear something vile, dirty, defiling around the entrance of his hole. As the dogs drove the ermine to his hole to get away, the snow white animal would see the filth and, realize it would have to defile its coat in order to enter his hole. So rather than defile itself, the ermine refused to enter and instead would turn around and face the dogs, in effect giving its life, rather than suffering defilement! Does holiness and moral purity mean that much to you? If not, you are destined to succumb to moral temptation, because you are half-hearted. Enabled by the Holy Spirit, you must determine to remain morally pure, to be holy as He is holy (1Pe 1:14, 15, 16+) And remember, the Spirit of the Living God does business with those that mean business. Don't get trapped!


EYE TROUBLE

  I have made a covenant with my eyes; how then could I gaze at a virgin? JOB 31:1

Men, this may not be an easy thing to admit with your wife sitting right next to you. But let’s be honest—you’ll likely relate to the story I’m about to tell.

I was seated in a car with another Christian leader—a good friend of mine. We were both away from home, without our wives, waiting for a colleague who had just gone inside a store. And as we sat there, a woman walked by who was, well, drop-dead gorgeous. I caught sight of her as she entered the store, and then turned back to our conversation.

When she walked by again, by God’s grace (or the fear of my own reputation being spoiled), I summoned up enough self-control to look away. But I did notice my friend’s eyes lingering as she walked on to her car. Knowing we were both fighting the same battle, I casually said, “Hey, you can look at her once, you can look at her twice, but if you look at her that long …”

We laughed. We knew.

Guys, there’s nothing wrong with appreciating a woman’s beauty. But we all know in an instant when we’ve reached that point where we’re no longer simply noticing her but have begun enjoying her and letting our minds become a playground of lustful thoughts. That’s when Fred Stoeker, coauthor of Every Man’s Battle, says we must heed the covenant of Job 31:1. With the same impulsive quickness that makes us pull our hands back from a hot stove, we must discipline ourselves to “bounce” our eyes away from her.

Yes, it’s every man’s battle, all right. But it’s a battle we can win.

DISCUSS Husbands, help your wives understand that this admission of struggle is not caused by being unsatisfied with her. It’s a struggle with temptation, lust, sin—a struggle with yourself.

PRAY Wives, pray for your husbands in this area. Each of you should ask God for help with any deep areas of sin and temptation, especially those that can come between the two of you. Trust Him for the strength to be obedient. (Dennis Rainey)


The Scriptures require spiritual leaders to be a " One woman man."  (1 Timothy 3:2). Here are a few suggestions that may prove helpful: 
 
 EYES — Remember the song, " I Only Have Eyes for You" ? We must determine to only " look"  at our wives. Lustful gazes are acts of adultery. (Matthew 5:29; Job 31:1) 
 
 C. S. Lewis said, " If you look at ham and eggs with lust, you already have committed breakfast." 
 
 EARS — How easily we can be sexually stimulated by what we hear. Proverbs cautions us, " For the lips of an adulteress drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil." (Proverbs 5:3) 
 
 LIPS — A man committed to his wife does not flatter other women: " Whoever flatters his neighbor is spreading a net for his feet."  (Proverbs 29:5) 
 
 HANDS — Paul admonishes us to " Treat… younger women as sisters, with absolute purity."  (1 Timothy 5:2). The manner in which we relate physically to our sisters should serve as a guideline in our association with other women. 
 
 FEET — We can easily identify with the statement, " I can resist anything but temptation."  Perhaps that's why the Scriptures warn us to " Flee youthful lusts… "  (2 Timothy 2:22a) 
 
 David stood and looked at naked Bathsheba and ended up committing adultery and murder. By contrast, Joseph fled Potifer's seductive wife and remained pure. (2 Samuel 11; Genesis 39) 
 
 MIND — It is only by the renewing of the mind that we can expect to live a pure life: " Let God re-mold your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice that the plan of God for you is good… "  (Romans 12:2b – Philips Translation) God's Word is central to the renewal process. 
 
 QUESTION: Are you allowing anything into your mind that is making the renewal process unnecessarily difficult?
 
 HEART — Wise old Solomon cautioned us, " Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life."  (Proverbs 4:23) 
 
 Thus, emotional involvement with a person of the opposite sex is often an early step in the process that culminates in the act of adultery.
 
QUESTION: Does your present attitude and pattern of behavior indicate a deep resolve to remain a " ONE WOMAN MAN" ? 


Warren Wiersbe - THE BEST SEX

There is certainly excitement and enjoyment in sexual experience outside of marriage, but there is not enrichment. Sex outside of marriage is like a man robbing a bank: he gets something, but it is not his and he will one day pay for it. Sex within marriage can be like a person putting money into a bank: there is safety, security, and he will collect dividends.

Paul referred to the creation account to explain the seriousness of sexual sin. When a man and woman join their bodies, the entire personality is involved. There is a much deeper experience, a "oneness" that brings with it deep and lasting consequences. Paul warned that sexual sin is the most serious sin a person can commit against his body, for it involves the whole person.

Paul did not suggest that being joined to a harlot was the equivalent of marriage, for marriage also involves commitment. When two people pledge their love and faithfulness to each other, they lay a strong foundation on which to build. Marriage protects sex and enables the couple, committed to each other, to grow in this wonderful experience.

In my pastoral counseling, I have had to help married couples whose relationship was falling apart because of the consequences of premarital sex, as well as extramarital sex. The harvest of sowing to the flesh is sometimes delayed, but it is certain (Gal. 6:7-8). How sad it is to live with the consequences of forgiven sin. (Pause for Power)


Lust (Teen to Teen)

“We too all previously lived among them in our fleshly desires, carrying out the inclinations of our flesh and thoughts, and we were by nature children under wrath as the others were also. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love that He had for us, made us alive with the Messiah even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace!” —Ephesians 2:3–5

Lust is a problem. The Bible tells us that we will struggle with lust. It’s hard for boys to stop looking at girls or to stop watching pornography on the computer screen. It’s hard for girls to put down the fiery romance books or stop watching romantic movies. Ephesians tells us that, “We all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh.” It is a constant battle being fought in the war against sin and Satan, but God provides hope for us in the war, “even when we were dead in trespasses, [He] made us alive together in Christ.” God is here, and He is ready to help us win this battle. Job 31:1 says, “I have made a covenant with my eyes. How then could I look at a young woman?” Matthew 5:29 instructs, “If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to be thrown in hell.” God has a plan for us to win this. Bounce your eyes from looking at that girl and change the channel when the sensual commercial or show comes on. If there is anything that causes you to lust, destroy it! Get rid of the porn sites, put up parental blocks, burn the romance book, and break the romance DVD. God is available in prayer and through His Word to help when the temptation to lust haunts us. Call on Him.

 Zach Watkins: 16, Henderson, NV
 Highland Hills Baptist Church and Green Valley High School, Henderson, NV


Question: What does the Bible say about voyeurism?

Answer: The Bible does not directly address the subject of voyeurism. Voyeurism is a sexual fetish that involves watching other people engaging in private behaviors such as undressing or participating in sexual activity. Voyeurism also often includes secretly videotaping or photographing the person being watched without his or her knowledge or consent. The voyeur usually observes from a secret vantage point or uses a hidden camera to capture illicit images. Some people consider viewing pornography or even looking at photos of other people on social media sites to be voyeuristic activity, but voyeurism, strictly speaking, is the act of secretly watching or filming people in real life as they undress or engage in sexual activity.

Voyeurism is sinful for at least two reasons: first, it is invasive and disrespectful to the person being watched. The Bible commands people to treat others with respect, justice, and kindness (Micah 6:8; Zechariah 7:9; Galatians 5:22). Voyeurism is a violation of this command—the voyeur treats other people as objects. Second, voyeurism falls under the category of unlawful or immoral sexual behavior. Lust is on the same level, spiritually, with adultery. When we look at another person with “lustful intent,” we have already committed adultery with him or her in our hearts (Matthew 5:28).

Secretly looking at the nakedness of another person (not one’s spouse) is wrong. Stealing of any kind—even stealing someone’s privacy—is sin. Voyeurism is a work of the flesh and a product of sinful desire. The Bible tells us to choose a different path for our lives: “Clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh” (Romans 13:14). GotQuestions.org

Related Resources from Gotquestions.org


Iain Paisley - THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT
  ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery’ Exodus 20:14 (commentary)

Here we have the sanctity of our neighbour’s purity.

‘The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever.’ Psalm 19:9.

This commandment demands that we preserve our own purity by preserving the purity of our neighbour.

Adultery wrecks our chastity on the rocks of uncleanness. Sex outside marriage is condemned by God.

The marriage is divinely instituted and sacred. God has hedged it around with a great prohibition and with great penalties. Those who break this hedge will be bitten by the serpent (Ecc. 10:8). Love and faithfulness are the great sustaining pillars of marriage.

Marriage resembles the mystical union between Christ and His church.

Adultery is a dishonour to God. It is deliberate. It can be prevented (1 Cor. 7:2+).

  1.      It is the worst sort of thievish sin. It is the stealing of his neighbour’s own flesh. Marriage makes man and woman one flesh. (Genesis 2:24).
  2.      It is beastly in nature (Jer. 5:8).
  3.      It pollutes the whole person (Luke 11:24).
  4.      It is destructive of the body (Prov. 5:11).
  5.      It robs men of their substance (Prov. 6:26).
  6.      It everlastingly blots the name (Prov. 6:32, 33).
  7.      It is heart breaking (Hosea 4:11).
  8.      It brings swift judgment (Deut. 20:10).
  9.      It damns in hell (I Cor. 6:9).
  10.      It endangers the soul of another.
  11.      It is abhorred of God (Prov. 22:14).

Thomas Watson states: ‘The adulterer is the devil’s first born, he is unclean, he is a moving quagmire, he is all over ulcerated with sin. His eyes sparkle with lust, he is so filthy that if he die in his sin all the flames of hell will never purge away his uncleanness.

And as for the adulteress, who can paint her black enough: the scripture calls her a ‘deep ditch’. She is a common sewer, whereas a believer’s body is a living temple. The body of a harlot is a walking dung hill.’

