Adultery is a very serious sin that can NOT be overlooked, so to ask one’s family to forgive them and to “look the other way” would fly in the face of Scripture. The Bible is crystal-clear when it comes to this sin and how we (believers in Christ) are to handle it. If the person in question is a Christian, he/she should be warned of their sin and its consequences and if they do not repent strong action should be taken. If the person is not a Christian, the consequences of living in adultery are even worse. Let’s consider a few passages that bring out the solemnity of this sin and its consequences for a believer and an unbeliever.

In 1st Corinthians 5:1-2 the Apostle Paul wrote, “It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and such sexual immorality as is not even named among the Gentiles—that a man has his father’s wife! And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he who had done this deed might be taken away from you” (NKJV). Here is an extreme case of adultery where a man who called himself a Christian was having sexual relations with his father’s wife (no doubt this was his “stepmother”). The assembly at Corinth knew about this and instead of being repulsed by this heinous sin and judging it, they were indifferent and proud. It may be that they thought (like many in the world today) that they should be TOLERANT of another person’s lifestyle, so they went on in fellowship with him as though nothing was wrong. But Paul went on to instruct them as to what to do in verses 4-5, “In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, along with my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, DELIVER SUCH A ONE TO SATAN FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF THE FLESH, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” In a word, the Apostle was telling them to remove him from the fellowship of the local church and by doing so he would be in Satan’s realm (without the love and fellowship of believers) where he could learn to judge the flesh (the Old Nature that was producing this sin). His repentance would prove he was indeed a true believer whose spirit will “be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” Paul ended this chapter by reaffirming this action, “Therefore ‘put away from yourselves the evil person.’” We know from Paul’s 2nd epistle to the church at Corinth that they obeyed Paul’s command and that the man’s removal from fellowship did result in him repenting of his sin which in turn would result in him being forgiven and restored back into fellowship in the church at Corinth (see 2nd Corinthians 2:1-11 and 7:4-11).

In 1st Corinthians 6:9-10 we read, “Do you not know that THE UNRIGHTEOUS WILL NOT INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD? Do not be deceived. Neither FORNICATORS….nor ADULTERERS….will inherit the kingdom of God. Now let’s read Ephesians 5:5-7, “For this you know, that NO FORNICATOR, unclean person…has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for BECAUSE OF THESE THINGS THE WRATH OF GOD COMES UPON THE SONS OF DISOBEDIENCE. Therefore do not be partakers with them.” Could words be clearer? If one is an unbeliever, whose life is characterized by sins like FORNICATION (this includes ADULTERY), he/she WILL NOT INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD. Instead, the “wrath of God will come upon them for all eternity” (see John 3:36 and Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8)! We saw that if a true believer falls into the sin of sexual immorality we must cut off fellowship with them and here we see that the same command is given to us regarding an unbeliever living in fornication…we must “not be partakers with them.” Of course if they repent of their sins and believe the gospel of Jesus Christ, they will be forgiven by God and we can then have happy fellowship with them. See 1st Corinthians 6:11 and 1:1-2, 9.  (387.3)  (DO)