1 CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 8

OBSERVATION STAGE

The purpose of the observation stage is to maintain focus on the text at hand within the normative rules of language, context and logic  which limits the observer to the content offered by the letter of 1 Corinthians especially the previous chapters. This will serve to avoid going on unnecessary tangents elsewhere; and more importantly, it will provide the framework for a proper and objective comparison with passages located elsewhere in Scripture utilizing the same normative rules of reading / interpretation.

Remember that something elsewhere may be true, but in the text at hand it may not be in view.

Manuscript Evidence from The New Testament And Translation Commentary, Philip W. Comfort, Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Ill.

****** EXCERPT FROM 1 COR CHAPTER 7 ******

OR MOVE TO FIRST VERSE OF CHAPTER EIGHT 

[(1 Cor 7:36-40) Commentary On 1 Cor 7:36-40]:

(1 Cor 7:36 NKJV) "But if any man thinks he is behaving improperly toward his virgin, if she is past the flower of youth, and thus it must be, let him do what he wishes. He does not sin; let them marry.

(1 Cor 7:37 NKJV) Nevertheless he who stands steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but has power over his own will, and has so determined in his heart that he will keep his virgin, does well.

(1 Cor 7:38 HCSB) So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better.

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

Author Paul returns to the subject of remaining single with a male believer who is a virgin and a woman who is a virgin especially in view when he wrote in 1 Cor 7:36 NKJV as follows:
"But if any man thinks he is behaving improperly toward his virgin ["his" in the sense of being bethrothed to a woman who is a "virgin," with the presumption that he too is a virgin because he is bethrothed to her] if she is past the flower of youth, and thus it must be, let him do what he wishes. He does not sin; let them marry," with the implication that he is not faulted for choosing to marry his bethrothed, both of whom are virgins, as is proper for believers. Notice the word rendered "them" conveys the context of a man and a woman who are bethrothed to be married, and not a father who gives away his daughter to be married, as some contend.

[(1 Cor 7:38) Manuscript Evidence on 1 Cor 7:38]:


WH, NU, P15(vid), Sinaiticus*, A, P, 33, 1739, syr (P46, B, D "autou" instead of "eautou) have "the one marrying his own virgin"

variant / TR Siniaticus(2), Psi, Maj have "the one giving [her] in marriage"

The WH, NU reading is supported by the best manuscript evidence (with one variation of the pronoun). Nonetheless, this expression has been very problematic for interpreters, who have seen it either as [a] way of saying that a fiance marries his virgin fiancee or of saying that a father gives away his virgin daughter in marriage. The ambiguity is taken away in TR, which conveys the notion of a father giving away his virgin daughter in marriage. This is reflected in KJV and NKJV, as well as in NASB and [in the] margins of other modern versions.


[(1 Cor 7:36-40) Commentary On 1 Cor 7:36-40 cont]:

(1 Cor 7:36 NKJV) "But if any man thinks he is behaving improperly toward his virgin, if she is past the flower of youth, and thus it must be, let him do what he wishes. He does not sin; let them marry.

(1 Cor 7:37 NKJV) Nevertheless he who stands steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but has power over his own will, and has so determined in his heart that he will keep his virgin, does well.

(1 Cor 7:38 HCSB) So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better.

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

So Paul goes on in 1 Cor 7:37 & 38 to clarify this matter that he touched upon in 1 Cor 7:36 as follows:

(1 Cor 7:37 NKJV)
 "Nevertheless he who stands steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but has power over his own will, and has so determined in his heart that he will keep his virgin, ["keep her" in the sense of marry her] does well," indicating that it is permissible for one to marry or not - a personal choice]

(1 Cor 7:38 HCSB) So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better."

So in 1 Cor 7:38 Paul concludes that the one who marries his bethrothed who is a virgin as well does well, but should he not marry, he will do even better - in the sense of serving the Lord that much the more due to having greater opportunity and circumstances to do so provided he follows through in faithfulness to those opportunities and circumstances that the Lord provides for him.

[(1 Cor 7:39) Manuscript Evidence for 1 Cor 7:39]:

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) "A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord."

WH, NU, P15(vid), P46, Sinaiticus*, A, B, D*, 0278, 33, 1739 have "a woman is bound"

variant1 / TR, Sinaiticus2, D(1), F, G, Psi, Maj, syr have "a woman is bound by law"

variant2 / K, cop(bo) have "a woman is bound by marriage"

The WH NU reading is fully supported by a wide range of witnesses; in a fuller context it is rendered, 'a woman is bound as long as here husband lives." Both variants are gap-fillers created by scribes who wanted to tell their readers just exactly how a woman was bound to her husband. The first variant was influenced by Ro 7:2; the second is a natural filler.

[(1 Cor 7:40) Manuscript Evidence for 1 Cor 7:40]:

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) "But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

Most manuscripts read, "and I think I have the Spirit of God." P15 and P33, however, have a different title here: "Spirit of Christ." The title "Spirit of Christ" is far less common than "the Spirit of God;" the former appears only in Ro 8:9 and 1 Pet 1:11, the latter in many NT verses. It would be much more likely that scribes changed "the Spirit of Christ" to "the Spirit of God" than vice versa. In this chapter Paul has made the point of separating his advice from the Lord's directives (see 7:10, 25). Nonetheless, he claims that his advice concerning virgins and the unmarried is to be heeded because he has the Spirit of God / Christ. Having made the Lord (that is, the Lord Jesus Christ) the source of reference throughout this chapter, it would be natural for Paul to conclude with an affirmation of his possesson of "the Spirit of Christ" rather than "the Spirit of God."

But these arguments, based on internal evidence, cannot outweigh the fact that all other manuscripts read, "the Spirit of God."


To repeat on the previous context before coming to vv. 39-40,
So in 1 Cor 7:38 Paul concludes that the one who marries his bethrothed who is a virgin as well does well, but should he not marry, he will do even better - in the sense of serving the Lord that much the more due to having greater opportunity and circumstances to do so provided he follows through in faithfulness to those opportunities and circumstances that the Lord provides for him.

