Phrase-by-Phrase Exegetical Commentary on 1 Corinthians 6:9-10

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1 Corinthians 6:9-10 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
Or 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 men of passive homosexual acts, nor men of active homosexual acts,[25] 10 nor thieves, nor greedy persons, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you; 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.

[25] The two Greek terms refer to passive men partners and active men partners in consensual homosexual acts. “nor men of passive homosexual acts [μαλακοὶ], nor men of active homosexual acts [ἀρσενοκοῖται]

In this passage, the apostle Paul is warning the Corinthian believers about the consequences of sin and reminding them that those who continue to engage in certain sinful behaviors will not inherit the kingdom of God. He lists several specific sins, including sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, homosexuality, theft, greed, drunkenness, reviling (insulting or speaking disrespectfully of others), and swindling (cheating or defrauding others). The overall message of the passage is that Christians should strive to live a holy and righteous life, turning away from sin and following the teachings of Jesus.

Here Is a Phrase-by-Phrase Exegetical Commentary on 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Verse 9: “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality.”

  • “Or do you not know”: This phrase suggests that the Corinthian believers should already be aware of the principle being stated.
  • “the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God”: The word “unrighteous” (Greek: “adikos”) refers to those who are unjust or wicked. The phrase “inherit the kingdom of God” refers to the promise of eternal life and blessings that God has promised to those who believe in Him. This verse is stating that those who are unjust or wicked will not receive this promise.
  • “Do not be deceived”: This is a warning against being led astray by false teachings or beliefs.
  • “neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality”: This list gives examples of specific behaviors that are inconsistent with righteousness and therefore disqualify a person from inheriting the kingdom of God. The Greek word translated as “sexually immoral” (porneia) refers to any kind of sexual immorality or promiscuity, including adultery and premarital sex. “Idolaters” refers to those who worship false gods or idols. “Adulterers” refers to those who engage in sexual relations outside of marriage. “Men who practice homosexuality” refers to men who engage in sexual relations with other men. The two Greek terms refer to passive men partners and active men partners in consensual homosexual acts. “nor men of passive homosexual acts [μαλακοὶ], nor men of active homosexual acts [ἀρσενοκοῖται]

Verse 10: “nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

  • “nor thieves”: This refers to those who steal from others.
  • “nor the greedy”: The Greek word translated as “greedy” (pleonektes) refers to those who are always seeking to acquire more and more, often at the expense of others.
  • “nor drunkards”: This refers to those who are habitually drunk.
  • “nor revilers”: The Greek word translated as “revilers” (loidoros) refers to those who speak abusively or insultingly to others.
  • “nor swindlers”: This refers to those who deceive or defraud others for personal gain.
  • “will inherit the kingdom of God”: As in verse 9, this phrase refers to the promise of eternal life and blessings that God has promised to those who believe in Him. This verse is stating that those who engage in the behaviors listed will not receive this promise.

Verse 11: “And such were some of you. 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.”

  • “And such were some of you”: This phrase acknowledges that some of the Corinthian believers used to engage in the sinful behaviors listed in verses 9-10.
  • “But you were washed”: The Greek word translated as “washed” (louō) means to cleanse or purify. This could refer to being cleansed from the guilt and consequences of sin through faith in Jesus Christ.
  • “you were sanctified”: The Greek word translated as “sanctified” (hagiazō) means to set apart for a sacred purpose or to make holy. In the New Testament, this often refers to the process of being made holy through faith in Jesus Christ.
  • “you were justified”: The Greek word translated as “justified” (dikaioō) means to be declared righteous or justified in the eyes of God. This often refers to the legal standing of a believer being changed from guilty to not guilty through faith in Jesus Christ.
  • “in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God”: This phrase indicates that the cleansing, sanctification, and justification of the Corinthian believers was accomplished through the power and authority of Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit.

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