Sunday School lessons for Gospel Doctrine Class

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

“Be Perfectly Joined Together”




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Resource quotes have been highlighted in blue and are noted at the end of the blog


Do you go to Church on Sunday, if so why? Is there a specific reason you go? Is it to socialize, to gain knowledge, to be obedient, or are there other factors? Elder Jeffrey R. Holland taught that most people “come [to church] seeking a spiritual experience”  As we read and study 1 Corinthians 1–7, for this week, let us prayerfully consider what we can do to help create our own spiritual experiences so that we may be connected to our Father in Heaven.  That we do all things for good which will carry us though not only for the day we have that experience, but for time upon times to come.

Why study 1 Corinthians? 
In Corinthians in the New Testament we come to the time Paul spent in Corinth. During these months “many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed, and were baptized” Acts 18:8. So it must have been heartbreaking for him to hear, just a few years later, that there were “divisions” and “contentions” among the Corinthian Saints and that in his absence they began to heed the “wisdom of this world” 1 Corinthians 1:10–11, 20.  In response, Paul wrote the letter we now call 1 Corinthians. It is full of profound doctrine, and yet at the same time, Paul seemed disappointed that the Saints were not ready to receive all the doctrine he wanted to give them. “I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual,” he lamented, “for ye are yet carnal” 1 Corinthians 3:1–3. As we prepare to read Paul’s words, it might be helpful to examine our own readiness to receive truth, including our willingness to heed the Spirit and strive for unity within our families, with our fellow Saints, and with God.

It can be challenging to live with faith and obedience in our modern world amid strife, skepticism, and immorality. Modern readers of 1 Corinthians can find strength in Paul’s words to the Saints in Corinth, who struggled with disunity, false doctrines, and immoral wickedness in the society in which they lived. Paul addressed a variety of gospel topics in this letter, such as how to promote unity in the Church, how to learn the things of God, the role of the physical body as a temple for the Holy Ghost, the nature of spiritual gifts, and the reality of the Resurrection.

History and Background
In Paul’s day, the city of Corinth was the capital of the Roman province Achaia, which covered most of ancient Greece south of Macedonia. As a wealthy trade center, Corinth attracted people from throughout the Roman Empire, making it one of the most diverse cities in the area. Idol worship dominated Corinthian religious culture, and there were numerous temples and shrines throughout the city. At the time of Paul’s ministry, the Corinthians had a reputation of being grossly immoral. For instance, ritual prostitution was reportedly practiced at the temple of Aphrodite.

Paul had established a Christian branch in Corinth during his second missionary journey  Acts 18:1–18. Paul remained in Corinth for 18 months, proclaiming the gospel and organizing the Church. Later, while Paul was preaching in Ephesus during his third missionary journey, he received communication from Church members in Corinth. He wrote a response to the branch 1 Corinthians 5:9, but unfortunately this epistle was lost and is therefore not part of the scriptural canon. Later, Paul received another report from Church members in Corinth concerning problems in the Church there  1 Corinthians 1:11. Hence, the epistle known today as 1 Corinthians is actually Paul’s second letter to members in Corinth.

The original correspondence that Paul received from the members in Corinth has long since been lost, so readers today must study Paul’s response to infer the actual questions and issues that the letter raised. 1 Corinthians makes it clear that Church members lacked unity and that some pagan beliefs and practices had begun to influence their observance of gospel principles and ordinances 1 Corinthians 1:11; 6:1–8; 10:20–22; 11:18–22.

Modern readers may find parts of the First Epistle to the Corinthians confusing, such as Paul’s advice regarding relationships between men and women 1 Corinthians 11:3, 8–9, hair coverings 1 Corinthians 11:4–7, and the role of women in worship services 1 Corinthians 14:34–35. Remembering that Paul was giving direction to solve specific problems among the Corinthian Saints of that day will help readers recognize the relevant gospel principles that are applicable to all followers of Jesus Christ.