To be kept from the sin of adultery we must:

  1.      Keep ourselves from the whorish man or woman (Prov. 5:8).
  2.      Make a covenant with our eyes (Job 31:1).
  3.      Dress modestly (Prov. 7:10).
  4.      Take heed of evil company (Psalm 106:18).
  5.      Turn away our eyes from beholding vanity. Immoral films, plays, pictures and books (Ps. 119:37).
  6.      Mind our eating habits. Gluttony and drunkenness are the vanguard of uncleanness (1 Cor. 9:27).
  7.      Beware of idleness (2 Samuel 11:4).
  8.      Honour our marriage relations (Ezek. 16:49).

‘It is not having a wife, but loving his wife which makes a man live chastely.’

Thomas Watson remarked that ‘some have concluded because the Bible says ‘none that go to her (the adultress) return again’ that adultery was the unpardonable sin’.

Not so. The meaning is, that ‘none of those who keep going to her return again’ (Ecc. 7:24).

David was delivered and restored and wrote scripture in his recovered joy of God’s salvation.

Mary Magdelene whose eyes were wanton with lust, washed the Lord’s feet with her tears from those very eyes. There is forgiveness with God. But, nevertheless, this is the most fearful of sins.

Our souls however, can have recourse to the precious cleansing blood of Christ and to that fountain opened to the house of David—remember he was an adulterer—and to Jerusalem—remember it was a city which became a harlot Isaiah 1:21—for sin and for uncleanness (Zech. 1:21). Listen to these Gospel words:—‘Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.’ Isaiah 1:18.

THOU SHALT NOT COMMIT ADULTERY!


Rod Mattoon - Because of the destructiveness of sexual immorality, Paul issues a simple, forceful, powerful command on how to deal with this sin. He says, "Run! Don't pollute the palace!" Fornication is a sin that affects your entire body and being. It has devastating spiritual consequences. When it comes to sexual sin, don't reason with it, don't rationalize it, just run!

In fact, the word "flee," which is from the word pheugo {fyoo'-go}, carries the idea of running continually and to keep on running from this sin until the danger has passed. It also means "to avoid by running." It is just as important to avoid the traps of sexual sin as it is to run from it if you find yourself in a situation of temptation that may arise. There are steps that we can follow to avoid sexual sin.

Avoiding Sexual Sin

1. Avoid the Actions That Lead to Fornication
Wandering Looks: Wandering eyes belong to those who are looking for women or men. They hunt for new sex partners.
* 2 Peter 2:14—Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
Wandering eyes can get you into trouble. The story is told that in the year 1040 A.D., Earl Leofric of Mercia, one of the four all-powerful lords that ruled England under Canute, the Danish king, decided he would raise the fees he levied on his tenants. One of the towns that he ruled over was Coventry. His wife, Lady Godiva, pleaded with him to cancel those charges and he agreed to do so if she would ride naked on horseback through the streets of Coventry. That is exactly what she did, but the grateful people agreed that they would all stay inside their homes and not watch the lady.
However, one man, named Tom, who was a tailor by trade, was so tempted by Lady Godiva's beauty, he did indeed peep through his window. He was said to have been blinded as a consequence, not by the townspeople but by an act of God, and has been known ever since as "Peeping Tom."

Wandering Eyes, Wild Behavior, and Immodest Gestures:
* Isaiah 3:16—Moreover the Lord saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet:
Improper sensual flirting, embraces and hugging should be avoided. Avoid wild parties. Stay out of taverns and off the dance floors. The close contact, looks, touching, the music and words stir the embers of emotion and fan the flames of sexual passion.

2. Avoid Sensual Men and Sensual Women
Avoid their houses like a sailor that avoids rocks. Women say a great deal by the way they behave around men and by the way they dress. Women that dress immodestly and sensually reveal what is in their hearts.
* Proverbs 5:8—Remove thy way far from her, and come not nigh the door of her house:
* Proverbs 4:14-15—Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. 15 Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.

3. Guard Your Eyes and Your Heart
Pornography will poison your heart and mind. Avoid places and activities of nudity and sensuality.
* Job 31:1—I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?
* Proverbs 4:23—Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

4. Be Careful How You Dress
Ladies, sensual dress provokes lust and attracts the wrong kind of men.
* 1 Timothy 2:9—In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with braided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;

5. Seek Biblical Marriage
* 1 Corinthians 7:1-2—Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. 2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
Do not fear scriptural marriage. Do not marry unbelievers, backslidden Christians, or someone who has been divorced and their former spouse is still alive. Those are God's guidelines. Reject also the philosophy of this world that promotes living together with someone before you are married to them. It doesn't work and has devastating consequences.
* Hebrews 13:4—Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.
A loving spouse can meet the need of attention, acceptance, affection, admiration, and activities. Sexual sin, however, will devastate your marriage and your relationship with God.
When we look through the Bible, we find an interesting contrast between a man that ran from sexual sin and a man that embraced it and regretted his decision. The two men we want to contrast are Joseph and King David. (Genesis 39 and 2 Samuel 11)

A. Notice Their Conditions
1. Joseph was busy and working, while David was idle. Temptation can come unexpectedly at any time.
* Genesis 39:11—And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within.
* 2 Samuel 11:1—And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.
2. Both of these men were prospering. David was a king. God prospered Joseph, even though he was a slave.
* Genesis 39:2,6—And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.... 6 And he left all that he had in Joseph's hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.

B. Notice Their Character
1. Joseph was the one being pursued. His heart was pure as we will see.
* Genesis 39:7—And it came to pass after these things, that his master's wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.
* Genesis 39:12a—And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me...
2. David was the pursuer. His heart was polluted with lust.
* 2 Samuel 11:2-4... And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. 3 And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? 4 And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house.

C. Notice Their Concern About Corruption
1. Joseph refused the sexual advances of Mrs. Potiphar and ran from the situation. He put into practice what Paul taught in 1 Corinthians 6:18.
* Genesis 39:8-10... But he refused, and said unto his master's wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand; 9 There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God? 10 And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.
* Genesis 39:12—And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out.
2. David was not concerned about sexual corruption. He indulged in it, dragging Bathsheba down with him.
* 2 Samuel 11:4—And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house.

D. Notice the Consequences of Their Actions
1. Joseph did what was right, but was falsely accused and imprisoned. Yet, God was still with him. His conscience was clear and God blessed Joseph and caused him to prosper.
* Genesis 39:14-20... That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice: 15 And it came to pass, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled, and got him out. 16 And she laid up his garment by her, until his lord came home. 17 And she spake unto him according to these words, saying, The Hebrew servant, which thou hast brought unto us, came in unto me to mock me: 18 And it came to pass, as I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled out. 19 And it came to pass, when his master heard the words of his wife, which she spake unto him, saying, After this manner did thy servant to me; that his wrath was kindled. 20 And Joseph's master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison.
* Genesis 39:23—The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the LORD was with him, and that which he did, the LORD made it to prosper.
2. David did that which was wrong and was imprisoned by his own guilt. His adultery with Bathsheba led to her pregnancy and exposure. The threat of his sin being exposed motivated him to try to cover it up, but to no avail. It would come to light. God was not pleased at all with David's sin. Joseph prospered, but David was punished. God's chastening hand of judgment would be upon his home for the rest of his life.
* 2 Samuel 11:5—And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.
* 2 Samuel 11:12-13... And David said to Uriah, Tarry here to day also, and tomorrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow. 13 And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house.
* 2 Samuel 11:15—And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die.
* 2 Samuel 11:27—And when the mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife, and bare him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased the LORD.
* 2 Samuel 12:7-10... And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; 8 And I gave thee thy master's house, and thy master's wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. 9 Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. 10 Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.

E. Notice Their Confession
1. Joseph's conscience was pure or clear and invited the inspection of the Pharaoh into his circumstances. Truth always invites inspection for it has nothing to hide.
* Genesis 40:14-15... But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house: 15 For indeed I was stolen away out of the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done nothing that they should put me into the dungeon.
2. David is perplexed and penitent and acknowledges his sin against the Lord.
* 2 Samuel 12:13—And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die.

Beloved, there is a heavy price to pay if you indulge in sexual immorality.


Commandment 7—Keep Yourself Pure

You shall not commit adultery. —Exodus 20:14 

Flee sexual immorality. —1 Corinthians 6:18

Today's Scripture: Matthew 5:27-30

The Bible is up-to-date on sexual matters. Long ago, God warned against adultery and fornication. In effect, He said, “Say no!” Now, in the 20th century with the awful threat of AIDS, many lawmakers, educators, and doctors are agreeing with the Almighty.

The Grand Rapids Press carried an article titled “Abstinence: The New Emphasis in Sex Education.” It told of 16-year-old Will Heiss, a “peer educator” who challenges younger kids to say no to sexual activity—and they are listening.

Author and campus lecturer Josh McDowell reminded a college audience that the seventh commandment is a gracious provision by God, given for our protection. Josh told of a man who had several sexual relationships. The man later received Christ and met a wonderful woman whom he married. “She’s precious,” confided the man, “but in the intimacy of our marriage I’m haunted by the ‘ghosts’ of those previous affairs.”

Abstinence until marriage is a sure safeguard. It protects the gift of sexual intimacy that is to be enjoyed within a lifelong relationship of commitment and trust. God hates sexual immorality because He has the highest good of men and women at heart.  Dennis J. DeHaan (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Lord, grant me strength from day to day—
How prone I am to go astray!
The passions of my flesh are strong;
Be Thou, my God, a shield from wrong.
—DJD

God’s commandments were not given to frustrate us but to fulfill us.

1 Corinthians 6:19  Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?

Amplified - Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own,

Wuest - Or do you not know that your body is an inner sanctuary of the Holy Spirit, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?  (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:19 Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself,

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:19 ἢ οὐκ οἴδατε ὅτι τὸ σῶμα ὑμῶν ναὸς τοῦ ἐν ὑμῖν ἁγίου πνεύματός ἐστιν οὗ ἔχετε ἀπὸ θεοῦ, καὶ οὐκ ἐστὲ ἑαυτῶν;

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:19 Have ye not known that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit in you, which ye have from God? and ye are not your own,

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or know ye not that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you, which ye have from God? and ye are not your own;

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:19 Don't you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God, and that you are not your own?

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:19 Do you not realise that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you and whom you received from God?

