July 3, 2017

Please use the comment section on this page to share insights from today’s reading OR your own personal Bible reading.

Reading along with us in 1 Corinthians? Here’s today’s reading:

1 Corinthians 8 (ESV)

Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” This “knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. 2 If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. 3 But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.

4 Therefore, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that “an idol has no real existence,” and that “there is no God but one.” 5 For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”— 6 yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist… Continue Reading

*If you click “Continue Reading”, you will leave this page and navigate to “bible.com” where you can read the rest of the chapter. Be sure to come back to this page to share what God has revealed to you by commenting below. 

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This Post Has 8 Comments
  1. knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. …. 3But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.

    6yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.
    ❤️And the Holy Spirit

  2. Scott and I were talking last night and today about the different convictions people have, often grounded, it seems, in those things they most identify with their “old lives” before they knew the Lord. How far do we go to protect a tender conscience before doing so becomes a stumbling block of its own — a stumbling block leading to legalism or bondage to man-made laws? This is often hard for me to discern.

    Paul appears to go so far as to swear off whatever it is that causes his brother to sister in Christ to stumble, as opposed to just not doing it in front of them: “Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble.” (1 Corinthians 8:13)

    Is this teaching only about food sacrificed to idols? Or about all personal convictions of those whose consciences are tender? I would be blessed by a teaching on this, Pastor Peter!

  3. I have often heard and applied this scripture to drinking alcohol…..but I have also had people who have strong convictions get angry with fellow-believers for not holding the same conviction and “causing them to stumble” by merely believing that alcohol consumption in moderation is okay Biblically (I do believe it is.) Who is the stronger brother? It’s hard to say, but it hurts me when I see believers put drinking meme’s on FB like “I need a drink” or how many glasses of wine they need to deal with a situation, etc. not because I struggle with drinking, but because I think it makes light of something that many have a major issue with. AND should believers be putting forth, even jokingly, the reliance on substances?

    1. Thank you, Amy! As many know, before I was born again, I was not only a user and abuser of alcohol, but craved it and was dependent on it to get through the many trials and stresses of human life. Sadly, the harm I caused to my relationships, the things I said and did under the influence of alcohol, and the danger I put myself and others in, were terrible side effects of what I thought was a solo act.

      I understand those who are convinced that all believers should steer completely clear of alcohol, so we don’t allow even the opportunity for harm or dependence. Yet I read throughout Scripture that fermented drink is a gift from God and His bounty. So why would I take that gift away from those who are under the control of the Holy Spirit and able to be judicious and enjoy what God has provided?

      I praise God for giving me freedom and teaching me to depend on HIM alone by the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in me, and through prayer, His Word, and fellowship with my church family. Such a night and day difference!! I do sometimes miss the taste of a cold beer or a glass of wine. And there are times when I am sorely tempted to drink. But I know not to allow the enemy of my soul an inch of territory to dim God’s glory! Because my testimony gives witness to the power of God in me (miraculous!), I choose — for love — not to drink alcohol at all so I can minister faithfully to those who are struggling with addiction of any kind.

  4. I do believe that this passage can be applied to other practices and not just eating food sacrificed to idols. It can only apply though to things where we truly have biblical freedom to participate in. That is why Paul makes a strong case for eating the food because his sacrifice of love to deny himself is only appropriate if God truly gave him the freedom in the first place. For instance, we can’t say I have some God given freedom to break the speed limit or take illicit drugs but I will deny myself when in the presence of those who don’t have that freedom out of love for them. Do you see how ridiculous that sounds?

    But I do believe this applies to consumption of alcohol that doesn’t approach drunkenness, the length of hair, tattoos, the playing of cards, dancing, certain kinds of gambling just to name a few. We should rejoice in the freedom we have in Christ to not have to follow standards dictated by man and not God (think of how the Pharisees thought of Jesus eating with the tax collectors and sinners), but not flaunt or abuse that freedom so we harm a brother or cross a line into licentiousness.

    Neither knowledge nor love by itself should be our guide, but it is the two working in harmony that orients us to the standards of God as well as how my life affects others. And the needs of others always trumps my needs especially when it comes to me expressing a freedom I have.

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