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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Corinthians 5:5

I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Adam Clarke Commentary

To deliver such a one unto Satan - There is no evidence that delivering to Satan was any form of excommunication known either among the Jews or the Christians. Lightfoot, Selden, and Schoettgen, who have searched all the Jewish records, have found nothing that answers to this: it was a species of punishment administered in extraordinary cases, in which the body and the mind of an incorrigible transgressor were delivered by the authority of God into the power of Satan, to be tortured with diseases and terrors as a warning to all; but while the body and mind were thus tormented, the immortal spirit was under the influence of the Divine mercy; and the affliction, in all probability, was in general only for a season; though sometimes it was evidently unto death, as the destruction of the flesh seems to imply. But the soul found mercy at the hand of God; for such a most extraordinary interference of God's power and justice, and of Satan's influence, could not fail to bring the person to a state of the deepest humiliation and contrition; and thus, while the flesh was destroyed, the spirit was saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. No such power as this remains in the Church of God; none such should be assumed; the pretensions to it are as wicked as they are vain. It was the same power by which Ananias and Sapphira were struck dead, and Elymas the sorcerer struck blind. Apostles alone were intrusted with it.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/1-corinthians-5.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

To deliver - This is the sentence which is to be executed. You are to deliver him to Satan, etc.

Unto Satan - Beza, and the Latin fathers, suppose that this is only an expression of excommunication. They say, that in the Scriptures there are but two kingdoms recognized - the kingdom of God, or the church, and the kingdom of the world, which is regarded as under the control of Satan; and that to exclude a man from one is to subject him to the dominion of the other. There is some foundation for this opinion; and there can be no doubt that excommunication is here intended, and that, by excommunication, the offender was in some sense placed under the control of Satan. It is further evident that it is here supposed that by being thus placed under him the offender would be subject to corporal inflictions by the agency of Satan, which are here called the “destruction of the flesh.” Satan is elsewhere referred to as the author of bodily diseases. Thus, in the case of Job, Job 2:7. A similar instance is mentioned in 1 Timothy 1:20, where Paul says he had delivered Hymeneus and Alexander to “Satan, that they might learn not to blaspheme.” It may be observed here that though this was to be done by the concurrence of the church, as having a right to administer discipline, yet it was directed by apostolic authority; and there is no evidence that this was the usual form of excommunication, nor ought it now to be used. There was evidently miraculous power evinced in this case, and that power has long since ceased in the church.

For the destruction of the flesh - We may observe here:

(1) That this does not mean that the man was to die under the infliction of the censure, for the object was to recover him; and it is evident that, whatever he suffered as the consequence of this, he survived it, and Paul again instructed the Corinthians to admit him to their fellowship, 2 Corinthians 2:7.

(2) it was designed to punish him for licentiousness of life - often called in the Scriptures one of the sins, or works of the flesh Galatians 5:19, and the design was that the punishment should follow “in the line of the offence,” or be a just retribution - as punishment often does. Many have supposed that by the “destruction of the flesh” Paul meant only the destruction of his fleshly appetites or carnal affections; and that he supposed that this would be effected by the act of excommunication. But it is very evident from the Scriptures that the apostles were imbued with the power of inflicting diseases or bodily calamities for crimes. See Acts 13:11; 1 Corinthians 11:30. What this bodily malady was we have no means of knowing. It is evident that it was not of very long duration, since when the apostle exhorts them 2 Corinthians 2:7 again to receive him, there is no mention made of his suffering then under it - This was an extraordinary and miraculous power. It was designed for the government of the church in its infancy, when everything was suited to show the direct agency of God; and it ceased, doubtless, with the apostles. The church now has no such power. It cannot now work miracles; and all its discipline now is to be moral discipline, designed not to inflict bodily pain and penalties, but to work a moral reformation in the offender.

That the spirit may be saved - That his soul might be saved; that he might be corrected, humbled, and reformed by these sufferings, and recalled to the paths of piety and virtue. This expresses the true design of the discipline of the church, and it ought never to be inflicted but with a direct intention to benefit the offender, and to save the soul. Even when he is cut off and disowned, the design should not be vengeance, or punishment merely, but it should be to recover him and save him from ruin.

In the day of the Lord Jesus - The Day of Judgment when the Lord Jesus shall come, and shall collect his people to himself.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-corinthians-5.html. 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

To deliver such a one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Deliver ... to Satan ... This was the apostolic sentence; but the full meaning of it is not fully clear, there being a great many things that people simply do not know concerning what is here revealed.

Some things are crystal clear. Paul denounced this sin in the strongest language found in the New Testament; and such a judgment could have been pronounced and executed only by an apostle of Christ. There is a hint that Paul expected that the man would die upon the announcement of his judgment, in the same manner as Ananias and Sapphira had died in Jerusalem. The salvation held out as a hope for the condemned was not envisioned as following his return to the congregation, but as something he would receive "in the day of the Lord Jesus," a certain reference to the final judgment. If these implications should be allowed, this exceedingly severe judgment "might have been an act of mercy, as well."[12] See my Commentary on Acts, under Acts 5:5.

The opinion that this offender repented and came back into the congregation is founded upon 2 Corinthians 7:12; but there is little certainty that this application is correct. If that is what happened, then what became of "the destruction of the flesh" enunciated in this judgment?

The frequent opinion that "The sinful man (was) delivered to Satan, to suffer physical affliction, to bring him to repentance and turn out for the good of his soul,"[13] is another example of what the passage is thought to teach.

Another thing that is certain, with reference to this, was pointed out by Adam Clarke:

No such power as this remains in the Church of God; none such should be assumed; and the pretensions to it are as wicked as they are vain. It was the same power by which Ananias and Sapphira were struck dead, and Elymas the sorcerer struck blind. Apostles alone were entrusted with it.[14]

Even an apostle like Paul exercised such power and authority only upon rare occasions, another instance being that of Hymenaeus and Alexander (1 Timothy 1:20).

[12] F. F. Bruce, The Book of Acts (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1954), p. 114.

[13] F. F. Bruce, Answers to Questions (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1972), p. 91.

[14] Adam Clarke, Commentary on the Holy Bible (New York: Carlton and Porter, 1831), Vol. VI, p. 213.


