God’s Hope for Your Heart from 1 Corinthians 5

GOD’S DISCIPLINE IS FOR YOUR DELIVERANCE

You are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.  (1 Corinthians 5:5)

It sounds so harsh.  It sounds so unloving.

“What about grace?” some might ask.  “You’re kicking someone out of your church because they made a mistake?”

Absolutely not!

What this passage is talking about is not someone who made a mistake, but a person who is continually and flagrantly violating some of God’s clearest and most basic instructions.  This isn’t a person who stumbled off the path.  This is someone who took a jackhammer to the path and is gleefully dancing in the rubble.

Here’s the thing.  The fact that someone would live like that is crystal clear evidence that either A) they have abandoned the life of Christ completely, or B) they never had it to begin with.  The frightening thing is that both scenarios lead to devastating results.

So, to simply allow someone to go on living like this without drastically intervening is not a gesture of love at all; it is a sign of indifference to their destruction, and indifference is the deepest form of hate.

This is why Paul is instructing the church at Corinth to send this person away, to “deliver him to Satan,” so that even though it will be painful for him, that pain will hopefully lead to repentance and the healing of his soul.

This action is not because the church doesn’t love this person, but because they do.  You see, church discipline is an example of God’s discipline, and God’s discipline on His children is always about restoration, not retribution.

So, when you find yourself in a place of pain or consequence because of your sin, may you turn to Jesus and take comfort in the hope of this truth: God’s discipline is for your deliverance.

-Pastor Phillip


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