Bible Commentaries

Edwards' Family Bible New TestamentFamily Bible NT

1 Corinthians 8

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Verse 1

Things offered unto idols ; the flesh of animals sacrificed to idols, on which the offerers and their friends feasted in the idol’s temple, verse 1 Corinthians 8:10 , and which was sometimes sold in the market, chap 1 Corinthians 10:25 .

We all have knowledge ; namely, that an idol is nothing. The apostle refers to the claim set up by some of the Corinthians, that, because they knew the vanity of idolatry, they could eat things offered to idols anywhere, even in an idol’s temple, without rendering to the idol any worship. He intimates that this knowledge is possessed by other Christians, as well as by them. Knowledge puffeth up ; that is, knowledge without love.

Charity ; that is, love, as the word in the original is generally rendered.

Verse 2

Think that he knoweth ; is puffed up with a conceit of his superior knowledge. A man proud of his knowledge is ignorant of himself, and dangerous to others.

Verse 3

Is known of him ; as his friend and the object of his love and care. Compare Matthew 7:23 .

Verse 4

That an idol is nothing ; that the deity which it represents has no existence, and that the idol is therefore a powerless and vain thing.

Verse 6

Of whom ; as the source.

In him ; rather, as the margin, unto or for him; created to promote his glory.

By whom ; by whose agency. Enlightened Christians hold with unshaken confidence to the unity of God, while they acknowledge Jesus Christ as their Creator, Redeemer, and rightful Proprietor, and render to him and to the Father the homage of their hearts.

Verse 7

That knowledge ; that there is but one God, and that idols are nothing.

With conscience of the idol ; thinking that idol deities are realities.

As a thing offered unto an idol ; with superstitious reverence for the supposed idol diety, as if he were a real existence.

Weak ; unenlightened, ignorant.

Defiled ; by thus joining in idol-worship.

Verse 8

Meat ; food of any kind, as the original word implies. To those who have knowledge it is one of the indifferent things. For this reason they ought to be considerate and kind towards their weak brethren in respect to the food now in question, as the apostle proceeds to show.

Verse 9

A stumbling - block ; an occasion of leading others into sin. No man is at liberty to do a thing merely because it is not expressly forbidden, is not wrong in itself, or will not injure him. He is bound to consider how it will affect others, and so to act as to promote their good.

Verse 10

Eat those things ; as real sacrifices to idols, and thus be guilty of idolatry, and of acting in opposition to his conscience.

Verse 11

Through thy knowledge ; the improper use of it.

Verse 13

If meat ; if my indulgence in a particular kind of food.

Make my brother to offend ; be the occasion of leading him into sin. That love which leads a person to deny himself, for the sake of honoring God and doing good to men, is essential to true religion. Luke 14:24-33 .

Bibliographical Information
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 8". "Edwards' Family Bible New Testament". American Tract Society. 1851.