Copyright Statement
James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/1-corinthians-5.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

To deliver such an one unto Satan,.... This, as before observed, is to be read in connection with 1 Corinthians 5:3 and is what the apostle there determined to do with this incestuous person; namely, to deliver him unto Satan; by which is meant, not the act of excommunication, or the removing of him from the communion of the church, which is an act of the whole church, and not of any single person; whereas this was what the church had nothing to do with; it was not what they were to do, or ought to do, but what the apostle had resolved to do; and which was an act of his own, and peculiar to him as an apostle, see 1 Timothy 1:20. Nor is this a form of excommunication; nor was this phrase ever used in excommunicating persons by the primitive churches; nor ought it ever to be used; it is what no man, or set of men, have power to do now, since the ceasing of the extraordinary gifts of the Spirit, which the apostles were endowed with; who, as they had a power over Satan to dispossess him from the bodies of men, so to deliver up the bodies of men into his hands, as the apostle did this man's:

for the destruction of the flesh; that is, that his body might be shook, buffeted, afflicted, and tortured in a terrible manner; that by this means he might be brought to a sense of his sin, to repentance for it, and make an humble acknowledgment of it:

that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus; that he might be renewed in the spirit of his mind, be restored by repentance, and his soul be saved in the day of Christ; either at death, when soul and body would be separated, or at the day of the resurrection, when both should be reunited; for the flesh here means, not the corruption of nature, in opposition to the spirit, as a principle of grace, but the body, in distinction from the soul: nor was the soul of this man, only his body, delivered for a time unto Satan; the end of which was, that his soul might be saved, which could never be done by delivering it up to Satan: and very wrongfully is this applied to excommunication; when it is no part of excommunication, nor the end of it, to deliver souls to Satan, but rather to deliver them from him. The phrase seems to be Jewish, and to express that extraordinary power the apostles had in those days, as well in giving up the bodies to Satan, for a temporal chastisement, as in delivering them from him. The Jews say, that Solomon had such a power; of whom they tell the following storyF5T. Bab. Succa, fol. 53. 1. :

"one day he saw the angel of death grieving; he said to him, why grievest thou? he replied, these two Cushites have desired of me to sit here, "he delivered them to the devil"; the gloss is, these seek of me to ascend, for their time to die was come; but he could not take away their souls, because it was decreed concerning them, that they should not die but in the gate of Luz, מסרינהו שלמה לשעירים "Solomon delivered them to the devils", for he was king over them, as it is written, 1 Chronicles 29:12 for he reigned over them, that are above, and them that are below.'

The phrase is much the same as here, and the power which they, without any foundation, ascribe to Solomon, the apostles had: this is their rod which they used, sometimes in striking persons dead, sometimes by inflicting diseases on them themselves; and at other times by delivering them up into the hands of Satan to be afflicted and terrified by him, which is the case here. And it may be observed, that the giving up of Job into the hands of Satan, by the Lord, is expressed in the Septuagint version by the same word as here; for where it is said, Job 2:6 "behold, he is in thine hand"; that version renders it, "behold, παραδιδωμισοι αυτον, I deliver him to thee", that is, to Satan; and which was done, that his body might be smote with sore boils by him, as it was; only his life was to be preserved, that he was not suffered to touch.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-corinthians-5.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

5 To c deliver such an one unto Satan for the 6 destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

(5) The one who is excommunicated is delivered to the power of Satan, in that he is cast out of the house of God.

(c) What it is to be delivered to Satan the Lord himself declares when he says, "Let him be unto thee as a heathen and publican"; (Matthew 18:17). That is to say, to be disfranchised and put out of the right and privileges of the city of Christ, which is the Church, outside of which Satan is lord and master. {(6)} The goal of excommunication is not to cast away the excommunicate that he should utterly perish, but that he may be saved, that is, that by this means his flesh may be tamed, that he may learn to live to the Spirit.


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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/1-corinthians-5.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Besides excommunication (of which the Corinthians themselves had the power), Paul delegates here to the Corinthian Church his own special power as an apostle, of inflicting corporeal disease or death in punishment for sin (“to deliver to Satan such an one,” that is, so heinous a sinner). For instances of this power, see Acts 5:1-11; Acts 13:11; 1 Timothy 1:20. As Satan receives power at times to try the godly, as Job (Job 2:4-7) and Paul (2 Corinthians 12:7; compare also as to Peter, Luke 22:31), much more the ungodly. Satan, the “accuser of the brethren” (Revelation 12:10) and the “adversary” (1 Peter 5:8), demands the sinner for punishment on account of sin (Zechariah 3:1). When God lets Satan have his way, He is said to “deliver the sinner unto Satan” (compare Psalm 109:6). Here it is not finally; but for the affliction of the body with disease, and even death (1 Corinthians 11:30, 1 Corinthians 11:32), so as to destroy fleshly lust. He does not say, “for the destruction of the body,” for it shall share in redemption (Romans 8:23); but of the corrupt “flesh” which “cannot inherit the kingdom of God,” and the lusts of which had prompted this offender to incest (Romans 7:5; Romans 8:9, Romans 8:10). The “destruction of the flesh” answers to “mortify the deeds of the body” (Romans 8:13), only that the latter is done by one‘s self, the former is effected by chastisement from God (compare 1 Peter 4:6):

the spirit … saved — the spiritual part of man, in the believer the organ of the Holy Spirit. Temporary affliction often leads to permanent salvation (Psalm 83:16).


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/1-corinthians-5.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

To deliver such an one unto Satan (παραδουναι τον τοιουτον τωι Σαταναιparadounai ton toiouton tōi Satanāi). We have the same idiom in 1 Timothy 1:20 used of Hymenius and Alexander. In 2 Corinthians 12:7 Paul speaks of his own physical suffering as a messenger (αγγελοςaggelos) of Satan. Paul certainly means expulsion from the church (1 Corinthians 5:2) and regarding him as outside of the commonwealth of Israel (Ephesians 2:11.). But we are not to infer that expulsion from the local church means the damnation of the offender. The wilful offenders have to be expelled and not regarded as enemies, but admonished as brothers (2 Thessalonians 3:14.).

For the destruction of the flesh (εις ολετρον της σαρκοςeis olethron tēs sarkos). Both for physical suffering as in the case of Job (Job 2:6) and for conquest of the fleshly sins, remedial punishment.

That the spirit may be saved (ινα το πνευμα σωτηιhina to pneuma sōthēi). The ultimate purpose of the expulsion as discipline. Note the use of το πνευμαto pneuma in contrast with σαρχsarx as the seat of personality (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:15). Paul‘s motive is not merely vindictive, but the reformation of the offender who is not named here nor in 2 Corinthians 2:5-11 if the same man is meant, which is very doubtful. The final salvation of the man in the day of Christ is the goal and this is to be attained not by condoning his sin.


Copyright Statement
The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/1-corinthians-5.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

d To deliver - unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh. On this very obscure and much controverted passage it may be observed: 1. That it implies excommunication from the Church. 2. That it implies something more, the nature of which is not clearly known. 3. That casting the offender out of the Church involved casting him back into the heathen world, which Paul habitually conceives as under the power of Satan. 4. That Paul has in view the reformation of the offender: “that the spirit may be saved,” etc. This reformation is to be through affliction, disease, pain, or loss, which also he is wont to conceive as Satan's work. See 1 Thessalonians 2:18; 2 Corinthians 12:7. Compare Luke 13:16. Hence in delivering him over to these he uses the phrase deliver unto Satan. Compare 1 Timothy 1:20.