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:19 Don't you know that your body is a temple that belongs to the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit, whom you received from God, lives in you. You don't belong to yourselves.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:19 Or are you not conscious that your body is a house for the Holy Spirit which is in you, and which has been given to you by God? and you are not the owners of yourselves;

  • Or do you not know 1Co 6:15,16 
  • your body is a temple 1Co 3:16 2Co 6:16 Eph 2:21,22 1Pe 2:5 
  • you have from God 1Ki 20:4 1Ch 29:14 Ps 12:4 100:3 Ro 14:7-9 2Co 5:15 Tit 2:14 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

NOTE: THESE ARE ABBREVIATED COMMENTS - CLICK IN DEPTH COMMENTS ON 1 CORINTHIANS 6:19. 

YOU BODY IS A TEMPLE
POSSESSED BY GOD

Or do you not know - The Corinthians did know this truth! Who owns you? When I ask myself that question, my first impulse is to dismiss it as nonsensical. With Paul, who enjoyed the rights and freedoms of a Roman citizen, I too can boast that I am free—at least politically.

ILLUSTRATION - Olav Olavson was a free citizen of Sweden, but he found himself hard pressed for money. So in desperation he sold his body for medical research to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm in 1910. A year later, he inherited a fortune, so he tried to buy himself back. But the Institute refused to sell him his rights to his own body, and in a lawsuit they retained possession of it. The Institute even collected damages from him because he had two teeth extracted without permission. Woe! Reminds me of Proverbs 5:22+ "His own iniquities will capture the wicked, And he will be held with the cords of his sin."

that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you - The word your is plural, but the words body and temple are singular. It seems taht  Paul is here describing not only the individual believer, but also the local church. Each local assembly is a “body” of people united to Jesus Christ. The conduct of individual members affects the spiritual life of the entire church. (See comments on 1 Cor 3:16)

To commit sexual sin in a church auditorium, disgusting as that would be, would be no worse than committing the sin anywhere else. Offense is made within God’s sanctuary wherever and whenever sexual immorality is committed by believers. Every act of fornication, every act of adultery by Christians, is committed in God’s sanctuary: their own bodies. “For we are the temple of the living God” (2Co 6:16). 

One of the words for Holy Spirit is parakaleo is "Counselor" or "Helper."  (parakletos in Jn 14:26) We have been given a divine resource in the battle against the flesh and against sexual sin. We don't have to be in bondage, because we have the power of the Spirit of God within us (Ezek 36:27+) to supernaturally help us resist the temptation. It is possible to live a life of sexual purity. (See The Holy Spirit-Walking Like Jesus Walked!)

Whom you have from God, The Spirit is our Gift from the Father and the Son! We are his temple, but literally it's not the whole temple, but the holy of holies, the sanctuary, the place in the temple where God dwelt. Each one of us, if we have a relationship with Christ, is the sanctuary of God. Paul calls us to sexual purity because we are the dwelling place of the eternal God of the universe. So how can we defile the place where God lives with sexual immorality?

and that you are not your own? Every act (= thought) of fornication, every act (= thought) of adultery by Christians is committed in essence in the "holy of holies"! (Greek is  naos)This is serious and is why Jesus said if your hand or eye cause you to stumble cut it off or pluck it out (Mt 18:8,9, Mt 5:29,30+)! (cp Heb 13:4+). We have the power to put to death these deeds of the flesh by the Spirit (Ro8:13, Col3:5, which follows Col1, chap 2 teaching us who we are in Christ & "Whose" we are).

C.T. Studd - I had known about Jesus dying for me, but I never understood that if He died for me, then I didn't belong to myself.... If I belong to Him, either I had to be a thief and keep what wasn't mine, or else I had to give up everything to God. When I came to see that Jesus Christ had died for me, it didn't seem hard to give up all for Him. 


Question -  What does it mean that the body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?

Answer: Instructing the Christians in Corinth to flee from sexual immorality, the apostle Paul exhorted, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Indeed, God the Father created our bodies, God the Son redeemed them, and God the Holy Spirit indwells them. This makes our body the very temple of the Holy Spirit of God.

Those who do not belong to Christ do not have the Spirit of Christ residing in them (Romans 8:9). Thus, their bodies are not a temple of the Holy Spirit. Clearly, then, the greatest thing we can do for our bodies is to make them into a temple for God’s Spirit. And we do this by placing our trust and faith in Jesus Christ as our Savior. The moment we do this, the indwelling of God’s Spirit takes place (1 Corinthians 12:13). Our salvation is then sealed and guaranteed (Ephesians 1:13-14). The Holy Spirit will then be with us forever (John 14:16), given by God as His pledge of the believer’s future inheritance in glory (2 Corinthians 1:21-22).

As the Holy Spirit resides in us, therefore, we are to honor God with our bodies as they “are not [our] own,” as Paul said. We have indeed been bought with a price. And it was not gold or silver or other perishable things by which we were redeemed; it was with the precious, unblemished blood of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:18-19). Ordained by God before the foundation of the world (Acts 2:23), Christ’s blood purchased us out of the slavery of sin and set us free forever. And as Christian’s bodies are God’s temple, we are to use them to glorify God.

If God meant simply to convey the idea that the Spirit lives within the believer, He could well have used words such as “home,” “house,” or “residence.” But by choosing the word “temple” to describe the Spirit’s dwelling, He conveys the idea that our bodies are the shrine, or the sacred place, in which the Spirit not only lives, but is worshiped, revered, and honored. Therefore, how we behave, think and speak, and what we let into the temple through our eyes and ears becomes critically important as well, for every thought, word and deed is in His view. Even though He will never leave us, it is entirely possible to grieve the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4: 30). Instructing the Ephesians to not grieve the Spirit, Paul told them to “get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:31-32). When we live by the Spirit, we will no longer gratify the desires of the sinful nature (Galatians 5:16).GotQuestions.org


D L Moody - I THINK it is clearly taught in the Scripture that every believer has the Holy Ghost dwelling in him, that there is a divine resident in every child of God. He may be quenching the Spirit of God, and he may not glorify God as he should, but if he is a believer on the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost dwells in him. But I want to call attention to another fact. I believe to-day that though Christian men and women have the Holy Spirit dwelling in them, He is not dwelling within them in power; in other words, God has a great many sons and daughters without power.


F B Meyer - 1 Corinthians 6:19

 Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you?

This is a sentence which should be deeply pondered; every clause is significant. We evidently should know its deep and solemn meaning. Apparently it is one of the commonplaces of our holy religion. This knowledge, however, should not be merely that of the intellect, but born out of the deep musing of the heart.

The holy temple. — Built up of the dust of the earth, our bodies are rarer than the most glorious structures that ever the sun shone on, because they are meant to be the shrine and home of God. Jesus spake of the Temple of his Body; and if He was so zealous for his Father’s House that He drove out the unholy traffickers, and refused to allow a vessel to be carried through the courts, should we not be equally careful? We are the custodians of the Divine residence; let us be very careful that there be nothing to offend or trouble the celestial Inmate.

The Divine Inmate. — Too often He is grieved, and driven to occupy the most secret shrine, concealed and hidden beneath the heavy vail of our inconsistency and unbelief. He is not driven out by our sins, but driven in. Whenever, on the contrary, we put away our sin, and walk in the light as He is in the light; whenever the vail is rent and the whole heart thrown open to Him — He comes in power to occupy every part of our being, so that there is no part dark, and the very body becomes transfigured.

The great price. — Bought as any slave standing in the market-place for sale! Ransomed from the direst slave-master to the dearest Lord! The price — not corruptible things, as silver and gold — but precious blood! Our life is henceforth not our own, but his. 


THE SPIRIT’S PRESENCE

1 CORINTHIANS 6:19 Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God?

Paul said to the Corinthians, “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?” Why was he telling them that? Because the Corinthians were doing things with their bodies that were an embarrassment to the Holy Spirit. They were living lives divorced from the awareness of His holy presence within them.

Perhaps you’ve found yourselves at certain crossroads recently where you didn’t know whether you should go to a certain place or participate in a certain activity because you are a Christian. The fact is, where you go, the Holy Spirit goes with you. So before you go, you’d better ask Him if He wants to go. And whatever He tells you, you do it.

Many Christians don’t even think about that. They just drag the Holy Spirit everywhere into all kinds of things that are dishonoring to His first name, which is Holy.

The Holy Spirit permanently indwells you. If you grasp that concept, it could have a life-changing impact on you. He is there. He is in you. He will never leave you. (Sanctuary - David Jeremiah)


Jehovah's Witnesses Answered Verse by Verse - David Reed - 1 Corinthians 6:19

  Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? …

Here is a line of reasoning to use with a Jehovah’s Witness, when presenting the deity of the Holy Spirit:

Besides the temple of the True God in ancient Jerusalem, the Scriptures mention many other temples—for example: the temple of Dagon (1 Sam. 5:2), the temple of Zeus (Acts 14:13), the temple of Artemis (Acts 19:35), and so on. Each one was someone’s temple, either the True God’s or a false God’s. But the Bible also shows that the physical body of each individual Christian becomes a temple. Whose temple? A “temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 6:19).

Not recognizing the Holy Spirit as a person, namely God himself, followers of the Watchtower find it impossible to grasp this teaching of Scripture: that God becomes personally present within each believer. Yet, their own Kingdom Interlinear Translation’s literal word-for-word rendering of the Greek at 1 Corinthians 6:19 says: “… the body of you divine habitation of the in you holy spirit is.… ” Obviously, these words indicate that the Holy Spirit is divine and that he inhabits Christians.

The promise of this wonderful, close relationship with God was given by Jesus, when he said: “ … I shall ask the Father and He will give you another Helper to stay with you forever, the Spirit of Truth.… You know Him, for He remains with you and will be within you” (John 14:16, 17, MLB). Pray that the Jehovah’s Witnesses may come to know God in this intimate way.

See also the discussions of John 16:13 and Acts 5:3–4.


Rod Mattoon - The Palace of the Holy Spirit   1 Corinthians 6:19

      What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

We are to keep ourselves pure from sexual sins because we are the palace or the temple of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God indwells every Christian. Such indwelling began when you put your faith in Jesus Christ for your salvation. If you have not put your faith in Christ, then the Holy Spirit does not live within you.
* Romans 8:9—But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
* Galatians 4:6—And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
The Christian is the temple of the Holy Spirit. This word "temple" is from the word naos which refers to the Holy Place and Holy of Holies in the Jewish temple. For the Jew, this was the place where God dwelled among His people until the destruction of the temple in A.D. 70. If you are a Christian, you are the temple of the Holy Spirit. You are not your own!