So
the same theme, Paul adds in 1 Cor 7:39-40 as follows:

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) "A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

So in 1 Cor 7:39 above, Paul indicates that a wife is bound to stay married as long as her husband lives - believers are in view - but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes; BUT "only in the Lord" in the sense that she must not marry an unbeliever or a believer who might be unequally yoked with her in the Lord.

And then in 1 Cor 7:40 above, Paul presents his opinion in this matter: that a woman who is a believer is happier if she remains as she is, in the sense of happier serving the Lord if, after her husband dies, she remains single rather than to remarry, even to not marry at all. Hence she can serve the Lord all the better and happier. Whereupon, Paul writes "
and I think that I also have the Spirit of God," which he wrote to affirm His authority, i.e., that his words in this letter are not only of value because of who he is but "also" because they have been inspired by the Spirit of God. This last phrase evidently indicates that there was some question as to his authority as representing God from some within the congregation of believers at Corinth. Nevertheless, his words apply to believers throughout the age and beyond.

[(1 Cor 7:36-40) Expositor's Bible Commentary On 1 Cor 7:36-40]:

(1 Cor 7:36 NKJV) "But if any man thinks he is behaving improperly toward his virgin, if she is past the flower of youth, and thus it must be, let him do what he wishes. He does not sin; let them marry.

(1 Cor 7:37 NKJV) Nevertheless he who stands steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but has power over his own will, and has so determined in his heart that he will keep his virgin, does well.

(1 Cor 7:38 HCSB) So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better.

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

"36-40 Paul teaches that a virgin of marriageable age must be treated honorably, whether she becomes married or not. It may be right for her either to marry or remain single.

"36 But who is meant by "he" is in v. 36, the father of the virgin or the man who is engaged to her? Some have even interpreted the second view to mean that the virgin was a "spiritual" bride who lived with the man as a virgin. This latter view presents problems in the light of the Scriptures that teach that a man is to cleave to his wife and they are to be one flesh (Gen 2:24) and to "be fruitful" (Gen 1:28). The decision as to whether the "he" is father or fiance turns on the meaning of gamizo ("marry") in v. 36. Frequently, verbs ending in izo are causative. If this is so here, then the translation "he who causes or gives his virgin to be married" would mean that "he" indicates the father, who in ancient times arranged for his daughter's marriage. But another viable view is that gamizo is not causative here, but is equivalent to gameo ("to marry"). If so, then "he" refers to the man who is considering the possibility of marrying his fiancee. Two arguments speak in favor of the second interpretation. First, v. 38b has no object expressed for the verb gamizo and so the verb can better be translated "marry," not "cause to marry." Second, gameo ("marry") is used in the plural in v. 36, "They should get married," where one might expect the singular form of gamizo if Paul meant to say, "Let him give her in marriage."

So the teaching is that if the situation in Corinth seems to be unfair to a particular virgin and especially if (ean with the subjunctive) she is passing her prime marriageable years, then the fiance should go ahead and marry her. The word hyperakmos literally means "beyond the peak" of life, and so can be translated "if she should be getting along in years." Paul adds that there is no sin in their getting married (v. 36).

NOTES ON vv. 36-40

36 The indicative condition of fact (v. 36a) assumes that such a situation really exists. Ἀσχημονεῖν (aschemonein, "to act improperly") in the light of what is implied by the clause "if she is getting past her prime of life" is best interpreted as meaning that the man could be treating his fiancee dishonorably by depriving her of the privilege of the marriage she desires. Paul seems to be making a play on words in using aschemonein, "to act improperly" when he has just used εὔσχημον (euschemon, "live in a right way, v. 35).

37, 38 In contrast, the man who feels no need to get married has done the right thing too. (The words "who is under no compulsion" refer to outward pressure to marry, such as some prior engagement contract or the pressure of a master on a slave.) However, Paul favors the man who does not marry (v. 38).

39, 40 In climaxing the discussion, Paul states that marriage is a life-long contract. If a woman marries, she is to cleave to her husband (Gen 2:24) till he dies. But when he dies, she is free to marry anyone she chooses, so long as he is a Christian. But, Paul says, the woman will be happier—freer from hardship and care—if she remains unmarried. This is his judgment for the Corinthian situation. When he says, rather modestly, "And I think that I have the Spirit of God," he means that in writing this also he is inspired by the Holy Spirit as were the other writers of Scripture. It is possible that some in Corinth were claiming inspiration; if so, Paul is contrasting himself with them in a veiled way.

"A woman is bound" (v. 39, dedetai, perfect tense) is a strong expression for the unbroken ties of marriage. The passive gamethenai ("to be married"; NIV, "to marry") indicates the women's consent to the new marriage relationship. The phrase monon en kurio ("only in the Lord") means that the woman should marry only a Christian. The NIV translation "but he must belong to the Lord" brings this out.

[(1 Cor 7:36-40) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 7:36-40]:


(1 Cor 7:36 NKJV) "But if any man thinks he is behaving improperly toward his virgin, if she is past the flower of youth, and thus it must be, let him do what he wishes. He does not sin; let them marry.

(1 Cor 7:37 NKJV) Nevertheless he who stands steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but has power over his own will, and has so determined in his heart that he will keep his virgin, does well.

(1 Cor 7:38 HCSB) So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better.

(1 Cor 7:39 NASB) A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

(1 Cor 7:40 NASB) But in my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God."

"7:36-38. The interpretation and translation of this passage is difficult, as the alternate marginal translation indicates. The issue revolves around whether the indefinite pronoun anyone (v. 36) refers to a father or to a prospective bridegroom. The niv translators, following most modern commentators, have adopted the latter point of view but have included the traditional interpretation in the margin. The strength of the bridegroom view lies in the fact that it permits a consistent subject for the verbs used throughout the passage, a strength which the niv translators forfeited by making the virgin the subject of the phrase getting along in years. This decision was possibly prompted by the need to explain why the bridegroom might be thought to act improperly (i.e., his delay in consummating the marriage may, with her advancing age, adversely affect her chance of ever getting married). The bridegroom view, however, faces a lexical difficulty in the meaning of two verbs (gameō and gamizō) for marriage. In order to sustain the bridegroom view it is necessary to understand the terms as virtual synonyms, meaning "to marry." But gamizō usually means "give in marriage," and gameō means simply "marry," as these words do in the other New Testament passages where they occur together (Matt. 24:38; Mark 12:25). This distinction in meaning continued to be recognized even in the second century. (Apollonius Dyscolus Syntax 3. 153). So it seems that the marginal reading is to be preferred.

