1 Corinthians 5-8 Revised Standard Version

Judgment of Immorality

5 1  It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and of a kind that is not found even among pagans; for a man is living with his father's wife. 2  And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. 3  For though absent in body I am present in spirit, and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment 4  in the name of the Lord Jesus on the man who has done such a thing. When you are assembled, and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, 5  you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. 6  Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?

7  Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed. 8  Let us, therefore, celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

9  I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with immoral men; 10  not at all meaning the immoral of this world, or the greedy and robbers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11  But rather I wrote to you not to associate with any one who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or robber--not even to eat with such a one. 12  For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13  God judges those outside. "Drive out the wicked person from among you."

Going to Law before Unbelievers

6 1  When one of you has a grievance against a brother, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? 2  Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? 3  Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, matters pertaining to this life! 4  If then you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who are least esteemed by the church? 5  I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no man among you wise enough to decide between members of the brotherhood, 6  but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? 7  To have lawsuits at all with one another is defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? 8  But you yourselves wrong and defraud, and that even your own brethren.

9  Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts, 10  nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11  And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Glorify God in Your Body

12  "All things are lawful for me," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be enslaved by anything. 13  "Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food" --and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14  And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. 15  Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I therefore take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! 16  Do you not know that he who joins himself to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, "The two shall become one flesh." 17  But he who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. 18  Shun immorality. Every other sin which a man commits is outside the body; but the immoral man sins against his own body. 19  Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; 20  you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Problems concerning Marriage

7 1  Now concerning the matters about which you wrote. It is well for a man not to touch a woman. 2  But because of the temptation to immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. 3  The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4  For the wife does not rule over her own body, but the husband does; likewise the husband does not rule over his own body, but the wife does. 5  Do not refuse one another except perhaps by agreement for a season, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, lest Satan tempt you through lack of self-control. 6  I say this by way of concession, not of command. 7  I wish that all were as I myself am. But each has his own special gift from God, one of one kind and one of another. 8  To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is well for them to remain single as I do. 9  But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to be aflame with passion.

10  To the married I give charge, not I but the Lord, that the wife should not separate from her husband 11  (but if she does, let her remain single or else be reconciled to her husband) --and that the husband should not divorce his wife. 12  To the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. 13  If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him. 14  For the unbelieving husband is consecrated through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is consecrated through her husband. Otherwise, your children would be unclean, but as it is they are holy. 15  But if the unbelieving partner desires to separate, let it be so; in such a case the brother or sister is not bound. For God has called us to peace. 16  Wife, how do you know whether you will save your husband? Husband, how do you know whether you will save your wife?

17  Only, let every one lead the life which the Lord has assigned to him, and in which God has called him. This is my rule in all the churches. 18  Was any one at the time of his call already circumcised? Let him not seek to remove the marks of circumcision. Was any one at the time of his call uncircumcised? Let him not seek circumcision. 19  For neither circumcision counts for anything nor uncircumcision, but keeping the commandments of God. 20  Every one should remain in the state in which he was called. 21  Were you a slave when called? Never mind. But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity. 22  For he who was called in the Lord as a slave is a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is a slave of Christ. 23  You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men. 24  So, brethren, in whatever state each was called, there let him remain with God.

25  Now concerning the unmarried, I have no command of the Lord, but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord's mercy is trustworthy. 26  I think that in view of the present distress it is well for a person to remain as he is. 27  Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free. Are you free from a wife? Do not seek marriage. 28  But if you marry, you do not sin, and if a girl marries she does not sin. Yet those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that. 29  I mean, brethren, the appointed time has grown very short; from now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, 30  and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods, 31  and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the form of this world is passing away. 32  I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to please the Lord; 33  but the married man is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please his wife, 34  and his interests are divided. And the unmarried woman or girl is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit; but the married woman is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please her husband. 35  I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.

36  If any one thinks that he is not behaving properly toward his betrothed, if his passions are strong, and it has to be, let him do as he wishes: let them marry--it is no sin. 37  But whoever is firmly established in his heart, being under no necessity but having his desire under control, and has determined this in his heart, to keep her as his betrothed, he will do well. 38  So that he who marries his betrothed does well; and he who refrains from marriage will do better.

39  A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If the husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord. 40  But in my judgment she is happier if she remains as she is. And I think that I have the Spirit of God.

Food Offered to Idols

8 1  Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that "all of us possess knowledge." "Knowledge" puffs up, but love builds up. 2  If any one imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. 3  But if one loves God, one is known by him.

4  Hence, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that "an idol has no real existence," and that "there is no God but one." 5  For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth--as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords" -- 6  yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

7  However, not all possess this knowledge. But some, through being hitherto accustomed to idols, eat food as really offered to an idol; and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. 8  Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do. 9  Only take care lest this liberty of yours somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. 10  For if any one sees you, a man of knowledge, at table in an idol's temple, might he not be encouraged, if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols? 11  And so by your knowledge this weak man is destroyed, the brother for whom Christ died. 12  Thus, sinning against your brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. 13  Therefore, if food is a cause of my brother's falling, I will never eat meat, lest I cause my brother to fall.

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