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Bibliography
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/1-corinthians-5.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

To deliver such an one — This was the highest degree of punishment in the Christian church; and we may observe, the passing this sentence was the act of the apostle, not of the Corinthians.

To Satan — Who was usually permitted, in such cases, to inflict pain or sickness on the offender.

For the destruction — Though slowly and gradually.

Of the flesh — Unless prevented by speedy repentance.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/1-corinthians-5.html. 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

To deliver such a one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh. Some suppose that this expression refers to a miraculous power with which the apostles were invested, and which Paul here intended to authorize the Corinthian church, to employ, for the punishment of this criminal, by subjecting him to bodily disease and suffering, through the agency of Satan, in judgment for his sin. Others suppose that the phrase delivering him to Satan, is a figurative expression, meaning his excommunication from the church, which would be removing him from the kingdom of Christ, into the visible kingdom of Satan; and that by the destruction of the flesh, is meant the subduing and eradicating of those fleshly lusts, which had causeD him to sin.


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Bibliography
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/1-corinthians-5.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

5.To deliver to Satan for the destruction of the flesh. As the Apostles had been furnished with this power among others, that they could deliver over to Satan wicked and obstinate persons, and made use of him as a scourge to correct them, Chrysostom, and those that follow him, view these words of Paul as referring to a chastisement of that kind, agreeably to the exposition that is usually given of another passage, in reference to Alexander and Hymeneus, (Titus 1:20.) To deliver over to Satan, they think, means nothing but the infliction of a severe punishment upon the body. But when I examine the whole context more narrowly, and at the same time compare it with what is stated in 2 Corinthians 2:5, I give up that interpretation, as forced and at variance with Paul’s meaning, and understand it simply of excommunication. For delivering over to Satan is an appropriate expression for denoting excommunication; for as Christ reigns in the Church, so Satan reigns out of the Church, as Augustine, too, has remarked, (280) in his sixty-eighth sermon on the words of the Apostle, where he explains this passage. (281) As, then, we are received into the communion of the Church, and remain in it on this condition, that we are under the protection and guardianship of Christ, I say, that he who is cast out of the Church is in a manner delivered over to the power of Satan, for he becomes an alien, and is cast out of Christ’s kingdom.

The clause that follows, for the destruction of the flesh, is made use of for the purpose of softening; for Paul’s meaning is not that the person who is chastised is given over to Satan to be utterly ruined, or so as to be given up to the devil in perpetual bondage, but that it is a temporary condemnation, and not only so, but of such a nature as will be salutary. For as the salvation equally with the condemnation of the spirit is eternal, he takes the condemnation of the flesh as meaning temporal condemnation. “We will condemn him in this world for a time, that the Lord may preserve him in his kingdom.” This furnishes an answer to the objection, by which some endeavor to set aside this exposition, for as the sentence of excommunication is directed rather against the soul than against the outward man, they inquire how it can be called the destruction of the flesh My answer, then, is, (as I have already in part stated,) that the destruction of the flesh is opposed to the salvation of the spirit, simply because the former is temporal and the latter is eternal. In this sense the Apostle in Hebrews 5:7, uses the expression the days of Christ s flesh, to mean the course of his mortal life. Now the Church in chastising offenders with severity, spares them not in this world, in order that God may spare them. (282) Should any one wish to have anything farther in reference to the rite of excommunication, its causes, necessity, purposes, and limitation, let him consult my Institutes. (283)


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/1-corinthians-5.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

destruction

(Greek - ὄλεθρο, used elsewhere, 1 Thessalonians 5:3 ; 2 Thessalonians 1:9; 1 Timothy 6:9. never means annihilation.

saved (See Scofield "Romans 1:16").

Jesus Some ancient authorities omit "Jesus."


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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/1-corinthians-5.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Ver. 5. To deliver such an one to Satan] That he may learn not to blaspheme, that is, not to cause others to blaspheme or speak evil of the good way of God, for his flagitious courses.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-corinthians-5.html. 1865-1868.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

5. ἵνα τὸ πν. σωθῇ] The aim of the ὄλεθρ. τ. σαρ.,—which he said ἤδη τῷ διαβόλῳ νόμους τιθείς, καὶ οὐκ ἀφιεὶς αὐτὸν περαιτέρω προβῆναι, as Chrys. p. 128. Thus the proposed punishment, severe as it might seem, would be in reality a merciful one, tending to the eternal happiness of the offender. A greater contrast to this can hardly be conceived, than the terrible forms of excommunication subsequently devised, and even now in use in the Romish church, under the fiction of delegated apostolic power. The delivering to Satan for the destruction of the spirit, can belong only to those who do the work of Satan. Stanley remarks, “For the popular constitution of the early Corinthian church, see Clem. Rom(10) i. 44 (p. 297): where the rulers of that society are described as having been appointed συνευδοκησάσης τῆς ἐκκλησίας πάσης.”


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Bibliography
Alford, Henry. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/1-corinthians-5.html. 1863-1878.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

1 Corinthians 5:5. τὸν τοιοῦτον] the so-constituted, comprises in one word the whole abhorrent character(784) of the man. Note the similar expression in 2 Corinthians 2:7.

παραδοῦναι τῷ σατανᾷ] is—although the phrase may not occur in Jewish formulae of excommunication (Lightfoot, Horae, p. 167 ff., but see Pfaff, Orig. jur. eccles. p. 72 ff.)—the characteristic designation of the higher Christian grade of excommunication, with which there was essentially joined the ordaining in the power of the apostolic office (not simply the presupposition, as Billroth’s rationalizing interpretation has it), that Satan should plague the person delivered over to him with corporeal inflictions. Therein consisted the difference between this peculiar species of the חֵרֶם which had passed over from the synagogue to the church, and the simple αἴρειν ἐκ ΄έσου, 1 Corinthians 5:2, comp 1 Corinthians 5:13. The latter could be performed by the church itself, whereas the παραδοῦναι τῷ σατ. appears in this passage, as in 1 Timothy 1:20, to be reserved for the plenary authority of an apostle. It pertained to the apostolic ἐξουσία, 2 Corinthians 13:10. Comp the analogous penal power in the cases of Ananias and Elymas, Acts 5:1 ff; Acts 13:9 ff. The simple exclusion belonged to the church independently, 1 Corinthians 5:2; and the apostle calls upon them in 1 Corinthians 5:13 to exercise this right of theirs. To himself, again, in the power of Christ, belonged the title and the power to inflict the intensified penalty of excommunication, the delivery to Satan, of which, accordingly, he does not say that the church ought to execute it, but that he has already resolved, etc. Observe, too, that παραδοῦναι is active; he does not say παραδοθῆναι, but he himself will do it. There is no reason to doubt the fact of this power being the prerogative of the apostleship, as the higher authority vested with power to punish(787) (Lipsius, Rechtfertigungsl. p. 181, Hofmann); comp also Ritschl, altkath. Kirche, p. 373. As regards the special assumption, again, that the thought would be complete in itself without τῷ σατανᾷ (Hofmann), 1 Timothy 1:20 should have been enough, even taken singly, to preclude it; for, judging from that passage, one might rather say that εἰς ὄλεθρον τ. σαρκός was obvious of itself. The delivery over to Satan can only be viewed as an express and declaratory act of relegation from Christian fellowship into the power of the ἄρχων τοῦ κόσμου; not as if Satan were but he, “through whom the evil-doer should come to experience what was destined for him” (Hofmann), which would not imply an exclusion from the church at all. Many other expositors, following Chrysostom and appealing to the case of Job, find here only the handing over to Satan for bodily chastisement,(789) and not along with that the excommunication (Lightfoot, Bochart, Wolf, al(790)). But this is against the connection, according to which (see 1 Corinthians 5:2; 1 Corinthians 5:13) the παραδ. τῷ σατανᾷ cannot belong to a different category from the αἴρειν ἐκ μέσον. At the same time it is not quite identical with it,(791) not simply a description of the excommunication (Calvin, Beza, and others, including Semler, Stolz, Schrader, Maier), seeing that the bodily result is indicated by εἰς ὄλεθρ. τ. σαρκ. as essential and as explaining itself to the reader without further interpretation.