You Are Not Your Own
    • * Determination may make you stubborn like a cantankerous, old mule, unwilling to do God's will, but you are not your own. 
    • * Desires may inflame your lust to fulfill sinful pleasures, but you are not your own. 
    • * Discouragement may sift your strength like fat ticks on a dog's ear, and move you to stop serving God, but you are not your own. 
    • * Defeat may cause you to be scornful and sour like tart grapes, but you are not your own. 
    • * Diamonds or dough may sidetrack your priorities from putting God first, but remember, you are not your own. 


Oswald Chambers - Ye are not your own

Know ye not that … ye are not your own? 1 Cor. 6:19.

There is no such thing as a private life—‘a world within the world’—for a man or woman who is brought into fellowship with Jesus Christ’s sufferings. God breaks up the private life of His saints, and makes it a thoroughfare for the world on the one hand and for Himself on the other. No human being can stand that unless he is identified with Jesus Christ. We are not sanctified for ourselves, we are called into the fellowship of the Gospel, and things happen which have nothing to do with us, God is getting us into fellowship with Himself. Let Him have his way, if you do not, instead of being of the slightest use to God in His Redemptive work in the world, you will be a hindrance and a clog.

The first thing God does with us is to get us based on rugged Reality until we do not care what becomes of us individually as long as He gets His way for the purpose of His Redemption. Why shouldn’t we go through heartbreaks? Through these doorways God is opening up ways of fellowship with His Son. Most of us fall and collapse at the first grip of pain; we sit down on the threshold of God’s purpose and die away of self-pity, and all so-called Christian sympathy will aid us to our death-bed. But God will not. He comes with the grip of the pierced hand of His Son, and says—‘Enter into fellowship with Me; arise and shine.’ If through a broken heart God can bring His purposes to pass in the world, then thank Him for breaking your heart.


Courting Disaster -  Peter Grainger Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12–20, especially verse 19

Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?

Introduction: The opportunities for sexual indulgence in our society are enormous. What was once practiced secretly and seen as shameful is now openly accepted. However, there’s nothing unique about sexual indulgence. The Greek city of Corinth was overlooked by a 2,000-foot-high hill topped with a huge temple to the goddess, Aphrodite, which reportedly housed 1,000 sacred prostitutes. In such seemingly hostile soil, another kind of temple had come into being in Corinth: not a physical building but a group of people in whom the one true God lived by His Spirit. Writing to these Christians, Paul exhorts them not to fall back into their old lifestyle. We can learn three vital truths and three applications to keep our bodies pure.

  1. The Purpose of the Body (vv. 12–14). Prevalent in Corinth was the idea that everything is permissible, so one can do as he wishes with his own body. Paul explains that such an inference is wrong. God is vitally concerned about what we do with our bodies. They were not designed for sexual immorality, but for the Lord. Living the Christian life is actually the life of the Spirit lived through our bodies. At the end of His life on earth, rather than casting off the body and assuming a spiritual existence, Jesus was raised! So, our bodies, too, have an eternal destiny and purpose in the resurrection. The Christian focuses not on his rights, but his responsibilities.

  2.The Power of the Body (vv. 15–18). The Corinthians believed that the spirit of a person was on a different level than the body, so deeds of the flesh don’t affect the spiritual realm. They were wrong and so are we if we hold to this idea! Paul reminds the Corinthians that their bodies are members of Christ Himself (v. 15). The word “joined” in verse 17 literally means “to glue together.” For a Christian whose body is destined for resurrection, to glue himself to a prostitute leads to self-harm and offense to Christ.

  3. The Purchase of the Body (vv. 19–20). Rather than a Christian being free to do what he or she likes with the body (as in v. 12), Paul reminds the Corinthians and us that we no longer belong to ourselves but to God who has a different plan for our bodies. The language is that of the marketplace and the slave market in particular. The Christians, once slaves to sin, have now been purchased by God. Because we were bought, we must honor God with our bodies (v. 20). No view of the Christian’s body—as a temple in which God lives by his Spirit—could be higher. No stronger reason or incentive could be given for avoiding sexual immorality.

Application:

  1. Radical Surgery (Matt. 5:27–30). The word for “sexual immorality” includes all sexual acts outside of marriage, whether men or women. This includes the thought and the intention behind the acts that are also crucial (Matt. 5:27–28). Jesus calls for radical surgery to protect against sin: “If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell” (Matt. 5:29).

  2.Radical Discipleship (Mark 8:34). Radical discipleship means: “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” This means not standing up for our perceived rights, but laying them aside in the Father’s service as Christ did on the Cross. Denying yourself in the area of sexual behavior is a most distinctive way this will be seen and noticed.

  3.Radical Repentance (Rom. 6:13). If you’ve failed in this area of sexual purity, or any sin against the body for that matter (drugs, alcohol, self-injury, anorexia, etc.), you need to repent today. Radical repentance begins with confession of sin to God and being accountable to a mature Christian. Present yourself to the Lord as in Romans 6:13: And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”

Conclusion: So perhaps today is a day for radical repentance and a day for cleansing the temple and rededicating it to the service of the One who purchased it with His own blood.


Clearing Out The Clutter

Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? — 1 Corinthians 6:19

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

My garage serves as “storage” for things that don’t have a place in our home, and, frankly, there are times when I am ashamed to open the door. I don’t want anyone to see the clutter. So, periodically, I set aside a workday to clean it up.

Our hearts and minds are a lot like that—they accumulate lots of clutter. As we rub shoulders with the world, inevitably, perhaps unknowingly, we pick up ungodly thoughts and attitudes. Thinking that life is all about “me.” Demanding our rights. Reacting bitterly toward those who have hurt us. Before long, our hearts and minds are no longer clean and orderly. And while we think we can hide the mess, eventually it will show.

Paul pointedly asked, “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?” (1 Cor. 6:19)—which makes me wonder if God often feels like He is living in our messy garage.

Perhaps it’s time to set aside a spiritual workday and, with His help, get to work clearing out the clutter. Discard those thoughts of bitterness. Bag up and throw out the old patterns of sensual thoughts. Organize your attitudes. Fill your heart with the beauty of God’s Word. Make it clean to the core, and then leave the door open for all to see! By:  Joe Stowell (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

More like the Master I would ever be,
More of His meekness, more humility;
More zeal to labor, more courage to be true,
More consecration for work He bids me do.
—Gabriel

Don’t let the Spirit reside in a cluttered heart. Take some time to clean it up today!


When Royalty Comes To Town

Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you . . . and you are not your own. — 1 Corinthians 6:19

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

My friend Tim Davis tells the story of being in Trinidad as a little boy when Queen Elizabeth came to visit their town. He recalls going with his missionary parents to join hundreds of others who gathered to greet the queen. Waving his little flag, he watched as the entourage came down the street—first the soldiers, then the mounted guard, and then the limousine from which she waved to the cheering crowd. He looked on as the queen drove out of town, leaving everyone to return to life as usual. In Tim’s words, “Royalty came to town and nothing changed!”

For those of us who have accepted Jesus as Savior, there was a day when royalty arrived—in our heart. As Paul put it, our body is “the temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 6:19)—a reality that has huge ramifications. His residence in our life is intended to transform us to live in a way that brings glory to Him. Our relationships, the way we serve our employer, how we use our money, how we treat our enemies, and everything else in our lives should reflect the wonderful reality that royalty lives within.

Has anything changed since King Jesus came into your heart? Does your world notice or do they think He was just passing through?  Joe Stowell (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

By this shall every person know
That we serve God above:
His Spirit dwells within our hearts
And fills us with His love.
—D. De Haan

If Jesus has taken up residence in us, the world should notice a lasting change.


Are You Free?

Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit . . . , and you are not your own? — 1 Corinthians 6:19

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

Who owns you? When I ask myself that question, my first impulse is to dismiss it as nonsensical. With Paul, who enjoyed the rights and freedoms of a Roman citizen, I too can boast that I am free—at least politically.

Olav Olavson was a free citizen of Sweden, but he found himself hardpressed for money. So in desperation he sold his body for medical research to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm in 1910. A year later, he inherited a fortune, so he tried to buy himself back. But the Institute refused to sell him his rights to his own body, and in a lawsuit they retained possession of it. The Institute even collected damages from him because he had two teeth extracted without permission.

All of us are slaves to sin and spiritually dead—unless we have been born again. We can be set free from the penalty and power of sin (and how I rejoice that I have been set free) by prayerfully asking Jesus Christ to become our Liberator. We experience spiritual freedom as we accept His gift of forgiveness and then offer ourselves as slaves to God (Romans 6:22).

What a blessed paradox! As God’s slaves we enjoy a life of true freedom, peace, and hope.  —  Vernon Grounds (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

We were imprisoned by our sin,
Controlled by evil ways;
But then the Savior set us free
To serve Him all our days. 
—Sper

To gain true freedom, give your life to Christ.


Garbage In The Temple

Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit? — 1 Corinthians 6:19

Today's Scripture: John 2:13-22

A number of years ago, a government investigation discovered that some truckers were hauling garbage in the same refrigerated trucks that were used to transport food. Part of the problem was that trucks making long trips could not afford to return empty.

According to the truckers, some considered garbage a dream commodity. They were paid to transport something that couldn’t be damaged. During congressional hearings, a food science professor likened the problem to serving potato salad from a cat’s litter box.

This “pollution for profit” scandal is nothing compared to the one described in John 2:13-22. Jesus cast out the money changers from the temple because their schemes for financial gain had desecrated His Father’s house. But just as bad is polluting the temple of our bodies with thoughts and practices that don’t belong there (1 Corinthians 6:19).

In many ways, we are no better than those truckers or the temple merchants of Jesus’ day. We think it would be more profitable for us to carry the garbage of this world’s values in our minds. May God forgive us, cleanse us, and help us to cast out everything that defiles the temple in which He alone has the right to dwell.  —  Mart DeHaan (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Lord, help us love what's good and right—
O make us pure within;
And give us courage to repent
When we would choose to sin. 
—D. De Haan

Christians must live in the world, but not let the world live in them.


