SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- Paul jumps right to the point. There are reports that a man is sleeping with his mother (or step-mother) and some people there are proud of it. He replies that this is repulsive even to people who don’t follow God.
- Paul says that this man clearly knows what he’s doing is wrong but doesn’t care.Therefore they should “hand him over to Satan,” which means kick him out of their group.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
- Paul’s reaction sounds harsh, doesn't it? But Paul is thinking about the group as a whole. Since the guy won‘t repent, reconciliation wouldn‘t work. Sometimes “tough love” applies in church. Paul tells them if they let this guy stick around he could influence others to sin and they can’t allow that to happen, because “a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.”
- In verses 10 - 12 Paul makes it very clear that he is passing this “judgment” only because this man claims to be a follower of Jesus. Paul says he doesn’t consider it his business to judge people outside of the church, only those inside. This practice keeps followers of Jesus accountable to other believers but prevents them from becoming judgmental of people who choose not to follow Jesus and be a part of church.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- We live in a culture where tolerance rules. While the Bible does teach us not to judge people, we learn that there needs to be accountability, and that there are consequence for our sin. We also learn that one person's sin can impact others and, when it does, the health of the group needs to be protected. Do you have accountability in your life? Are you experiencing any consequences of your sin? Are you impacting others through your sin? What needs to change in your life? Pray about it and ask God for help.