εἰς ὄλεθρ. τ. σαρκ.] is that which is to be effected by Satan on the man delivered over to him: for behoof of destruction of the flesh, i.e. in order that ( ἕλκει πονηρῷ νόσῳ ἑτέρᾳ, Chrysostom) his sinful fleshly nature, which is turned to account by the indwelling power of sin as the work-place of his desires and lusts, might be emptied of its energy of sinful life by the pains of bodily sickness, and might in so far perish and come to nought.(792) It is not his σῶμα that is to die, but his σάρξ (Romans 8:3; Colossians 3:5). The reason why the word σάρξ is here purposely selected, and not the ethically indifferent σῶμα, was correctly discerned by so early an expositor as Chrysostom, although many more recent interpreters, such as Rückert, have failed to perceive it. Hofmann also takes, in substance, the right view, Schriftbeweis, I. p. 462. To make, however, as he does (p. 105), the ὄλεθρ. τ. σαρκ. the same as διαφθείρεται ἔξω ἡμῶν ἄνθρωπος, 2 Corinthians 4:15, accords neither with the real meaning nor with the ethical relations of the case. As regards the two telic statements: εἰς ὄλεθρ. τ. σ. and ἵνα τὸ πνεῦμα κ. τ. λ(793) (which last expresses the final design of the whole measure of the παραδοῦναι κ. τ. λ(794)), observe that it is with an anti-Christian purpose that Satan smites the man delivered over to him with bodily misery, but that against his own will this purpose of his is made to serve God’s aim of salvation.

ἵνα τὸ πνεῦμα κ. τ. λ(795)] in order that his spirit, the underlying element of the higher moral life, of the true ζωή, may be saved (with the Messianic salvation) on the day of the (approaching) Parousia. That the σῶμα, again,—in which the σάρξ has lost its life, so that it is no longer the σῶ΄α τῆς σαρκός, Colossians 2:11,—should then be glorified, was a thing which did not need to be expressly stated to the Christian eschatological consciousness. See so early an expositor as Chrysostom. Calovius puts it well: “Non ergo dividit hominem apostolus, quasi eum partim interire, partim servari velit. Nam nec corpus interire potest sine divulsione ab anima, nec anima servari absque corporis salute.” Now this Messianic salvation was to Paul’s mind not merely a possible thing (Olshausen), but he expected it as a result, which, in virtue of the saving power of Christ, could not fail to ensue after the slaying of the sinful impulses by the ὄλεθρος τῆς σαρκός in the case of the man led by this punishment to conviction of sin and true penitence. The παραδοῦναι τῷ σατ. was therefore a paedagogic penal arrangement, a “medicinale remedium” (Calovius), as is shown by the whole scope of this passage and 1 Timothy 1:20 (not by the term παραδοῦναι itself, as Chrysostom, Theodoret, and Theophylact maintain, on the ground of Paul’s not having written ἐκδοῦναι),—a measure, in connection with which the πνεῦ΄α remained out of Satan’s power and accessible to the gracious influences of Christ, inasmuch as it retained the vital principle of faith, which was to develope its supremacy just in proportion as the σάρξ was destroyed. This may suffice to set aside Rückert’s censure of the apostle’s proceeding, on the ground that the punishment might easily have led to the utter destruction of the sinner, and, moreover, that Paul acted “imprudently” (comp Baur, I. p. 335 f., 2d ed.), since he could not have compelled the Corinthians to obey him in the matter. He does not, in fact, actually ordain(797) the παραδοῦναι τῷ σατ., but says merely that he, for his part, has already resolved on this, confining himself, therefore, certainly (against Lipsius and Hofmann) to the threat(798) in the meantime; and what he desires for the present is just the simple αἴρειν ἐκ μέσου (comp 1 Corinthians 5:13), which also was done by the majority, as we learn from 2 Corinthians 2:6, and that with the best results! Comp Bengel on 1 Corinthians 5:3. Upon the whole, too, we may believe that Paul knew his own powers of apostolic discipline, and may trust him to have been satisfied that, to try milder measures first (the omission of which Rückert blames as arising from passion), would not with the person concerned have had the effect aimed at.


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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/1-corinthians-5.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

1 Corinthians 5:5. παραδοῦναι, to deliver) This was the prerogative of the apostle, not of the Corinthians; comp. 2 Corinthians 13:10, note, and 1 Timothy 1:20, note. This is a specimen of the highest degree of punishment in the Christian republic, adapted to those early times.— ὄλεθρον, destruction) death although not sudden. The Hebrew word כרת corresponds to it: comp. ch. 1 Corinthians 11:30.— τῆς σαρκὸς, of the flesh) with which he had sinned. [1 Peter 4:6; comp. as to the Spirit, Romans 8:10.—V. g.]


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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/1-corinthians-5.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

What this delivering to Satan is, (of which also we read, 1 Timothy 1:20), is something doubted by interpreters. That by it is to be understood excommunication, or casting out of the communion of the church, can hardly be doubted by any that considereth:

1. That the apostle speaketh of an action which might be, and ought to have been, done by the church of Corinth when they met together, and for the not doing of which the apostle blameth them.

2. That the end of the action was, taking away the scandalous person from the midst amongst them, 1 Corinthians 5:2; purging out the old leaven, that they might become a new lump, 1 Corinthians 5:7.

3. It was a punishment inflicted by many. Those, therefore, who interpret the phrase of an extraordinary power given the apostles or primitive churches, miraculously to give up the scandalous person to the power of the devil, to be afflicted, tormented, or vexed by him, (though not unto death), seem not to have considered, that the apostle would not have blamed the church of Corinth for not working a miracle, and that we no where read of any such power committed to any church of Christ; and one would in reason think, that persons under such circumstances should rather be pitied and helped, than shunned and avoided.