Paul, then, gave advice to a father who in the first-century culture exercised great decision-making authority in matters affecting his family. A father may have decided that his daughter should not marry, possibly due to reasons similar to those Paul had mentioned in 1 Corinthians 7:25-34. But in coming to this decision, the father had not reckoned with the fact that his daughter might not be able to remain single. She might not possess the gift of celibacy (v. 7). If so, Paul recommended that the father should not feel obligated to hold to his previous commitment but instead let his daughter marry. However, the father should feel free to follow through on his conviction to keep his daughter single (v. 37) if three conditions were met: (a) He had a settled and firm conviction about the propriety of her celibacy. (b) He was in a position where he was free to exercise his authority, that is, he was not a slave in which case the master could determine the daughter's destiny. (c) He was under no compulsion from evidence which suggested that his daughter was not able to remain single but required marriage instead. If these conditions were met, then the father did well not to give her in marriage."

4. Remarriage And Widows (7:39-40)
7:39-40. Paul's earlier counsel to widows (vv. 8-9) was to remain single. In that previous context, however, he acknowledged the fact that not all were equipped to do so. The only constraint Paul placed on a widow who sought remarriage was the obligation to marry another Christian (he must belong to the Lord) - an obligation which though previously unstated, he no doubt meant to apply to all who sought marriage partners. That point alone, however, affected a widow's options. Within that condition she might choose whom she wanted and find with that husband great happiness, though Paul added that in his judgment she would be happier if she remained single. This advice was not only from Paul's heart but also guided by the Spirit of God, who equipped both single and married Christians (v. 7) for their respective roles."

****** END OF EXCERPT FROM 1 COR CHAPTER 7 ******

I) [1 Cor 8:1-13]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies.

(1 Cor 8:2 NASB) If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know;

(1 Cor 8:3 NASB) but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him.

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB)
Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. [Note: consult original study on this to add notes on the Trinity NOT being refuted - 1cor8.htm]

(1 Cor 8:7 NASB)
However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.
 
(1 Cor 8:8 NASB) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat.

(1 Cor 8:9 NASB) But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.

(1 Cor 8:10 NASB) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?

(1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

(1 Cor 8:12 NASB) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.

(1 Cor 8:13 NASB) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."

A) [(1 Cor 8:1) Commentary on 1 Cor 8:1]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies."

'''Author and apostle Paul begins 1 Cor 8:1 with the Greek words "peri de" rendered "Now concerning" [meat sacrificed to idols] which words indicate that he is moving now to another vital subject that directly addresses the believers at Corinth, namely that of meat sacrificed to idols. For the Greek and Roman society in that part of the world was largely one of idol worship of many gods and of pagan sacrifices especially animal sacrifices to those pagan gods that they worshipped. But the believers at Corinth were now under one God over all and the fact that no other gods actually existed. And all of this through a momet of faith alone in Jesus Christ alone: in His sacrifice for sins which was diametrically opposed to such idol worship and animal sacrifices to those 'gods.' So in the midst of such religious practices all around one, and many of the believers in Corinth having participated in such practices themselves, Paul was addressing a potential stumbling block in the lives of the believers - especially the new believers, and/or the believers that participated in animal sacrifices to idols - which permeated the society that they lived in. Even the local meat markets in the regions offered left over meat to be sacrificed to idols from the portions not burned up for sale to the general public.
Thus a considerable amount of sacrificed meat ended up in the public market, on the tables of pagan neighbors and friends, or at the pagan festivals. Thus questions might arise in the mind of believers, such as, was the meat spiritually contaminated? Did the pagan god actually have an effect on the meat? Even if one did not think so, what would his participation do to his Christian brother who might have scruples about this perhaps because he is immature in the faith as yet? Though Christians today do not have to deal with this particular problem, they too must face questions of how to conduct themselves in a non-Christian society. So this is a valuable lesson for all believers.

So on this issue of a lesson to be learned, there is indeed implied that on the matter of meat sacrificed to idols, that Christians should know that it is not a significant issue wherein believers must abstain from eating meat which was prepared to be sacrificed to pagan idols / gods. They have their freedom of choice as Christians to do so or not. Either way it should not be a matter of being faithful or not, or breaking a command or not. On the other hand, there is also implied that some believers who are not mature or properly informed on this issue may feel, albeit inaccurately, that Christians should not eat such food at all. So Paul implies that those that do eat meat prepared to sacrifice to idols in front of potentially weaker Christians who might question the practice are endangering the spiritual growth of them who observe or learn of that practice that other believers are doing it and do not know that it is not an issue of being unfaithful:

1) [Compare 1 Cor 8:7]:

(1 Cor 8:7 NASB) "However not all men have this knowledge [that it is ok to eat meat prepared to sacrifice to idols]; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled." in the sense that they are convicted of being sinful.

So Paul adds the point that the mere knowledge that it is okay to eat such meat is insufficient without an agape self-sacrificial love / concern for how their actions effect others in this regard. For without such concern - hence only having the mere knowledge of this matter - the believer's actions become indifferent to the welfare of others - especially other believers. They consider themselves secure in demonstrating proper faithful conduct despite their inconsiderate actions which might endanger the faith and faithfulness of other believers. Hence
Paul struck right to the heart of the matter in these preliminary verses by stating that knowledge without agape love is insufficient (cf. chap. 13).

2) [(1 Cor 8:1) Expositor's Bible Commentary On 1 Cor 8:1]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies."

