1Does any one of you, when he has a [a]complaint (civil dispute) with another [believer], dare to go to law before unrighteous men (non-believers) instead of [placing the issue] before the saints (God’s people)? 2 [b]Do you not know that the saints (God’s people) will [one day] judge the world? If the world is to be judged by you, are you not competent [c]to try trivial (insignificant, petty) cases? 3 Do you not know that we [believers] will judge angels? How much more then [as to] matters of this life? 4 So if you have lawsuits dealing with matters of this life, are you appointing those as judges [to hear disputes] who are of no account in the church? 5 I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is not one wise man among you who [is governed by integrity and] will be able and competent to decide [private disputes] between his fellow believers, 6 but instead, brother goes to law against brother, and that before [judges who are] unbelievers?
7 Why, the very fact that you have lawsuits with one another is already a defeat. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded? 8 On the contrary, it is you who wrong and defraud, and you do this even to your brothers and sisters.
9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit or have any share in the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; [d]neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate [by perversion], nor [e]those who participate in homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers [whose words are used as weapons to abuse, insult, humiliate, intimidate, or slander], nor swindlers will inherit or have any share in the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you [before you believed]. But you were washed [by the atoning sacrifice of Christ], you were sanctified [set apart for God, and made holy], you were justified [declared free of guilt] in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the [Holy] Spirit of our God [the source of the believer’s new life and changed behavior].
The Body Is the Lord’s
12 Everything is permissible for me, but not all things are beneficial. Everything is permissible for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything [and brought under its power, allowing it to control me]. 13 Food is for the stomach and the stomach for food, but God will do away with both of them. The body is not intended for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body [to save, sanctify, and raise it again because of the sacrifice of the cross]. 14 And God has not only raised the Lord [to life], but will also raise us up by His power. 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Am I therefore to take the members of Christ and make them part of a [f]prostitute? Certainly not! 16 Do you not know that the one who joins himself to a prostitute is one body with her? For He says, “The two shall be one flesh.” 17 But the one who is united and joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. 18 Run away from sexual immorality [in any form, whether thought or behavior, whether visual or written]. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the one who is sexually immoral sins against his own body. 19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is within you, whom you have [received as a gift] from God, and that you are not your own [property]? 20 You were bought with a price [you were actually purchased with the precious blood of Jesus and made His own]. So then, honor and glorify God with your body.
- 1 Corinthians 6:1 I.e. a property or civil claim (not a criminal matter) before it goes to court.
- 1 Corinthians 6:2 This is the first of six “Do you not know” statements in this chapter.
- 1 Corinthians 6:2 Or to form the smallest courts.
- 1 Corinthians 6:9 This list of sinners, which continues into v 10, is used by Paul to describe various sinful lifestyles. All such lifestyles are impossible for true believers, who continue to sin but not to live lives of sin.
- 1 Corinthians 6:9 Lit male homosexuals.
- 1 Corinthians 6:15 Corinth was famous for its prostitutes, and many if not all probably practiced their trade in connection with the worship of Aphrodite. Having relations with temple or cult prostitutes was considered acceptable behavior, and Paul’s admonitions here indicate that some of the Corinthian converts were continuing the practice.