The only question therefore is: Why the apostle expresseth excommunication under the notion of being delivered to Satan? Some have thought that the reason is, because God was so pleased to ratify the just censures of his church, delivering such persons as were cast out of it into the hands of Satan, to be vexed and tormented by him; and that this might be in some particular cases, none can deny, but that this was an ordinary dispensation of Providence as to all excommunicated persons, wants better proof than any have yet showed us. It appears to me a more probable account of this phrase which others have given us, telling us, that Satan is called the god of the world, and the prince of the world, as world is taken in opposition to the church of God; so as delivering to Satan, is no more than our Saviour’s—If he neglect to hear the church, let hint be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican, Matthew 18:17. Only for the further terror of it, the apostle expresseth it by this phrase of delivering up to Satan; thereby letting us know, how dreadful a thing it is to be out of God’s special protection, and shut out from the ordinary means of grace and salvation, and exposed to the temptations of our grand adversary the devil, which is the state of all those who are out of the church, either having never been members of it, or, according to the rules of Christ, cast out of the communion of it.

For the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus: the end of excommunication is not for the destruction of the person of him who is cast out, but for the destruction of his flesh, that is, his lusts, which are often in Scripture called flesh, or the maceration and affliction of his body through grief and sorrow; for a determination of his fleshly being cannot be here understood by the destruction of the flesh, for that is no effect of excommunication; and those who interpret the delivery to Satan, of an extraordinary punishment, which the apostles or church in the primitive times had a power to inflict, make it to terminate not in the death, but in the torments only, of the person so punished. Again, the apostle mentioneth this punishment as a means to the eternal salvation of this person’s soul in the day of Christ. There is no text in Scripture which more clearly asserts and opens the ordinance and nature of excommunication, than this text doth. As to those who are to inflict it, it lets us know, that it is to be done by the church, when gathered together; though the elders of the church may put the church upon it, and decree it, yet the consent and approbation of the whole church must be to it; and indeed it is vain for the officers of a church to cast any out of a communion, when the members of that communion will yet have conununion with him or them so cast out. It also lets us know, that it is a censure by which men are not shut out of the fellowship of men as men, but of men as Christians, as a church of Christ, in such religious actions and duties as concern them, considered as such a body: excommunication doth not make it unlawful for persons to buy and sell with the persons excommunicated, but to eat and drink at the Lord’s table with them, or have communion with them in acts proper to a church as the church of Christ. The excommunicated person is in something a better condition than a heathen, for he is not to be counted as an enemy, but admonished as a brother, 2 Thessalonians 3:15. Heathens also may hear the word; he is only to be avoided in acts of church fellowship; and as to intimate communion, though it be not religious, as appeareth from 1 Corinthians 5:11, and from 2 Thessalonians 3:14. Further, we are taught from hence, that none ought to be excommunicated but for notorious, scandalous sins, nor without a solemn invocation on the name of Christ, inquiring his will in the case. We are further taught, that the person that is duly excommunicated is in a miserable state, he is delivered up to Satan, cast out of God’s special protection, which is peculiar to his church, and oftentimes exposed to formidable temptations. Finally, we are from this text instructed, that excommunication ought to be so administered, as may best tend to the saving of the soul of him that falls under that censure: men’s end in excommunications should not be the ruin of persons in their health or estates, only the humbling of them, and bringing them to a sense of their sins, and a true repentance; and all means in order to that end should be used, even to such as are cast out of any church, such are repeated admonitions, the prayers of the church for them, &c.


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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-corinthians-5.html. 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Deliver such a one unto Satan; exclude him from the visible kingdom of Christ, not to destroy him, but to bring him to repentance and thus save him.

For the destruction of the flesh; many think that these words imply the infliction, along with the exclusion from the church, of some bodily evil through the miraculous power conferred by Christ on the apostle, which should cooperate with the exclusion to lead him to repentance. There are but two kingdoms on earth, the kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan. All who do not belong to the one, belong to the other.


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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Family Bible New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/1-corinthians-5.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges

5. παραδοῦναιτῷ Σατανᾷ. Two explanations of this passage demand our notice. [1] It has been understood of excommunication, as though he who was excluded from the Christian Church was thereby solemnly given back to Satan, from whose empire he had been delivered when he became a Christian. The ‘destruction of the flesh’ and the salvation of the spirit are then explained to mean that mortification of carnal concupiscence and that amendment of life which the sentence is calculated to produce. But it is better [2] to understand it of some temporal judgment, such as befell Job in the Old Testament, Ananias, Sapphira, and Elymas the sorcerer, in the New. Such an idea was common among the Rabbis (see Stanley’s note). It falls in with such passages as Luke 13:16; 2 Corinthians 12:7 (where ‘messenger’ may be translated ‘angel’), as well as with ch. 1 Corinthians 11:30 in this Epistle. The punishment was intended for the discipline and ultimate recovery of the spirit. Some have doubted whether this is possible, but we may bear in mind the acute remark of Meyer, that though ‘it is with an antichristian purpose that Satan smites the man, against his own will the purpose is made to serve God’s aim of salvation.’ He also notices that it is not the body but the flesh, i.e. carnal appetite, that is to be destroyed by the chastisement. A similar instance of delivery to Satan is to be found in 1 Timothy 1:20. Whether the power was confined to the Apostolic age or not is a point we cannot determine with certainty. A reference to 1 Corinthians 5:2 shews that the punishment spoken of here was superadded to excommunication.

ἵνα τὸ πνεῦμα σωθῇ. ‘Human punishment rests upon three grounds: [1] it is an expression of Divine indignation; [2] it aims at the reformation of the offender; [3] the contagious character of evil; a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.’ Robertson. For ἡμέρα τοῦ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ see ch. 1 Corinthians 3:13, 1 Corinthians 4:5, and Romans 2:5; Romans 2:16. For σωθῇ see ch. 1 Corinthians 1:18, note. It is remarkable that nothing is said about the exclusion of the woman from the Church. Was she a heathen?


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"Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cgt/1-corinthians-5.html. 1896.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

5. Unto Satan—From the Church, under Christ, they are to surrender him unto the world under Satan.

Destruction of the flesh—As was inflicted, with instant death, upon Ananias and Sapphira. It is not to be supposed, as some commentators would have it, that this destruction is inflicted by Satan, but by the judgment of God upon one who is handed over from Christ to Satan. By destruction of the flesh some commentators, excluding all supernaturalism, understand the destruction or correction of the carnal disposition, as the natural result of the admonition and discipline of the Church. Such would be a feeble meaning. A supernatural bodily emaciation would, indeed, tend to destroy the lust of the flesh, and so would be a very suitable discipline; just as blindness inflicted upon Elymas was a suitable penalty for his blindness of soul, and tended to open his spiritual perceptions.

