Vs 9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people —
Vs 10 … not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters,
since then you would need to go out of the world.
Vs 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.
Vs 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders?
Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?
Vs 13 God judges those outside.
Paul is dismayed that the church in Corinth is embracing and celebrating sinful behavior by their members.
They were choosing to celebrate people in the church in their worst behavior.
And exclude people outside the church.
They were doing the exact opposite of what Paul wanted.
Paul clarifies that they are to go into the world where there will be immorality all around them.
But they are to not accept the immorality of those inside the church.
In other words, we are to judge those inside the church, but not those outside of the church.
“Judge” is a very weighty and loaded term in our culture.
It is helpful for me to consider that “judging” can mean two very different things.
Judging can be “discerning”, as in deciding between what is “right or wrong” and “good or bad”.
This I should absolutely do.
Judging can also be “condemning”, as in to determine someone’s “guilt or innocence”,
or in “religious” terms … to determine someone’s final destination, salvation, or even worth.
This I should absolutely not do.
God is the final arbiter of salvation. He does the choosing … not me!
I also cannot determine someone’s worth … God has also done that!
God has made everyone in His own image, and Christ has died for “the world”.
If I am in the business of condemning, I am taking God’s place.
I must be in the busines of discerning, though, and at this the Corinthians failed miserably.
They were discerning evil as good.
I must have my eyes and ears and heart sensitive to immorality in the church.
But to evil outside of the church, Paul declares, “What have I to do with judging outsiders?
What a message and for the church to hear … today and always!
Is this the message outsiders hear from the church?
Nope! In fact, the #1 word outsiders use to describe “Christians” is … “judgmental”.
Is this me?
In the same way I need to have awareness of immorality inside the church,
I need to have awareness of judgmentalism inside of me!
Thank you, God, that you are a Good Judge!
Help me Holy Spirit to see others the way you do
Help me live with those outside the church with the Good News
And help me have discernment with those inside the church
In Jesus name