Dave Llewellyn continues the new series looking at the early church in Corinth and how the same challenges present themselves in today’s church. The path a Christian and the church take is seldom straightforward, although it can be creative and life giving it can also get messy.
1 Corinthians 5:6-7 (NIV2011)
6 Your boasting is not good. Don’t you know that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough?
7 Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch—as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (NIV)
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
10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 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.
Romans 7:15-25 (MSG)
15 What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. 16 So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary.
17 But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help!
18 I realize that I don’t have what it takes. I can will it, but I can’t do it.
19 I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway.
20 My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time.
21 It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up.
22 I truly delight in God’s commands, 23 but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.
24 I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?
25 The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.
1 Corinthians 6:12-13 (TLB)
12 I can do anything I want to if Christ has not said no, but some of these things aren’t good for me. Even if I am allowed to do them, I’ll refuse to if I think they might get such a grip on me that I can’t easily stop when I want to.
13 For instance, take the matter of eating. God has given us an appetite for food and stomachs to digest it. But that doesn’t mean we should eat more than we need…
Romans 6:12-14 (NIV)
12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness.
14 For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV)
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; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your body.