- ABOUT US
- Calendar and News
- READING PLAN
- The Chosen
The Kingdom of God
“Humanity’s Only Hope”
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
There is no more ridiculous charge brought against the Bible than it is an old book and no longer relevant. Yet there is nothing more remarkable than the reality that the Bible has always been contemporary, up to date, and relevant, having something to say to each and every generation. There isn’t a single topic of our day that the Bible doesn’t address.
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NKJV)
The Bible has always had a word and it always has had the last word, and that’s because it’s God’s word. It’s not a human book of theories and ideas; rather it’s a book that while written by men, they were moved by the Holy Spirit to write these words.
“Knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” (2 Peter 1:20-21 NKJV)
These men were not writing their own opinions; rather they were writing what God told them to write, they were writing under the direction of the Holy Spirit.
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 NKJV)
The word, “inspiration” in the Greek language means that the Scriptures were literally breathed into by God. It comes from the Greek words for God and breath. And so it was that the Breath of God, the Holy Spirit, breathed out these words into these men who wrote them and thus breathing them into us.
Therefore, the business of the church is to preach the Bible, to unfold and expound upon the message of God’s word.
“How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Romans 10:14 NKJV)
In our passage Paul says, “Do you not know.” He expected the Corinthian church to know these things, so the Bible gives us knowledge that is absolutely vital to our life.
To put this another way, all the trouble we’re experiencing is due to our ignorance of certain fundamental truths, the most foundational of them all is that Jesus came into this world so that we no longer have to walk in the darkness of ignorance.
When Pontius Pilate questioned Jesus about His kingdom and whether He was indeed a king, Jesus said,
“You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” (John 18:37 NKJV)
Jesus also said to those who witnessed His forgiveness of the adulterous woman:
“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12 NKJV)
By saying these things Jesus was saying, “I am the truth the world needs. I am the only one who can enlighten humanity, and I am the only one who can open their eyes and bring them out of the darkness and into the light of life.”
So the Bible gives us real knowledge, because it gives us God’s word. It isn’t some fairy tale pie-in-the-sky bye-in-bye unrealistic nonsense. It’s absolutely true and real. It’s a book of facts, history, and tells us the plain truth about ourselves with nothing glossed over.
The Bible is a book that looks us straight in the face and examines the motives of our hearts and tells us the truth about ourselves.
The Bible actually deals with two basic questions. First is why things are like they are, and gives us the causes and explanation. And second the Bible tells us how these things can be put right.
The first thing we’re told is that we’re in danger of being deceived.
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived.” (1 Corinthians 6:9 NKJV)
What we’re being told is humanity is in ignorance because they’ve been deceived, which is by none other than the devil, which isn’t something that should surprise us because Jesus calls Satan a liar and the father of lies. (John 8:44)
Satan deceived Eve telling her that partaking of the fruit wasn’t all that bad. Now he’s telling her offspring, that is you and me, that it’s okay to continue to sin.
In the beginning God made the world perfect, including humanity, and placed them in His perfect creation. Therefore humanity should have lived happily ever after. But that’s not what happened. Instead the story is one that can be read in any local newspaper. It’s a story of jealousy, envy, and murder.
The reason is because the devil came in and deceived, and he’s been deceiving humanity ever since. The Devil is saying that it’s okay to sin, to go against God and His word, and to live our lives as we want, because God really doesn’t care.
But Paul said,
“I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:2-3 NKJV)
How Are We Being Deceived?
The first way we’re being deceived is through the claim that the Bible is no longer relevant. They say the Bible was written over 2,000 years ago, and since that time humanity has advanced in knowledge, therefore the Bible no longer speaks to our lives today. Through this deceit Satan has successfully stopped people from reading the Bible.
But humanity is no different today than they were back 2,000 years ago. The sin is still the same, and we’re still the same. We are still fornicators, idolaters, thieves, covetous, addicts and the like, which Paul states.
Another way the devil deceives is by saying that the Bible was written by man, not by God, and therefore it is full of errors.
But if people took the time to research how the Bible was written and all the evidence that shows that it hasn’t been changed and isn’t full of errors, then this deceit would fall by the wayside.