Spirit may be saved—The excommunication, though an act of severity, is an act of love. It is the Church’s last admonition of the guilty to win him unto repentance. And the destruction of the flesh, by illness or consumption short of death from supernatural infliction, as a divine penalty, would show the truth of Christianity, the value of the Church, and the guilt of sin; and might perhaps bring the apostate to reflection, conviction, and salvation. So St. Paul delivered Hymeneus and Alexander unto Satan, in order that, admonished by the consequent destruction of the flesh, they might learn not to blaspheme.

Upon this case St. Paul now (1 Corinthians 5:6-8) states the object of Church discipline, namely, the purity of the Church, and (9-13) the degree of separation from the wicked required, and the limitation of the Church’s discipline to its own membership.


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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-corinthians-5.html. 1874-1909.

William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament

5. To deliver such an one to Satan unto the destruction of carnality, in order that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” This was really an awful case of incestuous fornication, as the father was still living (2 Corinthians 7:12), the woman, of course, a second wife of the old man, and perhaps younger than the son. You see he terribly castigates and anathematizes the whole church for tolerating this irregularity, who instead of putting on mourning over it, were even inflated with spiritual pride. What is meant by delivering this man, or any other person, “unto Satan for the destruction of carnality”? God recognizes the devil as the god of this age

(2 Corinthians 4:4), having captured the world in the Fall, and ruling it during this age of darkness and sin. The word translated church, ecclesia, means the called out, i. e., not including any person in the world during the gospel ages while Satan has them, but only those who, responsive to the call of the Holy Ghost, have come out of the world and identified themselves with the Word of God. Since the Church of God contains all the human race who have come out of the world, and hence are no longer in it, you see very clearly the import of the proposition to turn one over to Satan; it is simply to turn him out of the church, back into the world, over which Satan is not only king, but god. How would this excommunication from the gospel church be conducive to the destruction of carnality and the salvation of the human spirit (which is none other than the man himself)? Do you not know that excommunication is one of the greatest means of grace this side of Heaven? I have witnessed many a glorious conversion at the altar, and heard the convert testify to the fact that for years he had been a wicked church member, but eventually fortunate to suffer a disgraceful excommunication, which, at first making him awfully mad, ultimated in a Sinai conviction rendering life intolerably miserable, evoking an importunate cry to God for mercy, all sinful practices abandoned in disgust, in agony of soul having sought the Lord day and night, victory had come at last. All such cases are parallel to the one under consideration. The names of persons in this way gloriously saved are now rife in my memory, some of whom are now in bright glory, who rejoiced to the day of their triumphant death that they were expelled from the church in disgrace, as they ever afterward believed that terrible discipline was God’s means of grace alone competent to awaken them from their carnal slumber in the cradle of dead church membership, and bring them to repentance, that they might get saved. “The day of the Lord Jesus” of course means the day of His coming for His saints, which shines out a beacon light throughout the New Testament. The saddest phenomena of the present age, and fearfully ominous of the awful tribulation coming on a wicked world and fallen church at race-horse speed, is the everywhere ostensible and indisputable fact that the general apostasy of the churches has already passed the excommunication station. Suppose a popular church in this city (Keene, N. H.) proceeded to expel her wicked members, a dozen others would be looking on with delight, hoping to take them in; hence you see the impracticability of disciplinary enforcement. When I was presiding elder in the Kentucky Conference, twenty-five years ago, a democratic church undertook to turn the drunkards out. Upon counting noses, behold, the drunkards had the majority, and of course a right to rule the church. While preaching in a Western city, a pastor gave us a cordial invitation to come and hold a revival in his church, at the same time notifying us to be sure that we say not a word against whisky, as the big end of his money came that way. If all the wicked members in the churches of this city, or any other, were excommunicated, it would actually bring a Judgment Day conviction on the people. A hush and a trepidation, a tremor and a solemn awe, as if the archangel of doom had come down and the mountains were crumbling beneath his mighty tread, and valleys leaping to his stentorian voice, would actually bring a nightmare and a paralysis on the wicked, and superinduce cries of mercy which would move Heaven, earth and Hell, and bring on the world such a revival of religion as has not been seen since the apostolic age.


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Godbey, William. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ges/1-corinthians-5.html.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Paul had determined to deliver the man to Satan for the destruction of his flesh. Probably Paul meant that he had delivered the man over to the world, which Satan controls, with God"s permission of course, for bodily chastisement that might even result in his premature death. [Note: H. Conzelmann, 1Corinthians: A Commentary on the First Epistle to the Corinthians, p97; S. M. Gilmour, "Pastoral Care in the New Testament Church," New Testament Studies10 (1963-64):395; J. C. Hurd Jeremiah , The Origin of I Corinthians, p137 , p286 , n5; G. W. H. Lampe, "Church Discipline and the Interpretation of the Epistles to the Corinthians," in Christian History and Interpretation: Studies Presented to John Knox, pp349 , 353; Morris, pp88-89; Johnson, p1237; and Bruce, pp54-55.] This was the result of Peter"s dealings with Ananias and Sapphira, though the text does not say he delivered them to Satan for the destruction of their flesh. God was bringing premature death on other Corinthians for their improper conduct during the Lord"s Supper ( 1 Corinthians 11:30; cf. 1 John 5:16). We have no record that this man died prematurely, though he may have. Premature death might be his judgment (the "worst case scenario") if he did not repent.

Paul passed similar judgment on Hymenaeus and Alexander ( 1 Timothy 1:20). In that case he said he just delivered them to Satan. He wrote nothing about the destruction of the flesh. Deliverance to Satan must mean deliverance to the authority and control of Satan in a way that is different from the way all believers are under Satan"s control. Everyone is subject to temptation and demonic influence under the sovereign authority of God (cf. Job 1-2). [Note: See Sydney H. T. Page, "Satan: God"s Servant," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society50:3 (September2007):449-65.]

A variation of this view is that the delivery to Satan would eventuate in a wasting physical illness but not death. [Note: William Barclay, By What Authority? p118; M. Dods, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, p118; H. Olshausen, Biblical Commentary on St. Paul"s First and Second Epistles to the Corinthians, p90; H. Ridderbos, Paul: An Outline of His Theology, p471; W. G. H. Simon, The First Epistle to the Corinthians: Introduction and Commentary, p78; and M. E. Thrall, The First and Second Letters of Paul to the Corinthians, p40.] However the term "the destruction of the flesh" seems to imply death rather than simply disease.

A third interpretation understands the term "flesh" metaphorically as referring to the destruction of the man"s sinful nature. [Note: F. W. Grosheide, Commentary on the First Epistles to the Corinthians, p123; R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of St. Paul"s First and Second Epistles to the Corinthians, p217; J. J. Lias, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, p67; and G. Campbell Morgan, The Corinthian Letters of Paul, p83.] The destruction of the flesh in this case refers to the mortification of the lusts of the flesh. However it seems unusual that Paul would deliver the man to Satan for this purpose. Satan would not normally put the lusts of the flesh to death but stir them up in the man. It is hard to see how handing a person over to Satan would purify him.

