In the end, Paulís advice about the images of false gods is like his advice about wrong sex acts (6:18). These matters are so serious that a Christian should avoid them completely. God has provided a way to escape (10:13), and Christians should use it.
Some Christians in Corinth thought that God only wanted them not to give honour to those false gods. So they gladly ate meat that other people had offered to those false gods. Perhaps they even entered the house of the false god to do that (8:10). They insisted that their relationship with Christ allowed them to do such things. By those actions they were showing that God really had made them free. That is what they said.
Paul carefully explained to them that they were wrong:
(1) Even if they did not give any honour to false gods, other Christians may copy their actions. And because those Christians were weaker in their relationship with God, they might give honour to false gods (8:10-13).
(2) A Christian should not use his freedom to do whatever he pleases. He should use his freedom to serve other people, so that he can declare Godís good news to them (9:19-22).
(3) Certainly, a Christian must not allow his emotions to rule his life. Most of the people whom Moses led did that. God was not pleased with them; they suffered greatly because of their wrong attitudes (10:1-11).
(4) Paul will soon add another reason why Christians should avoid completely the images of false gods. To serve a false god is really to serve the devil (10:20). Clearly, a Christian must never do that.
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© 2014, Keith Simons.