'''1 By the peri de ["now concerning"] Paul shows he is referring to another question asked by the Corinthian delegation (cf. 7:1, 25). The importance of the question of "foods offered in sacrifice to idols" (eidolothuton) becomes evident when one realizes how thoroughly idolatry and pagan sacrifices permeated all levels of Greek and Roman society. Indeed, people could hardly escape contact with the pagan practices and their influence. The meat offered on the pagan altars was usually divided into three portions: one portion was burned up, a second given to the priest, and the third given to the offerer. If the priest did not use his portion, it was taken to the meat market. Thus a considerable amount of sacrificed meat ended up in the public market, on the tables of pagan neighbors and friends, or at the pagan festivals. The problems Christians faced are obvious. Was the meat spiritually contaminated? Did the pagan god actually have an effect on the meat? Even if one did not think so, what would his participation do to his Christian brother who might have scruples about this? Though Christians today do not have to deal with this particular problem, they too must face questions of how to conduct themselves in a non-Christian society.

In v. 1 Paul concedes that all Christians know—at least theoretically—the real meaning about the meat sacrificed to idols. But, he implies, there is something more—some may really feel that there is something wrong with that meat (v. 7). So he adds that the mere knowledge that there is nothing wrong with it inflates one to a level of false security and indifference. Thus, love (agape) is necessary. Love takes one beyond himself to aid another; it builds up. (It is possible to take v. 1a, as some do, as a quotation from the Corinthians themselves: "We know that you say we all have knowledge.")'''

3) [(1 Cor 8:1) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 8:1]:

a. The principle of brotherly love (chap. 8)

"Paul struck right to the heart of the matter in these preliminary verses by stating a basic principle: love is superior to knowledge (cf.chap. 13).

8:1. Much as he had begun his reply on marital questions, Paul may have quoted a Corinthian sentiment (we all possess knowledge) with which he basically agreed but which required qualification. Knowledge was essential in correctly responding to their questions but those who thought they had it did not, as Paul would show."

B) [(1 Cor 8:1-3) Commentary On 1 Cor 8:2-3]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies.

(1 Cor 8:2 NASB) If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know;

(1 Cor 8:3 NASB) but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him."

Paul states in 1 Cor 8:2-3 if anyone in the sense of any believer supposes that he knows anything in the sense of presuming that what he knows about a subject is sufficient and if he has not considered that anything else should accompany that knowledge - just a memory of the subject matter without consideration of others' response to that knowledge when conveyed to them in order to be suitably functional toward some end without some other qualification being required; then that believer's knowledge is not sufficient to be properly utilized. So that person has not yet known as he ought to know - there is something lacking, namely what that knowledge's effect might have upon others that he communicates that knowledge to, i.e., that knowledge is conveyed with a framework tempered with agape / self-sacrificial love - a concern for how that knowledge when conveyed to others might effect them. Such insufficient knowledge not being conveyed with agape / self-sacrifical godly love tends to puff one up with an unrealistic, self-important attitude - a self-serving attitude devoid of consideration of others one is communicating that knowledge to. And Paul conveys
the idea that if anyone loves God with an agape / self-sacrificial love, he is known by Him - a statement that to be known by God one's knowledge must be expressed with agape / self-sacrificial, godly love toward God and others. This is not so say one is not saved if one is not "known by God" as it is ex  pressed in 1 Cor 8:3. It is a sign of growing in the faith as a child of God which childhood status with God was forever established at the point of receiving Christ as Savior, i.e., believing in His name: compare Jn 1:12-13 . But it is a sign of advancement toward spiritual maturity wherein one is in a more intimate fellowship relationship with God ones Father. For expressing agape / godly / self-sacrificial love toward God and fellow men is indeed an expression that only believers can do, not unbelievers. And they do it as they grow in the faith as a child of God, born of God.

1) [(1 Cor 8:1-3) Expositor's Bible Commentary On 1 Cor 8:2-3]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies.

(1 Cor 8:2 NASB) If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know;

(1 Cor 8:3 NASB) but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him."

"2 Paul now warns against dependence on simply knowing something, since a person never knows all he ought to know about a subject. Such an attitude exhibits a complete dependence on one's own self-sufficient knowledge and illustrates what Paul means by saying, "Knowledge puffs up."

3 With the essential ingredient of love, knowledge is tempered and made the right kind of discerning and compassionate knowledge exhibited when one loves God. In loving God, a person shows that he is known by God—that God recognizes him as his own and as having the right kind of knowledge, because he is exercising it in love to his fellow-Christians and to God."

2) [(1 Cor 8:1-3) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 8:2-3]:

(1 Cor 8:1 NASB) "Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies.

(1 Cor 8:2 NASB) If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know;

(1 Cor 8:3 NASB) but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him."

"8:2-3. In the first place, knowledge about God was always partial (13:12). In the second place, true knowledge led to God and a love for Him which Paul knew must issue in love for others (cf. 1 John 4:20-21)."

C) [(1 Cor 8:4-6) Commentary On 1 Cor 8:4-6]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."

So author and apostle Paul moves on to further qualify the phrase "meat sacrificed to idols" in verse 4
beginning with the Greek word "translated" meat literally "brosis" = "food." There is no conflict here, however, because the context involves altar sacrifices and the meat market (Greek: "makellon." So the translation to "meat" is proper. The key is to consider that an animal was killed / sacrificed in an act or acts of worship to an idol and such idols although in the minds of those involved represented gods which in reality did not even exist. They were nothing, and had no reality or power. Hence Paul wrote in 1 Cor 8:4, "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one." Thus this verse implies that believers need not be concerned with eating such meat, because it is not in reality representing real gods as none exist - it is inconsequential. The only God is God alone - the God of the Bible as believed in by Christians.  

Whereupon, having brought up the subject in 1 Cor 8:4 of idols whom people worship who are falsely believed to represent actual gods, i.e., actual rulers of natural even supernatural capacity in the world / the universe whom Paul declares as not existant when he wrote: "we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one." Notice that he declares that there are no idols and no gods and no God but one, hence no other gods, even lesser gods, nor natural or supernatural rulers represented by those idols - such as might be in view in the mind of apostle Paul in Roman and Greek mythology and also the gods and lords of the mystery religions of his time and the minds of the Romans and the Greeks who follow and believe in their particular mythology in their worship of their particular idols. So then Paul goes on to consider that even if there are so-called gods behind the idols which people worship whether in heaven or on earth in view in 1 Cor 8:5 NASB: "For even if there are so-called gods [and there are not] whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords [in the sense of the authority they have over people and are even called as such by people without consideration for the fact that there is no God but one]; nevertheless he concludes this thought in 1 Cor 8:6 NASB, with "yet for us [Christians] there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by Whom are all things [i.e., He is Creator / God], and [therefore] we exist through Him."