Still another view takes the flesh and spirit as referring to the sinful and godly character of the church rather than the individual. [Note: B. Campbell, "Flesh and Spirit in1Corinthians5:5: An Exercise in Rhetorical Criticism of the NT," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society36:3 (September1993):341; K. P. Donfried, "Justification and Last Judgment in Paul," Interpretation30 (April1976):150-51; H. von Campenhausen, Ecclesiastical Authority and Spiritual Power in the Church of the First Three Centuries, pp134-135 , n50; and the early church father Tertullian.] Paul may have been identifying the sinful element within the Corinthian church that needed destroying. This would result in the preservation of the spirit of the church. The main problem with this view is that Paul seems to be referring to an individual rather than to the church as a whole. Certainly the man"s actions would affect the church, so it is probably proper to see some involvement of the church here even though the judgment seems to be primarily against the man.

Another interpretation is that Paul was speaking of the man"s excommunication from the church. [Note: Fee, The First . . ., pp208-15; Barclay, The Letters . . ., p50; Robertson, 4:113.] In this view Paul meant that he was turning the man over to live in the sphere of Satan"s authority, the world, from the sphere of the Spirit"s authority, the church.

"What the grammar suggests ... is that the "destruction of his flesh" is the anticipated result [Gr. eis] of the man"s being being [sic] put back out into Satan"s domain, while the express purpose [Gr. hina] of the action is his redemption." [Note: Fee, The First . . ., p209. See also Craig L. Blomberg"s discussion of this verse in William D. Mounce, Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar: Second Edition, p54.]

I think Paul meant excommunication with the possibility of premature death. [Note: Cf. Lowery, p514.] His analogy concerning the Passover ( 1 Corinthians 5:6-8) stresses separating what is sinful from what it pollutes. Paul meant that the Lamb was already slain on Calvary, but the Corinthians had not yet gotten rid of the leaven.

Is this a form of church discipline that we can and should practice today? There are no other Scripture passages in which the Lord instructed church leaders to turn sinners over to Satan. Consequently some interpreters believe this was one way in which the apostles in particular exercised their authority in the early church for the establishment of the church (cf. Acts 5). I think modern church leaders can turn people over to Satan by removing them from the fellowship of other Christians and the church. People may commit sins that may ultimately lead to their premature deaths today, and there are, of course, other biblical examples of excommunication as church discipline (cf. 1 Corinthians 5:13; Matthew 18:17; 2 Corinthians 2:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:14-15).

The last part of the verse gives the purpose of Paul"s discipline. "Spirit" contrasts with "flesh." "Flesh" evidently refers to the body so "spirit" probably refers to the immaterial part of the man. The "day of the Lord Jesus" refers to the return of Christ at the Rapture and the judgment of believers connected with it (cf. 1 Corinthians 1:8).

From what would his punishment save the incestuous man"s spirit? It would not save him eternally since faith in Christ does that. It might save him from physical death if he repented, but the reference to his spirit makes this interpretation unlikely. Probably it would guard him from a worse verdict when Christ would evaluate his stewardship of his life at the judgment seat. Evidently Paul regarded it better for this sinning Christian, as well as best for the church, that he die prematurely, assuming that he would not repent, than that he go on living. Perhaps Paul had reason to believe that he would not turn from his sin but only worsen.

Some have interpreted Paul"s allusion to "such a one" in 2 Corinthians 2:6-7 as referring to this incestuous man. The text does not warrant that definite a connection. "Such a one" is simply a way of referring to someone, anyone, without using his or her name. [Note: Bruce, p54.]


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/1-corinthians-5.html. 2012.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

1 Corinthians 5:5 to deliver such a one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

"deliver"-3860. paradidomi {par-ad-id"-o-mee}; from 3844 and 1325; to surrender, i.e yield up, intrust, transmit: -betray, bring forth, cast, commit, deliver (up), give (over, up), hazard, put in prison, recommend.

"unto Satan"-"What a terrifying phrase is that..the man was already in Satan"s possession. Withdrawal is simply the formal declaration by the visible community of what has already taken place in the invisible realm..withdrawal suggests our stepping back and leavingt the man alone." [Note: _ McGuiggan p. 62]

"More likely, the language means to turn him back into Satan"s sphere." (Fee p. 209)

Withdrawal is the acceptance of the "reality" of the case. This man because of his selfishness, belongs to Satan"s kingdom, and not God"s. Act like it. Treat him as such.

"for the destruction of the flesh"-"that what is sensual in him may be destroyed" (TCNT).

Points to Note:

1. Many commentators take this phrase to refer to some physical sickness or disease that Satan is allowed to inflict upon the withdrawn from. Even to the point of physical death. Job, Ananias and Sapphira and Paul"s thorn in the flesh are all cited as examples. But neither Job nor Paul were being withdrawn from. And "that the spirit may be saved", wasn"t the end result of the punishment visited upon Ananias and Sapphira, not to mention God brought that judgement, not Satan.

2. Some of the "once saved always saved" school of thinking, believe that this passage is teaching that if a child of God is going to go into sin, God will cause that person to be killed before they have a chance to forfeit their salvation. Problems: (1) How does a persons own death "save their spirit"? Or, does one"s own blood also atone for one"s own sins? I thought only the blood of Christ could atone for sins (John 1:29). (2) The man in this chapter doesn"t fit the above scenario. For he "hath" his father"s wife (he"s past the stage of merely thinking about it), this man is already "lost". (3) The only path to salvation that I find in the bible, runs directly through repentance. (2 Peter 3:9; Romans 2:4-5; Acts 8:22; 1 John 1:9-10) (3) Such would also teach that God saves some people "against their will".

"It is especially difficult to see how an expected result of death can be understood as remedial." (Fee p. 210)

"The further instruction in verse 11, that they are not to associate with this man, not even to eat with him, implies that no immediate death is in purview." (Fee p. 212)

In addition, the man wasn"t killed, for he repented (2 Corinthians 2:5-11).

3. "Flesh" here must mean something different from the body. For sin doesn"t originate in the body, but in the heart. (Mark 7:20-23)

"may"-the "destruction of the flesh" and the "spirit being saved", are hoped for results. This is a key word to understanding the whole verse. Withdrawal can take place and neither result happen. Since the "spirit being saved" depends upon the attitude of the sinner, therefore, the "destruction of the flesh", must be something that the sinner being withdrawn from must allow to happen in their life.

