2nd Cor. 6
14 Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?
15 Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?
16 Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I WILL DWELL IN THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE.
17 “Therefore, COME OUT FROM THEIR MIDST AND BE SEPARATE,” says the Lord. “AND DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN; And I will welcome you.
18 “And I will be a father to you, And you shall be sons and daughters to Me,” Says the Lord Almighty.
1 ¶ Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
In verses 14-18 of chapter six Paul is exhorting the Corinthians to walk clean before the Lord. The reason parts of verses 16-17 are capitalized is because they are quotes taken from the Old Testament. As a side note, it’s interesting that Paul pulls these verses from various Old Testament passages. According to the strict rule of hermeneutics (the “science” of Biblical interpretation) this is a no-no because the verses are taken out of the original context to accentuate another point. But such is the moving of the Holy Spirit.
Verse one of chapter seven is the passage we want to focus on. We understand well enough what it means to be cleansed from the defilement of the flesh. The Adamic, flesh nature is a bottomless pit of corruption. But what about the defilement of spirit? What does that mean? Our spirits are influenced by the defilement of the soul realm. We are created spirit, soul, and body. But these three aspects of our being are not separate compartments each unaffected by the other. For example, what we eat can adversely affect us not just physically, but emotionally. What we eat can also affect our spirits. Have you ever had a keen awareness of the presence of the Lord and then after a big meal feel as if you couldn’t discern you way out of a paper bag? Or, if you are going through some emotional trauma find that your physical body develops certain ailments? That same emotional trauma can also cloud our spirits from perceiving the Lord. We are an interrelated and complex creation. We want to be a people who can live, move, and breathe in a pure atmosphere of spirit devoid of the defilements that inevitably come. Now, how does this come about? Continue reading