The Book of 1 Corinthians Bible Study Chapter 10 Part 2

On to 1 Cor 10: 14-22
 
v14: There’s a relationship between temptation and idolatry. Idolatry is a religious attempt
to justify sin. Idolatry is a way of giving in to temptation but doing so in a religious way that justifies your failure. Idolatry was a term that the Jewish community used. There is no power in idols. They are false, they are lies, they are deceptions. The problem however is this: when someone participates in idolatry, they open themselves up for the influence of demons in their life. Believers who have the Holy Spirit living in them cannot be possessed by a demon. But demons can afflict and influence believers who are not walking in obedience to the truth and Word of G-d (they are violating Scriptural truth). That demonic influence is going to produce unrighteous and ungodly behaviour in our lives. 
 
v15: Wise: Thinking people. People who utilise their minds and have the capacity to understand what Paul is saying.  
·      Judge for yourselves: Thinking people have the ability to make judgments/evaluations etc. 
 
v16: The cup of blessing: Paul is speaking from a very important cultural background. From a Jewish standpoint, the cup of blessing is related to sanctification – living a holy life. Early Gentile believers would go to the synagogues to hear the Word of G-d being read (Acts 15:21, Acts 13:13-46). From the get-go they were brought into a faith culture that was founded upon Jewish culture.
·      The communion (fellowship) of the blood of Messiah: Paul was showing the early believers how to utilize the Passover tradition (a portion of the matzah was eaten and the 3rd cup of redemption was drunk). If we want to live a holy life, we need to accept that the body of Messiah was given as an offering for us, but we also need to be redeemed by His blood. When offerings were offered up, the body of the sacrifice was not treated in the same way as the blood. Although both were a part of the offering, they each had a different function and had to be appropriated correctly in order for that sacrifice to be acceptable.  
 
v17: One bread and one bodywe all partake of that one bread (loaf): Although there are many people there is unity between us. Although we are many, we are united in the fact that we only have one G-d (many people, one G-d – Acts 4:12). Our G-d has not been made to suit us, but we are being made suitable for Him. 
 
v18: Observe Israel: Paul was not talking about Jewish people today but about Israel historically.
·      After the flesh: Observe historical Israel from simply a human or natural perspective.
·      Those who eat of the sacrifices: Speaking of the priests and Levites. 
·      Partakers of the altar: They have fellowship, through their work, with the altar. Because they offer up and participate in the sacrifices (they have a connection with the sacrifices) they get a portion of them.
 
v19: What am I saying then: Paul is trying to give us a proper understanding of idolatry. Although idols are just wood or stone etc when someone engages in idolatry there is an outcome or a result. In the same way that those who served in the temple received a portion of the sacrifice (they were directly impacted by the sacrifice) so too those who offer up to idols are also directly impacted by their actions. 
 
v20: Gentiles: This is a key word in helping us understand what Paul is talking about here. He mentioned Israel and their way of worship and now he speaks about the nations and their worship practices (idolatry. The Gentiles didn’t call what they did ‘idolatry’ – they called it different religions or alternate forms of worship). 
·      Sacrifice to demons not to G-d: Although an idol is nothing more than wood etc worshipping it brings a person into contact with demons. Every form of worship, except for the worship of the only True G-d through His Son Messiah Yeshua, is demonic. Every other religion (Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc) are all demonic. They bring their followers under their demonic power and authority. 
 
v21: The cup of the L-rd and the cup of demons: Yeshua cannot just be added to the list of different gods and idols. Yeshua is very different and very separate from other gods and idols. 
·      L-rd: This name of Yeshua is repeated and therefore emphasised in these verses. Yeshua is our Saviour, but He is even more than that – He is our L-rd or Ruler, He is the one we are to submit to. 
 
v22: We do not want to provoke the L-rd to jealousy and nor are we stronger than Him. 
(For example: a mouse doesn’t want to make a cat angry because the cat is larger and a greater threat to him. Same concept here). We don’t want to provoke G-d’s jealousy. We want to be people who are pleasing to Him. 

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