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The error of litigation in the Church
1Now another matter — the Greeks are devoted to litigation, it is a passion with them, but what has that to do with you? Are you going to haunt the law-courts of Corinth and with cases which you bring against one another! 2This has little to do with the true judgment and justice which your faith exemplifies. 3That is capable of judging angels, and if you have it are you not even capable of settling these business disputes which arise amongst yourselves? 4-7Have you no one wise enough for that, but must you go to law with one another, and invoke the methods and assistance of a corrupt judicial system to get the better of your brother? Questions of everyday life then cannot be settled by the Church, but you must needs take them before those who know nothing of your faith, and whom the Church on that account esteems as of no account. Yet you bring your quarrels and disputes before them! And why do such disputes arise? 8Is it not because you still have in your midst the old spirit of over-reaching and dishonesty? I declare it is better to be wronged, to be cheated and robbed, and to take the injustice and say no more about it, for that would more resemble your calling than to do the opposite. 9Yes, for the old world of wickedness that God is judging, which is for ever excluded from His Kingdom, is still lurking in your midst. O do not be deceived by it, whatever cloak it may put on! Fornication, idolatry, adultery, sodomy, 10dishonesty, greed, drunkenness, cursing, theft — these are the things that hide the Kingdom of God, and they can never win it. 11Were you once involved in them, and were you purified, cleansed, justified in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and in the spirit of our God? Yes, you were, you had won clear of that spirit of perdition, but see that it does not entangle you again, know it for what it is.
Man not subordinate to physical nature
12True, I am free, I am independent, and can act as seems good to me, yet, though nothing is bad in itself, evil in its influence is dangerous. I am a free man, but I will not be mastered by any influences. 13Food and drink have nothing to do with my real being, they affect the belly, not me, you say, and I am in my true self independent of them. Yet that physical part of you is doomed to destruction along with the material things that feed it. Perhaps you would dare to apply the same view to the body. Never! The body is not for fornication. It is for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body. 14And as the Lord was raised from the dead by the power of God, so shall we be raised. 15For there is nothing legitimate or natural for you in an appetite which demands such vile institutions and uses for its satisfaction. Your bodies are no longer carnal, they are members of Christ. 16Shall I take that which is spiritual and convert it into the very opposite, change the limbs of Christ into the flesh of a harlot? “They twain shall be of one flesh,” says Moses (Gen ii. 24), and so this awful substitution takes place, and in the place of Christ's body we find that of a harlot. Such then is their practice, this besetting sin of Corinth. Flee from it. 17For the One Spirit makes us one with the Lord. 18That is the truth, of which the other is the lie. Just as in the truth man cannot separate himself from the Lord, for there is but one Spirit, so in the false, in the carnal action, man cannot separate himself from the sin to which he surrenders, he sins not against another only, nor does the wrong of his action merely affect that which is outside himself. He cannot excuse himself by saying “it has nothing to do with my true being, it is inherent in the body only, and I disclaim its connection with me, though as a physical being I am forced by the power of Nature to submit to it, even as I am forced by other appetites to eat and drink!” The reasoning is false. 19Your bodies are spiritual structures, the spirit that dwells in you is of God, and your bodies are correspondingly spiritual, as temples, rather than animal organisms; 20they owe allegiance not to the physical self, but to Him who redeemed them at a price. God Himself is to be glorified in your bodies.
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Taking each other to court
1When one of you has a complaint against another, do you take your complaint to a court of sinners? Or do you take it to God's people? 2Don't you know that God's people will judge the world? And if you are going to judge the world, can't you settle small problems? 3Don't you know that we will judge angels? And if that is so, we can surely judge everyday matters. 4Why do you take everyday complaints to judges who are not respected by the church? 5I say this to your shame. Aren't any of you wise enough to act as a judge between one follower and another? 6Why should one of you take another to be tried by unbelievers?
7When one of you takes another to court, all of you lose. It would be better to let yourselves be cheated and robbed. 8But instead, you cheat and rob other followers.
9Don't you know that evil people won't have a share in the blessings of God's kingdom? Don't fool yourselves! No one who is immoral or worships idols or is unfaithful in marriage or is a pervert or behaves like a homosexual 10will share in God's kingdom. Neither will any thief or greedy person or drunkard or anyone who curses and cheats others. 11Some of you used to be like that. But now the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and the power of God's Spirit have washed you and made you holy and acceptable to God.
Honour God with your body
12Some of you say, “We can do anything we want to.” But I tell you that not everything is good for us. So I refuse to let anything have power over me.#1 Co 10.23. 13You also say, “Food is meant for our bodies, and our bodies are meant for food.” But I tell you that God will destroy them both. We are not supposed to do indecent things with our bodies. We are to use them for the Lord who is in charge of our bodies. 14God will raise us from death by the same power that he used when he raised our Lord to life.
15Don't you know that your bodies are part of the body of Christ? Is it right for me to join part of the body of Christ to a prostitute? No, it isn't! 16Don't you know that a man who does that becomes part of her body? The Scriptures say, “The two of them will be like one person.”#Gn 2.24. 17But anyone who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit with him.
18Don't be immoral in matters of sex. That is a sin against your own body in a way that no other sin is. 19You know that your body is a temple where the Holy Spirit lives. The Spirit is in you and is a gift from God. You are no longer your own.#1 Co 3.16; 2 Co 6.16. 20God paid a great price for you. So use your body to honour God.