On the other hand, when Scripture refers to lords, gods, kings, etc. depending upon context these words are in, they often refer to those who are indeed real life beings who are nevertheless all under the authority of God. They are largely human beings, but a number of them are demonic angelic beings, having having usurped the authority of humans which began in the Garden of Eden, Satan being their head, and these demonic angels are directing their powers over mankind toward the manipulation of humanity toward their own ends and against the authority of God. This was due to the demon angels' alienation toward their Creator God and against the authority of God. Nevertheless, this was limited by the sovereignty of God so that they would not gain complete and permanent control of the world. For humanity will be restored to their position of authority once more through Jesus Christ .

1) [(1 Cor 8:4-6) Expositor's Commentary On 1 Cor 8:4-6]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."
"b. The meaning of eating meat sacrificed to idols (8:4-6)

4 The word translated "meat" is really the broader word "food" (brosis), but since the subject involves altar sacrifices and the meat market (makellon, 1Cor 10:25; see commentary on this verse), the translation "meat" is proper. The main thing to remember in connection with such meat, Paul says, is that the idol before which it was sacrificed and the god it represents are actually nothing—that is, nothing as to personal reality and power. That he means this is clear from his statement "There is no God but one" (cf.Deut 6:4-9; 1 Kings 18:39; Isa 45:5). The phrase "in the world" means "in the universe."

5, 6 Paul grants that there are "so-called gods" in heaven and earth such as those the pagans recognized in Greek and Roman mythology. In addition, he mentions the many "gods" and "lords" who are called such in Scripture (cf.Deut 10:17; Ps 136:2, 3) and who in the widest sense represent rulers in the universe who are subordinate to God (Col 1:16 ). So Paul is teaching that the "so-called gods" of the pagans are unreal and that the real "gods" and "lords," whatever they may be, are all subordinate to the only one supreme God whom alone we recognize. Actually, Paul declares the Christian's "one God, the Father... one Lord, Jesus Christ, to be the source of all things and the One for whom Christians live" (v. 6). Concerning the world, the Father is the source (ex hou) of all creation, and Jesus Christ is the dynamic One through whom (di hou) creation came into existence. As for the Christian, he lives for God, the source of all, and has the power for so living through Jesus Christ. So why, implies Paul, should we be concerned with idols or meat sacrificed to idols?

D) [(1 Cor 8:6) Commentary On 1 Cor 8:6 Relative to the Trinity]:

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB) "yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."

"All hEmin heis theos ho ..patEr .ex .hou ....ta ...panta

"but to us..one God ...the Father of .Whom the .all

kai hEmeis eis auton kai heis kurios .iEsous .christos di .hou

and we .......for Him ..and one Lord ...Jesus ...Christ ...by Whom

ta .panta kai .hEmeis di ..autou"

all things and we ........by Him"

1) THE TRINITY IS NOT REFUTED BY THIS VERSE

a) THE LANGUAGE IS INSUFFICIENT TO EXCLUDE GOD THE SON AND GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO ARE DESCRIBED ELSEWHERE AS GOD

"Yet for us there is but one God, the Father" =

Just because this phrase only has in view "one God, the Father," it cannot be said to exclude the possibility of Jesus Christ being God the Son and the Holy Spirit being God the Holy Spirit, provided they are Personalities of the Godhead, (and they are stipulated as such elsewhere in Scripture). Mentioning one Personalty of the one and only God, namely the Father, does not exclude the other two unless there is language that specifically conveys that point - and there isn't.

i) Jesus Christ Is God

i_1) [Compare Titus 2:11-14]:

(v. 11) "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.

(v. 12) It teaches us to say 'No' to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,

(v. 13) while we wait for the blessed hope - the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,

(v. 14) Who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good."

In NT Greek, this is called Granville Sharpe construction. One article is used for both nouns. The Greek kai ("and") connects the two nouns. This means that the appositive, Jesus Christ, must be referring to both "God" and "Savior".

Hence Jesus Christ is stipulated as our great God; and He is stipulated as our great Savior with details in verse 14 that depict Jesus Christ in His Humanity redeeming us from all wickedness - His Humanity being in view, a requirement in Scripture in order to be our Redeemer.

ii) The Holy Spirit Is God

ii_a) [Compare Jn 14:16-17]:

(v. 16) "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever:

(v. 17) that is the Spirit of truth, Whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you."

"another" = "allon". The Greek word "allon" is the word which John used which is translated "another" in the English. "Allon" more specifically means 'another of the same kind' whereas the Greek word 'heteron' could have been chosen but was not.

'Heteron' means another but of a different kind. Compare Gal 1:6-7 where Paul speaks of of a different gospel, ("heteron"), which is not another, ("allon"), of the same kind that he preached as the true gospel:

[Gal 1:6-7]:

(v. 6) "I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him Who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different [= "heteron" = another of a different kind] gospel;

(v. 7) which is really not another ["allo" = another of the same kind]"

Cp 1 Cor 15:39-41.

ii_a cont.) [Jn 14:16-17 cont.]:

(v. 16) "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever:

(v. 17) that is the Spirit of truth, Whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you."

So since we have already proved that Jesus Christ Himself is God, (Titus 2:13), then "Another" of the same Kind' Who is, ("allon"), as Jesus Christ is, could only be God. Therefore since Jn 14:16-17 states that "Another" of the same kind as Jesus Christ is refers to the Holy Spirit then the Holy Spirit is God.

ii_a cont.) [Jn 14:16-17, 26 cont.]:

(v. 16) "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;

(v. 17) that is the Spirit of truth, Whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you."

["Him" = "Auto" = nominative, singular, neuter, personal pronoun]

(v. 26) "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you."

["Whom" = "" = nominative singular masculine pronoun.

