Daily Reflections

1 Corinthians 6:1-11

As if sexual immorality was not enough, Paul was also forced to rebuke the young Corinthian church for the scandal of taking each other to court to settle internal disputes. Matters had reached such a low spiritual ebb that Christians were submitting their disagreements for judgement by pagan courts. How powerful the attraction of the ways of the world! How easily our best intentions are defeated when we feel our personal interests are threatened. Again the model for the Corinthians and for us is Jesus.

He teaches us to turn the other cheek rather than to seek personal satisfaction or revenge (Luke 6:29). He teaches us to love one another as he loves us (John 13:34-35), and gives explicit instruction on what to do in cases of disputes that are going to court. By saying, ‘Make friends quickly with your accuser, while you are going with him to court’ (Matthew 5:25), the Lord was not speaking hypothetically, but giving a real-life scenario which he wanted acting out in his Church. But in knowing the full extent of our independence and pride, he begs the Father to grant us as close a unity as that of the Trinity (John 17:23). The body of Christ is weakened if different parts are in opposition to one another. Thus, the gift of unity in Christ at any level, family, parish or the wider Church, needs to be nurtured with reverence and carefully protected in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Paul’s remedy for the tendency towards sin within the Corinthian church is to remind them of their former lives and of the new identity and dignity they have been given. He recalls what Christ has done for them. As Christians they have been washed clean in the waters of baptism. In Christ we share in the justification won and made available for all humankind in the sacrifice of the Cross. We are sanctified, set apart as beloved children of God and adopted as brothers and sisters of his Son Jesus Christ (Galatians 3:26-27). As children of God we no longer belong to the world and are set free from slavery to its values and ways (Romans 12:2). Today let us approach the throne of grace in humble thanks.

‘Heavenly Father, we thank you for the gift of your Son in whom, through baptism, we have become your new creation, brought to you as your children cleansed of all sin.’

1 Corinthians 6:1-11
Psalm 149:1-6, 9b  •  Luke 6:12-19

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