C H Spurgeon - Sermon Notes -  1 Cor. 6:19, 20—“And ye are not your own, for ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

With what ardour does the apostle pursue sin to destroy it!
He is not so prudish as to let sin alone, but cries out, in plainest language, “Flee fornication.” The shame is not in the rebuke, but in the sin which calls for it.
He chases this foul wickedness with arguments. See verse 18.
He drags it into the light of the Spirit of God. “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost?” Verse 19.
He slays it at the cross. “Ye are bought with a price.”
Let us consider this last argument, that we may find therein death for our sins.

  I.      A BLESSED FACT. “Ye are bought with a price.”
“Ye are bought.” This is that idea of Redemption which modern heretics dare to style mercantile. The mercantile redemption is the Scriptural one; for the expression, “bought with a price,” is a double declaration of that idea.
Redemption is a greater source of obligation than creation or preservation. Hence it is a well-spring of holiness.
“With a price.” This indicates the greatness of the cost. The Father gave the Son. The Son gave himself; his happiness, his glory, his repose, his body, his soul, his life.
Measure the price by the bloody sweat, the desertion, the betrayal, the scourging, the cross, the heart-break.
Our body and spirit are both bought with the body and spirit of Jesus.
            1.      This is either a fact or not. “Ye are bought,” or ye are unredeemed. Terrible alternative.
            2.      If a fact, it is the fact of your life. A wonder of wonders.
3. It will remain to you eternally the grandest of all facts. If true at all, it will never cease to be true, and it will never be outdone in importance by any other event.
            4.      It should therefore operate powerfully upon us both now and ever.

  II.      A PLAIN CONSEQUENCE. “Ye are not your own.”
NEGATIVE. It is clear that if bought, ye are not your own.
            1.      This involves privilege.
         You are not your own provider: sheep are fed by their shepherd.
         You are not your own guide: ships are steered by their pilot.
         You are not your own father: children loved by parents.
            2.      This also involves responsibility.
         We are not our own to injure. Neither body nor soul.
         Not our own to waste, in idleness, amusement, or speculation.
         Not our own to exercise caprice, and follow our own prejudices, depraved affections, wayward wills, or irregular appetites.
         Not our own to lend our service to another master.
         Not our own to serve self. Self is a dethroned tyrant. Jesus is a blessed husband, and we are his.
POSITIVE. “Your body and your spirit, which are God’s.”
         We are altogether God’s. Body and spirit include the whole man.
         We are always God’s. The price once paid, we are for ever his.
We rejoice that we know we are God’s, for thus
         We have a beloved owner.
         We pursue an honoured service.
         We fill a blessed position. We are in Christ’s keeping.

         III.      A PRACTICAL CONCLUSION. “Glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
         Glorify God in your body
           By cleanliness, chastity, temperance, industry, cheerfulness, self-denial, patience, etc.
         Glorify God—
             In a suffering body by patience unto death.
             In a working body by holy diligence.
             In a worshipping body by bowing in prayer.
             In a well-governed body by self-denial.
             In an obedient body by doing the Lord’s will with delight.
         Glorify God in your spirit
           By holiness, faith, zeal, love, heavenliness, cheerfulness, fervour, humility, expectancy, etc.
Remember, O redeemed one, that—
            1.      You will be closely watched by Christ’s enemies.
            2.      You will be expected to be more gracious than others; and rightly so, since you claim to be Christ’s own.
            3.      If you are not holy, the sacred name of your Redeemer, your Proprietor, and your Indweller will be compromised.
            4.      But if you live a redeemed life, your God will be honoured.
Let the world see what Redemption can do.
Let the world see what sort of men “God’s Own” are.

PIECES OF MONEY

But why should so vast a price be required? Is man worth the cost? A man may be bought in parts of the world for the value of an ox. It was not man simply, but man in a certain relation, that had to be redeemed. See one who has been all his days a drunken, idle, worthless fellow. All appropriate to him the epithet “worthless”—worth nothing. But that man commits a crime for which he is sentenced to be hanged, or to be imprisoned for life. Go and try to buy him now. Redeem him and make him your servant. Let the richest man in Cambridge offer every shilling he possesses for that worthless man, and his offer would be wholly vain. Why? Because now there is not only the man to be considered, but the law. It needs a very great price to redeem one man from the curse of the law of England; but Christ came to redeem all men from the curse of the Divine law.—William Robinson.

Does not justice demand the dedication of yourself to your Lord? God has not only procured a title for you, but a title to you: and unless you devote yourself to his service, you rob him of his right. What a man has bought, he deems his own; and especially when the purchase has been costly. And has not God bought you with a price of infinite value? And would you rob him of a servant from his family; of a vessel from his sanctuary? To take what belongs to a man is robbery, but to take what belongs to God is sacrilege.—William Jay.

The Lord Jesus is everything in redemption, for he is both the Buyer and the price.

A silly child when he plays at selling would like to take the price and keep the article too; but everybody knows that this cannot be. If you keep the goods you cannot have the price, and if you accept the price the goods are no longer yours. You may have either the one or the other, but not both. So you may be your own, if you wish; but then the redemption price is not yours. If you accept the ransom, then the thing redeemed is no longer yours, but belongs to him who bought it. If I am redeemed, I am Christ’s. If I am resolved to be my own, I must renounce my Redeemer, and die unransomed.

1 Corinthians 6:20  For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

Amplified - You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body.

Wuest - For you were purchased at a price. Now therefore, glorify God in your body. (Eerdmans Publishing - used by permission

NET  1 Corinthians 6:20 For you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God with your body.

NLT  1 Corinthians 6:20 for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.

ESV  1 Corinthians 6:20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

NIV  1 Corinthians 6:20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.

GNT  1 Corinthians 6:20 ἠγοράσθητε γὰρ τιμῆς· δοξάσατε δὴ τὸν θεὸν ἐν τῷ σώματι ὑμῶν.

KJV  1 Corinthians 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

YLT  1 Corinthians 6:20 for ye were bought with a price; glorify, then, God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.

ASV  1 Corinthians 6:20 for ye were bought with a price: glorify God therefore in your body.

CSB  1 Corinthians 6:20 for you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body.

NKJ  1 Corinthians 6:20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.

NRS  1 Corinthians 6:20 For you were bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body.

NAB  1 Corinthians 6:20 For you have been purchased at a price. Therefore, glorify God in your body.

NJB  1 Corinthians 6:20 You are not your own property, then; you have been bought at a price. So use your body for the glory of God.

GWN  1 Corinthians 6:20 You were bought for a price. So bring glory to God in the way you use your body.

BBE  1 Corinthians 6:20 For a payment has been made for you: let God be honoured in your body.

  • For you have been bought with a price: 1Co 7:23 Ac 20:28 Ga 3:13 Heb 9:12 1Pe 1:18 2Pe 2:1 Rev 5:9 
  • glorify God in your body: 1Co 10:31 Mt 5:16 Ro 6:19 12:1 Php 1:20 1Pe 2:9 
  • 1 Corinthians 6 Resources - Multiple Sermons and Commentaries

Related Passages:

Job 31:1+; Matthew 5:28+; Romans 6:16+; 1 Corinthians 6:18; Colossians 3:5+; Hebrews 13:4+; 1 Peter 2:11+; 2 Peter 2:19+

NOTE: THESE ARE ABBREVIATED COMMENTS - CLICK IN DEPTH COMMENTS ON 1 CORINTHIANS 6:20. 

THE COST OF REDEMPTION SHOULD
MOTIVATE GOD-GLORIFYING BEHAVIOR

For gar: The reason that the believer, according to Paul, can no longer claim free choices is that he is now the personal property of another. The imagery of “bought with a price” probably derives from the slave auctions so well known in the ancient world (cp Ga3:13) Its emphasis, therefore, is not on having a ransom paid that leads to freedom, but rather on a change of ownership. There was for Paul no stronger antidote against sexual promiscuity and prostitution than claiming the believer’s body, and not just his soul and spirit, as the location for the glorification of God.

You have been bought with a price - Jesus Christ bought us with a price, and therefore our bodies belong to Him. We are one spirit with the Lord and we must yield our bodies to Him as living sacrifices (Ro 12:1-2). If you begin each day by surrendering your body to Christ, it will make a great deal of difference in what you do with your body during the day. 

Now I belong to Jesus,
Jesus belongs to me,
Not for the years of time alone,
But for eternity. 
—Clayton

What is the "price" [Greek = time) Jesus paid? [1Pe1:19] The precious (timios) blood of the unblemished, spotless Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (Jn 1:29). 

Christians’ bodies are God’s temple, and a temple is for worship. Our bodies, therefore, have one supreme purpose: to glorify God. This is a call to live so as to bring honor to the person of God, who alone is worthy of our obedience and adoration.

As you review this section, you will see that sexual sins affect the entire personality. They affect the emotions, leading to slavery (1Co6:12b). It is frightening to see how sensuality can get ahold of a person and defile his entire life, enslaving him to habits that destroy. It also affects a person physically (1Co6:18). The fornicator and adulterer, as well as the homosexual, may forget their sins, but their sins will not forget them.

SPURGEON - 6:19–20 “You are not your own, for you were bought at a price. So glorify God with your body.” Notice three things in this text. First is a blessed fact:

“You were bought at a price.” Then comes a plain consequence: “You are not your own.” And out of that springs inevitably a natural conclusion: “So glorify God with your body.”

First, the blessed fact: “You were bought at a price.” Paul reminded us that we were redeemed from the punishment due us, redeemed from the wrath of God, redeemed to Christ to be his forever. “You were bought” implies a price, but the words “at a price” are added to show that it was not for nothing that we were purchased; something inestimably precious was paid for us—“the precious blood of Christ” (1Pt 1:19). Our being “bought at a price” is the most important fact in our present existence. It determines all we do and are as Christians. It also will be the most important fact in our future existence, for redeeming love is the song of heaven: “You were slaughtered, and you purchased people for God by your blood” (Rev 5:9).

Second, from this arises an important consequence—“You are not your own.” If bought, we are not our own. Now if it is true that we are not our own, then the inferences from this are that we have no right to injure what does not belong to us; and, as we are not our own, we have no right to be idle or to waste our talents. Further, we have no right to do what our old will would do; we are to desire to be obedient to the will of our Father who is in heaven. Yet again, if we are not our own, then we have no right to serve ourselves. The person who is living entirely for himself, whose object is his own ease, comfort, honor, or wealth—what does he know about redemption by Christ? If our aims rise no higher than our personal advantages, we are false to the fact that we “are bought at a price”; we are traitors to him in whose redemption we pretend to share.

