Scripture: I Corinthians 8

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READ and STUDY the WORD

Food Sacrifice To Idols

1 Corinthians 8:1-13 (WEB) Now concerning things sacrificed to idols: We know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. But if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he doesn’t yet know as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God, the same is known by Him. Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that no idol is anything in the world, and that there is no other God but one. For though there are things that are called “gods”, whether in the heavens or on earth; as there are many “gods” and many “lords”; yet to us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we live for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we live through Him. However, that knowledge isn’t in all men. But some, with consciousness of the idol until now, eat as of a thing sacrificed to an idol, and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. But food will not commend us to God. For neither, if we don’t eat, are we the worse; nor, if we eat, are we the better. But be careful that by no means does this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to the weak. 10 For if a man sees you who have knowledge sitting in an idol’s temple, won’t his conscience, if he is weak, be emboldened to eat things sacrificed to idols? 11 And through your knowledge, he who is weak perishes, the brother for whose sake Christ died. 12 Thus, sinning against the brothers, and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. 13 Therefore if food causes my brother to stumble, I will eat no meat forever more, that I don’t cause my brother to stumble.

Questions and Answers:

1. What puffs up and what builds up (I Corinthians 8:1)? Knowledge puffs up but love builds up.

2. What is said about idols (I Corinthians 8:4) Idols (gods) are nothing in the world.  There is no other God but the one true God.

3. What is said about the one true God (I Corinthians 8:6a)? There is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we live for Him.

4. What is said about Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 8:6b)? There is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we live through Him.

5. Whose conscience is defiled (I Corinthians 8:7)? Those who don’t understand that there is no god besides the one true God.  They are weak.

6. Of what are we to be careful (I Corinthians 8:9)? We are to be careful that the liberty we have doesn’t become a stumbling block for the weak.

7. When we sin against our brothers what are we doing to both the brothers and to Christ (I Corinthians 8:12)? When we sin against our brothers who may be weak, we are possibly wounding their conscience and sinning against Christ.

8. What does Paul say he will not do if (a certain) food causes his brother to stumble (I Corinthians 8:13)? Paul said he would eat no meat forever more, rather than cause his brother to stumble.

HEAR the WORD

I Corinthians 8:2-3 (AMP) If anyone imagines that he knows and understands anything [of divine matters, without love], he has not yet known as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God [with awe-filled reverence, obedience and gratitude], he is known by Him [as His very own and is greatly loved].

1 Corinthians 8:8 (AMP) Now food will not commend us to God nor bring us close to Him; we are no worse off if we do not eat, nor are we better if we do eat.

1 Corinthians 8:10-11 (AMP) 10 For if someone sees you, a person having knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, then if he is weak, will he not be encouraged to eat things sacrificed to idols [and violate his own convictions]? 11 For through your knowledge (spiritual maturity) this weak man is ruined [that is, he suffers in his spiritual life], the brother for whom Christ died.

MEDITATE on the WORD

Ponder the above verses.  My Bible notes: Verses 2-3: Love is more important than knowledge.  Verse 8: Paul addressed those believers who weren’t bothered by eating meat that had been sacrificed to idols.  But eating such meat offended Christians with more sensitive consciences.  Paul said that if a weaker or less mature believer misunderstood their actions, they should out of consideration avoid eating meat offered to idols.  Verses 10-11: Christian freedom is inseparably tied to Christian responsibility.  New believers are often very sensitive to what is right or wrong, what they should and shouldn’t do.  When we love others, our freedom should be less important to us than strengthening the faith of a brother or sister in Christ.   

MEMORIZE the WORD

I Corinthians 8:13 (NIV) Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat (a particular food) again, so that I will not cause him to fall.

LOVE and LIVE the WORD

We can obtain God’s knowledge only by loving Him.

TEACH and SHARE the WORD

We can only know God when we model Him by showing love.

PRAY the WORD

Lord, I pray we will be known by You because we love You (I Corinthians 8:3). Lord, You are the one true God from whom all things came and for whom we live.  There is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through who we live (I Corinthians 8:6).  Lord, I pray we will be careful that the exercise of our freedom doesn’t become a stumbling block to the weak (I Corinthians 8:9).  Lord, I pray we will not eat anything that could cause a brother or sister to fall into sin (I Corinthians 8:13). In Christ Jesus’ name I pray.  AMEN.

ENCOURAGEMENT

“May you and I put the welfare of our brothers and sisters ahead of our own.” <>< Dona