1Cor 5:3-5 Effective Discipline

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May 12, 2023, 7:04:04 AM5/12/23
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Effective Discipline

1Cor 5:3-5  Even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. And I have already passed judgment on the one who did this, just as if I were present. When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.

"sinful nature" is literally the word "flesh" ("sarx"). That is, Paul intended for Satan to "knock his sarx off" - if you're familiar with the idiom. Paul himself had benefited from such an experience when the Lord gave him a vision of heaven. "To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me." 2Cor 12:7 And Paul had also delivered others to Satan for like purpose. 1Tim 1:20 "Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme" The intention is to have the person experience humiliation in some form so as to bring them to repentance or help them to maintain a proper level of humility.

"When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world." 1Cor 11:32

To utilize Satan for such a purpose requires permission. Unlike what is often portray in the media, Satan is under God's authority and only does what God permits him to do. Thus in the book of Job Satan required God's permission to harm Job. And Satan needed the Lord's permission to tempt Peter. Luke 22:31  "Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat." (Wouldn't it be nice if Christians learned to seek God's permission at least as much as Satan does?)  Handing the man over to Satan required the Christians to pray for the Lord to do so. And believe it or not, at times it is appropriate to do so, but not in a spirit of vengeance. Rather in love some need the necessary discipline to bring them to repentance.

Perhaps this is something you may warn your kids about the next time they rebel.

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