Distinctive features of 1 Corinthians
The New Testament contains more counsel from Paul to the Church members in Corinth than to any other branch. In fact, Paul’s two epistles to the Corinthians constitute one-fourth of all of Paul’s existing writings. In 1 Corinthians, Paul sought to strengthen the converts in Corinth who struggled with reverting to their past beliefs and practices. Among the many topics that Paul addressed in this letter, he focused on the Atonement of Jesus Christ 1 Corinthians 1:17–18, 30; 6:20; 7:23, the Savior’s death  1 Corinthians 1:23; 2:2, 8; 8:11; 10:16; 11:26; 15:3, His Resurrection  1 Corinthians 6:14; 15:4–8, 12–23, 55–57, and the eventual return of Jesus Christ to earth 1 Corinthians 1:7–8; 4:5; 5:5.

Chapter Summaries

1 Corinthians 1: True Saints are perfectly united in the same mind and in the same judgment to preach the gospel and save souls. The gospel is preached by the weak and the simple. “While many Jews and Gentiles rejected the gospel message as ‘foolishness’ 1 Corinthians 1:18, Paul taught that ‘the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men’ 1 Corinthians 1:19–25. God often performs His work through individuals whom the world might consider to be ‘foolish’ or ‘weak’  D&C 35:13–14; 124:1. In 1 Corinthians 1:28, the ‘base things of the world, or those who are lowly and humble; are those whom God chooses to accomplish His work” (New Testament Student Manual[Church Educational System manual, 2014], 364).

1 Corinthians 2: The gospel is preached by the power of the Spirit. The Spirit reveals all things to the Saints. The unrepentant natural man cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God. Because “the things of the Spirit of God” can only be “spiritually discerned” 1 Corinthians 2:14, those who are worldly minded cannot understand spiritual truths. God has provided a way for us to obtain spiritual knowledge.

Elder Paul V. Johnson of the Seventy taught:  “In the scientific world the scientific method is used to learn truth and advance knowledge. It has been extremely helpful over the years and has yielded tremendous amounts of scientific knowledge and continues to push back the curtain of ignorance about our physical world. Learning spiritual things, however, requires a different approach than learning scientific things. The scientific method and intellect are very helpful, but they alone will never bring spiritual knowledge.“Learning spiritual things involves the intellect, but that is not enough. We only learn spiritual things by the Spirit. …Answers to spiritual questions are given to individuals who don’t harden their hearts; who ask in faith, believing they will receive; and who diligently keep the commandments. Even when we follow this pattern, we don’t control the timing of getting answers. Sometimes our answers come quickly, and sometimes we must place questions on the shelf for a time and rely on our faith that has developed from the answers we do know” (“A Pattern for Learning Spiritual Things”[Seminaries and Institutes of Religion satellite broadcast, Aug. 7, 2012], si.lds.org).

Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught:  “The Lord’s prescribed methods of acquiring sacred knowledge are very different from the methods used by those who acquire learning exclusively by study. For example, a frequent technique of scholarship is debate or adversarial discussion, a method with which I have had considerable personal experience. But the Lord has instructed us in ancient and modern scriptures that we should not contend over the points of his doctrine. (See 3 Ne. 11:28–30; D&C 10:63.) … Gospel truths and testimony are received from the Holy Ghost through reverent personal study and quiet contemplation” (“Alternate Voices,” Ensign, May 1989, 29).

1 Corinthians 3: Milk comes before meat in the Church. Men’s works will be tried by fire. The Saints are the temple of God, and if they are faithful, they will inherit all things.

1 Corinthians 4: Christ’s ministers must be faithful. The Apostles suffer, minister, and keep the faith. The kingdom of God is not in word but in power.

1 Corinthians 5: The Church cannot fellowship sinners. Christ, our passover, was sacrificed for us.

1 Corinthians 6: Church members should not fight one another in the courts—The unrighteous will not be saved. True Saints are the temple of the Holy Ghost.

1 Corinthians 7: Paul answers special questions about marriage among those called on missions. Paul praises self-discipline.


Part 1: 1 Corinthians 1:10–17; 3 The members of Christ’s church must be unified.

Paul warned against divisions within the congregations of the Church in Corinth. He emphasized the importance of unity among Church members. He warned members against sexual immorality, taught that the body is a temple for the Holy Spirit, and encouraged self-mastery. He addressed specific questions regarding marriage, the ordinance of the sacrament (the Lord’s Supper), and whether or not it was permissible to eat meat that had been offered to pagan idols.

