May 31 sermon
Good morning brothers and sisters and welcome to the J and L Ministries room here on Paltalk. We also thank A Far From Normal Faith Ministries, Lokey Sisters and Mylookonline for allowing us to share the sermon videos on their sites. And also thank you all who watch on the Cross Roads Fellowship sites and Jandlministries.weebly.com website and of course my good friends on Google plus.
Today, as we continue in our series "Who Are We In Christ?" based on the book of 1 Corinthians, we'll begin this morning with chapter 5. Because Paul was addressing many sins that were and had crept into the church at that time, and we know that it has flooded many congregations in our time world wide today, we'll most likely spend a lot time on this chapter and break down each issue that Paul was addressing. Why? Because I want you brothers and sisters in Christ to be rock solid in your faith in Jesus Christ and how you act according to God's ways.
Leanna will be posting scriptures that we'll be reading from this morning, but I urge you friends to keep notes and please go back to these scriptures on your own time. Most of you who've been following this ministry know that I base all these sermons using the King James Version and I still am, but we'll also be looking at some other translations this morning. So let's get started with Chapter 5 and verse 1.
1 Corinthians 5:1 KJV It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife.
This is not good. And as we look at other translations, we'll see that even those who were not of the faith would look at this as being sick. Let's look at the English Standard Version followed by the Good news Bible and then the Amplified.
(ESV) It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father's wife.
(GNB) 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!
1 Corinthians 5:1 and 2 (Amplified) It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, impurity of a sort that is condemned and does not occur even among the heathen; for a man has [his own] father’s wife. 2 And you are proud and arrogant! And you ought rather to mourn (bow in sorrow and in shame) until the person who has done this [shameful] thing is removed from your fellowship and your midst!
Suppose there was a message being delivered? I can't imagine this, but here's a member of the church and was apparently openly living in sin with his father's wife. Sleeping with his step-mom.
We read verse 2 from the amplified, here is 2 and 3 in the King James.
1 Corinthians 5:2-3 KJV (2) And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you. (3) For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed.
Church, notice in verse 1, we see that Paul hadn't heard about this instance of incest through just one witness. This was common knowledge among the believers in Corinth. And from what he says here, even the non-Christians, Gentiles, and as the other translation used, pagan and heathen didn't live in this kind of sin.
In verse 2, Paul's saying to the church that "You're being arrogant when you should have been more upset about this. If you had been upset, the man who did this would have been removed from among you. You brethren have let the enemy get a foot inside the your own congregation."
If we were to look up the Greek word for fornication which was used twice in verse1 and twenty-two other times in the New Testament, it's "PORNEIA," and it means "harlotry (including adultery and incest); figuratively, idolatry" (Strong's Concordance).
If one was to do a study from all the commentaries, you'd find that most agree that fornication is all sexual immorality of which adultery is just a part of. And we see here that no one dealt with the matter and as we'll see, Paul was not a happy camper. Yet, how much different is that in most congregations today? How many unwed couples are living together today? And yes, Leanna and I did before we were saved. Was it right? Absolutely not, and we both have to deal with that when witnessing to couples who are doing the same thing.
There have been times that we've had to speak to couples unmarried who ask the question "Is it wrong?" My suggestion to them is this. If they're serious about living their lives for Christ and they're serious about one another, one of them needs to move to another place until they do get married. And, not have a sexual relationship until that time. I believe that God would honor that. It shows that they're trying to do what's right and not be what the world is.
"Well brother Jim, isn't that being judgmental?" Well, who do we want to serve? We can't have it both ways.
Matthew 6:24 KJV No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Church, The man who loves God cannot love the evil world. We live in it, yes but don't become part of the evil. Things might seem okay and normal in this dark world, but for us, we need to stay away from such things.
1 Corinthians 5:4-5 KJV (4) In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, (5) To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
Okay, now this is where some may find it difficult to understand. This is where some will say we're not to judge. This is where some may tune me out, but I ask you this. Do we believe in the Bible? Do we believe that every word was inspired by the Holy Spirit? Okay, so in what we just read, was Apostle Paul being led by the Holy Spirit? We need to make up our minds friends and we're just getting into the sin part and we're going to look at each one of them that Paul addressed as we continue. Will we serve man, or will we serve God?
