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1 Corinthians 10:23-33

Live to Glorify God

10:23 “Everything is lawful,” but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is lawful,” 1  but not everything builds others up. 2  10:24 Do not seek your own good, but the good of the other person. 10:25 Eat anything that is sold in the marketplace without questions of conscience, 10:26 for the earth and its abundance are the Lord’s. 3  10:27 If an unbeliever invites you to dinner and you want to go, eat whatever is served without asking questions of conscience. 10:28 But if someone says to you, “This is from a sacrifice,” do not eat, because of the one who told you and because of conscience 4 10:29 I do not mean yours but the other person’s. For why is my freedom being judged by another’s conscience? 10:30 If I partake with thankfulness, why am I blamed for the food 5  that I give thanks for? 10:31 So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. 10:32 Do not give offense to Jews or Greeks or to the church of God, 10:33 just as I also try to please everyone in all things. I do not seek my own benefit, but the benefit 6  of many, so that they may be saved.

1 snEverything is lawful.” Here again Paul cites certain slogans the Corinthians used to justify their behavior (cf. 6:12-13; 7:1; 8:1, 4). Paul agrees with the slogans in part, but corrects them to show how the Corinthians have misused these ideas.

2 tn Grk “builds up.” The object “others” is not expressed but is implied, as v. 24 shows. Paul picks up a theme he introduced at the start of this section of the letter (8:1).

3 sn A quotation from Ps 24:1; an allusion to Ps 50:12; 89:11.

4 tc The Byzantine texttype and a few other witnesses (Hc Ψ Ï) essentially duplicate v. 26 at the end of this verse (with γάρ [gar, “for”] in second instead of third position), which itself is a quotation from Ps 24:1 (23:1 LXX). Not only is there a vast number of early, important, and diverse witnesses that lack this extra material (א A B C* D F G H* P 33 81 365 630 1175 1739 1881 2464 latt co), but the quotation seems out of place at this point in the discourse for Paul is here discussing reasons not to partake of food that has been sacrificed to idols. Perhaps scribes felt that since food is from the Lord, to eat meat sacrificed to idols contradicts that belief. Either way, the better witnesses lack the clause which, had it been authentic to v. 28, would have not occasioned such a widespread excision. The evidence is thus compelling for the shorter reading.

5 tn Grk “about that for which”; the referent (the food) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

6 tn Although the Greek word translated “benefit” occurs only once in this verse, the Greek article occurs twice. This indicates an implied repetition of the term, which has been included twice in the translation for the sake of clarity and English style.

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