August 9 Hard Stuff

Photo by Richard Wong

Photo by Richard Wong

Ezra 8:21-9:15; 1 Corinthians 5:1-13; Psalm 31:1-8; Proverbs 21:1-2

“Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed. 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. I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people–not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolators, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name ‘brother’ if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolator, reviler, drunkard or swindler–not even to eat with such a one. Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside. Purge the evil person from among you.” 1 Corinthians 5:6-13

Church discipline.

St. Paul addresses the Corinthian Christians regarding one of its members who claims to be a Christian yet lives in sin with his stepmother.

What to do? What to do?

Paul’s pretty clear about what to do–

Excommunicate. Remove from fellowship. Call a spade a spade.

In the hope that the man might see the truth of his sin, repent and be restored.

Church discipline.
Is it necessary?
Is it vital?
Is it soul-saving?

Indeed it is!

Lord God, grant wisdom and discernment to those in authority over our church bodies–our congregations–our places of fellowship–to do the needful disciplining–to speak the truth in love, to offer forgiveness to those who repent, to restore to fellowship those who have renounced their sinful ways. Lord, search my own heart and bring to light anything in me that is contrary to your will that I may not be a stumbling block to my brothers and sisters in the faith. Bless O Lord your Word of Law and Gospel that it may have its full effect in the Body of Christ our Lord. Thank and praise you that because of Christ’s work on the cross no one need be lost. We have the assurance of full forgiveness. In Jesus’ name and for his sake I pray, Amen.


2 thoughts on “August 9 Hard Stuff

  1. Pingback: Malice and evil; sincerity and truth | daily meditation

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