10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?
14 I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius;
15 Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name.
16 And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.
17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

According to 1 Corinthians 1:10, what does the Lord expect us to do as Church members? The Lord expects us as Saints to be united and to eliminate divisions and contention.

What do these verses, along with our experiences, teach about what helps create unity and what threatens it? 1 Corinthians 1:10–13; 3:1–11

1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?
5 Who then is Paul, and who isApollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

What can we do as Church members to eliminate divisions and contention in our families and in our wards?  Just before the Savior carried out the Atonement, He prayed for His disciples, whom He had sent into the world to teach the gospel. He also prayed for those who would believe in Him because of His disciples’ words. He pled for unity: “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me” John 17:21. From this prayer we learn how the gospel unites us with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and with each other. When we live the gospel, receiving the saving ordinances and keeping our covenants, our natures are changed. The Savior’s Atonement sanctifies us, and we can live in unity, enjoying peace in this life and preparing to dwell with the Father and His Son forever.

The Lord has said, “If ye are not one ye are not mine” Doctrine and Covenants 38:27. We can seek and promote this standard of unity in our families and in the Church. If we are married, we and our spouse can be unified in purpose and action. We can allow our unique qualities to complement one another as we face challenges together and grow in love and understanding. We can also be unified with other family members and with members of the Church by serving together, teaching one another, and encouraging one another. We can become one with the President of the Church and other Church leaders as we study their words and follow their counsel.

As the Church grows throughout the world, all Latter-day Saints can be united. Our hearts can be “knit together in unity and in love one towards another” Mosiah 18:21. We appreciate cultural diversity and individual differences, but we also seek the “unity of the faith” that comes when we follow inspired leaders and remember that we are all children of the same Father Ephesians 4:3–6, 11–13. (“Unity,” Gospel Topics, topics.lds.org)

What blessings can we receive from being united and eliminating contention? President Henry B. Eyring taught:  “I was invited to kneel at bedtime with a family when I was a guest in their home. The smallest child was asked to be voice. He prayed like a patriarch for every person in the family, by name. I opened my eyes for an instant to see the faces of the other children and the parents. I could tell that they were joining their faith and their hearts in that little boy’s prayer. Some Relief Society sisters recently prayed together as they prepared to visit for the first time a young widow whose husband died suddenly. They wanted to know what to do and how to work together to help prepare the home for family and friends who would come at the time of the funeral. … An answer to their prayer came. When they arrived at the house, each sister moved to complete a task. The house was ready so quickly that some sisters regretted not being able to do more. Words of comfort were spoken which fit perfectly together. They had given the Lord’s service as one, hearts knit together” (“Our Hearts Knit as One,” Ensign, Nov. 2008, 68–69).

When have you been blessed as a result of being united in a class, quorum, or ward or branch?


Paul uses the image of a building to encourage unity in 1 Corinthians 3:9–17

9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

In what sense are we “God’s building”? 1 Corinthians 3:9.
9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.

How can this analogy help us better understand unity? 

How is God building us individually? We are God’s buildings. "The greatest responsibility that is ever entrusted to any human being is that of building his own personality. The first soul that anyone should bring to God is his own soul. ... It is God's work to build character, ability, and Godliness into the lives of his children. ... The chief business of our lives is to build a house that will bear the weight of eternal life." (Elder Sterling W. Sill, General Conference, April 1962)

What are we building together as fellow Saints?

What can we do as a unified ward that we wouldn’t be able to do as individuals?


Part 2: 1 Corinthians 1:17–31; 2; 3:18–20 To accomplish God’s work, we need the wisdom of God.

While it’s good , and we are even encouraged to seek wisdom wherever we can find it 2 Nephi 9:29; D&C 88:118, Paul gave some strongly worded warnings about flawed human wisdom, which he called “the wisdom of this world.”

17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness;
24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.
19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.
20 And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.

What do these verses teach about being wise in the Lord’s work? Some people feel unqualified to serve in the Church because they lack education or professional training. Others feel quite qualified because they have education or professional training. Both views reflect a misunderstanding of what truly qualifies us for God’s work.

According to 1 Corinthians 2:9–16, how is learning “the things of God” different from learning the “things of a man”?

