“I also received a report of scandalous sex within your church family, a kind that wouldn’t be tolerated even outside the church”.
1 Cor 5:1 EHP
Anyone who thinks that the modern world is the most depraved society ever in the matter of sexual relationships has not read the Bible. Sex has always constituted one of the most critical areas of human behaviour. It still is.
In the church at Corinth a man was sleeping with his step- mother. And the Corinthian Christians were taking it in their stride. It would have been all too easy for Paul to have overlooked it and to have said, “Well, it’s their private lives”. Paul was a strong leader and came from a strict Jewish background. He knew that this action was wrong and he did not shrink from saying so. One of the features that had made Judaism so attractive to many Gentiles in the first century was precisely its insistence on sexual purity. And many of the people who became converted to Christianity were precisely these Gentiles who had first become Jewish adherents. And Christianity demanded even higher standards of purity and decency. Paul knew he had to take a stand for the sake of the church, and ordered that the man be hauled before the whole church community. If the allegation was found to be true he should be expelled from membership. All members were expected to follow lifestyles that were exemplary – it was their witness to the world outside the church.
It is still true that Christian believers should live blameless lives when it comes to sexuality. This is not being prudish. It is being godly. It is loving God with one’s heart, soul, mind and strength. And reflecting the life of Jesus.
Lord, purge your church from all impurity.