We Must Heed the Vital Message of 1 Corinthians 10:18-20

1 Corinthians 10:18-20 provides vital instruction that every believer must heed:

1 Corinthians 10:18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar? 19 What say I then? that the idol is any thing, or that which is offered in sacrifice to idols is any thing? 20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.

To eat in a worship context of what has been sacrificed on an altar to an idol is to be a partaker of the altar. To do so is also to have fellowship with demons!

Such fellowship with demons is not contingent upon a person's having to offer the sacrifices himself. Anyone who eats of such sacrifices comes into fellowship with demons.

The passage also does not provide any basis to say or to hold that this only happens sometimes--in a worship context, anyone who eats what has been sacrificed to an idol has fellowship with demons. God does not want any humans to have fellowship with demons!

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RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

But there is something about the connection that is not connecting yet with me. You have made it clear that you don't think the participants in the GCI were believers. Yet the warning about fellowship with demons in 1 Cor 10 is given to believers. Why would believers be warned about "Exodus 32 level" demonic danger if the Exodus 32 eating was not being done by believing Israelites? It doesn't make sense to say the connection involves wild, demon-controlled behavior if believers are not subject to such possession by demons.

No, I have not made it clear that there were no believers who participated--I dispute that the majority were believing Israelites. Although there is no way for me to prove it, I believe that the vast majority of those who engaged in the idolatrous eating and playing were from the mixed multitude who turned back in their hearts to Egypt (Acts 7:39) to rejoice in the works of their hands (Acts 7:41), as they were used to doing. Based on what the text says in Exodus 32, I hold that at a bare minimum neither Aaron nor any of the Levites (cf. "all the sons of Levi" [32:26]) participated in any of the idolatrous eating or playing talked about in 1 Cor. 10:7.

The faithful Israelites did not worship molten images while they were in Egypt, as these did in the GCI (Ps. 106:19). Any believing Israelites who nevertheless somehow did succumb to participating in the perversity of the idolatrous playing paid dearly with the loss of their lives at the hands of the faithful Levites who executed those who were wildly out-of-control.

Kevin Miller wrote:

There's another direction in the discussion which I want to be clear about before I ask anything in that direction. I want to make sure I have my assessment of your position accurate. I speculated earlier that the GCI worshippers could have used their normal worship music during the wild dancing. I'm admitting this is speculation. You dismissed this possibility. The way I understand your reasoning is that their normal worship music would have contained an instrumental "message" that meant "worship to the true God." Since they were now worshipping in an idolatrous way, the new "message" of the instrumental music would be "idolatrous worship." Since those two messages are not the same, then the style could not have been the same. Have I described your train of thought correctly?

There is no way that those who were under strong demonic influence used any normal worship music in the GCI. I am getting ready to move on to that discussion shortly.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 I believe that the vast majority of those who engaged in the idolatrous eating and playing were from the mixed multitude who turned back in their hearts to Egypt (Acts 7:39) to rejoice in the works of their hands (Acts 7:41), as they were used to doing.

I don't see either Acts 7:39 or Acts 7:41 giving an indication that it was the "mixed multitude" that was the majority of the GCI worshippers. The phrase used to describe those worshippers was "our fathers," which was the same term used for the Israelites in the other surrounding verses.

Quote:
The faithful Israelites did not worship molten images while they were in Egypt, as these did in the GCI (Ps. 106:19). Any believing Israelites who nevertheless somehow did succumb to participating in the perversity of the idolatrous playing paid dearly with the loss of their lives at the hands of the faithful Levites who executed those who were wildly out-of-control.
Psalm 106:19 doesn't tell us anything about whether any Israelites in Egypt had worshipped a molten image. That verse was just repeating the account of the GCI. It didn't mention, one way or another, what their practices may have been in Egypt. Since they were slaves in Egypt, they may have been forced to worship idols at times, and they may not have been as brave as Daniel and his friends were in Babylon. We just don't know. We also don't know that the 3000 who were executed were the only ones who had participated in the eating and dancing.

Quote:
There is no way that those who were under strong demonic influence used any normal worship music in the GCI. I am getting ready to move on to that discussion shortly.

You are pretty adamant in that assertion. How can you be so adamant when the Bible doesn't specifically say what specific music was used? We know from 2 Samuel 6 that their normal worship music could easily be danced to.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

Quote:
There is no way that those who were under strong demonic influence used any normal worship music in the GCI. I am getting ready to move on to that discussion shortly.

 

 

You are pretty adamant in that assertion. How can you be so adamant when the Bible doesn't specifically say what specific music was used? We know from 2 Samuel 6 that their normal worship music could easily be danced to.

Do you think that the demons decided to be merciful by corrupting everything else except the instrumental music used? Or, do you think that the demons were incapable of corrupting the instrumental music for some reason? What exactly is your basis in the text for holding that the worship music that was used by these exceedingly sinful people who were under strong demonic influence was godly worship music?

RajeshG's picture

Demons are incorrigibly and irredeemably evil beings. In every way possible and at all possible times, they seek to devour souls. They unceasingly endeavor to deny God the glory that is due only to Him in worship.

