1 Corinthians 15:33 – “Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”

Is it not amazing how a little drop of poison contaminates a whole meal? Is it not devastating how just one wrong action by a noble person is able to mar the person’s lifelong built integrity? Little influences can be very powerful. In the same vain, the smallest tolerance of bad company can end up corrupting a person with very good morals.

“to be corrupted” = Someone who has been corrupted behaves in a way that is morally wrong, especially by doing dishonest, or boing illegal things in return for money or power

“don’t be deceived” = believe something that is not true, or led away from the truth – Jesus warns us not to be deceived by false Christ that would come. Some seemingly true statements can be deceptive, so be careful.

Paul the Apostle spoke at length with the believers in the city of Corinth, admonishing them to be careful with their associations with sinful people. This concern was important to Paul and therefore he addressed it in both 1st and 2nd Corinthians. To Paul, you can have the best of morals but if you indulge in bad company, you will be influenced with time. In the context of the Chapter under review, bad company represented those propagating false doctrine.

1 Cor 15; 33 (Amp) – is the law of association. Form profitable relationships; make sure they are not changing you, but rather you are changing them. Be careful who you associate with. Don’t associate with the wrong people they can hurt you so bad/painful, also avoid people who complain all the time.

If you associate with small-minded people who limit yourself, you are going to be small-minded too. By the Law of association, “Either you become like them, or they become like you”. The Bible says we are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. We shouldn’t even eat with such people.

1 Corinthians 15:33 (NIV) serves as a warning to us all concerning the people we spend our time with. As humans, we tend to adopt the values and attitudes of the people we spend the most time with. That is a good thing if they are godly people of good character. But it can be dangerous if they are not.

Beloved, the one who takes your greatest attention eventually determines the direction of your life. What category of people constitute bad company? These are people who confidently live an immoral life, and even go ahead to recommend their negative lifestyle to even those with good morals. These can be dangerous false teachers, sexually promiscuous people, thieves and financially corrupt people, idolators and occults, big time liars, proud and arrogant people, etc.

Believers must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat with. What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside?

I had to take time to counsel a gentleman who ended up in a religious group that condemned Faith, and promoted atheism. This false preacher almost annulled the man’s Christian Faith. I have seen very gifted committed Christians entangle themselves in complicated troubles of life, because they entertained bad friends. Some people have been dismissed from their places of work, because they aligned themselves to a bad co-worker.

‘Deceive’ is not the same as ‘betray’: Deceive is to trick or mislead while betray is to deliver into the hands of an enemy by treachery or fraud, in violation of trust; to give up treacherously or faithlessly

Similarly, ‘lying’ differs from ‘deception’: In order to lie, one must make a false statement. Deception does not require that one make a false statement or make any statement at all.

I want to humbly admonish you: Do not think you cannot be corrupted because that is very possible, especially if you keep bad company. Please be very circumspect because the days are evil. Christ is coming soon and it will be sad for you to live your whole life pursuing good morals, only for you to miss rapture because of the impact of bad company. May God help us all, Amen


Heavenly Father, I ask for Grace and boldness to end any bad company that I have gotten myself into. Please surround me with good company,
in Jesus’ Name, Amen.


What do I need to do to ensure I am not corrupted by bad company?

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