Finally, from this there is a natural conclusion—“So glorify God with your body.” The force of the apostle’s language falls on the word body, and perhaps it is so because we are so apt to forget the truth of God that the body is redeemed and is the Lord’s and should be made to glorify God. The Christian’s body should glorify God by its chastity. The body should glorify God by its self-control in all things—in eating, drinking, sleeping—in everything that has to do with the flesh. As the apostle put it, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God” (1Co 10:31). The body ought to glorify God by its industry. A lazy servant is a bad Christian and does not glorify God in his or her body. Our bodies used to work hard enough for the devil; now that they belong to God we need to make them work for the Lord.

Warren Wiersbe writes: "In my pastoral counseling, I have had to help married couples whose relationship was falling apart because of the consequences of premarital sex, as well as extramarital sex. The harvest of sowing to the flesh is sometimes delayed, but it is certain (Ga6:7-8). How sad it is to live with the consequences of forgiven sin. Having said all this, we must also realize that there are eternal consequences for people who habitually practice sexual sins. In 1Co6:9-10, Paul twice states that people who practice such sins will not inherit God’s kingdom. A Christian may fall into these sins and be forgiven, as was David; but no Christian would continuously practice such sins (1Jn 3:1-10)."

John MacArthur writes: "A friend once took a visitor to a large Catholic cathedral in the east. The visitor wanted to pray at the station of his favorite saint. But upon arriving at that station, he was startled to find no candles lit, and a sign saying, “Do not worship here; closed for cleaning.” The Corinthians provided no divine focus, either, no place for seeking souls to worship, since they were unclean. That, Paul said, had to change."

Therefore - A great term of conclusion!

Glorify God in your body - Glorify (doxazo) is a aorist imperative to "Do this now!" "Do it effectively!" but to obey it we need to depend on the Holy Spirit. The question then that we must always keep before our mind regarding our thoughts & actions is "Does it, or does it not, glorify God (give a proper opinion to others of God) in our body and spirit?" (Mt 5:16, Isa 61:3, 1 Pe 2:12,  Jn 15:8, 2 Th 1:12,3:1, Jn 4:24,17:4,Ro 15:6] 

Jesus' words echo Paul's when he also gives a command...

Let your light shine (aorist imperative - need to depend on the Holy Spirit) before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify (doxazo)your Father who is in heaven.  (Mt 5:16+)

Spencer - We must be careful not to be involved in anything that would bring reproach upon the name of God. Let us note that the words glorify God in your body constitute a command. A serious command! This is not a mere suggestion, but an authoritative command. The words glorify, and glory come from "doxa." It is the word from which we get our English word doxology. A doxology is a word of praise and glory—it carries the idea of speaking good about someone. Dear Christian, what we do in our bodies ought to bring praise and glory to God. Our very lives ought to speak well of the One who purchased us. We ought to say with Francis R. Havergal each day:

Take my life, and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee;
Take my hands, and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet, and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee;
Take my voice, and let me sing
Always, only, for my King.
Take my love, my God I pour
At Thy feet its treasure store;
Take myself, and I will be
Ever, only, all for Thee.

Piper - What that means very simply is use your body in ways that will show that God is more satisfying, more precious, more to be desired, more glorious than anything the body craves.

A large group of European pastors came to one of D. L. Moody’s Northfield Bible Conferences in Massachusetts in the late 1800s. Following the European custom of the time, each guest put his shoes outside his room to be cleaned by the hall servants overnight. But of course this was America and there were no hall servants. Walking the dormitory halls that night, Moody saw the shoes and determined not to embarrass his brothers. He mentioned the need to some ministerial students who were there, but met with only silence or pious excuses. Moody returned to the dorm, gathered up the shoes, and, alone in his room, the world’s only famous evangelist began to clean and polish the shoes. Only the unexpected arrival of a friend in the midst of the work revealed the secret. When the foreign visitors opened their doors the next morning, their shoes were shined. They never know by whom. Moody told no one, but his friend told a few people, and during the rest of the conference, different men volunteered to shine the shoes in secret. Perhaps the episode is a vital insight into why God used D. L. Moody as He did. He was a man with a servant’s heart and that was the basis of his true greatness. He gave a proper opinion of his Master. 


J C Philpot - How deep, how dreadful, or what awful magnitude, of how black a dye, of how ingrained a stamp must sin be, to need such an atonement—no less than the blood of Him who was the Son of God—to put it away.  What a slave to sin and Satan, what a captive to the power of lust, how deeply sunk, how awfully degraded, how utterly lost and undone must guilty man be to need a sacrifice like this.  “Ye are bought with a price.”  Have you ever groaned, cried, grieved, sorrowed, and lamented under your miserable captivity to the power of sin?  Has the iron ever entered into your soul?  Have you ever clanked your fetters, and as you did so, and tried to burst them, they seemed to bind round about you with a weight scarcely endurable?  But have you ever found any liberty from them, any enlargement of heart, any sweet going forth from the prison-house, any dropping of the manacles from your hands, and the fetters from your feet, so as to walk in some measure of gospel liberty?  “Ye are bought with a price.”  Ye were slaves of sin and Satan; ye were shut up in the dark cell, where all was gloom and despondency; there was little hope in your soul of ever being saved.  But there was an entrance of gospel light into your dungeon; there was a coming out of the house of bondage; there was a being brought into the light of God’s countenance, shining forth in His dear Son.  Now, this is not only being bought with a price, but experiencing the blessed effects of it. Ears from Harvested Sheaves.


Rob MattoonThe Purchase and Purpose of Your Life   1 Corinthians 6:20        For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

We are not to pollute the palace because we belong to the Lord. We are bought with the price of His blood. For this reason we are to glorify God in our body, soul, and spirit.... with our entire being. This is the purpose of the life of the Christian.

* Matthew 5:16—Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
* 1 Corinthians 10:31—Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

Great men of the Bible desired to glorify God with their lives.

    • * Daniel why are you praying? Don't you know the punishment is death in the lions' den? "Yes, but I have purposed in my heart to glorify God in my body." 
    • * Shadrach, Mechech, and Abednego, why will you not bow down to the idol of the king? "It is our desire to glorify God with our bodies." 
    • * Paul, why are you still preaching after those people stoned you and left you for dead? "It is my desire in whatever I do to glorify the Lord with my body." 
    • * Joseph, why are you running from the clutches of that beautiful woman? "I am determined to glorify God in my body." 

Beloved, we are to glorify God with our bodies and not pollute the palace because we have been bought with a price. The purchase of our lives provokes a number of great truths.

Bought with a Price
    • * Being bought with a price Verifies our need for a Savior. 
    • * Being bought with a price is Vital for our salvation and deliverance from Hell. 
    • * We 're bought with a price because of the Vileness and Vices of Sin. 
    • * We 're bought with a price because of the Vanity of our good works and self righteousness. 
    • * Because we are bought with a price, we have Victory over sin and death. 
    • * Because we are bought with a price, the Veil between God and man is removed. 
    • * Being bought with a price reveals our Value to the Lord and the fact we are important to Him. 
    • * Being bought with a price Verifies God's love for all of us. 
    • * Being bought with a price expresses the Vastness of God's wealth, power, and love. 
    • * Being bought with a price, the Void in our hearts is filled with the Holy Spirit. 
    • * Being bought with a price Validates God's ownership of our lives. 

Being bought with a price, may God help us all to not pollute His palace.


On this Day - An Evening Sermon March 8

Charles Spurgeon, the Prince of Preachers, read voraciously through the week, but not until Saturday night did he determine and develop his message for the following morning. Only on Sunday afternoon did he prepare his evening address. But it worked. For 30 years, he kept London’s Metropolitan Tabernacle packed. On Sunday night, March 8, 1874, Spurgeon preached from 1 Corinthians 6:20: God paid a great price for you. So use your body to honor God. Had you entered Metropolitan Tabernacle that evening, you would have heard Spurgeon’s carillon voice pealing these words through the lamplit hall:

  … you young men who come to London amidst its vices, shun everything that is akin to lewdness or leads on to unchasity, for your bodies were bought with your Lord’s lifeblood, and they are not yours to trifle with. Shun the strange woman, her company, her wine, her glances, her house, her songs, her resorts. Your bodies are not yours to injure by self-indulgence of any sort. Keep them pure and chaste for that heavenly Bridegroom who has bought them with his blood.
  And then your soul is bought too. I was obliged to mention the body, because it is mentioned here, and it is so needful it should be kept pure. But keep the soul pure. Christ has not bought these eyes that they should read novels calculated to lead me into vanity and vice, such as are published nowadays. Christ has not bought this brain of mine that I may revel in the perusal of works of blasphemy and filthiness. He has not given me a mind that I may drag it through the mire with the hope of washing it clean again.…
  Your whole manhood belongs to God if you are a Christian. Every faculty, every natural power, every talent, every possibility of your being, every capacity of your spirit.… It is all bought with blood. Therefore keep the whole for Jesus, for it belongs to him.

Don’t be immoral in matters of sex. That is a sin against your own body in a way that no other sin is. You surely know that your body is a temple where the Holy Spirit lives. The Spirit is in you and is a gift from God. You are no longer your own. God paid a great price for you. So use your body to honor God.1 Corinthians 6:18-20


JUST A LITTLE PORN

References: Job 31:1+; Matthew 5:28+; Romans 6:16+; 1 Corinthians 6:18; Colossians 3:5+; Hebrews 13:4+; 1 Peter 2:11+; 2 Peter 2:19+

My friend looked like a good Christian. He was a faithful elder in the church and a devout husband and father. He had a reputation for honesty, courage, and integrity. But he also had an issue with pornography.

He said he wasn’t addicted to porn, and there was no reason not to believe him. He could go weeks without it, he said. Porn didn’t affect his relationship with his wife. It didn’t interfere with his church work or prayer life. It was just a little recreational pleasure that he indulged in now and then, especially after working long hours for his company or the church.

"I’ve justified it in my mind a thousand times," he said, "and I could out-argue anyone who wants to give me all that bull about potential addiction and how it ruins your marriage.

Well, it’s only made my marriage easier, since I don’t pester my wife as often, and yet I don’t do porn so much that I don’t have any ardor for her when she’s ready. Still," he conceded, "I feel so unclean."