Let's look at verse 5 from the Good News Version.
1 Corinthians 5:5 GNB 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.
Let's see what Jesus said about the sinner in Matthew. Now remember as we read these verses, Jesus is talking about a believer.
Matthew 18:11-17 KJV For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. (12) How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep,100 believers and one of them be gone astray, 1 believer doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? (13) And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. (14) Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.
Here we're going to see the order Jesus tells us to handle an issue with a brother (a believer) who has wronged you, or, and this is important for the church leadership, is involved in sin. Remember brothers and sisters in Christ, these are not my words, but from the Master Himself.
(15) Moreover if thy brother a believer shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. (16) But (step 2) if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. (17) And if he (Believer) shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
"But brother Jim, I'm still tripped up about the judging thing." My friend, I know where you're going with this. Paul expects Christians to judge one another. I know someone's going to say, "But, but what about Matthew 7:1 Do not judge others, so that God will not judge you." Yes, it does say that. And just like so many scriptures, This is the most quoted verse in the world today. Yet, very few people read Jesus' words in context. Jesus says that we can judge, but first we must judge ourselves. But many see that 1 verse and skip the rest. Not us friends. We're going to read it. Glory to God.
Before we do read this, can I make a suggestion to each of you hearing my voice, or reading this? When a preacher reads a scripture verse,or passage, read the prior verses and the verses after. Make sure he or she isn't taking things out of context.
Matthew 7:1-5 KJV Judge not, that ye be not judged. (2) For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. (3) And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? (4) Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? (5) Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
Wow! So back to verse 5 in Corinthians, 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. Delivering this man to Satan for the destruction of his flesh was the last step in church discipline. There are two other men whom Paul delivered unto Satan for this purpose. We see this in 1 Timothy.
1 Timothy 1:20 GNB Among them are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have punished by handing them over to the power of Satan; this will teach them to stop their blasphemy.
So someone is probably thinking, "Brother Jim, that means I have to hand them over to Satan so they go to hell?" Delivering people unto Satan does not mean we're damning them to hell, nor does it mean they're going to die physically. In this instance, we see by Paul's instructions in 2Co 2:6-7 that this man didn't die but repented and was restored back into the fellowship of the church.
2 Corinthians 2:2-11 KJV (2) For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me? (3) And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all. (4) For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you. (5) But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not overcharge you all. (6) Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. (7) So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. (8) Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him. (9) For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things. (10) To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; (11) Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
What does Satan do? Steal, kill and destroy. And that my friends is what Satan wants to do to you and me.
Jesus says: John 10:9-11 KJV I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. (10) The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. (11) I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
Let's get back to 1 Corinthians. Leanna's working hard, I know. There's a lot of scriptures that we've looked at, but my friends, I want each of us to get this.
1 Corinthians 5:6-8 KJV (6) Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? (7) Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: (8) Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
What does bread making have to do with this passage? I can remember a time when I'd read right through this part of the Bible. I was just reading. I wasn't studying it. Amen someone? Anyone been there? And we read it and we thought, "Well, it's biblical so it must be true." And we walk away without any understanding.
What Paul was saying to the Corinthian church was you have this man that's living this sinful way that even the pagans stay clear of, but also the pride of the church. He uses the illustration of a piece of leaven. Those who've ever made bread knows what I'm saying. Leaven is a little lump of bread dough that is saved out of the batch. It's allowed to ferment or sour, and then it’s used in the next batch of bread so that it'll rise. A little bit of yeast can make a whole loaf rise. The Jews associated fermenting with rotting, so leaven became a symbol of corrosive evil. Paul was saying what's infecting the congregation is their boasting about their toleration of this man. That's what Paul wants to get rid of among the believers in Corinth. To accomplish this the sinful man has to be expelled. Friends, this took me a while to understand. Paul doesn't see the sin of this man’s immorality infecting the congregation, as though that's the rottenness. We know that, right? Here's the issue right here. What Paul was really addressing and what's affecting the church in Corinth and the church today is the sin of their pride. If they can get rid of that sin which is eating its way through the congregation, then they stand a chance of being (here we go with the bread) “a new batch without yeast.”
