Scripture Study: 1 Corinthians 6

1 Corinthians 6  •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 6
What a cold, worldly condition of soul these Corinthians were in, yet Paul speaks to them as saints, and appeals to them to behave consistently with their heavenly calling, which for the moment, they seem to have forgotten. He puts it in strong language:
Verses 1-6. “Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?” Matters might arise between them, but they are easily settled where grace is working in their hearts—where the heart is going on in communion with the Lord. This is the serious thing in these controversies—the flesh manifests its selfishness. Selfish interests gain such a place, that Christ and His interests are forgotten. He reminds them of their blessed association with the Lord, who has told them that when He reigns, they shall reign with Him.
“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? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more things that pertain to this life? If then ye have things to judge pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the assembly.” What a shame for saints to go to law with each other. Is there not one among you able to judge between his brethren? But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers.
Verses 7, 8. They were utterly at fault to have suits between themselves, and here the appeal becomes stronger. “Why do ye not rather suffer wrong? Why do ye not rather be defrauded? Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.” How the world takes hold when self is allowed a place! There is the fault—the world has the place where the Lord Jesus Christ should reign. Their love for Him has grown cold, and temporal things have increased in value accordingly, and is it not so with us all? The more we enjoy the Lord Jesus and His riches, the less value we set on the present and temporal things. “Set your mind on things above, and not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God,” is the word in Colossians 3:2, 32Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. 3For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. (Colossians 3:2‑3), for what we set our minds on, our affections follow after.
Verses 9-11. Again, that word “Know ye not?” would lead them to consider the hole of the pit out of which they have been taken, and that such shall not inherit the kingdom of God. And then the blessed contrast in what the grace of God has made us, for, “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.” What foolishness in those who are made meet, and whose destiny is glory with Christ on high, to go to the unrighteous to judge between brother and brother.
Believers here are washed; it is the practical judgment of evil in themselves—the washing of water by the Word. They are sanctified, that is, set apart by the Spirit, and they are justified freely by His grace, by faith in Him, by His precious blood. So it is “in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”
Verses 12-14. And while thus set free, and all things are lawful unto us, yet all things are not expedient, so the apostle says, “All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” The conscience is thus exercised to walk in purity. “Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them,” but the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body. The lusts and appetites are now to he controlled by the knowledge of the Word in the power of the Spirit, for the body is the Lord’s. “And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by His own power.”
Verses 15-18. “Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ?” Therefore I cannot do what I like, or go where I like, for I am a member of the body of Christ. The union of two makes them one body, for two saith He, shall be one flesh. But our union with Christ, by the Spirit, makes us, “One Spirit with the Lord.”
And these Corinthians needed to be reminded to “flee fornication,” and this was against his own body who committed it.
Verses 19-20. Again we get that word, “What? Know ye not (how important it is to take heed) that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God?” Is it not wonderful that now the body of the believer is made God’s sanctuary, His dwelling place? And besides this, it is added, “Ye are not your own, ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.” Our bodies are the members of Christ. We are one Spirit with the Lord, united to Him by the Holy Spirit, who also dwells in us. We are bought with a price, redeemed by Christ’s precious blood, and waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.