First Corinthians 8-10 is one continuous unit of teaching. Even though we have multiple chapter breaks we must keep the flow of the message together so that we can properly understand what Paul is teaching. Before we can begin chapter 9, we need to recall the message of chapter 8. In 1 Corinthians 8 we see that the Corinthians are declaring that they have knowledge about idols. They know that idols are nothing and therefore they can go into the pagan temples and eat in those places because of their knowledge. The apostle Paul agrees with their knowledge but they are failing to have love for others. The big message is that we cannot use our spiritual knowledge it such a way to cause the shipwreck of faith in others. We cannot use our knowledge so that people sin or fall away. It is important that we keep this in mind also. Paul is talking about causing people to sin, not about people who just do not like it or have a bothered conscience. The problem is the destruction of people’s faith in the name of knowledge. We mentioned last time how sad it is that this has happened so often in history where people who have knowledge have destroyed churches and destroyed the faith of people all for what they wanted to promote or emphasize. We do not want to do anything that would cause a person to stumble and fall from the Lord (8:13). Now we can consider the ninth chapter.
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