"He" = "ekeinos" = nominative, singular, demonstrative, masculinepronoun]

b) BOTH THE ONE GOD THE FATHER AND THE ONE LORD JESUS CHRIST ARE STIPULATED AS BEING CREATOR OF ALL THINGS AND FOR WHOM ALL MANKIND EXISTS. THIS EQUATES THE FATHER WITH JESUS CHRIST - BOTH BEING THE ONE GOD - CORROBORATING THE DOCTRINE OF THE TRINITY

"Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom all things came and for Whom we live" =

"All hEmin heis theos ho ..patEr .ex .hou ....ta ...panta

"but to us..one God ...the Father of .Whom the .all

kai hEmeis eis auton kai heis kurios .iEsous .christos di .hou

and we .......for Him ..and one Lord ...Jesus ...Christ ...by Whom

ta .panta kai .hEmeis di ..autou"

all things and we ........by Him"

Notice that the one God the Father and the one Lord Jesus Christ are stipulated as being Creator of all things and for Whom all mankind exists. This is a parallel statement that can be said to corroborate the equality of the one God the Father and the one Lord Jesus Christ. Hence it supports the doctrine of the Trinity.

c) THE JUXTAPOSITION OF THE ONE GOD THE FATHER VS THE ONE LORD JESUS CHRIST IN HIS HUMANITY DOES NOT REFUTE THE TRINITY

The one Lord Jesus Christ is portrayed in Scripture in three ways:

i) His Humanity Is In View Which Does Not Negate His Diety

i_a) [Compare John 17:1-5]:

(v. 1) "After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: 'Father, the time has come. Glorify Your Son, that your Son may glorify you.

(v. 2) For you granted Him authority over all people that He might give eternal life to all those You have given Him.

(v. 3) Now this is eternal life: that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, Whom You have sent.

(v. 4) I have brought You glory on earth by completing the work You gave Me to do.

(v. 5) And now, Father, glorify Me in your presence with the glory I had with You before the world began."

Notice that Jesus Christ is praying to God the Father requesting that the Father Glorify Jesus, evidently in His Humanity. Further on in the passage, however, Jesus aludes to His eternal presence before the world began, obviously in His Diety. Nevertheless, Jesus is operating here exclusively out of His humanity, setting aside His expression of Diety as Phil 2:5-8 indicates He would.

iii) His Diety Is In View Which Does Not Negate His Humanity

iii_a) [Compare Jn 1:1-3]:

(v. 1) "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

(v. 2) He was with God in the beginning.

(v. 3) Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made."

Notice that the Word later is identified in vv. 14-18 as Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Verses 1-3 have only the Diety of the Word, Jesus Christ, the Son of God in view. This does not negate His Humanity, however, which comes in view by verse 14 when "The Word became flesh," i.e., added to Himself Humanity.

Detailed explanation of John chapter one

iii) His Humanity And His Diety Are Both In View.

iii_a) [Compare Titus 2:11-14]:

(v. 11) "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.

(v. 12) It teaches us to say 'No' to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,

(v. 13) while we wait for the blessed hope - the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,

(v. 14) Who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good."

In NT Greek, this is called Granville Sharpe construction. One article is used for both nouns. The Greek kai ("and") connects the two nouns. This means that the appositive, Jesus Christ, must be referring to both "God" and "Savior".

Hence Jesus Christ is stipulated as our great God; and He is stipulated as our great Savior with details in verse 14 that depict Jesus Christ in His Humanity redeeming us from all wickedness - His Humanity being in view, a requirement in Scripture in order to be our Redeemer.

So the first phrase of 1 Cor 8:6, "Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom all things came and for Whom we live" is juxtaposed to "and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through Whom all things came and through Whom we live," implying a distinction - and there is! The Humanity of Jesus Christ which is in view here in phrase #2 does not negate His diety as clearly indicated elsewhere in Scripture, but it is not in view, nevertheless not negated by and in phrase #1. He has both Diety and Humanity:

i_a) [Compare Phil 2:5-8]:

(v. 5) "Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,

(v. 6) Who, although He subsisted in the form of God, [He is God] did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped,

(v. 7) but emptied Himself, [i.e., set aside the expression of His Godhead. He never abolished His Diety] taking the form of a bondservant, and being made in the likeness of men, [i.e., it was added to Him Humanity].

(v. 8) And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

Further explanation:

2) [(1 Cor 8:4-6) Expositor's Commentary On 1 Cor 8:4-6]:
       
(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."

"4 The word translated "meat" is really the broader word "food" (brosis), but since the subject involves altar sacrifices and the meat market (makellon, 1Cor 10:25; see commentary on this verse), the translation "meat" is proper. The main thing to remember in connection with such meat, Paul says, is that the idol before which it was sacrificed and the god it represents are actually nothing—that is, nothing as to personal reality and power. That he means this is clear from his statement "There is no God but one" (cf.Deut 6:4-9; 1 Kings 18:39; Isa 45:5). The phrase "in the world" means "in the universe."

5, 6 Paul grants that there are "so-called gods" in heaven and earth such as those the pagans recognized in Greek and Roman mythology. In addition, he mentions the many "gods" and "lords" who are called such in Scripture (cf.Deut 10:17; Ps 136:2, 3) and who in the widest sense represent rulers in the universe who are subordinate to God (Col 1:16 ). So Paul is teaching that the "so-called gods" of the pagans are unreal and that the real "gods" and "lords," whatever they may be, are all subordinate to the only one supreme God whom alone we recognize. Actually, Paul declares the Christian's "one God, the Father... one Lord, Jesus Christ, to be the source of all things and the One for whom Christians live" (v. 6). Concerning the world, the Father is the source (ex hou) of all creation, and Jesus Christ is the dynamic One through whom (di hou) creation came into existence. As for the Christian, he lives for God, the source of all, and has the power for so living through Jesus Christ. So why, implies Paul, should we be concerned with idols or meat sacrificed to idols?"

3) [(1 Cor 8:4-6) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 8:4-6]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."