At first he thought the guilt was just a leftover from his fundamentalist upbringing. But he noticed he didn’t feel bad about other post-fundamentalist behaviors, such as drinking wine or going to the movies. Just porn. I suggested that this feeling might be the prodding of the Spirit. "Why don’t you just give up porn?"

"I’ve thought about that," he replied. "If God does want me to give it up, I know it’s because that’s ultimately good for me. Yet the thought of giving up porn cold turkey is one of the most frightening things I can imagine right now. And I don’t know why."

—Mark Galli, Jesus Mean and Wild (Baker, 2006)

PERSONAL NOTE -- Some 35 years ago I was born again and switched to a Bible church, got baptized and sought to join the church, all immediately. To join you had to be interviewed by an elder. I knew the elder who interviewed me as his son was friends with my son. I can't remember how it came up but he shocked me when he told me that he and his wife watched pornographic movies to enhance their sex life! Talk about deceived! And he was a  prominent elder at the most prominent Bible church in Austin! Woe!


You Have Value

You were bought at a price. 1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 5:6–11

After my mother-in-law died, my wife and I discovered a cache of US Indian Head pennies in a dresser drawer in her apartment. She wasn’t a coin collector, as such, but she lived in the era when these pennies were in circulation and she had accumulated a few.

Some of these coins are in excellent condition; others are not. They are so worn and tarnished you can hardly see the imprint. All bear the stamp “One Cent” on the opposite side. Although a penny these days has little value and many consider them useless, this one-cent coin would have bought a newspaper in its day. And collectors still find value in them, even those that have been battered and abused.

Perhaps you feel tarnished, worn, old, or out of circulation. Even so, God finds value in you. The Creator of the universe wants you—not for your mind, your body, your clothes, your achievements, your intellect, or your personality, but because you are you! He would go any distance and pay any price to possess you (1 Cor. 6:20).

In fact He did. He came down to earth from heaven and purchased you with His own blood (Rom. 5:6, 8-9). That’s how much He wants you. You are valuable in His eyes, and He loves you.  David H. Roper (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

As I think about Your love for me, Father, I wonder with amazement how You could love someone like me—and I praise You.

Christ’s death is the measure of God’s love for you.


Fleeing to Strength

You were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. 1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Corinthians 6:12–20

“Parry four!”

When I began fencing in high school, my coach would shout the correct defensive position (“parry”) against the move he was making. When he extended his weapon and lunged, to repel the attack I had to listen and respond immediately.

That active listening brings to mind the prompt obedience Scripture calls for in the area of sexual temptation. In 1 Corinthians 6:18 Paul writes to believers tempted to solicit pagan temple prostitutes, telling them to “flee from sexual immorality.” Sometimes we are to “stand firm” in challenging circumstances (Galatians 5:1; Ephesians 6:11), but here the Bible practically shouts our best defense: “Run away!”

Immediate action guards against compromise. Small compromises can lead to devastating defeats. An unrestrained thought, a glance in the wrong place on the Internet, a flirting friendship when you’re already married—each are steps that take us where we shouldn’t go and put distance between us and God.

When we flee temptation, God also provides a place to run. Through Jesus’s death on the cross for our sins, He offers us hope, forgiveness, and a new beginning—no matter where we’ve been or what we’ve done. When we run to Jesus in our weakness, He sets us free to live in His strength.  James Banks (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Lord Jesus, out of love You gave Yourself on the cross for us. I give myself to You in obedience to Your will.

God alone can meet our deepest needs and give us soul-deep satisfaction.


Learn The Cost

You were bought at a price. — 1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Peter 1:17-21

We gave our 2-year-old son a pair of new boots recently. He was so happy that he didn’t take them off until it was bedtime. But the next day he forgot all about the boots and put on his old sneakers. My husband said, “I wish he knew how much things cost.”

The boots were expensive, but a young child doesn’t know about working hours, salaries, and taxes. A child receives the gifts with open arms, but we know that he can’t be expected to fully appreciate the sacrifices his parents make to give him new things.

Sometimes I behave like a child. With open arms I receive God’s gifts through His many mercies, but am I thankful? Do I consider the price that was paid so I can live a full life?

The cost was expensive—more than “corruptible things, like silver or gold.” As we read in 1 Peter, it required “the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1:18-19). Jesus gave His life, a high price to pay, to make us part of His family. And God raised Him from the dead (v.21).

When we understand the cost of our salvation, we learn to be truly thankful.  Keila Ochoa (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Lord, help me to understand, to take in what it meant for You, the Holy One, to bear my sin. Remind me to give You thanks for salvation and for all the ways You show me Your love throughout my day today.

Salvation is infinitely costly, but absolutely free.


Return On Investment

You were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit. — 1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

Long before the US professional baseball season begins each spring, team owners and managers are busy negotiating trades and contracts. They’ll pay large sums of money to get the athlete who will help them win the championship. When the season starts, all eyes are on the newly acquired talent to see if he was worth the cost. The ultimate measure of the player’s success is whether his contribution to the team is a good return on the investment.

In 1 Corinthians 6:20, Paul reminds us that we too have been “bought at a price.” The context paints a compelling picture of Christ’s great sacrifice. He liberated us from the cruel slavemaster of sin by buying us with the high price of His own life.

Getting a grip on God’s great and loving investment in us should motivate us to gladly consider making His sacrifice rich in dividends. How is that return on His investment measured? By living to bring glory to Him! Our eyes, hands, feet, thoughts, dreams, and desires have been purchased to reflect the wondrous glory of God’s will and wisdom. In other words, we are no longer our own.

Paul concluded, “Therefore glorify God in your body” (v.20). Living to reflect His glory is the return on investment that makes the Owner of our lives look good!  Joe Stowell (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Redemption's price our Savior paid
When all our sins on Him were laid;
He took our guilt, He bore our shame
That we may glorify His name.
—D. De Haan

Our choice to bring glory to God yields a great return on Christ's investment.


Spared From Death

You were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. — 1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture: Colossians 1:24-29

On August 6, 1945, Kanji Araki, then a toddler, was playing on the floor. Although an air-raid siren had sounded a warning, few paid it any heed since Hiroshima had previously escaped bombing. Then a blinding flash lit up the sky. Superheated air rushed at tremendous speed, knocking down buildings and setting the center of the city ablaze. In the days that followed the nuclear detonation, Kanji’s grandmother, brother, and sister died from radiation sickness.

As Kanji grew up, he experienced emotional conflict about those who suffered and died because of the bomb. His parents were Christians, but Kanji adopted a secular view of life. Yet he felt a growing emptiness inside. He began to study the Bible to discover for himself who Jesus is. At a spiritual turning point, Kanji put his trust in Christ, and his empty heart was filled with God’s wonderful assurance. When the Lord led him into the ministry, he cited 1 Corinthians 6:20 and said, “I was spared from death so that my life might have a higher purpose in serving God.”

The apostle Paul had also been spared to serve God. “I became a minister according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you,” he said (Colossians 1:25). What has God entrusted to you?  Dennis Fisher  (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

Lord, I thank You for salvation,
For Your mercy, full and free;
Take my all in consecration,
Glorify Yourself in me. 
—Codner

Knowing God gives meaning to life, and obeying God gives purpose to life.


The Total Package

You were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit. —1 Corinthians 6:20

Today's Scripture: Colossians 1:19-23

Our family had lived in the same house for many years, and it was time for a change of scenery. When we finally discovered a house we liked, we began negotiating for its purchase.

We had to find out if the refrigerator stayed. And the stove. But we knew some things were not going to stay. The furniture didn’t come with the house. And I jokingly wondered if we could keep the cars in the garage.

When you buy a house, you may not get the total package. The owner takes his belongings with him, although you may have the option to buy some of them.

Many things in life have purchase options. But that’s not how it is with our faith in Jesus Christ. When Jesus purchased us with His blood on the cross, He didn’t get only a portion of us. He’s not just the Lord of the religious stuff; He owns everything. So why do we sometimes live as if parts of us don’t belong to Jesus? That’s not fair to the buyer.

“You were bought at a price,” Paul wrote. “Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:20).

Christ bought us—body, soul, and spirit. Let’s make sure we let Him use the total package for His glory.  Dave Branon (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. — Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

You have bought us, and no longer
Can we claim to be our own;
Giving freely, naught withholding,
We shall serve You, Lord, alone.
—Murray

Jesus gave His all; He deserves our all.


Question - What does it mean that “you were bought with a price” (1 Corinthians 6:20; 7:23)?

Answer: Twice the apostle Paul informed believers at Corinth, “You were bought with a price.” In 1 Corinthians 6, Paul was making a passionate appeal against sexual immorality. He concluded his argument, stating, “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19–20ESV).

A Christian’s body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. At salvation, the Holy Spirit takes up residence, transforming the believer’s body into a sanctified place, a home for God’s holy presence (Hebrews 10:10). In union with Christ, the Christian receives a new nature and a new identity (2 Corinthians 5:17). When a believer engages in sexual immorality, he or she violates that new creation, which was purchased at a very high price.

The price we were bought with is disclosed in 1 Peter 1:18–19NLT: “For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value. It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God”.

When Paul said, “You were bought with a price,” he meant that believers were purchased and paid for with the sinless, spotless perfection of Jesus Christ’s blood. Jesus Himself said that He came to give His life as a ransom for us (Matthew 20:28). Since we were obtained at such a tremendous expense, we are to use our bodies to honor God with good deeds: “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10NLT).

Paul reminded the Corinthians that ownership of their bodies had been transferred to Christ. They no longer had the right or freedom to use their bodies any way they wished. Just as slaves were purchased in the ancient world, we were bought with the price of Christ’s blood on the cross. We now belong to Him (1 Corinthians 7:22). We don’t have the right to rebel against our Master by using our bodies in ways He forbids.

Paul repeated this teaching in 1 Corinthians 7:23, but with an emphasis on spiritual freedom: “You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of human beings.” Believers are set free from the dominion of sin through the death of Christ (Galatians 1:4). Our spiritual freedom comes at the price of Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross (1 Peter 2:24). Consequently, since we now belong to Christ, we must not let ourselves come under the control of other humans.

Paul’s phrase become slaves of human beings was meant metaphorically. We are not to let human ideas and worldly systems rule over us. Legalism, for example, should not rule us; we are not bound by the rules of men. Rather, we are “responsible to God” (1 Corinthians 7:24). Jesus Christ alone is our Master.

