Useful Bible Studies > 1 Corinthians Commentary > chapter 10

What should a Christian do if he has to refuse food?

1 Corinthians 10:28

Sometimes a person who is not a Christian invites a Christian for a meal. On such occasions, the Christian should eat whatever food his host has provided. In other words, the Christian guest should not normally refuse the food for reasons of religion. Of course he may have to refuse food for other reasons. For example: Because of his health, or if there is too much food.

However, there can be circumstances where a Christian should refuse food because of matters of religion. For example: Someone may warn the Christian not to eat the meat because the host offered it to a false god.

If the Christian had not known that fact, he could have eaten the meat. In fact, he should eat it - see 1 Corinthians 10:27. But now that the Christian does know, the circumstances are different. People may be watching that Christian to see whether he eats that meat. If so, they will think that he is giving honour to the false god.

Or, the person who told the Christian may be watching. That person may be someone whose trust in God is weak. So, that person may imitate what that Christian guest did. That person may also eat food that people offer to false gods. The result may be to ruin that personís trust in Christ (8:9-12).

The decision not to eat the meat may offend the host. So the Christian must be careful in how he explains his decision. He should emphasise that he is grateful for the hostís kindness. He should eat happily any other food that the host offers him. And when he refuses the meat, he must do it politely. In other words, he must not blame the host!

Next part: What will bring the greatest honour to God? (1 Corinthians 10:29-30)


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© 2014, Keith Simons.