Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


1 Corinthians 8:12

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

But when ye sin so against the brethren - Against Christians, who are called by the Gospel to abhor and detest all such abominations.

Ye sin against Christ - By sending to perdition, through your bad example, a soul for whom he shed his blood; and so far defeating the gracious intentions of his sacrificial death. This is a farther intimation, that a person for whom Christ died may perish; and this is the drift of the apostle's argument.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

But when ye sin so against the brethren - This is designed further to show the evil of causing others to sin; and hence, the evil which might arise from partaking of the meat offered to idols. The word sin here is to be taken in the sense of “injuring, offending, leading into sin.” You violate the law which requires you to love your brethren, and to seek their welfare, and thus you sin against them. Sin is properly against God; but there may be a course of injury pursued against people, or doing them injustice or wrong, and this is sin against them. Christians are bound to do right toward all.

And wound their weak conscience - The word “wound” here ( τύπτοντες tuptontes“smiting, beating”) is taken in the sense of injure. Their consciences are ill-informed. They have not the knowledge which you have. And by your conduct they are led further into error, and believe that the idol is something, and is to be honored. They are thus led into sin, and their conscience is more and more perverted, and oppressed more and more with a sense of guilt.

Ye sin against Christ - Because:

(1) Christ has commanded you to love them, and seek their good, and not to lead them into sin, and,

(2) Because they are so intimately united to Christ (see the notes at John 15:1 ff) that to offend them is to offend him; to injure the members is to injure the head; to destroy their souls is to pain his heart and to injure his cause; see the note at Matthew 10:40; compare Luke 10:16.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Eating one kind of food, and abstaining from another, have nothing in them to recommend a person to God. But the apostle cautions against putting a stumbling-block in the way of the weak; lest they be made bold to eat what was offered to the idol, not as common food, but as a sacrifice, and thereby be guilty of idolatry. He who has the Spirit of Christ in him, will love those whom Christ loved so as to die for them. Injuries done to Christians, are done to Christ; but most of all, the entangling them in guilt: wounding their consciences, is wounding him. We should be very tender of doing any thing that may occasion stumbling to others, though it may be innocent in itself. And if we must not endanger other men's souls, how much should we take care not to destroy our own! Let Christians beware of approaching the brink of evil, or the appearance of it, though many do this in public matters, for which perhaps they plead plausibly. Men cannot thus sin against their brethren, without offending Christ, and endangering their own souls.
Ellen G. White
This Day With God, 147.4

Some, because they do not receive and impart light, have no genuine spiritual experience. They are often surprised by temptations that come in such fascinating forms that they do not recognize them as deceptions of the wily foe. How important that they obtain the experience necessary for them to have. The members of the Lord's family are to be wise and watchful, doing all in their power to save their weaker brethren from Satan's concealed nets. TDG 147.4

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