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Paul J. Bucknell
Outline of 1 Corinthians
Writing about immoralities | Dangers of immorality
View #1: Subjectivism | View #2: Fixed Standards (1 Cor 6:12-20)
Flee Immorality | Only Two Choices
Bible Study Questions for 1 Corinthians 6:12-20
Introduction of 1 Corinthians 15 | Defending Resurrection (15:12-34)
1 Corinthians 6:12-20: 'Necessity of Writing about Immoralities' explains why Paul thought it necessary to address this topic of sexual immorality.
1 Corinthians 6:12-20 is the closing statement to the first part of 1 Corinthians. Paul discusses some difficult issues. Earlier on we had talked about factions and divisions in the church and how to handle a difficult case with a brother. Should he sue him? Paul says a clear, "No." Today we are addressing another difficult and embarrassing topic: sexual immorality.
Last year when I visited my mother in another state, she surprised me when she said that where she lived it was illegal to hang out ones clothes to dry. We grew up with a backyard clothes line. I still remember bringing in some frozen pants and shirts.
I wondered why it would become illegal. Was it an image issue? Everyone needs to dry clothes. It is not just poor people that do this. Maybe people were offended at seeing other people's underwear? Perhaps.
The issues that the apostle brings up are like this. Some things like these issues ought not be existent. If everything worked right, then Paul certainly could have skipped these first six chapters and gone straight onto public issues. I grieve over some issues that I have needed to talk about with individuals, couples and even the church as a whole.
Some things just shouldn't have to be discussed. It grieves me when my little children have to hear a sermon about sexual immorality.
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These issues are embarrassing but ignoring them would be horrible. Some people avoid trouble by avoiding conflict. They run from place to place piling up scars. This is ungodly and irresponsible behavior. Paul's approach might be more direct than you are used to, but it rings with a message of love and freedom.
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Satan deceives people into thinking they have to stay put in their sins. They don't know of a way out. We just read how all sorts of people ensnared in sin are set free by the power of Jesus Christ. If there was no solution, then maybe it would be okay not to say anything. But this is not the case in Christianity. Christ is for freedom to do what is right, good and lovely. Do you want this freedom? Then you need Christ. He specializes in delivering people from their difficult situations. Having said this, we also must understand that this is also a warning for everyone of us. We all are in danger.
The young people who are trying to understand their new found sexual feelings are being told that for them to be normal and happy that they need to indulge these sexual desires however they want. Everyone seems to say that; they wonder if it is true. It sounds good, but it sounds wrong.
It is not just young people that are facing problems. No, not at all. We have created a double crisis by extending the age of marriage to the late 20s. I am not for this. Let me ask you this question, "Is it okay to graduate from grad school on time if it cost you to fall into a few immoral situations?" No one wants to face the issues of modernity. Parents just aren't thinking about God's design for people.
Those who are married also need to wake up. They are facing dangers. There use to be a lot of support for marriages but not today. Many churches have left God and have adopted worldly standards. Divorce is rampant and accepted in many cases. Where there is not much divorce, there is still much adultery. Where there is seems to be good marriages, in many cases they are sullied by heart adultery where pornography substitutes real people.
We are fighting a great immoral culture. It is like a big ball of dough. Poke your finger in it. Challenge it. But it will again expand and the hole be gone.
Next => The Danger of Immorality
Scriptures typically quoted from the New American Standard Bible unless noted:
(C) Copyright The Lockman Foundation 1988