Paul understood how hard it can be to avoid wrong behaviour. So he was careful not just to give instructions for Christians to obey. He also explained why Christians should do these things. He wanted them to understand the reasons so that they could make right decisions.
Here, Paul was writing especially about wrong sex acts. Of course, people do such things with their bodies. So Paul urged his readers to think about the relationship between their bodies and Christ. Then they would understand how God thinks about such behaviour.
The words at the end of 1 Corinthians 6:16 are from Genesis 2:24. That verse describes how God unites a man with his wife. And the same verse also describes the relationship between Christ and Christians (Ephesians 5:31-32).
That is how God thinks about Christians: as the bride of Christ (Ephesians 5:25-27). And if they are his bride, they are united with him as part of his body (12:27).
And that is how Christians should think about themselves. Together, they are the bride of Christ and, therefore, part of his body (10:16-17).
Genesis 2:24 helps us to understand why a man should only have sex with his wife. Someone who has sex with someone else has begun a relationship with that person. In God’s opinion, there is a real connection between them.
Christians belong to Christ even as a bride belongs to her husband. So it is very wrong if they then form a connection with someone else by means of a wrong sex relationship. God’s people belong to him, and he wants them to be wholly his.
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© 2014, Keith Simons.