9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

What are things about the gospel that might seem foolish to some people? How do these things demonstrate the wisdom of God? 

How could Paul’s words help someone who is struggling with his or her testimony?

What are ways you trust in God’s wisdom rather than your own to accomplish His work?


Part 3: 1 Corinthians 6:9–20 Our physical bodies are sacred.

As Latter-day Saints, we often have opportunities to explain our beliefs about chastity to those who may not share those beliefs. In doing so how would you answer the following questions from these verses? 1 Corinthians 6:9–20

How does the Lord view our bodies?
How is this different from the way Satan wants us to think of our bodies?
What does it mean that our bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost?

9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.
15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.
16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.
19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

Most people in Corinth felt that sexual immorality was acceptable and that their bodies were made primarily for pleasure. In other words, Corinth was not that different from the world today.  At a Worldwide Devotional for Young Adults, Sister Wendy W. Nelson said:  “Personal purity is the key to true love. The more pure your thoughts and feelings, your words and actions, the greater your capacity to give and receive true love.  As an important part of the expression of their love, the Lord wants a husband and wife to partake of the wonders and joys of marital intimacy. …Anything that invites the Spirit into your life, and into the life of your spouse and your marriage, will increase your ability to experience marital intimacy. … On the other hand, anything that offends the Spirit will decrease your ability to be one with your spouse. …“Marital intimacy endorsed by the Spirit is blessed by the Lord and is sanctifying” (“Love and Marriage,” Worldwide Devotional for Young Adults, Jan. 8, 2017, broadcasts.lds.org).

What is Chastity? Chastity is sexual purity. Those who are chaste are morally clean in their thoughts, words, and actions. Chastity means not having any sexual relations before marriage. It also means complete fidelity to husband or wife during marriage.

Why chastity is important? Elder Jeffrey R. Holland taught:  “May I stress that human intimacy is reserved for a married couple because it is the ultimate symbol of total union, a totality and a union ordained and defined by God. …“But such a total union, such an unyielding commitment between a man and a woman, can only come with the proximity and permanence afforded in a marriage covenant, with solemn promises and the pledge of all they possess—their very hearts and minds, all their days and all their dreams” (“Personal Purity,” Ensign, Nov. 1998, 76).

Elder David A. Bednar explained: “[Sexual] relations are not merely a curiosity to be explored, an appetite to be satisfied, or a type of recreation or entertainment to be pursued selfishly. They are not a conquest to be achieved or simply an act to be performed. Rather, they are in mortality one of the ultimate expressions of our divine nature and potential and a way of strengthening emotional and spiritual bonds between husband and wife. We are agents blessed with moral agency and are defined by our divine heritage as children of God—and not by sexual behaviors, contemporary attitudes, or secular philosophies” (“We Believe in Being Chaste,” Ensignor Liahona, May 2013, 42).

I am married, what does chastity have to do with me? Physical intimacy between husband and wife is beautiful and sacred. It is ordained of God for the creation of children and for the expression of love within marriage. Pornography, flirting, explicit movies, television and reading materials are unchaste and have the power not only to destroy a marriage, but also the soul.

In the world today, Satan has led many people to believe that sexual intimacy outside of marriage is acceptable. But in God’s sight, it is a serious sin. It is an abuse of the power He has given us to create life. The prophet Alma taught that sexual sins while married or not, are more serious than any other sins except murder and denying the Holy Ghost Alma 39:3–5.

Sometimes people try to convince themselves that sexual relations outside of marriage are acceptable if the participants love one another. Or choices such as pornography after marriage are acceptable due to preference or marital struggles. This is not true. Breaking the law of chastity and encouraging someone else to do so is not an expression of love. Pornography or other unchaste choices are not expressions of love in fact they are the opposite. People who love each other will never endanger one another’s happiness and safety in exchange for temporary personal pleasure married or not married.

When people care for one another enough to keep the law of chastity, their love, trust, and commitment increase, resulting in greater happiness and unity. In contrast, relationships built on sexual immorality sour quickly. Those who engage in sexual immorality often feel fear, guilt, and shame. Bitterness, jealousy, and hatred soon replace any positive feelings that once existed in their relationship.

