But not everyone possesses this knowledge.(A) Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat sacrificial food they think of it as having been sacrificed to a god, and since their conscience is weak,(B) it is defiled. But food does not bring us near to God;(C) we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.

Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block(D) to the weak.(E) 10 For if someone with a weak conscience sees you, with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols?(F) 11 So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed(G) by your knowledge. 12 When you sin against them(H) in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ.(I) 13 Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall.(J)

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Idol Feasts and the Lord’s Supper

14 Therefore, my dear friends,(A) flee from idolatry.(B) 15 I speak to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. 16 Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break(C) a participation in the body of Christ?(D) 17 Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body,(E) for we all share the one loaf.

18 Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices(F) participate in the altar? 19 Do I mean then that food sacrificed to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything?(G) 20 No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons,(H) not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons. 21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons.(I) 22 Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy?(J) Are we stronger than he?(K)

The Believer’s Freedom

23 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial.(L) “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. 24 No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.(M)

25 Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience,(N) 26 for, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.”[a](O)

27 If an unbeliever invites you to a meal and you want to go, eat whatever is put before you(P) without raising questions of conscience. 28 But if someone says to you, “This has been offered in sacrifice,” then do not eat it, both for the sake of the one who told you and for the sake of conscience.(Q)

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Footnotes

  1. 1 Corinthians 10:26 Psalm 24:1

14 Nevertheless, I have a few things against you:(A) There are some among you who hold to the teaching of Balaam,(B) who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin so that they ate food sacrificed to idols(C) and committed sexual immorality.(D)

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20 Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel,(A) who calls herself a prophet. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.(B)

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