The Example of Those Who Fell in the Wilderness

Text: 1 Corinthians 10:1-12

Paul begins by reminding these Christians of the parallels between then and the Israelites (v. 1-4). But most died in the wilderness. We need to learn from their failings so we can avoid their sins.

Do Not Crave Evil Things (v. 6)

  • This was the fundamental problem that led to the others
  • We will never attain holiness if we long for wickedness (Proverbs 23:7)
  • We will never overcome sin if we desire it (James 1:14-15)
  • We must crave/desire good things (Colossians 3:1-2; Philippians 4:8)

Do Not Be Idolaters (v. 7)

  • Example of the golden calf (Exodus 32:1-6)
  • What is an idol? … Anythings that is a substitute for God; object of our devotion/allegiance
  • An idol allows man to act as he pleases
  • Defeating idolatry — recognize God as the only being/thing worthy of our worship/service (Exodus 20:3-5); act according to His will, not our own (Luke 9:23)

Do Not Act Immorally (v. 8)

  • Example of the sin of Peor (Numbers 25:1-9)
  • Immorality is an abomination to the Lord — pre-marital sex (Matthew 19:4-5), adultery (1 Corinthians 6:9), homosexuality (1 Timothy 1:10), pornography (Matthew 5:27-28)
  • Defeating immorality — speak up about the sin (1 Corinthians 6:18; Hebrews 13:4); do not tolerate the sin (1 Corinthians 5:1-2,13)

Do Not Try the Lord (v. 9)

  • Example of the fiery serpents (Numbers 21:4-9)
  • They complained of no food or water — but God had provided (Exodus 16:14-15; Numbers 20:11), they just weren’t thankful
  • We try the Lord when we desire something more/different than what He provides
  • Defeating the tendency to try the Lord — learn contentment (Philippians 4:11); show gratitude (Philippians 4:6)

Do Not Grumble (v. 10)

  • Example of those who grumbled over the fate of Korah and his followers (Numbers 16:41-49)
  • What were they grumbling about? … the opposition to sin & divine judgment
  • Defeating the urge to grumble as they did — understand sin for what it is (1 John 3:4; Isaiah 59:2); recognize that all judgment belongs to the Lord (James 4:12)

Do Not Think You Cannot Fall (v. 11-12)

  • Even a faithful Christian can fall away, just as the Israelites did
  • If you stand, good — continue to stand; do not follow their example of disobedience; remain faithful so you can enter into the reward

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