Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 – Scripture of the Day (February 6, 2014 – HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD!!)
Before I begin my commentary for today’s Scripture of the Day, I want to give a shout-out to my father, Mike Mitchell, a sound gospel preacher and the best father for which anyone could ask. Today is his birthday. I won’t reveal how old he is, except to say that he looks younger than he is. I love you very much, Dad. I would not be preaching the gospel from the pulpit or trying to reach people with the Bible on this blog if you and Mom had not raised me to love God from my childhood (Eph. 6:4; 2 Tim. 1:5; 3:15; Deut. 6:6-9). I would not be trying my best to be a good husband and father if you and Mom had not set that example before me throughout my life. Thank you. I wish I could see you face-to-face today and tell you this in person, but I guess we’ll have to settle for me informing the folks on the Internet. I miss you, and I really wish you were with me today, but I know that you are in spirit and that your prayers, love, and support are always with me. For that and for a lifetime of your love and strength, my gratitude knows no bounds. Happy birthday.
Excuse me for a second, folks. I have something in my eye… 😉
Okay, on with today’s Scripture of the Day…
Contextually, the apostle is in the midst of condemning the sin of fornication, with a prostitute or otherwise (6:13-20). As Christians, we are members of the body of Christ, his church (Eph. 1:22-23; 1 Cor. 12:12ff). We are to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice to God (Rom. 12:1). While that is commonly and rightly interpreted to mean that our entire lives belong to God and his service, let us not forget that includes our physical bodies and how we use them also. Earlier, the apostle alluded to food and how it was meant for our bodies and our bodies were meant for food (6:13a), but even then we must practice self-control with regards to what we eat and how much we eat of it so that we do not commit the sin of gluttony (Prov. 23:20-21; Phil. 3:19; Tit. 1:12-13). But though our physical bodies are meant for food, they are not meant for fornication (v. 13b). They are meant for the Lord, and the Lord for them (v. 13c; cf. Rom. 12:1).
So shall we take our bodies – which are meant for the Lord and not meant for fornication, which are part of the body of Christ, his church for which he died – and use them to commit fornication with a prostitute and thus become one body, one flesh, with her rather than with our spouse as God intended (6:15-16; cf. Gen. 2:24; Matt. 19:5; Mark 10:8; Eph. 5:31)? We were joined to the Lord (6:17) when we were baptized into him (Rom. 6:3-4; Gal. 3:26-27; 1 Cor. 12:13; cf. Eph. 1:22-23). This unity with God which God desires us to have is violated when he use our bodies sinfully by fornicating, which is why God wants us to flee from this sin (vs. 17-18a).
Not only that, but we sin against our own bodies when we commit the sin of fornication (6:18b). While talking about the act of fornication which is homosexuality, God talked about how those who committed such acts would be “receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error” (Rom. 1:26-27), an allusion to the venereal diseases that come about primarily as a result of heterosexual and homosexual fornication. By committing fornication, we sin against our own bodies by opening the door for those diseases. Even more so, we sin against own bodies by using them in a way that is blatantly against the wishes of the Lord for whom they exist, and the Holy Spirit which dwells within them (6:19a).
It’s easy to forget that we as Christians are not our own (6:19b). When we obeyed the gospel, we gave our lives to Christ. More than that, he bought us with his own blood (6:20a; Acts 20:28). He gave his life for us. We are HIS slaves, not the slaves of sin (Rom. 6:17-18). So let us glorify him by using our bodies the way he wants (6:20b).