A computer virus on the loose is a computer user’s worst nightmare. Once a computer is infected, the damage can be devastating. A virus can destroy everything in a computer’s memory. It may take some time for the destructive power of the virus to be felt, but once its effect takes hold, much information and hard work can be erased or corrupted.
In the same way that a computer virus spreads through the files of a computer, serious sin can spread through the church. It might take some time for the damage to be felt, but no congregation can withstand the destructive power of blatant, unrepentant sin.
The apostle Paul says that such sin is like yeast that works its way through the whole batch of dough (1 Corinthians 5:6). That’s why church leaders must be diligent, proactive and forceful in protecting the church from the hideous virus of sin (1 Corinthians 5:7-13). Any congregation that ignores the biblical doctrine of church discipline does so at their own peril.