I think Barclay has a good grasp of this verse, "it was to humiliate the man, to bring about the taming and the eradication of his lusts so that in the end his spirit should be saved. It was to bring him to his senses, to make him see the enormity of the thing that he had done." (p. 50)

"The hope is that he will feel the loneliness of isolation, recognize the heinousness of his wrong, repent and return." (McGuiggan p. 63)

Right now, the man in this chapter has a problem. His "lust" for his father"s wife. Withdrawal "tests" a persons love for a certain sin or lifestyle. Do you love it to the point that you would give up your brethren for it? Their association and encouragement? Withdrawal visibly reminds the sinner, "this sin is costing you your soul"! An eternity in hell is the price you are paying for this pleasure. How appealing does it look now? The hope is that such a withdrawal by the whole congregation will "force" the man to seriously evaluate the "price" he is paying for his pleasure. Many Christians, turned from the world in the first place, when they finally realized the "high price" of sin (Romans 6:23). Sin can lose it"s attractiveness when it really starts to demand sacrifices of us-i.e. our health, family, children, spouses, etc...Fornication loses it"s attractiveness when you catch a sexually transmitted disease, drugs and alcohol lose their appeal when they"re about to cost you your family or job. But sadly, not for everyone. You must allow such to happen.

I think Fee has some good thoughts, when he says, "was the destruction of what was "carnal" in him.."Flesh" means the whole person as oriented away from God. The "destruction" ..(of the flesh)..would thus belong to the same kind of imagery as in "crucifying" it (Galatians 5:24; Romans 7:5-6)" (p. 212)

Before we move on, Fee in his commentary gives us an insight to the frustration that the denominational world has with the application of these verses:

"In a day when the church tolerates every kind of sin ("because we who are sinners must not be judgmental"), the need for discipline..is perhaps greater than ever....Finally, the great problem with such discipline in most Christian communities in the Western world is that one can simply go down the street to another church. Not only does that say something about the fragmented condition of the church at large, but it also says something about those who would quickly welcome one who is under discipline in another community.." p. 214


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Bibliography
Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/1-corinthians-5.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

To deliver. i.e. That ye should deliver. Greek. paradidomi. See John 19:30. This clause depends on "judged" in 1 Corinthians 5:3.

unto = to.

Satan. Compare 1 Timothy 1:20. Satan is regarded as inflicting bodily suffering. See Luke 13:16. 2 Corinthians 12:7.

for. App-104.

the. Omit.

destruction. Greek. olethros. Elsewhere, 1 Thessalonians 5:3. 2 Thessalonians 1:9. 1 Timothy 6:9.

spirit. App-101.

day. The day of resurrection, when the spirit which returns to God at death is restored.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-corinthians-5.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Besides excommunication (which the Corinthians had the power of), Paul delegates here to them his power as an inspired apostle, of inflicting corporeal disease or death in punishment for sin ("to deliver [ paradounai (Greek #3860), temporarily; not ekdounai (Greek #3860), to give up utterly] unto Satan such an one" - i:e., so heinous a sinner). See instances, Acts 5:1-11; Acts 13:11; 1 Timothy 1:20. As Satan receives power to try the godly, as Job (Job 2:4-7), Paul (2 Corinthians 12:7), and Peter (Luke 22:31), much more the ungodly. Satan, the "accuser of the brethren" (Revelation 12:10), the "adversary" (1 Peter 5:8), demands the sinner's punishment for sin (Zechariah 3:1; Luke 13:16). God lets Satan have his way at times (cf. Psalms 109:6). Here it is not finally, but for the affliction of the body (1 Corinthians 11:30; 1 Corinthians 11:32), so as to destroy fleshly lust (Matthew 5:29). He does not say, 'for the destruction of the body,' for it shall share in redemption (Romans 8:23); but of the corrupt "flesh," which "cannot inherit the kingdom of God," and the lusts of which prompted this offender to incest (Romans 7:5; Romans 8:9-10; Romans 8:13). The "destruction of the flesh" answers to "mortify the deeds of the body," only that this is done by one's self, that by chastisement from God (cf. 1 Peter 4:2; 1 Peter 4:6).

The spirit may be saved - the spiritual part, in believer the organ of the Holy Spirit, involving the salvation of the body too. Temporary affliction often leads to permanent salvation (Psalms 83:16). Satan in God's hand becomes, in spite of himself, an instructor of believers.


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-corinthians-5.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(5) That the spirit may be saved.—The object of this punishment was the destruction of the flesh, and the salvation of the man.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-corinthians-5.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
deliver
13; Job 2:6; Psalms 109:6; 2 Corinthians 2:6; 10:6; 13:10; Acts 26:18; 1 Timothy 1:20
that
11:32; 2 Corinthians 2:7; Galatians 6:1,2; 2 Thessalonians 3:14,15; James 5:19,20; 1 John 5:16; Jude 1:22,23
the day
1:8; Philippians 1:6; 2 Timothy 1:18; 2 Peter 3:12

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-corinthians-5.html.

Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians

For I verily, as absent in body, but present in Spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, (concerning) him that hath so done this deed, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; when ye are gathered together, and my Spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, to deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the Spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

These verses constitute one sentence, and must be taken together in order to be understood. The construction of the principal clauses is plain. Paul says, ‘I have determined to deliver this man unto Satan.' All the rest is subordinate and circumstantial. The connection of the subordinate clauses is doubtful. Perhaps the best interpretation of the whole passage is the following: ‘I, though absent as to the body, yet present as to the Spirit, have determined as though present, in the name of the Lord Jesus, ye being gathered together, and my Spirit being with you, with the power (i.e. clothed or armed with the power) of our Lord Jesus Christ, to deliver this man to Satan.' There was to be a meeting of the church, where Paul, spiritually present, would, in the name of Christ, and in the exercise of the miraculous power with which he was invested, deliver the offender to the power of Satan. The connection with what precedes is indicated by the particle for. ‘I would ye were in a state of mind to remove this offender for I have determined to cut him off.' I verily ( לו ́ ם), or I at least. ‘Whatever you do or leave undone, I at least will do my duty.' Absent in body, but present in Spirit. Neither Paul's capacity nor his authority to judge, nor his power to execute his judgment, depended on his bodily presence. He was present in Spirit. This does not mean simply that he was present in mind, as thinking of them and interested in their welfare; but it was a presence of knowledge, authority, and power. Have judged already. That is, without waiting either for your decision in the matter, or until I


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Bibliography
Hodge, Charles. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hdg/1-corinthians-5.html.

The Bible Study New Testament

Over to Satan. This means to expel him from the messianic community. For his body to be destroyed. The shame of being put out of the church would cause the man to repent. His pride would be destroyed. MacKnight thinks the language implies a painful physical disease was part of the judgment which Paul placed on the man. Johnson argues that when Paul tells them to take the man back into the church (2 Corinthians 2:7), nothing is said about any physical disease. But 1 Corinthians 4:21; 2 Corinthians 13:1-2; 2 Corinthians 13:10 are good reasons to adopt MacKnight's thinking. So that his spirit. This is the reason for discipline in the church. Compare Jude 1:22-23; 2 Corinthians 2:5-11.


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Bibliography
Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 5:5". "The Bible Study New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/1-corinthians-5.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

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