“Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”
We live in a society where nothing is right or wrong; it just depends on the context. Immorality is a matter of genes. Nothing is clearly wrong or right in this kind of culture, with the possible exception of murder. However, murder is not too bad if you have sufficient aggravation. We live in a crazy, mixed-up world that has developed a system for condoning sin.
“Uncleanness” is any filthy substance. This term carries the ideas of filth, dirt, or rubbish; it is the state of moral impurity, especially concerning sexual sin — impurity, immorality, or filthiness.
“But inside they are full of dead people’s bones and all kinds of filth” (Mt 23.27).
“Uncleanness” occurs ten times in the New Testament. Here are a few usages:
“Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves” (Ro 1:24).
This word describes raw humanity who dabble in the raw spiritual sewage of society. These people are foul, reeking with sin. This activity is the seamy side of life.
“Lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and I shall mourn for many who have sinned before and have not repented of the uncleanness, fornication, and lewdness which they have practiced” (2 Co 12:21).
God wrote 2 Corinthians 12:21 to saints who fell into sexual sin.
“Uncleanness” is an action; it can be committed; it is more than an attitude. Every form of sinful impurity is involved with this word (Gal 5:19, Eph 4:19).
Like a pig, they dive into the muck and douse themselves in mud.
“But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints” (Eph 5:3).
The word “all” in Ephesians 5:3 carries the thought of whatever form of uncleanness may come the Christian’s way.
“For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness” (1 Thes 4:7).
God wants us to deal decisively with uncleanness on the authority of the Word of God.
If we remove the Bible from society, there will be no standard by which to measure right and wrong. We cannot place confidence in a society that turns rapists and murderers back on a community with very little or no time served in jail.
The Bible is the only book that speaks with ultimate authority on morality and immorality. Some of the most immoral people who have ever crawled on the face of the earth are in universities. A person can become a brilliant philosopher, surgeon, or engineer and remain immoral. It is possible to be a brilliant physicist and a pervert who molests children. Education in itself holds no morals; it does not have a moral standard.
The Bible does not say to “wound” uncleanness in our lives. It does not ask us to “cripple” uncleanness but to put it to death. God does not want us to compromise with uncleanness. No neutrality or peaceful co-existence exists with sin because we worship an absolutely holy God.