Introduction: Finding the Gospel in Paul’s Rebuke

January 1, 2013 — Leave a comment


For years I read 1 Corinthians 6:12-20 as a long guilt trip from Paul as to why it is bad to sleep with prostitutes (or look at pornography). He says things like “Do you not know?” And “Never!” as if he is really saying, “You idiots!”

Not too long ago I realized that his tone is actually quite different. While it is true that he thinks the Corinthians are being foolish, his tone is that of a pleading father who sees such good things his son is missing out on because of foolish disobedience. It is as if he is saying, “Come on! Can’t you see what you are missing?”

For this series we will look at the six things in this passage that Paul says are incredible blessings of the Gospel. These are things we have in Christ or we are in Him or we will have in Him. But we could miss out on them if we indulge in the idolatry of sexual pleasure.

Here they are, followed by the section of the passage where you can find them:

The hope of new resurrected bodies

“God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power.”

The intimacy of being members of Christ’s body, the Bride

“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! 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.’”

The comfort of being one Spirit with Christ

“But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality.”

The power of being temples of the Holy Spirit

“‘Every sin a person commits is outside the body,’ but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?”

The relief of not belonging to yourself

“You are not your own,”

The value of being purchased by the precious life of Christ

“for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”

For the remainder of this series, I will be dedicating a few posts for each of the six aspects of the Gospel above. It will be a long series, but I am very excited about it. I think we will all gain a lot from studying these things and seeking to live in light of them.

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