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1Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” “Knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. 2If any one imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. 3But if one loves God, one is known by him.

4Hence, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that “an idol has no real existence,” and that “there is no God but one.” 5For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”—6yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

7However, not all possess this knowledge. But some, through being hitherto accustomed to idols, eat food as really offered to an idol; and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. 8Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do. 9Only take care lest this liberty of yours somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. 10For if any one sees you, a man of knowledge, at table in an idol’s temple, might he not be encouraged, if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols? 11And so by your knowledge this weak man is destroyed, the brother for whom Christ died. 12Thus, sinning against your brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. 13Therefore, if food is a cause of my brother’s falling, I will never eat meat, lest I cause my brother to fall.

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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