Skip to comments.I keep hearing about Unity - what about I Corinthians, Chapter 5?
Posted on 05/27/2005 6:11:17 PM PDT by sionnsar
The other night I was sitting at my kitchen table, after a long hard day at work, a glass of Old Forester Bourbon and C2 by my side, and I picked up my bible as I often do, just flipping to see what inspiring words God might have for me. I was drawn to First Corinthians, and I read to Chapter 5 and stopped dead in my tracks.
1 Now, it is actually being said that there is sexual immorality among you so terrible that not even the heathen would be guilty of it. I am told that a man is sleeping with his stepmother! R22 2 How, then, can you be proud? On the contrary, you should be filled with sadness, and the man who has done such a thing should be expelled from your fellowship. 3 And even though I am far away from you in body, still I am there with you in spirit; and as though I were there with you, I have in the name of our Lord Jesus already passed judgment on the man who has done this terrible thing. As you meet together, and I meet with you in my spirit, by the power of our Lord Jesus present with us, 5 you are to hand this man over to Satan for his body to be destroyed, so that his spirit may be saved in the Day of the Lord. 6 It is not right for you to be proud! You know the saying, A little bit of yeast makes the whole batch of dough rise. R23
7 You must remove the old yeast of sin so that you will be entirely pure. Then you will be like a new batch of dough without any yeast, as indeed I know you actually are. For our Passover Festival is ready, now that Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. R24 8 Let us celebrate our Passover, then, not with bread having the old yeast of sin and wickedness, but with the bread that has no yeast, the bread of purity and truth. R25
9 In the letter that I wrote you I told you not to associate with immoral people. 10 Now I did not mean pagans who are immoral or greedy or are thieves, or who worship idols. To avoid them you would have to get out of the world completely. 11 What I meant was that you should not associate with a person who calls himself a believer but is immoral or greedy or worships idols or is a slanderer or a drunkard or a thief. Dont even sit down to eat with such a person. 12 After all, it is none of my business to judge outsiders. God will judge them. But should you not judge the members of your own fellowship? As the scripture says, Remove the evil person from your group. (Todays English Version - well, yall knew that was my favorite.)
How do I reconcile this whole chapter (no proof text here) of the scriptures with the numerous emails of late asking me to work for unity, not disunity, in the church. Based on what I read here, my only work with those with whom I disagree on the sexuality issues confronting our church is to evangelize them, not make room for differing perspectives. Im sure the man who married his stepmother loved her very much, and the quality of their relationship was wonderful; but, still, it is wrong.
Id like to know if anyone out there has a way to faithfully read (not ignore) this chapter in Pauls letters and yet work for making room for different perspectives on sexuality issues? I dont think anyone can. Therefore, the hard work of evangelization lays before us; we dont fellowship with them. Not sharing table would certainly mean not sharing communion, as the Global South Primates did at Dromantine. Ive heard folks say Eucharist should not be used as a political pawn", but I think following the scriptures is not a political pawn being moved across the board one space at a time, but a solid statement of faithfulness to God.
Im entering a process of prayer and discernment this weekend on what this piece of the scriptures holds and means for me. Maybe Ill talk to God about what sexual immorality is. Is it only incest? Or does in include homosexuality? Paul makes that clear elsewhere, so does Jude. What then, to do?
You can love those who choose this evil and attempt, through love, reason and the ministering of the Holy Ghost, to bring them to choosing to get off that path and repent and return to God's way.
The same is true with any sin and with anyone, including ourselves, when we misstep. Humility, repentance and a desire to follow our Savior and turn away from sin are the answers...not embracing the sin and calling that embrace unity.
Just my own perspective and feelings based on what I have been taught and read, and experienced throught the healing blood and grace of our Savior.
Well put, and I agree.
thank you Jeff Head.
But, having said that, I also know that there are tens of millions of faithful remnants here on our shores who yet trust God in Heaven and faithfully follow His ways. For that, we shall ultimately be preserved as a nation and a people...even though there most probably will be a very rough row to hoe in getting there.
"For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, .....he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit." 1 Thess 4:1-8
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