February 18th, 2007
Paul says, “Knowledge makes people arrogant, but love builds people up.” It really is possible to lose a battle by winning an argument. When an argument develops in the context of a personal relationship, you need to ask yourself whether it is more important for you to win the argument or preserve the relationship. It may give you a good feeling to be able to prove that you are right and the other person is wrong, but it’s hardly going to give the other person the same feeling. So if you are a follower of Jesus, you need to exercise great care in what you say and do.
Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians — Chapter 8
8:1 With regard to things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes people arrogant, but love builds people up. 8:2 Someone who claims to understand something does not yet really understand. 8:3 But someone who loves God is known by him.
8:4 So, when it comes to eating things sacrificed to idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and there is no God but one. 8:5 Even if there were beings called “gods” whether in the heavens or on earth, and there are many such “gods” and “lords”, 8:6 yet there is one God for us, the Father, from whom come all things, and we exist for him. There is only one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things exist, and we live through him. 8:7 However, not all people have that knowledge. Some people have been accustomed to idols until now, and their conscience is weak and becomes polluted when they eat food which has been sacrificed to idols.
8:8 Food does not bring us closer to God. If we do not eat, we are no worse, and if we eat, we are no better. 8:9 Be careful that your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak. 8:10 If someone sees you who have this knowledge sitting in an idol’s temple, will not that person’s conscience, if it is weak, be encouraged to eat things sacrificed to idols? 8:11 As a result of your knowledge, someone who is weak perishes, a believer for whose sake Christ died. 8:12 By sinning against believers and wounding their consciences when they are weak, you sin against Christ. 8:13 If food causes my fellow believer to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I do not cause my fellow believer to stumble.
Entry Filed under: Generosity