Just added to our teaching section on 1 Corinthians, a new message preached by J Stewart Gillespie:
Notes from the above message:
1 Corinthians chp 5 vs 1 to 7 : ‘Better than the Best’
We may be left perplexed, shocked, confused and astounded; from chapter 5, that a church like Corinth with all of its privileges:
- Foundation in apostolic preaching and teaching
- Expository ministry of Apollos from the OT scriptures
- Stories of great conversions and testimonies; eg Sosthenes (1 Co1:1) and Crispus (Acts 18)
- Signs of the apostles (2 Co 12:12)
That such a church could fall so far and so fast
That ought to leave us more than just a little perplexed and confused and shocked
Why should it happen?
1 – Doctrinal Confusion? (cf Romans 6:11)
2 – Moral Compromise (1 Co 6:12ff) – difficult to take a stand where we have at least in part compromised ourselves on something very similar – prostitution
3 – Spiritual corruption (1 Co10:4-9)
All of that was a:
- Distraction from Christ (1Co10:4)
- Attack upon Christ (1Co10:9)
Their relationship with the Lord was compromised and that weakened these believers spiritually; their strength was sapped.
How do we get back?
What about recovery?
- Discipline (1Co5:5)
- Devotion (1Co5:7)
- Repentance (v2)
- Judgment (v3)
- Destruction of the flesh (v5)
Not as some have suggested the physical flesh or body of the believer through disease or disaster; some have drawn parallels perhaps with:
- Paul in 2 Co 13 – his thorn in the flesh
- Believers who are sick and who sleep (1 Co11:30)
This is not the physical flesh here but rather the fallen human nature:
- Sin resides not in the physical but in the inner fallen nature (Mark 7:15; 20-23)
- Notice the contrast between flesh and spirit (v5) as opposed to body and spirit (5:3)
- The judgment is with a view to their salvation and ultimate restoration (5:5; 2 Co 2:5ff); something that is difficult to imagine as an outcome if they have been destroyed!!
Discipline is only one half of the Recovery programme, back to Christ in 1 Corinthians chapter 5
To Discipline over sin the apostle adds, exhorts, gives reason for Devotion to Christ.
7 aspects to Christs surpassing greatness are presented to us by the apostle; following the pattern of Leviticus chapter 23; the 7 Feasts of Jehovah:
- Feast of Unleavened Bread
In 1 Corinthians chapter 5 we are going to come to the first 2 of these feasts:
- Unleavened Bread
In fact all 7 will be referred to / paralleled in 1 & 2 Corinthians; all pointing to the all sufficiency of a Christ who is able to satisfy:
- Passover (1 Co5:7)
- Unleavened Bread (1 Co5:7-8)
- Firstfruits (1 Co 15:20)
- Pentecost (1 Co 12:13)
- Trumpets (1 Co 15:51ff)
- Atonement (2 Co 5:21)
- Tabernacles (2 Co 5:1ff)
Just as the 7 Feasts of Jehovah give us the backbone of the OT religious system, so too if you were to come to the NT and were to ask, what does God have for me today?
What is the Big Picture?
What is the Big Purpose?
We find that it all lies in Christ.
He is the Big Picture!!
Appreciating Christ as our passover (1 Co5:7)
What does that, mean?
Exodus chp 12:
- The Place / Purpose (12:1)
- The Pre-eminence (12:2)
- The Prophecies (12:3)
- The Pictures of Christ (chp12)
1 – The Place / Purpose (12:1)
What is the passover about?
I want to modify something that has been taught over the years; that the purpose of the passover was to deliver from bondage in Egypt.
That the passover did deliver from:
Is eminently true (Exodus 3:7ff); at least it is true of the most of the nation of Israel
Of one man however more could be said.
Illust: Leo Brettell who died aged 93 last week. He had risked being shot and being killed by jumping from a moving train. The train was heading to Auschwitz and in the words of Leo Bretholz; anything was better than Auschwitz.
Leo Brettell decided that the possibility of death was better than the worst of this world; Auschwitz.
The passover delivered not only from the worst of this world – from sin and slavery and suffering but for Moses; the passover delivered from:
The Best of this World
For his story we need to turn to Hebrews chapter 11:
Moses chose Christ above:
- Sovereignty (11:24)
- Sin (11:25)
- Silver (11:26)
Moses found that the Passover lamb not only delivered from the worst of Egypt but that the Passover delivered from the best of Egypt.
Moses knew that Christ was Better than the Best!
2 – The Pre-eminence (12:2)
The nation would start their calender from the passover festival (Ex 12:2)
Interesting to reflect on our own calendar today: date, month and year – the year of the birth of the Passover lamb.