I’ve been talking about how our world is really close to the world of 1 Corinthians but we don’t realize it—but I haven’t managed to show why I think that. To do that, I wanted to spend time thinking about interaction with idolatry by examining 1 Corinthians 8-10, a passage which is often misread by looking at it through a Romans 14-15 filter. In the last post we noted, in passing, some similarities and differences between the two sections; but in this post I want to do a bird’s eye view of Paul’s argument in 1 Corinthians 8-10.
In the last post I made a passing comment about misinterpreting our world. It was a statement actually lifted from the interpretation of the text. When you ask a Christian about 1 Corinthians 8-10, they automatically start speaking in terms of Freedom To Do and Freedom To Act In Any Way Before the Lord.
It’s not surprising really. The language that Paul uses here in 1 Corinthians 8 is very similar to the language in Romans 14—but it is also strikingly different. So in this post I want to offer a comparison and contrast of some key terms in the chapters and how they’re used.
On the fourth post of Doctrine for Everybody, concluded that the books the Lord says are Scripture are Scripture; that the Church doesn’t dictate the table of context, they confirm the index. For this reason we noted that the strongest support for the Old Testament Scriptures as we have them in the Protestant Bible are directly connected to the fact that it was the Bible that Our Lord Jesus Christ was using and confirmed as Scripture.
The contention is that the letters to the churches in the Revelation of Jesus Christ should be read in only one way with one intended purpose. If read in that way, the contender states, then the rest of the book should be read that way.
I will deal with the first charge by examining if the letters in Revelation 2-3 have only one purpose for one audience.
On the third post on Doctrine for Everybody, we noted that the revelation of God operates in certain spheres and modes within those spheres. We saw that God has spoken explicitly is in the Person of His Son, the Prophets, the Apostles, and finally recorded in Scripture.
But what Scripture? There are plenty of holy books: the Qu’Ran, the Book of Mormon, The Vedas, the writings of Guru Granth Sahib, the extra books dubbed canonical by The Roman Catholic Church and the general consensus of the Eastern Orthodox Church. After all—say some as if proving a point—it’s not like God ever said that these books are not Scripture!