"8:4. With the principle stated it now remained to be applied to the particular instance in question. The statements which follow the twothats (an idol is nothing at all and there is no God but One) may well have been Corinthian affirmations with which Paul could wholeheartedly agree. An "idol" indeed was "nothing" (Ps. 115:4-8), for there is only one God (Deut. 4:35, 39). Hence eating food sacrificed to idols was, in itself, inconsequential.

8:5-6. The pantheon of the Greeks and Romans, not to mention the gods and lords of the mystery religions, were indeed numerous, but one God alone is real (Deut. 10:17). The Father is the source of all (Gen. 1:1) and the One for whom the Corinthians should live (1 Cor. 10:31). The Lord Jesus Christ was the agent of Creation (Col. 1:16) and the One through whom the Corinthians lived (1 Cor. 12:27; Eph. 1:23)."

E) [(1 Cor 8:4-8) Commentary On 1 Cor 8:7-8]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.

(1 Cor 8:7 NASB)
However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled."
 
(1 Cor 8:8 NASB) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat."

So in view of what Paul wrote in the three previous verses, namely
(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. (1 Cor 8:5 NASB) For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, (1 Cor 8:6 NASB) yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by Whom are all things, and we exist through Him," Paul wrote in 1 Cor 8:7 NASB, "However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled. (1 Cor 8:8 NASB) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat." Notice Paul's concern for the emotional, spiritual welfare for a brother / sister in Christ who might be negatively influenced / effected perhaps due to a weak or defiled conscience by a believer who eats things prepared to be or actually sacrificed to idols. Although a believer may exercise his freedom in Christ to choose to eat things prepared to be or actually sacrificed to idols it must be with the proviso that it not create a problem with a brother in Christ who may observe this behavior and think it is questionable, even forbidden; perhaps because he has been exposed or even participated in such forms of idol worship. So in 1 Cor 8:7, Expositor's Bible Commentary says, "The knowledge Paul now speaks of is the perceptive knowledge regarding an idol and the existence and position of the "so-called gods." But some may not fully realize the significance of these truths, because in their former unsaved state they had become so accustomed to idols and to the sacrificed meat that now when they eat such meat, they think of it only as something sacrificed to the idol, rather than as food provided by God. Their moral awareness—their conscience (syneidesis)—is weak, being unable to discriminate in these matters and so is defiled. The verb moluno can mean "defile" as in Revelation 14:4, or can be used, as here, of being brought into a sense of guilt."

Then in 1 Cor 8:8, one should as he grows in the faith consider that although believers are free to choose whether to eat such food or not, nevertheless food believers eat neither commend one to God or not, nor will it make us better before God or not; it must not be provided if it offends a weaker brother / sister in Christ.

1) [(1 Cor 8:4-8) Expositor's Bible Commentary On 1 Cor 8:7-8]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB)
"Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.

(1 Cor 8:7 NASB)
However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled."
 
(1 Cor 8:8 NASB) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat."

"7 The knowledge Paul now speaks of is the perceptive knowledge regarding an idol and the existence and position of the "so-called gods." But some may not fully realize the significance of these truths, because in their former unsaved state they had become so accustomed to idols and to the sacrificed meat that now when they eat such meat, they think of it only as something sacrificed to the idol, rather than as food provided by God. Their moral awareness—their conscience (syneidesis)—is weak, being unable to discriminate in these matters and so is defiled. The verb moluno can mean "defile" as in Revelation 14:4, or can be used, as here, of being brought into a sense of guilt.

7 The textual problem in v. 7a is whether the reading should be συνείδησις (suneidesis, "conscience") instead of συνήθεια (sunetheia, "become accustomed to"). The latter, followed by NIV, is the witness of the better Gr. texts. If suneidesis should be read as in KJV, then the idea is that their thought has been permeated with the consciousness or awareness that the idol is real.

8 Paul's next statement can have a twofold thrust. First, as in 8:1, we should know that there is nothing inherently wrong with sacrificial meat and that in itself food neither enhances nor minimizes our standing before God. Second, since the eating of meat is of no spiritual importance and so is a matter of indifference, the Corinthians should realize that to eat sacrificial meat is not a practice to be insisted on for maintaining Christian liberty (Hodge, in loc.)."

2) [(1 Cor 8:4-8) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 8:7-8]:

(1 Cor 8:4 NASB) "Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.

(1 Cor 8:5 NASB)
For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,

(1 Cor 8:6 NASB)
yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from Whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.

(1 Cor 8:7 NASB)
However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled."
 
(1 Cor 8:8 NASB) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat."

"8:7-8. If all Corinthian Christians could have agreed that an idol was nothing and that there was only one God (v. 4), then they might have eaten the idol meat with impunity. However, such was not the case. All, in fact, did not possess knowledge. The conscience of some Christians was not strengthened on this point by the truth. They were still ignorant and had not come to the point where they could accept eating this kind of meat as a matter of indifference. For them it was wrong, and so to eat it was sin (cf. Rom. 14:23 ). Paul denied the validity of their scruples, but in the advice which followed he suggested that the solution would be found in love, not in knowledge."

F) [(1 Cor 8:9-13) Commentary On 1 Cor 8:9-13]:

(1 Cor 8:9 NASB) "But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.

(1 Cor 8:10 NASB) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?

(1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

(1 Cor 8:12 NASB) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.

(1 Cor 8:13 NASB) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."

Finally, Paul begins to summarize this part of his letter [designated as chapter 8 by Bible Publishers] in 1 Cor 8:9 NASB with, "But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak."

And 1 Cor 8:9 is followed by specifics on this issue:

(1 Cor 8:10 NASB) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?

(1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

(1 Cor 8:12 NASB) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.

(1 Cor 8:13 NASB) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."

