7 “Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? 8No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren!”
Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another.
The word “already” indicates that lawsuits were present among the Corinthian church at the time of writing. The word “utter” shows the comprehensive nature of failure in the local church. It was an utter and complete mar on the church.
Why do you not rather accept wrong?
Paul suggests that it is right at times to receive the wrong rather than go into a lawsuit. “Who, me?” is the way many Christians react to accepting loss.
Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated?
Why not allow yourselves to suffer personal loss rather than allowing the testimony of the church to undergo a spiritual loss?
No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren!
The Greek places emphasis upon “you” and on “brethren.” Christians were in the process of defrauding one another. Not only did the Corinthian church refuse to take the wrong, but they were also inflicting wrong upon fellow Christians.
Dealings with Christians require special care – two wrongs do not make a right.
Christians assume that they must demand redress rather than suffer loss. This is a bitter pill and hard for the self to swallow. Rather than assert your rights and stand upon your just claims, take the loss. Leave discipline in the hands of the Lord because “Vengeance is mine,’ says the Lord.” Two wrongs do not make a right. We do not right a situation by wronging someone who wronged us. All this does is lower ourselves to their level. This does not excuse the person perpetuating the wrong.
1 Peter 2:20-21, 20For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. 21For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps:
The principle of suffering wrong does not apply to a Christian businessman going to law to safeguard his holdings. We have the right to call the police if threatened or haul people to court for wronging us. God constitutes the legal and police systems as authorities for the public good. We cannot expect non-Christians to abide by the Bible.