Our Heavenly Father has given us the law of chastity for our protection. Obedience to this law is essential to personal peace and strength of character and to happiness in the home. Those who keep themselves sexually pure will avoid the spiritual and emotional damage that always comes from sharing physical intimacies with someone outside of marriage or unchaste choices during your marriage. Those who keep themselves sexually pure will be sensitive to the Holy Ghost’s guidance, strength, comfort, and protection and will fulfill an important requirement for receiving a temple recommend and participating in temple ordinances.

Keeping the Law of Chastity
No matter how strong temptations seem, the Lord will help us withstand them if we choose to follow Him. The Apostle Paul declared, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” 1 Corinthians 10:13. The following counsel can help us overcome the frequent and blatant temptations in the world today:

Decide now to be chaste. We need to make this decision only once. We can make the decision now, before the temptation comes, and let our decision be so firm and with such deep commitment that it can never be shaken. We can determine now that we will never do anything outside of marriage to arouse the powerful emotions that must be expressed only in marriage. Or to make unchaste choices that can destroy a marriage We can determine now that we will be completely true to our spouse.

Control our thoughts. No one commits sexual sin in an instant. Immoral acts always begin with impure thoughts. If we allow our thoughts to linger on obscene or immoral things, we have already taken the first step toward immorality. We must flee immediately from situations that may lead to sin and pray for constant strength to resist temptation and control our thoughts. We can make this a part of our daily prayers.

Stay away from pornography. We must not view, read, or listen to anything that depicts or describes the human body or sexual conduct in a way that can arouse sexual feelings. Pornographic materials are addictive and destructive. They can rob us of our self-respect and of a sense of the beauties of life. They can tear us down and lead to evil thoughts and abusive conduct.

If we are single and dating, always treat our date with respect. Those who are dating must never treat their date as an object to be used for lustful desires. They should carefully plan positive and constructive activities so that they are not left alone without anything to do. They should stay in areas of safety where they can easily control themselves. They should not participate in conversations or activities that arouse sexual feelings, such as passionate kissing, lying with or on top of another person, or touching the private, sacred parts of another person’s body, with or without clothing.

If we are married, be faithful to our spouse in our thoughts, words, and actions. The Lord has said: “Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else. And he that looketh upon a woman to lust after her shall deny the faith, and shall not have the Spirit; and if he repents not he shall be cast out” Doctrine and Covenants 42:22–23. We should never flirt in any way. As much as possible, we should avoid being alone with anyone of the opposite sex and ask ourselves if our spouse would be pleased if he or she knew of our words or actions. We should remember the Apostle Paul’s counsel to “abstain from all appearance of evil” 1 Thessalonians 5:22. When we stay away from such circumstances, temptation gets no chance to develop.

Elder Russell M. Nelson: "With your body being such a vital part of God’s eternal plan, it is little wonder that the Apostle Paul described it as a 'temple of God.' Each time you look in the mirror, see your body as your temple. That truth—refreshed gratefully each day—can positively influence your decisions about how you will care for your body and how you will use it. And those decisions will determine your destiny. How could this be? Because your body is the temple for your spirit. And how you use your body affects your spirit." (General Conference, October 2013)


Conclusion
Paul, concerned about the behavior of the Corinthian saints not living within gospel standards, has given us this epistle that is not only relevant for then but for now.  We need to strive towards unity in our church, our wards, our homes and relationships coming together as brothers and sisters of Christ rather than separate beings. For the common cause of Zion, we need to Love one another and progress the work of the Lord quickly.

In addition we need to beware of the counsel and wisdom of the world and seek for the guidance of the Spirit. Immoral behavior has become acceptable, it has become the way of the world. Sexual perversion and unchaste behavior is common place, idol worship is still prevalent; we, even now, live in our own Corinth. It is imperative that we be diligent, even tenacious in watching our thoughts and behavior that can lead to our downfall. If we do not, the consequences in the eternal realm of things, can be forever devastating.


Resources 
New Testament Student Manual
Conference Reports
Ensign
Book of Mormon
Doctrine and Covenants
For Strength of Youth
Gospel Topics, Topical Guide




The Fall of Adam and Eve

  Scriptures are hyperlinked to Scriptures at ChurchofJesusChrist.org Resource quotes have been highlighted in blue and are noted at the end...