“Bad company corrupts good character.” (15:33) Have you ever spent much time pondering that saying?
I always pictured that those with bad character would be villainous. You know, goth, scary looking, the type you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark ally. But…when you really think about it, according to verse 22, ….it is anyone who takes the saying, “You only live once!” seriously. It’s anyone who doesn’t give heaven or hell a thought. Do you hang out with people like that? Do you know someone like that?
Or, here is something to think about…do you “hang out with people” that you “know” by book, TV, movie or music that do not hold to the resurrection?…..That’s looking at it from a new perspective!
For good reason, Paul is warning us, “Bad company corrupts good character.”
I have experienced something that illustrated this for me…
I went for a stretch of time without watching TV. Then my schedule changed where I found myself turning on the TV at the same time every evening. When I saw the first episode of a particular sitcom, I was shocked!!!! Not having watched TV for awhile, I wasn’t used to how crass the dialogue can be. I couldn’t believe the content, language and theme of this show! Utterly shocking! I almost turned it off…..…except it was also funny. I laughed out loud once…. I watched the program to the end. The next time it came on, I watched again. About 1/2 way into the season, I had been desensitized to all offensive content. I over looked all the bad stuff just for the laugh. Except, of course, when my kids came into the room, then I was aware that it was bad. I didn’t want them to see it, so I would turn the channel. What a hypocrite I am! 🙄
That show was “bad company” for me! It corrupted how I thought and acted. Fortunately, I could easily turn it off once I came to my senses. Friends are an entirely different matter. It’s hard to walk away from a relationship that is bad. But, in this context, Paul isn’t focusing on "bad" relationships, he is saying don’t hang out with those who don’t believe in the resurrection! You can actually have a fun relationship with someone who doesn't want to believe in heaven or hell. But Paul is giving a clear warning. Christians can get caught trying to “life style evangelize” and instead get sucked into a different way of thinking themselves.
Paul’s warning is so simple, “Do not be misled… come back to your senses as you ought, and stop sinning”…….