In one sense, the blood of Christ paid for our liberation, setting us free from sin; but in another inference, His sacrifice changed our ownership, making us slaves to God alone. “You were bought with a price” means God was willing to obtain possession of us on Calvary by paying the ultimate price—the blood of His own Son (Acts 20:28). GotQuestions.org


Alan Redpath - THINGS GOD EXPECTS YOU TO KNOW — II - 1 CORINTHIANS 6:12–20

These chapters of Paul’s letter require very careful and prayerful treatment in public ministry. But I believe they concern matters of importance to the whole Christian church and to each one of our lives today. Paul addresses himself straightforwardly to the sin which lay at the root of the situation in the Corinthian church and gives the supreme answer to it. Victory and deliverance are yet possible. He is always seeking to point people away from their failure, to get them to look up to the Lord; Paul’s answer to every situation is Calvary.

He has already dealt with the individual who was personally responsible, telling the church what they must do: deliver him to Satan for the destruction of the flesh and the saving of the soul in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. Then he goes on to rebuke them for their petty disputes and calls upon them to remember what they are as Christians: washed, sanctified, justified.

Now we hear him saying,

Remember to Whom you belong,”
and telling us to bring that relationship between the soul and the Savior
to bear upon every matter of life.

The whole theme of this portion of Scripture is the Christian’s attitude toward his body. His moral standards must be recognizably different from others, and he must be able not only to explain why they are necessary but also how they can be maintained.

The apostle who writes this letter under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is the one who, perhaps above all others, proclaims salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ by faith alone. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves . . . not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8–9). This is Paul’s great gospel, that a man comes to know Jesus Christ only on simple faith in the atonement for him at Calvary.

Yet the apostle Paul also relentlessly declares that no one can claim salvation and go on practicing sin like an unbeliever. If the outer life of a child of God is not made pure, it is evidence that the inward heart has never been renewed. The faith that does not produce holiness is not New Testament faith; it is not saving faith, for “without [holiness] no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14+). (ED: This Series was published in 1960 - imagine what Redpath would think now some 60 years later in 2021!)

With that background in mind, let us turn to what Paul has to say concerning our relationship to our body and think of it carefully, prayerfully, and soberly in the presence of God. First of all, Paul lays down some principles of Christian liberty: “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any” (1 Cor 6:12). That was a master stroke on Paul’s part, for that was exactly what everyone in Corinth said: “All things are lawful” was their attitude on the matter of sex relationships.

That is also what the twentieth century is saying: “Have your fling! Go to the registrar, if you like, to get a little legal authority to practice what you have already been doing.” There are to be no inhibitions, no frustrations because, we are told, these things are not sin. “Express yourself! Away with the prohibitions that come from an outmoded method of life and thinking!” That is what Corinth said, and the spirit of the city had got into the church. Who can say that the spirit of what is practiced today has not penetrated our churches? Has not this very thing eaten into the vital testimony of professing Christianity today?

All things are lawful unto me,” writes Paul, “and there is not a single faculty or appetite of the body which is not for me to use lawfully.” But because we are Christians there are two things we must bear in mind as we exercise our liberty.

The first is this: “All things are not expedient.” That word means “bearing together,” “helping together.” Paul is saying, therefore, that he no longer lives to himself; as a Christian he is one of a fellowship, and he can only use the appetites of the body so long as he is not hurting another. He is governed by the effect upon other people, not upon himself.

Not only that, says Paul, but “I will not be brought under the power [authority] of any.” If through the unrestrained use of the body he is mastered by these things, then he is denying the right of Jesus Christ to the sovereignty of his life.

Notice his simple illustration here: “Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body. And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power” (6:13–14).

We need food for our physical appetite, but a day is coming when God is going to destroy both. That does not mean the body will be destroyed. That will mark the end of its physical desires and physical limitations, the end of its demand for physical satisfaction. Although this thing in which we live may be put in a grave, one day it will be raised and transformed into the likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ. The body is not finished when it is put into a coffin; it is to be brought into the very presence of God. This body is for the Lord, for His use and not for mine.

That gives us a new slant on the problem of sex, an attitude peculiarly Christian, rooted in the fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ as the “firstfruits of them that sleep.” It is based on the reality of eternity; we were not created only to live down here. Our body is God’s, and we cannot play fast and loose with it, because it is for His use. We have Christian liberty, but only in consideration of others and in carefulness with regard to the damage we might do. Our liberty is only within the fellowship of God’s people and under the authority of the Lord Jesus. The body is not to be played with; it is for Him.

Here, very briefly, is the principle for Christian living. Now, in what sense is the body for the Lord? It is not only that it is going to be transformed into His likeness, but that we will be held responsible before the judgment seat of Christ (2 Cor 5:10+), as Paul himself tells us, for the deeds done in this body. That will put discipline and restraint into life. It will mean that certain habits must stop because I am a Christian. Certain practices that the world may consider “the thing to do” are going to have no part in my life, because I am a Christian.

When we look further into this chapter, I think we will see why — it is the prevention of license. Notice again one of Paul’s great questions: “Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. What? Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? For two, saith he, shall be one flesh. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit” (1 Cor 6:15–17).

May I ask you to follow me very carefully here. We who have been redeemed by His precious blood are His body here on earth, the channels through which He works. Our Lord, instead of being subject to the time and space limitations of one physical body, as when He was here on earth, now acts through the bodies of His people in whom He lives. “He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit,” says Paul. Wherever He can find a body surrendered to Him, a man or woman who will receive Him as their Lord and Sovereign, then they become His means of revealing Himself to the world around them. “Ye are members of Christ.”

You will always find in Scripture that God works through a human body. That is why it was said of the Lord Jesus, “Lo, I come to do thy will, O God . . . by the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all” (Hebrews 10:9–10). It was in a body that man sinned; it is in a body that we sin. It was in a body that Jesus came to earth; it was in a body that He lived triumphantly and overcame where we have been overcome. It was in a body that He died and rose again, and now by His Spirit He comes to live within the body of His people.

Satan always works through a body, also. The only way he can thwart God’s purposes is to get a body surrendered to his use, available for his diabolic power and ugly purposes.

This is the question of choice in a Christian’s life: shall he take that which is a member of Christ and give it to some unworthy use? Shall he take his body, the means through which God’s will is to be done, and yield it to the immoral, sinful purposes of Satan? What will happen if he does? He becomes one body if he is joined to that which is sinful. But if he is joined to the Lord, he is one spirit. That means that in every physical faculty the human frame is under the control of the Lord’s Spirit. That Spirit enabled Jesus Christ to live day by day in a human body and never deviate from the will of God, never yield to all the tremendous temptations of the devil.

If we are joined to Christ, we are therefore enabled by His grace to control the body. But if we join ourselves to that which is immoral, we become one flesh with that which we love, and therefore we become part of judgment, condemnation, and punishment, the inevitable result of such action.

Here is the issue from the moment of our birth until the moment when we meet God face to face: either the Spirit of God is to triumph and the life of the flesh die out, or that which is of sin and of the flesh will control us that the Spirit of God ceases to speak. That tremendously solemn alternative faces everyone. Everything is lawful for the child of God, but only under the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. What He permits, I will do; what He refuses, I will reject. What His Word tells me is right, I will accept; what His Word tells me is wrong, I will refuse. This is the battleground where you and I fight every day.
However, lest I seem to place burdens upon you that are impossible to carry, there is something else Paul tells us, the answer to “how.”

I repeat, Paul always brings his hearers back to the cross, back to the place where Jesus died for them. He is never afraid to reveal the ugliness of sin for what it is; he exposes it and drags it to the very foot of Calvary that it may be dealt with there: “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s” (6:19–20).

Here is Paul’s plea for loyalty, and it is sufficient to make a man stand when otherwise he would fall. In making his greatest argument for holiness and purity, for power to keep the body in subjection, Paul points back again to the place where “ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, . . . but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18–19).
An infinite price, the price of His precious blood, suggests infinite pain. I can never enlarge upon the physical point of our Lord Jesus, great as that must have been. But I don’t believe that was by any means the depth of the horror of the cross. The pain of Christ was expressed in His cry, “My God, why hast thou forsaken me?” It was in being made sin for me: coming all the way down the shame and agony of the cross, enduring the judgment of a holy God on the sin that was mine, paying the price I could never pay.

You who have been playing fast and loose with your body, you who have been letting the standard down and not caring, you who have allowed the spirit of the age to catch you: remember you have been bought with a price. Therefore it follows that you are not your own. The greatest tyrant in life is self: the demand for freedom from restraint, a “me first” attitude, touchiness and loneliness. But the Bible says we are not our own, and what a real comfort that is!
Again I say, if you refuse to acknowledge that, you have no right to claim salvation. If you refuse the implication of His claim upon you, then what business have you to hide in the shelter of John 3:16? You cannot have the grace of God without the government of God. Real deliverance demands real holiness. The price of His precious blood demands a practical surrender of all your body. You cannot have free salvation unless, as you accept it gladly from the risen Savior, you acknowledge, “I am no longer my own; I am bought with a price.”

Then if that is true, let me say this quietly but firmly: you have no right to injure God’s property. “If any man defile the temple of God, him will God destroy.” You have no right to drunkenness, immorality, uncleanness. You have no right to indulgence or laziness. You have no right to lack of control in any appetite. Furthermore, you have no right to let yourself lie waste. If you belong to the Lord, then you should be going to work for Him. You have no right to any reservations, no right to self-government. When Satan comes with all his insinuations, you must tell him that you are not your own. Every power and faculty, all the time, is altogether God’s.

Paul concludes his argument by saying, “Therefore glorify God in your body.” How can you? By chastity, discipline, temperance in the way you eat and drink and sleep: whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. The feet that led you into sin should now take you to the house of God and to the place of prayer. The eyes that once looked upon things that aroused lust should now be turned upon your wonderful Savior. The ears that listened to doubtful stories should now be eager to hear the Word of God. The hands that once squandered your money should now labor in the cause of the Lord Jesus Christ. The tongue that talked so loosely and glibly should now be singing His praises and telling others of His love.

Your body is the sanctuary of the Holy Spirit. Is everything in the temple singing “Glory to God!” today? I could not conclude more appropriately than to remind you of the great words of Paul in the conclusion of his letter to the church at Rome: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).