To Judge or Not to Judge

1 Corinthians 5

1 Corinthians 5 12

We are going to take a look today at 1 Corinthians 5.

Paul has talked a lot up until now about how immature and unwise the Corinthians are, and we start to see here what he is talking about.  There is some really weird sexual immorality going on in the church at Corinth, and they were bragging about it. Paul is very critical of this and tells them “I have already passed judgment in the name of our Lord Jesus on the one who has been doing this”.  Because they have accepted Jesus they should have his wisdom and the Holy Spirit guiding their lives and they should know that these things are wrong, and therefore have no excuse in allowing this to go on.

“What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside?  God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”’ 1 Corinthians 5:12-13

Paul clarifies though, that he is not judging their culture, which finds this practice acceptable, but he can judge them because they have committed themselves to a higher standard and are falling short.  Many Christians today need to be reminded of this. We need to hold other Christians to the standard that Christ has set. It may make us uncomfortable, but if we see sin in the Church it is our responsibility to help fix it.  Confronting people is not easy, but if we love them then we will want them to be right with God.

On the other side we cannot judge the sins of non-believers because they have not committed themselves to Christ, and they do not understand that what they do is sinful.  It is not our place to judge the sin in the world, but it is our job to spread the good news that Jesus died for our sins, and then we can let the Holy Spirit convict that person of their sin, and hope that they make the right decision.  If we start by judging them for their sins we will only push them away, and that will not help the Kingdom to grow. We can see a widespread rejection of Christianity in our culture today partly because of a cultural backlash towards Christians that openly judge non-Christians.  So let us remember that our message is one of life and hope, not judgement and condemnation.

 

Thanks for reading,

Chris Mattison

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