1 Corinthians 6:11

“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.”

Paul is making a comparison. By the end of the verse a glorious situation is revealed. To understand the comparison, “And such were some of you,” consider the verses before. In 1 Corinthians 6:9,10 we read, “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, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

The topic is who inherits the kingdom of God. Verses 9 and 10 list a number of behaviors that characterize the world to this very day. Paul says that those who do those things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. The beginning of 1 Corinthians 6:11 points out, “And such were some of you.” While nobody is guilty of all of these things, all were guilty of something. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God…” Quoting from Ecclesiastes 7 and Psalm 14, Romans 3:10-12 says, “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” Taken together, according to Romans and 1 Corinthians 6:9,10, nobody will inherit the kingdom of God.

We see in 1 Corinthians and Romans that all of mankind is guilty. As we read through the list we can see where we ourselves are guilty in thought or word or deed, even perhaps on more than one count. What an awful position to be in because the end, the affect, of these behaviors is that we will not inherit the kingdom of God. But Paul told the Corinthians that they “were” like that. This implies that they were no longer like that. How does someone move from being disqualified from inheriting the kingdom of God to being an inheritor of the kingdom of God? The answer to that question lies in the rest of verse 11.

Such were some of you, but ye are washed. Elsewhere, that word is translated washed away. Paul was telling a crowd in Jerusalem about the details of his own salvation. A man named Ananias was sent by the Lord to Paul, and spoke of his sins being washed away (Acts 22:16). In 1 Corinthians, Paul told his readers that they were washed. That is, he was telling them that their sins were washed away. Speaking of Jesus in his greeting to the seven churches in Asia Minor, in Revelation 1:5,6, John wrote, “Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

Such were some of you, but ye are sanctified. This means to make holy. In words that are similar to 1 Corinthians 6:9,10, Hebrews 12:14 tells us, “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord…” Without holiness, that is without sanctification, no man will see the Lord; no man shall inherit the kingdom of God. How does someone become sanctified? Hebrews 13:12 says, “Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.” Sanctification is God’s work through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Concerning His followers, in John 17:17 Jesus prayed to His Father, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” And, in Acts 20:32 Paul told the leaders from the church in Ephesus, “And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.” Like washing, this, too, is available through the death of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Such were some of you, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and ye are justified by the Spirit of our God. To be justified is to be declared righteous. The verse above declares a two-fold effort by God on our behalf. We are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For (God) hath made (Jesus) to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” It is God’s work, and not in any way of ourselves. Galatians 2:21 says, “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Righteousness does not come by following the law, but through the work of the Lord Jesus Christ, and by the enabling of His Holy Spirit, Who guides us into all truth. (John 16:13)

All people desire eternal joys. We know that this life is only the beginning of things. Death is not the end. This verse speaks of inheriting the kingdom of God. And, it points out who will not inherit it. In so saying, it infers that there will be some who will inherit His kingdom. And who will that be? Those that are washed, justified, and sanctified by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Praise God for His great salvation plan!

What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.


Oh! precious is the flow
That makes me white as snow;
No other fount I know,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

For my pardon, this I see,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
For my cleansing this my plea,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.


Nothing can for sin atone,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
Naught of good that I have done,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.


This is all my hope and peace,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
This is all my righteousness,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.


Glory! Glory! This I sing—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus,
All my praise for this I bring—
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

Refrain (Robert Lowry)

Deuteronomy 32:4

“He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.”

This was part of what Moses told the people about the Lord. He put before the Israelites Who God is. They had seen His might displayed in so many ways. Joshua and Caleb could tell first-hand what God had done for the Israelites as He freed them from Egypt and brought them to the Promised Land. God had defeated the Egyptian Army at the Red Sea.

Many more of the Israelites could testify about how God maintained their clothing for the 40 years that they wandered in the desert. He supplied food and water throughout the whole trip. He supplied them with bread from heaven that sustained all of them for the whole time. One time He even brought so many quails that the whole crowd of 600,000 was able to eat. At the least, some gathered 10 bushels of quail! Though this was a judgment for their disobedience, God was well able to do such a thing.

He is the Rock. This term is used a number of times in reference to deity. Even idolators referred to their idols as a rock. In 1 Samuel 2:1-3, when Hannah praised the Lord about the birth of Samuel, she said, “…My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God. Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.” There is no Rock like our God. The idols of the world are dead. Our God is living.

His work is perfect. His deeds are without blemish, complete, and full. Israel witnessed or had heard the stories about God’s workings on their behalf. He lead them through the desert with a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire at night. They were about to enter the Promised Land, which He said that He would give to them. As noted, even their clothing did not age. While bringing them to the Promised Land, God met all of their needs for food, shelter, and clothing. In Matthew 6:8 Jesus reminds us, “…your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.” His work is perfect.

All His ways are judgment or lawful. Isaiah 30:18 tells us, “And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him.” In Revelation 15:3,4 we read this worship to the Lord, “Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.” His judgments bring glory to His name. He does only what is lawful.

He is a God of truth. There is something that the Bible says it is impossible for God to do. Hebrews 6:18 says, “That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us…” Other scriptures tell us that He cannot lie, such as Titus 1:2, “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began…” In John 17:17, Jesus told His Father, “Thy Word is truth.” He is a God of truth.

He is without iniquity. In Genesis 18:25, Moses said to the Lord, “That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” Consider the last phrase here. Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? He surely will. He will do only right. He is without iniquity.

And, He is just and right. Concerning God, Romans 3:26 tells us, “…to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.” God is the justifier of them that believe in Jesus, and He is just in doing so, because Jesus endured God’s wrath against our sin. Psalm 71:19 tells us, “Thy righteousness also, O God, is very high, who hast done great things: O God, who is like unto thee!”

This is our God, our Creator. To Him be all glory!

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
His holy will abideth;
I will be still whate’er He doth;
And follow where He guideth;
He is my God; though dark my road,
He holds me that I shall not fall:
Wherefore to Him I leave it all.

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
He never will deceive me;
He leads me by the proper path:
I know He will not leave me.
I take, content, what He hath sent;
His hand can turn my griefs away,
And patiently I wait His day.

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
His loving thought attends me;
No poison can be in the cup
That my physician sends me.
My God is true; each morn anew
I’ll trust His grace unending,
My life to Him commending.

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
He is my friend and Father;
He suffers naught to do me harm,
Though many storms may gather,
Now I may know both joy and woe,
Some day I shall see clearly
That He hath loved me dearly.

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
Though now this cup, in drinking,
May bitter seem to my faint heart,
I take it, all unshrinking.
My God is true; each morn anew
Sweet comfort yet shall fill my heart,
And pain and sorrow shall depart.

Whate’er my God ordains is right:
Here shall my stand be taken;
Though sorrow, need, or death be mine,
Yet I am not forsaken.
My Father’s care is round me there;
He holds me that I shall not fall:
And so to Him I leave it all. (Samuel Rodigast, translated by Catherine Winkworth)