1 Corinthians 10


Paul ended last chapter by telling everyone that he was running for a prize.

  1. You do not win by entering the race.
  2. You win by finishing.
  3. He is disciplining his body to make it do what he wants it to do.
  4. Does not want to be disqualified.


Now Paul is going to give us an example of someone who did not finish the race.

1. Israel’s example of one who failed to obtain the prize.


  1. Greek word “pantes” which means all and is used five times in the first five verses
    1. ALL our fathers escaped by miracle from bondage
    2. ALL received the tokens of the Mosaic covenant
    3. ALL participated under its forms in Christ
    4. MOST of them perished.
  2. The cloud shaded them the sea made a path for them Vs 1
    1. Glorious signs to “our ancestors salvation
    2. Ancestors identifies the NT church with Israel
  3. They were baptized into a spiritual union with Moses Vs 2
    1. They were compelled to follow his leadership
    2. They acknowledged fellowship with God who appeared through these events.
  4. After deliverance came sustenance Vs 3, 4a
    1. Miraculous bread – “manna” (See Exodus 16: 4 – 30)
    2. Miraculous drink – water from the rock (See Exodus 17: 1ff)
    3. It is spiritual because of its supernatural character.
  5. That rock was Christ Vs 4b

1. They were actually nourished by Christ in the wilderness

1. This is why Moses was so greatly rebuked for striking the rock twice when he was told to speak to the rock. (See Numbers 20: 1 – 13)

  1. Israel rejected Christ and went after idols in the wilderness
  2. Idolatry was preferred over a relationship with Christ.

6. They failed to win the prize Vs 5

  1. God scattered their bodies all over the desert
  2. MANY of them died? what an understatement. Actually only two survived over the ageof 20.
  3. IMPORTANT: all of them experienced a type of baptism and communion.

2. An Application as well as a warning Vs 6 – 13


  1. Now these things were our examples Vs 6a
    1. Israel had special privileges
    2. Yet Israel failed to obtain the prize
    3. And they thus serve as warnings.
  2. Four examples of how Israel lusted after evil things Vs 7 – 10

1. Example One Israel ate in the presence of the golden calf Vs 7

1. The Corinthians were eating meat in the presence of idols

2. REMEMBER this was compromise which was justified as business. Business was done in these areas and these christians were willing to compromise to advance themselves.

2. Example Two Israel was immoral Vs 8 (See Numbers 25: 1 – 9)
1. The Corinthians church had a son sleeping with his fathers wife.

  1. Example Three They tested Christ (See Numbers 21: 4 – 7)
    1. Tempt = try to the utmost.
    2. The Corinthians making a mockery of Christ by suing each other in public courts.They are playing with their place in heaven.
  2. Example Four They grumbled (See Numbers 14: 1 – 38 and 16: 41)
    1. Israel continually grumbled and finally was destroyed in the desert, except Joshua and Caleb
    2. The Corinthians grumbling against their spiritual father Paul and accusing him of not being spiritual!
  1. These examples are warnings for us Vs 11
    1. There is a God given reason for this to be put in the Bible
    2. Everything must be viewed in the light of eternity
    3. All of these things serve as a warning as God is bringing all of His purposes to fulfillmentin Christ.
  2. The Corinthians must take care or they may meet a similar fate.Vs 12
    1. Israel’s sacraments were no guarantee for them
    2. Those who feel being baptized or taking communion places them above danger need tobeware.
  3. Important distinction.
    1. We all face trials and even though there is an escape for us, we sometimes fall
      1. These temptations are there as we are drawn away by our own fleshly wants anddesires.
      2. They lead to quarrels with others that we are around as we fight to get what we want.
      3. We are still secure in these trials.
        1. God will not allow more than we can bear in the way of trials
        2. He will provide a way out.
    2. Idolatry is a tempting of Christ

1. This is when we place ourselves into a position where we are pursuing other things than Christ.

  1. The Corinthians were pursuing other teachers
  2. They were pursuing lustful desires and suing each other to get them
  3. They were compromising to get ahead in the business world.

1. Not willing to lose friends for the sake of the cross.! 4. This is what placed them on dangerous ground.

3!. Flee Idolatry Vs 14 – 22 Conclusion that began in chapter 8

1. Decide what I am saying is true Vs 14.
1. Don’t decide whether Paul is correct or not, but decide he is right.

  1. When we partake of communion, we are saying we are of one covenant Vs 15 – 18
  2. We are united with each other and so we are together united with Christ.
    1. We are not allowed other unions to take that place.
  3. There is religious significance in the Lord’s supper, and there is religious significance in eating together over idolatry. Vs 19 – 22
  1. There are demonic forces at work here
  2. Any supernatural working happening here is demonic in nature.
  3. Don’t share in a meal with demons.
  4. We can’t consistently [partake of the Lord’s cup and the cup of demonic forces andexpect a blessing
  5. We can’t be devoted to two gods (See Matthew 6: 24)

4. Repeating marketplace food Vs 23 – 11: 1

1. I am lawfully allowed to eat anything that is offered to me in the marketplace.!

  1. This is not him pursuing a meal in front of an idol, this is that food being offered in ahouse.
  2. If the person with me has no problem with it, then I am good.
  3. If the person has a problem with it, abstain.
  4. Don’t stand int he way of someone else hearing the gospel. Vs 33

1. This is not trying to be everyone else’s friend, but building a bridge to share the gospel.