Church, I'm going to start to bring this message to a close. I know we only got through 8 verses this morning and I still don't think everyone really understands the full message of what Paul was addressing.
The church then, as is now, was without excuse. They had been under the preaching of two of the greatest preachers in world history. Paul and Appolos. But really friends, does it really matter who the preacher is? Look at some of the most Godliest preachers man has ever known, yet Christians will continue to sin regardless of who's preaching and leading. And my friends, you know what the biggest issue is? Want to know what will destroy a group of believers? Pride.
This is going to hurt. There are those, and friends I've witnessed it and if you really think about this, I know you have too, preachers who preach their hearts out. Everything from their lips are biblical and they live their lives according to what they preach, and not intentionally, they are hatching pride issues within the church. Come on friends, someone get an understanding of this.
How many times do we hear others from another church say, "My preacher is the greatest preacher I've ever had. He preaches the Word. Man this guy feeds me the meat, there's no milk in his messages. My church knows the Word." Now are you starting to see the big picture, friends? And what happens friends, is they think they're spiritually mature when in reality they're not.
So now's the time friends for us to get real. Here's the time that we need to ask Jesus to reveal our hearts. This is the time that we come to Jesus and we say, "Lord, I need to be broken. Lord, help me be the man or woman that you want me to be. Father, I've tried on my own and I just can't change, so Jesus I give my heart to You to mold me into the person that You want me to be. To clean soften that hard heart."
So friends, here's your time to get right with God. Let me ask a tough question: Are you involved in some sin that, if revealed, would devastate your loved ones and destroy your reputation? Okay, maybe you haven’t done what this man did, but are you involved in internet pornography, or an emotional affair at work? As we looked at in the beginning of this message, maybe you're a couple living together and aren't married. Do what's right. Maybe you're abusing drugs. It may even be abuse of prescriptions drugs. There may be someone listening or reading that's involved in illegal gambling, some kind of illegal money deals.
I don't know your hearts my friend, but I guarantee God does. You and I can fool people for a time and maybe a long time, but you're not fooling God for a minute.
Maybe alcohol's a problem that you have. Maybe lying or stealing. Here's one that so many are involved in and we didn't get far enough in this chapter to look into it this week. Gossip. And so many are unaware they do it. My brothers and sisters in Christ, whatever it is, stop today. My dear friends, you and I, when we find God's truths are responsible to act upon what we hear is wrong. For those who've been following this ministry, or any ministry and you hear from the Word of God and it points to something that you 've harbored in your heart, it's time to make a change.
There will be a time that you and I my friends will stand before God. Each one of us will have to account for our lives and if you're listening to this message, on that day that you stand before God and you're involved in any of these sins that I've mentioned and haven't turned away from them, you won't be able to say that you didn't know.
My friends, I urge each of you to begin practicing the spiritual disciplines of prayer and Bible study. God will grant you plenty of grace if you come clean with Him and others. Don't put it off, because time's running out. It's estimated that somewhere around 144,000 people die every day. That someone maybe you. Not one of us are promised tomorrow.
For those who might be part or have been blessed with their own ministry and you may have these issues within the congregation, deal with that issue as we saw how Jesus told us to deal with it in Matthew 18 and how Paul dealt with it here in this chapter.
Friends, we love you and this may have been a hard message for someone to swallow and as we continue next week, there will be other things that may reveal things to others. Society has allowed so much corruption to be a part of the normal and so hasn't the church. You and I need to be different and with Christ living in us and allowing the Holy Spirit to guide us, if we are willing to yield to that direction, we can change. Praise God!
Thank you for joining us this morning here on Paltalk. Thank you to all of you who read or watch these messages on all the other websites. We hope that if these messages have spoken to you that you share them with friends and family and please leave a comment.
We love you and hope you all have a great week and let God direct your path.