Aug. 5. Paul Warns Against Idolatry

I Cor. 10:14-33

Idolatry was a prevalent and grievous sin. Paul told the Corinthians to flee from it. Many sins today are idolatrous, especially the excessive desire for money, looks, fame, entertainment or “stuff.”

Paul returned to his thoughts on eating meats offered to idols. He first reminded the Corinthians of the elements of the Lord’s Supper and the communion Christians have with one another when they partake of the Supper. The (unleavened) bread and cup (fruit of the vine) represent the body and blood of Christ. Christians take these as they commune as one in the church. The Israelites communed as one as they ate the sacrifices offered on the altars under the Law of Moses.

When one partakes of a feast to idols, even though idols are nothing, he communes as one with those who are worshipping those gods. Paul warned against this practice by saying, “You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons.” (Likewise, one cannot fellowship in worship with those who are teaching things contrary to the commands of Christ.)

Paul repeated that it was not sinful to eat meat offered to idols as long as one did not eat it as worship to an idol. Meat could be bought at the marketplace without fear of it being associated with idol worship. In order to protect one who regarded eating this meat as worship to an idol, he instructed the Corinthians to refuse to eat it if they had been informed that it had truly been offered in idol worship.