1 Corinthians 8:8
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.

New Living Translation
It's true that we can't win God's approval by what we eat. We don't lose anything if we don't eat it, and we don't gain anything if we do.

English Standard Version
Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do.

Berean Study Bible
But food does not bring us closer to God: We are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.

Berean Literal Bible
But food will not commend us to God; neither if we should eat do we come short, nor if we should not eat, do we have an advantage.

New American Standard Bible
But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat.

King James Bible
But meat commendeth us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Food will not make us acceptable to God. We are not inferior if we don't eat, and we are not better if we do eat.

International Standard Version
However, food will not bring us closer to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat food that has been offered to an idol, and no better off if we do.

NET Bible
Now food will not bring us close to God. We are no worse if we do not eat and no better if we do.

New Heart English Bible
But food will not commend us to God. For neither, if we do not eat, are we the worse; nor, if we eat, are we the better.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
But food does not bring us to God, for if we eat, we gain nothing, and if we do not eat, we lose nothing.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Food will not affect our relationship with God. We are no worse off if we eat [that food] and no better off if we don't.

New American Standard 1977
But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But food does not make us more acceptable unto God; for neither if we eat are we the better, neither if we eat not are we the worse.

King James 2000 Bible
But food commends us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse.

American King James Version
But meat commends us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse.

American Standard Version
But food will not commend us to God: neither, if we eat not, are we the worse; nor, if we eat, are we the better.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But meat doth not commend us to God. For neither, if we eat, shall we have the more; nor, if we eat not, shall we have the less.

Darby Bible Translation
But meat does not commend us to God; neither if we should not eat do we come short; nor if we should eat have we an advantage.

English Revised Version
But meat will not commend us to God: neither, if we eat not, are we the worse; nor, if we eat, are we the better.

Webster's Bible Translation
But food commendeth us not to God: for neither if we eat, are we the better; neither if we eat not, are we the worse.

Weymouth New Testament
It is true that a particular kind of food will not bring us into God's presence; we are neither inferior to others if we abstain from it, nor superior to them if we eat it.

World English Bible
But food will not commend us to God. For neither, if we don't eat, are we the worse; nor, if we eat, are we the better.

Young's Literal Translation
But victuals do not commend us to God, for neither if we may eat are we in advance; nor if we may not eat, are we behind;
Study Bible
Food Sacrificed to Idols
7But not everyone has this knowledge. Some people are still so accustomed to idols that they eat such food as if it were sacrificed to an idol. And since their conscience is weak, it is defiled. 8But food does not bring us closer to God: We are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do. 9Be careful, however, that your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak.…
Cross References
Matthew 25:15
To one he gave five talents, to another two talents, and to another one talent--each according to his own ability. And he promptly went on his journey.

Romans 14:17
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Treasury of Scripture

But meat commends us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse.

meat.

1 Corinthians 6:13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy …

Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, …

Colossians 2:20-23 Why if you be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, …

Hebrews 13:9 Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is …

are we the better. or, have we the more. are we the worse. or, have we the less.

(8) But meat . . . .--By showing that the eating is a matter of indifference, the Apostle introduces his reason for yielding to the weakness of another. If the weakness involved a matter of our vital relation to God, then to yield would be wrong. But meat will not (future) affect our relationship to God. The concluding words of this verse are inverted in later MSS., as in the English version, and the better order is: "Neither, if we eat not, do we lose anything in our relation to God; nor, if we eat, do we gain anything in our relation to Him."

Verse 8. - But meat commendeth us not to God; rather, will not recommend us. God would think none the better of them for eating idol sacrifices, even though they asserted thereby a freedom which was the reward of clear insight. This verse will serve to show why "fasting" is nowhere rigidly enjoined on Christians. If fasting is a help to our spiritual life, then we should practise it, but with the distinct apprehension of the truth that God will think none the better of us merely because we eat less, but only if the fasting be a successful means of making us more pure and more loving. If the Bible had been in the hands of the people during the Middle Ages, this verse would have rendered impossible the idle superstition that to eat meat in Lent was one of the deadliest sins, or that there was any merit whatever in the Lenten fast except as a means of self improvement and self mastery. This verse says expressly, "We lose nothing by not eating; we gain nothing by eating." But meat commendeth us not to God,.... These words are said by the apostle, either as expressing the argument of such as had knowledge in favour of themselves, that what they did was a thing indifferent, by which they were made neither better nor worse; nor did they look upon it as meritorious, or expect any favour from God on account of it, and therefore were not to be blamed for using their liberty in the manner they did: or else they are spoken by him as his own sense: and the meaning is, that eating of meat, any sort of meat, and so that which is offered to idols, or abstinence from it, neither one nor the other recommends any to the love and favour of God; , "does not bring near", or give access to God, as the Syriac version renders the phrase; does not ingratiate any into his affectionate regards, or make them acceptable unto him:

for neither if we eat are we the better; or "abound", not in earthly but spiritual things, in the graces of the Spirit, and particularly in the esteem and good will of God, upon which such an action can have no influence:

neither if we eat not are we the worse; or are deficient; meaning not in temporal things, but, as before, in spiritual; true grace and piety are not a whit the less; nor are such persons less in the love and favour of God, which is not to be known and judged of by any such action, or the omission of it. 8. Other old manuscripts read, "Neither if we do not eat, are we the better: neither if we eat are we the worse": the language of the eaters who justified their eating thus [Lachmann]. In English Version Paul admits that "meat neither presents [so the Greek for 'commendeth'] us as commended nor as disapproved before God": it does not affect our standing before God (Ro 14:6).8:7-13 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.
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