From 1 Corinthians 5:1-5

It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that even pagans do not tolerate: A man is sleeping with his father’s wife. And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have gone into mourning and have put out of your fellowship the man who has been doing this? For my part, even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. As one who is present with you in this way, I have already passed judgment in the name of our Lord Jesus on the one who has been doing this. So when you are assembled and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, hand this man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved on the day of the Lord.

I was contemplating Paul’s tough love when a youth pastor friend of mine posted this photo:

I like the message of the photo. I want to be a part of a church that emphasizes the gospel and not religion. When I contemplated the words in the photo compared to Paul’s message, at first it seemed that Paul’s edict was more like Religion than Gospel. Then it struck me, there is a reason the two scenarios are very different. The person Paul is referring to in 1 Corinthians 5 never says, “I messed up.” That person pretends that his sin is not sin. He pretends that he isn’t hurting his family or the church family.

God cares about us enough to discipline us. He cares about the church and doesn’t want the church to let sin spread through compromises and approval of sin.

It is helpful to understand what love is and the different ways love approaches life and helps people. Love doesn’t let children put knives into electrical outlets or puppies play in the street. Love protects and love is honest, not overlooking the dangers of sin.

Spend some time considering how this works in your life. Are you living like Paul, who calls “believers” out for sin and addresses it honestly in order to save the church and that person from continuing to live harmful lies? What would it take to love people like Paul does and call sin – sin?

Pastor John Riley
Junior High Pastor

Subscribe to the Daily Fill