How easily we get puffed up over our opinions! But love builds up the structure of our new life. If anyone thinks of himself as a know-it-all, he still has a lot to learn (1 Corinthians 8:1-2 TPT).
This verse sounds like the Apostle Paul is writing about whether we should take the vaccine.
How many of us have encountered ridiculous opinions about the vaccine and people who seem to be know-it-all? Especially with those who disagree with us!
Friends argue with friends, political leaders are maligned, pastors should not speak without fear of dropped offerings, and imagine a Thanksgiving dinner table with both vaxxers and non-vaxxers.
Paul isn’t writing about taking or not taking a vaccine, he writes about eating or not eating food sacrificed to idols. Can you imagine the Thanksgiving dinner arguments in the first century?
~ Non-Meatxxer, “Wait a minute, this turkey was sacrificed to idols. I can’t eat it!”
~ Meatxxer, “Why can’t you eat it? Grandma Miriam worked all day basting and cooking.”
~ Non-Meatxxer, “I can’t because it means I’m aligning myself with the anti-Christ.”
I better stop this mythical argument before our first-century celebrants come to blows.
I admit they didn’t have turkey or Thanksgiving, but they did have feasts – a lot of them – and believers would serve meat sacrificed to idols and then sold in the marketplace.
In Corinth, some saints thought it okay to eat meat while other saints thought it sinful. Then both sides of the “meatxxer” debate back then, and both sides of the “vaxxer” debate today, all began acting unsaintly toward one another.
The Apostle wrote to them and to you:
It seems that everyone believes his own opinion is right on this matter… but if a person loves God, he will possess the knowledge of God (1 Corinthians 8:1 and 3).
What is this knowledge of God that Paul mentions? It is love and freedom for Christians to hold differing opinions on some matters. Let me emphasize – some matters – as Paul was giving followers the right to have opinions on topics not a matter of salvation.
Eating food to idols or not eating food to idols didn’t give or take away salvation. Taking the vaccine or not taking the vaccine has nothing to do with salvation.
Listen to Paul:
We know that what you eat will not bring you closer to God. You are no better if you don’t eat certain foods and no better if you do (1 Corinthians 8:8 TPT [The Passion Translation]).
Or a more modern translation:
We know that taking the vaxx will not bring you closer to God. You are no better if you don’t vaxx and no better if you do vaxx (1 Corinthians 8:8 OGV [Old Guy Version]).
How about Pastor Grant?
I had COVID and I have been vaccinated with the first and second Pfizer shot. At this time, I am not getting a booster. I believe parents should be very cautious about getting young children vaccinated.
I sense some readers shouting “Hallelujah” and others thinking, “XXX***###??!!!XZZXX!”
Paul writes about his freedom, food sacrificed to idols, love, grace, and honoring others in 1 Corinthians 8, 9, and 10. Paul concludes with:
Whether you eat or drink, whether you vaxx or not vaxx, live in a way that glorifies and honors God (1 Corinthians 10:31 [A mixture of TPT and OGV]).
When I began to honor others above myself in all things COVID, I didn’t get anxious if someone disagreed with me. I have a right to my opinion. I also found myself listening closely to those disagreeing with me – because they have a right to their opinion and that opinion might be right.
We have both sides of the debate in our family. I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner.