I have a question about what Paul means in 1 Corinthians 5:5 when he says, “Then you must throw this man out and hand him over to satan so that his sinful nature will be destroyed and he himself will be saved on the day the Lord returns.” How can someone thrown out of the church and handed over to satan be saved?
1 Corinthians 5:5
NLT - 5 Then you must throw this man out and hand him over to Satan so that his sinful nature will be destroyed and he himself will be saved on the day the Lord returns.
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In my opinion, what Paul is saying here is analogous to what a parent might experience with a rebellious child who refuses to respond to discipline or correction. Although the parent may love that child dearly, and may desperately want to "save him from himself", there may come a point when the most effective (as well as truly loving) thing that the parent can do is to stop intervening on the child's behalf, and allow the child to experience the full adverse effects or consequences of his actions, in the hope that this may finally "bring him to his senses", and result in his ultimate reformation. I view this as similar to the attitude of the father toward the prodigal son in Jesus' parable (Luke 15:11-32). The father loved his rebellious younger son, but did not stand in the way of the son's wishes, even going so far as to accede to the son's demand that his father give him his share of the inheritance while the father was still alive, although the son then proceeded to waste it all, eventually being reduced to the point of having to feed swine, and wishing that he could eat the food that was being given to the swine, until he finally "came to himself". And his father never stopped looking for his son's return (which was why he was able to see him while he was still a great way off). In my opinion, Paul is making this same point with respect to the course of action that the church should take with an egregious sinner.
I would like to point out that Paul was also strongly rebuking the Corinthians. Rather than anguishing over this guy's conduct they were as he stated, "puffed up". They were prideful and arrogant, naturalizing or indifferent to his immorality. "There's nothing wrong with it" (My interpretation). I believe the main qualifier is in V' s 9-11. Paul states that he did in fact write a letter telling them not to associate with sexually immoral people but he was not speaking of the immoral of the world (the unregenerate). He clarifies by stating in order to disassociate from the greedy, swindlers and idolators of the world they would have to actually leave the world. The following verse begins with one of the biggest little words in the Bible. "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat." "........If any man be called brother......" If a professing brother practices such a sinful, immoral lifestyle, don't associate with him and put him out of the church. Why so harsh? "......Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?" (V.6) I don't think we have to look very far or hard to see the effects of tolerance as it applies to modern day christiandom. "Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" (Isaiah 5:20). Our story has a good ending. "Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.". (2 Corinthians 2:6-8) "For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things. To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ;" (2 Corinthians 2:9-10) I believe it is clear that God's purpose In the life of a wayward believer (as Paul demonstrated) is repentence, recconciliation and restoration, not destruction. "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." (Galatians 6:1)
In 1 Cor 5 Paul addresses a gross case of immorality - a church member is sleeping with his stepmother and apparently no one in the church is bothered by this. Such compromise called for a strong rebuke - deliver the offending brother to Satan for “the destruction of the flesh.” Some Bible scholars put forward the idea that the “destruction of the flesh” here refers to physical death, intended for the man’s salvation. Knowing that God does not collaborate with Satan in saving souls, and that there is no redemptive value in death makes me very skeptical of this interpretation. One chapter over in 1 Cor 6:9, 10 Paul tells the Corinthians no to be deceived - no sexually immoral person will inherit God's kingdom. And in 1 Cor 6:11 Paul delivers the punchline: “And some of you used to be like this. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God." So, if we were washed and sanctified, how can we still be wallowing in sexual immorality? Well, in 2 Peter 2 we can find some answers. Here Peter addresses the false teachers among the early Church, describing their future: "keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority” (2 Peter 2:9, 10). Moreover, 2 Peter 2:20, 21, 22 delivers a very unflattering characterization of these so-called Christians who once knew Christ but later went astray, which remind us of Paul’s statement in (1 Cor 6:11) - that we were washed and sanctified in Jesus’ blood. In Heb 10:26 we find a very sobering warning: “For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.” In my opinion, turning the man over to Satan means disfellowship - send him back into the world of depravity that he may reap the consequences of his rebellion - whatever physical and/or emotional affliction that might involve. Then, devoid of the warm and loving association with the brethren, the disobedient member might realize his wicked ways, repent and return to God’s fellowship (Romans 6:12, 13).
Several reasons. When we trust Jesus as our savior, we are given eternal life. John 6:40 And this is the will of Him who sent me, that all that seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have eternal life. We are given His righteousness to us, and our sins can no more be imputed to us. Romans 4:1-8 When we trust Jesus as our savior, all of our sins have been paid for, past, present, and future. All of them. If they were not all paid for then we would have to go to hell to pay for them. But, Jesus blood sacrifice covers us from all sin. Jesus paid it all, and we paid 0. Our salvation does not depend on what we do good or bad, but only on what Christ did for us on the cross. It is a free gift of God that Jesus died for all our sins. First Corinthians 15:1-4 Romans 11:6 We are saved by grace, what Jesus did for us on the cross, not by works, what we do or do not do. It can not be both. So once a person is given the Holy Spirit Ephesians 1:13, They are sealed by Gods spirit unto the day of redemption. Ephesians 4:30 Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace ye are saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the Gift of God, (what Jesus did for us) not of works, (what we do or do not do) so no one can boast. When we trust Jesus as the only way of salvation, we are given eternal life. John 1:12 But as many as received Him, (the free gift of salvation) to them gave He power, to become the children of God, even to them that believe on His name. We are born into the family of God by faith alone in what Jesus has done for us on the cross. Once we accept Him as our savior, we are saved forever. But we all still sin. The man living with his father's wife was major sin, and even thou God loves us, He hates our sin. And since we are now a child of God, He chastens those He loves, and in some cases allow Satan to take our life or cut it short because of sin that we do not turn from. Our salvation is never in question, because Jesus paid for all our sins. But we can lose our life and our rewards in heaven because of sin. John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me, will come to me, and ALL that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. So, once we have received the free gift of salvation, we are saved, and have eternal life. John 6:39 Jesus has never lost one. The man who was living with his father's wife quit doing it and came back into fellowship with the church, but if he had not, he would still be saved. As children of God we all sin at times, because none of us are perfect. But we are children of God whether we are obedient or disobedient. If we could live without sin, then Jesus died for no reason. We do not go to hell because we sin, but because we never trust Jesus as the only way to be saved. First Corinthians 15:1-4 is the gospel. That Christ died for our sins, according to the scriptures, that he was buried, and rose again on the third day, according to the scriptures. If you believe it, that He did it for you, you are saved and have eternal life. Where sin abounded, grace much more abounds. We can get out of fellowship with our heavenly father by sin, but never our relationship to Him. We are child of God for ever once we believe on Jesus.
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