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1 Corinthians 8:12,13 – irritation or snaring

11-06-2019 - Posted by Andre Piet

Now in thus sinning against brethren, and beating their weak conscience, you are sinning against Christ. Wherefore, if food is snaring my brother, I may under no circumstances be eating meat for the eon, lest I should be snaring my brother.

Here the problem is not that the brother is irritated. Many translations use that word here, but that’s not correct. It’s not about irritation or anger that would arise if I eat meat, that was sacrificed to the idols. No, Paul warns that my attitude could snare a brother. i.e. my behaviour makes that he comes to a wrong conclusion and that he will fall down. Shouldn’t that be bad? Is that worth eating meat? Of course not.

 If my attitude makes that a brother get lost, then I sin. Even literally. For my behaviour makes that the other misses his purpose. And thát is sin: missing purpose. The brother, who was already weak, was struck by my attitude. Thus I’m not only sinning against that brother, but against Christ. For the brother is surely part of “the Christ”, the ecclesia. Quite a name…