Examples for Christian Living – 1 Corinthians 10 – Part 2

by Bryant Evans on July 23, 2010

We are looking at Examples for Christian Living which is a continuation of an article begun yesterday. Today we continue by looking at 1 Corinthians 10:8-11.

Examples for Christian Living – Sexual Immorality – 1 Corinthians 10:6

The practice of sexual immorality is an example of something that must not be tolerated in our lives. Adultery was included among the 10 commandments (Exodus 20:14) and is included among the works of the flesh enumerated by Paul in Galatians 5:19-20. The ESV speaks broadly of “sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality…orgies.” In 1 Corinthians 6:9 the list includes adultery (more specifically) and homosexuality.

Now I sure know that our world absolutely disagrees with the Bible on this subject but the world is dead wrong.  rates of teen pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, serial divorce and remarriage and innumerable related societal ills are ample evidence that the sexual revolution has done terrible harm. All of these problems, and more, are eliminated by following Biblical principles and guidelines.

To illustrate his point the apostle references a horrible event with the people of Moab. Found in Numbers 25 we read harsh language directed at the Israelites; “the people began to whore with the daughters of Moab.” A plague was sent by God and 24,000 people died as a result of that plague. Paul reminds his readers that sexual immorality is deadly and is never accepted by God. Men today should heed this warning.

Examples for Christian Living – Testing Christ – 1 Corinthians 10:7

In one way, mortal man really cannot test Christ. He is God and far above us. But in another way we do test or challenge Jesus often. This idea of testing is expressed in different translations in different ways. ESV has “test” while KJV has “tempt” and NAS has “try.” The lexicons suggest that the word may also be translated as “to put to the test or to examine.”(1) Now here is the important part. If we test Jesus then we take it upon ourselves to grade Jesus. We make him subservient to our opinion. We decide whether or not Jesus passes the test. That is precisely upside down.

God does test us (2 Chronicles 32:31; Psalm 66:10). In fact we should ask God to test us as did the psalmist (Psalm 139:23). What God does not do is tempt us to sin (James 1:13). His testing and trying is for our growth. While Satan tempts to pull one toward destruction, God tries to draw one closer to him. Much of the book of Job is a cry from Job to be tested by God so that he (Job) could be found blameless. When God does test we know that his grade is always correct.

The Israelites tested Christ in many ways. They tested God by demanding meat in the wilderness (Psalm 78:18; Exodus 16:2 ff). Every sin was a test against God. The result of their sinfulness was a plague of fiery serpents sent among the people (Numbers 21:6).

Ours is not to test God but to trust him.

Examples for Christian Living – Grumbling – 1 Corinthians 10:10

Grumbling is a horrible habit. It keeps the grumbler stirred up and all who are nearby. The grumbler offers neither solution nor suggestion but instead thrives on being a grouch. His attitude is hurtful, contentious and even hateful. The grumbler is often one who has failed to get his way so is determined to make everyone else miserable.

The Bible warns of such people who commit sins of enmity, hatred, strife and divisions (Galatians 5:19-20). It is the peacemaker who is blessed (Matthew 5:9; Galatians 5:22).

The example used by Paul is that of Numbers 14:1-4 when the people rebelled against God and refused to enter the promised land. Of course the outcome was 40 years of wandering in which every adult but two died having never set foot in the promised land. In that particular event their fear gave way to grumbling which continued and eventually fermented into outright rebellion. Grumbling must stop.

Examples for Christian Living – Conclusions

Paul enumerates five examples of troublesome living that will bring wrath upon those who practice such a lifestyle.

  1. The Desire for Evil
  2. Idolatry (covetousness)
  3. Sexual Immorality
  4. Testing Christ
  5. Grumbling

All of us need to daily examine our lives and these ancient examples for ways to become more pleasing unto God.

I certainly invite and encourage your comments on this post and all others. Please leave your thoughts for us below._____

  1. Louw Nida 27.46(&#8617)
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{ 1 comment }

P. July 2, 2012 at 8:02 pm

Very excellent — thank you.
(I need to confess my grumbling!) 🙂

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