Bible Commentaries
1 Corinthians 10

Edwards' Family Bible New TestamentFamily Bible NT

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Verse 1

All our fathers ; those who came out of Egypt.

Verse 2

Were all baptized unto Moses ; shown by those signs to be under his guidance, as the acknowledged visible people of God.

Verse 3

Spiritual meat ; manna, typical of spiritual blessings by Christ. John 6:31-35 ; John 6:48-51 .

Verse 4

Spiritual drink ; the water that flowed miraculously from the rock, and was a type of Christ. Exodus 17:6 ; Numbers 20:11 .

Drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them ; it has been supposed that the water from the rock mentioned in Exodus 17:6 , followed the Israelites during their wanderings in the wilderness, till they approached Kadesh the second time. But perhaps the words "that followed them" refer to Christ the antitype, rather than to the material water that typified him.

That Rock was Christ ; a figure, type, or representation of Christ; as when he said, Luke 22:19 , This is my body, meaning a representation of his body.

Verse 5

Many of them ; who belonged to God’s visible people, and enjoyed all their outward privileges. Thus the apostle warns the Corinthians not to think themselves safe from danger because they belong outwardly to Christ’s church, and enjoy its ordinances and gifts.

They were overthrown ; Numbers 14:29-35 ; Numbers 26:64-65 . Persons may profess to be friends of God, observe his ordinances, and be favored with all external privileges, and yet fail of heaven. Unless they love God, and seek to honor him by obeying his commands, they will perish.

Verse 6

Our examples ; designed to warn us against doing evil, lest we also be destroyed.

Verses 7-10

It is written ; Exodus 32:6 ; Numbers 25:1-9 ; Exodus 17:2 ; Exodus 17:7 ; Exodus 15:24 ; Exodus 16:2-9 ; Numbers 14:2 ; Numbers 14:27-30 ; Numbers 16:46-49 ; Numbers 21:5-6 .

Verse 11

They are written ; in the Scriptures, as a warning to those who should live under the gospel.

The ends of the world ; the ends of the ages, an expression nearly equivalent to the Old Testament phrase, "the last days," by which was represented the then distant future of the Christian dispensation. Compare Hebrews 9:26 . The judgments of God against transgressors recorded in the Old Testament, were designed to deter us from imitating their example, that we may escape their ruin.

Verse 12

Him that thinketh he standeth ; securely in the favor of God.

Lest he fall ; into sin, and perish.

Verse 13

That ye may be able to bear ; the temptation or trial, without being overcome by it. Psalms 34:19 .

Verse 14

Flee from idolatry ; do not join in or encourage it.

Verse 15

Wise men ; capable of judging correctly.

Verse 16

The cup-the bread ; of which they partook in the ordinance of the Lord’s supper, and in which they professed to commune with Christ. Partaking of the Lord’s supper is a solemn public profession of friendship to Christ, and devotion to his service. All who unite in it should be especially careful to avoid not only the reality, but the appearance of evil, and to adorn their profession by habitual holiness of life and conversation.

Verse 17

Are one bread ; as being all partakers of that one bread which represents Christ, and thus made one spiritual body in Christ.

Verse 18

Partakers of the altar ; connected in a special sense with the altar, and thus with Jehovah, to whom the altar is devoted. So, should they feast in heathen temples, they would be considered as worshippers of heathen gods.

Verse 20

They sacrifice to devils ; though idols are nothing, idolatry is a system under the dominion of evil spirits; and they are the real objects worshipped by idolaters.

Verse 21

Ye cannot ; consistently with truth and duty. Should they join with idolaters, they would rebel against Jehovah, and provoke him to come out in judgment against them.

Verse 22

Persons cannot continue to unite with the wicked in the service of Satan, and yet be the friends of God; and those who seek their chief enjoyment in sensual gratifications, are provoking the Lord to destroy them.

Verse 23

All things ; which are good to eat, may at proper times be eaten and even meat which had been offered to idols was not changed, and would not injure Paul: but it would not on that account be right for him to partake of it in idolatrous feasts, because his doing so might injure others.

Verse 24

His own ; his own pleasure or profit merely.

Another’s ; benefit, as well as his own.

Verse 25

The shambles ; public markets.

Asking no question ; as for example, whether it may not be the flesh of an animal sacrificed to an idol. For in such a case, though it should be so, you are not thereby made in the view of men a patron of idolatry.

Verse 26

The earth is the Lord’s ; we may therefore use any part of it in such a manner as will honor him and do good, and we should not desire to use it in any other way.

Verse 28

Eat not ; lest your example injure him who gave the information. The same action may under some circumstances be right, and under other circumstances be wrong. It is not always enough therefore to look at the action as it is in itself, disconnected from its circumstances, or at its effects on ourselves merely; but we must look also at the impression it will make and the effects it will have on others.

Verse 29

Judged of another man’s conscience ; why should another man make the scruples of his conscience a measure of my liberty? This, with what follows in the next verse, is said in support of the assertion just made, "Conscience, I say, not thine own."

Verse 30

By grace ; rather, as the margin, with thanksgiving, namely, to God.

Be a partaker ; of the food set before me.

Give thanks ; to God, thus showing that I worship him, and no idol. In this and the preceding verse the apostle vindicates for every Christian his liberty of conscience, while in the context he urges all to use their liberty so as not to give offence to the weak.

Verse 31

Do all to the glory of God ; let it be your great object to honor him, and do the greatest good in your power.

Verse 32

Give none offence ; no just occasion of offence.

Verse 33

Please all men in all things ; so far as is consistent with fidelity to God and to them.

Bibliographical Information
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on 1 Corinthians 10". "Edwards' Family Bible New Testament". American Tract Society. 1851.