Over at BibleX Charles has posted a good quote from Karl Donfried's The Dynamic Word: New Testament Insights for Contemporary Christians (Harper & Row, 1981). I think Donfried makes my point quite well.
"The notion that early Christianity is a perfect model that all successive followers of Jesus Christ should imitate is clearly undermined in 1 Corinthians, and elsewhere in the New Testament as well. The early church, as we shall repeatedly see, had the same frailties and difficulties as ever subsequent Christian generation. Since this is the case, the way in which such difficulties are resolved should be particularly illuminating for the contemporary church, where many of these same issues are reflected, not least of which is the problem of the disunity and fragmentation of Christianity."