Even Christians don’t know the facts, and the only thing they quote is that it was given by the inspiration of God, but don’t present any facts. So the deception continues.
The devil says morality is relative, and there are no eternal principles or truths that we can live our lives by. It’s the lie that what may be right for one generation may be wrong for another.
For example, one generation ago alternative lifestyles was wrong, but now it’s touted as being right, and everyone who says differently is wrong, and the same goes for every form of sexual immorality.
Or Satan has convinced us by telling that a lie is okay as long as it gets us what we want.
Everything is relative. There are no eternal standards of right or wrong, and no absolute truths according to the world. But this is nothing but unadulterated deceit. People are making up and living according to their own set of rules and standards, which is nothing more than trying to excuse their sinful ways.
They say the moral teaching of the Bible is good, but cannot accept biblical theology. They want the part where we’re not to murder, but not the part where Jesus is the only way.
People have mistakenly thought that they could hold onto what they like about God’s word, but at the same time get rid of its belief system. This is exactly what we’ve done as a nation. Without Jesus and His sacrifice, however, all the goodness in the world isn’t going to change the heart of man, because man’s heart is corrupt from the get go.
This leads us to the second point
How can we stop being deceived? It’s through believing God and His word.
There is no excuse for ignorance, because God has given us the answer, God has given us the truth of His word to counter the deception of Satan.
God made it known to Adam and Eve, but they chose to ignore God’s word, and thus paid the price, which we are all paying today.
There is an eternal law of righteousness that God has written upon the heart of everyone. To the Gentiles, those who didn’t have God’s law, Paul said,
“They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right.” (Romans 2:15 NLT)
Not only has God made it clear that there is a moral standard, but He also makes it clear that there will also be judgment. Notice again what Paul said to the Corinthians, that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
Let me put this simply, either you’re in or you’re out. Either a person is in the Kingdom of God or they’re not. Don’t let the devil deceive saying that since we said yes to Jesus that it’s okay to continue to sin. The truth is that if we continue to sin, then we’re outside the Kingdom of God looking in.
Satan’s deception is that we can be our own judges as to what right and wrong. In essence he’s saying to us the same thing he said to Eve, that we can be our own gods, determining for ourselves what is right and wrong for our own lives.
This is what got the children of Israel in trouble with God. In the book of Judges it says continually that the people did what was right in their own eyes. Therefore God gave them over to their enemies until they learned their lesson and turned back to God.
Today all the talk is about our economy and about enjoyment, possessions, and money. But the Bible says that it’s not about those things, rather it’s about righteousness, because where there is no righteousness the people and nations perish.
Look at history. All the great empires of the past have vanished, and America will go the same way if we don’t turn back to God. The Bible says only righteousness will save us.
“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” (Proverbs 14:34 NKJV)
Righteousness matters to God. Our problem is that there is no one who is righteous enough for God. (Psalm 14:3; 53:3; Romans 3:12)
This is what Paul summarized as well in our passage. Let me read it in the New Living Translation.
“Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:11 NLT)
The answer is our being born again, having our sins washed away through the blood of Jesus Christ. As the prophet Isaiah said that though our sins be as scarlet, they can be as white as snow. (Isaiah 1:18)
But there is another sad truth, and that is many who are Christians have bought in to the same lie and have believed the deception. They’re the ones who say, “Lord, Lord, didn’t we do all these great things in Your name.” but the Lord will say, “Depart from me you workers of iniquity, I never knew you.”
This is what Paul was saying to those within the Church of Rome. They thought that since they said yes to Jesus that they could continue in their sin.
“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?” (Romans 6:1 NKJV)
And then Paul went on to answer his own question saying, “Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?” (Romans 6:2 NKJV)
Merely saying that we believe is not enough, as the Apostle James says, “You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe–and tremble!” (James 2:19 NKJV)
If there is no change of heart, then it’s all a lie and we are living in deceit.
Now concerning those who still live in their sin, we don’t need to condemn them; rather we need to tell them the truth that they can be deliver out of the darkness of the devil’s deceit and be washed, cleansed, and brought into the light of Christ and be saved.
Being brought into the Kingdom of God by grace through faith is humanity’s only hope.
Wednesday Evening Bible Study