So it is indicated here that out of agape / self-sacrificial love for others - especially fellow believers in Jesus Christ, Paul addresses a specific issue [and it nevertheless applies to many related issues in the Christian life relative to affecting a weaker brother] that is up to the believer in his Christian walk whether or not he may choose to follow it: the issue of whether or not to eat meat / i.e., things prepared to and even sacrificed to idols. But Christians are not to operate solely out of knowledge of the Christian life but out of that knowledge plus operate out of agape / self-sacrificial love - concern for fellow believers. So the believer must choose to refrain from exercising solely out of knowledge excluding operating out of agape / self-sacrificial love for others, i.e., solely out the knowledge of ones freedom in Christ in such a matter if there is a chance that others who are vulnerable might see him doing this who are not mature in the faith / liable to be unduly influenced by his actions and for that matter even in matters that are similar so that others who might see a believer exercising his freedom and be offended and even have their faith jeopardized because from their immature point of view, albeit, it is none of their concern. Thereby the believer's actions if he chooses to operate out of knowledge and bypass expressing agape / self-sacrificial love toward his brother might become a stumbling block and cause the immature believer to fall away from the faith / be ruined because of what the other has done. Note that the phrase (1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died does not imply loss of salvation for that cannot happen . But there are other kinds of temporal / eternal ruin such as an early physical death, loss of blessings in the temporal life and suffering the loss of eternal rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ for the rest of eternity.

This is not to say that a believer must aways respond with abandoning his freedom to the Christian who chooses to become a prejudicial legalist who demands that all believers follow his lead, much like the Judaisers in the early church.

Expositor's Bible Commentary wrote, "As a final note to this chapter it should be understood that Paul did not say that a knowledgeable Christian must abandon his freedom to the ignorant prejudice of a "spiritual" bigot. The "weak brother" (v. 11) was one who followed the example of another Christian, not one who carped and coerced that knowledgeable Christian into a particular behavioral pattern. Also it was unlikely that Paul saw this weak brother as permanently shackling the freedom of the knowledgeable Christian. The "weak brother" was no omnipresent phantom but an individual who was to be taught so that he too could enjoy his freedom (Gal. 5:1)."          

1) [(1 Cor 8:9-12) Expositor's Commentary On 1 Cor 8:9-13]:

(1 Cor 8:9 NASB) "But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.

(1 Cor 8:10 NASB) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?

(1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

(1 Cor 8:12 NASB) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.

(1 Cor 8:13 NASB) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."

"9-12 Though Christians have the exousia (the "authority") to act in such cases as the one mentioned, they must "be careful" (blepete), lest through the exercise of this authority to act in freedom they somehow cause the weak (in conscience) to stumble in living their Christian lives. By "stumbling block" is meant causing the weak brother not only to have a sense of guilt (v. 7), but to go beyond this into sin (v. 13) by compromising with pagan idolatry.

So Paul depicts for the Corinthians what may well have been an actual scene (v. 10): Suppose, a brother who is weak in conscience sees you, who understand that an idol is nothing, reclining at table to eat (katakeimenon) in an idol temple; won't he also be encouraged to eat and so do what his conscience forbids him to do? When you do such a thing, he continues (v. 11), you are using your freedom and knowledge to bring your weak brother down the path (apollutai, present tense of apollumi, "destroy") toward spiritual weakness and destruction. Paul does not mean ultimate spiritual destruction, for he calls this man a "brother, for whom Christ died." The stress is on weakening the faith and ruining the Christian life of the brother.

Speaking to the "strong" brother (v. 12), Paul is saying, "If you cause the weak brother to stumble into sin, you yourselves are sinning in a twofold way: (1) against your brothers and (2) against Christ in that you are wounding the conscience of those who belong to Christ." The plurals in this verse imply that Paul has in mind a sizeable group at Corinth who were both the offenders and the offended.

13 In closing the discussion, the apostle includes himself. He may be indicating that when he was in Corinth, he had had to face this question and had, for the sake of the Christians there, refrained from eating meat that had been sacrificed to idols. So he ends with the personal declaration: "Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause him to fall" (v. 13) - a noble resolve that stands as an enduring principle for Christian living."

2) [(1 Cor 8:9-12) Bible Knowledge Commentary On 1 Cor 8:9-13]:

(1 Cor 8:9 NASB) "But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.

(1 Cor 8:10 NASB) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?

(1 Cor 8:11 NASB) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

(1 Cor 8:12 NASB) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.

(1 Cor 8:13 NASB) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."

"8:9. When knowledge uninformed by love dictated one's behavior, Paul warned that spiritual harm would result. The exercise of... freedom by the knowledgeable could in certain circumstances become an obstacle, a stumbling block in the weak Christian's walk with God (cf. v. 13).

8:10. As an illustration Paul posed a situation in which a weak Christian saw a knowledgeable brother enjoying a meal in an idol's temple and was by this example encouraged to join in, even though he could not do so with the clear conscience before God that the knowledgeable Christian enjoyed.

8:11. As a consequence the conscience of this weak believer was seared (cf. 1 Tim. 4:2), and his capacity to distinguish right from wrong was lost (cf. Titus 1:15) leading to his spiritual ruin and physical death (cf. 1 Cor. 10:9-10; Rom. 14:15). Apollytai, rendered is destroyed, often refers to physical death (e.g., Matt. 2:13; Acts 5:37). The selflessness of Christ was an example for the knowledgeable. If Christ loved this brother so that he was willing to give up His exalted rights and even His life (Phil. 2:6, 8), surely the strong could give up his right to eat such meat.

8:12. To be arrogantly indifferent to the need of weaker Christians results in sin not only against them (for you... wound their weak conscience; cf. v. 7) but also against Christ of whose body they are members (12:26-27; cf. 1:30; Matt. 25:40, 45). Paul experienced this point acutely on the Damascus Road (Acts 9:4-5).

8:13. In summary Paul stressed the priority of brotherly love. He did not demand that the knowledgeable relinquish their right, but he illustrated how he would apply the principle to himself. Paul did not want any brother to fall (cf. v. 9) but to be "built up" (cf. v. 1), and knowledge governed by love accomplished that.

As a final note to this chapter it should be understood that Paul did not say that a knowledgeable Christian must abandon his freedom to the ignorant prejudice of a "spiritual" bigot. The "weak brother" (v. 11) was one who followed the example of another Christian, not one who carped and coerced that knowledgeable Christian into a particular behavioral pattern. Also it was unlikely that Paul saw this weak brother as permanently shackling the freedom of the knowledgeable Christian. The "weak brother" was no omnipresent phantom but an individual who was to be taught so that he too could enjoy his freedom (Gal. 5:1)."

Continue to 1 Cor chapter 9