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I received the following question:

I have always wondered what it was the Corinthians were doing to be deserving of punishment, even unto death, when partaking of the Passover?  How could they eat and drink unworthily?  Was this unworthy eating and drinking something that was warned against in the OT as well, or is it a NT concept as Paul says they would be “guilty of the body and blood of the Lord”?    

My take on it is that since the Passover now has a new and more profound meaning for these NT believers who were Israelites, to unworthily partaking would involve either a non-believer or a believer who is not living the “Kingdom” life that was expected of him.  I understand that a life outside the will of God in the Acts period would be dealt with by God, but why is punishment attached to the partaking of the Passover if done unworthily?  

I would find it very doubtful that this would be referring to non-believers or unbelievers, since they would not be keeping the Passover outside the land. The revelation that “Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast,” (I Corinthians 5:7b-8a,) would not have been made to them. This is doubtless referring to believers who were doing something unworthy, and yet still thinking that, since they had permission, they could go ahead and keep the Passover in the way they had been given it by God’s kingdom representatives. The violent results of this showed them that this was not, in fact, the case. Read the rest of this entry »