Demons are vastly superior to humans in knowledge, power, experience, and supernatural capabilities.

When any humans set themselves defiantly against God in a context of perverted worship, they oppose God openly and greatly provoke Him to wrath. Such humans are not submitted to God and fall into the snare of the devil. They are taken captive by him and held captive by him to do his will.

Believers who refuse to submit to God are incapable of resisting the devil so that he will flee from them. Scripture warns believers not to give the devil any place in their lives. Scripture speaks of believers being given over to Satan for the destruction of their flesh because of their sinfulness.

All the people who in a worship context ate and drank what was offered to the idol in the GCI came into fellowship with demons. Because they sinned greatly by engaging in that idolatrous eating and drinking, none of them had any ability to resist the devil, even if they were believers.

Scripture profusely attests to the importance that God places on godly instrumental music being offered to Him in corporate worship. Because of the importance of instrumental worship music to God, we have every reason to hold that defiling instrumental worship music is a very high priority of the devil.

Short of believing a priori that there is no way to corrupt instrumental music such that it is not acceptable to God, we do not have any basis to hold that any of the instrumental music played in the GCI was godly worship music. Because the Bible does not provide any basis to hold that instrumental music is inherently incorruptibly acceptable to God, we know for certain that the instrumental music in the GCI was ungodly music.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Demons are incorrigibly and irredeemably evil beings. In every way possible and at all possible times, they seek to devour souls. They unceasingly endeavor to deny God the glory that is due only to Him in worship.

Demons are vastly superior to humans in knowledge, power, experience, and supernatural capabilities.

When any humans set themselves defiantly against God in a context of perverted worship, they oppose God openly and greatly provoke Him to wrath. Such humans are not submitted to God and fall into the snare of the devil. They are taken captive by him and held captive by him to do his will.

Believers who refuse to submit to God are incapable of resisting the devil so that he will flee from them. Scripture warns believers not to give the devil any place in their lives. Scripture speaks of believers being given over to Satan for the destruction of their flesh because of their sinfulness.

All the people who in a worship context ate and drank what was offered to the idol in the GCI came into fellowship with demons. Because they sinned greatly by engaging in that idolatrous eating and drinking, none of them had any ability to resist the devil, even if they were believers.

Scripture profusely attests to the importance that God places on godly instrumental music being offered to Him in corporate worship. Because of the importance of instrumental worship music to God, we have every reason to hold that defiling instrumental worship music is a very high priority of the devil.

Short of believing a priori that there is no way to corrupt instrumental music such that it is not acceptable to God, we do not have any basis to hold that any of the instrumental music played in the GCI was godly worship music. Because the Bible does not provide any basis to hold that instrumental music is inherently incorruptibly acceptable to God, we know for certain that the instrumental music in the GCI was ungodly music.

It looks like you are taking everything the Bible says demons can do and applying it to the phrase "fellowship with demons." The way i am trying to examine the nuances of that perspective is to examine whether demons do the same things to all people, or whether believers may be exempt from some of the effects of demons. You wrote "Believers who refuse to submit to God are incapable of resisting the devil so that he will flee from them." Does this sentence mean that you believe Christians can be possessed? I need a specific answer in order to fully understand your perspective. 

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Demons are incorrigibly and irredeemably evil beings. In every way possible and at all possible times, they seek to devour souls. They unceasingly endeavor to deny God the glory that is due only to Him in worship.

Demons are vastly superior to humans in knowledge, power, experience, and supernatural capabilities.

When any humans set themselves defiantly against God in a context of perverted worship, they oppose God openly and greatly provoke Him to wrath. Such humans are not submitted to God and fall into the snare of the devil. They are taken captive by him and held captive by him to do his will.

Believers who refuse to submit to God are incapable of resisting the devil so that he will flee from them. Scripture warns believers not to give the devil any place in their lives. Scripture speaks of believers being given over to Satan for the destruction of their flesh because of their sinfulness.

All the people who in a worship context ate and drank what was offered to the idol in the GCI came into fellowship with demons. Because they sinned greatly by engaging in that idolatrous eating and drinking, none of them had any ability to resist the devil, even if they were believers.

Scripture profusely attests to the importance that God places on godly instrumental music being offered to Him in corporate worship. Because of the importance of instrumental worship music to God, we have every reason to hold that defiling instrumental worship music is a very high priority of the devil.

Short of believing a priori that there is no way to corrupt instrumental music such that it is not acceptable to God, we do not have any basis to hold that any of the instrumental music played in the GCI was godly worship music. Because the Bible does not provide any basis to hold that instrumental music is inherently incorruptibly acceptable to God, we know for certain that the instrumental music in the GCI was ungodly music.

 

It looks like you are taking everything the Bible says demons can do and applying it to the phrase "fellowship with demons." The way i am trying to examine the nuances of that perspective is to examine whether demons do the same things to all people, or whether believers may be exempt from some of the effects of demons. You wrote "Believers who refuse to submit to God are incapable of resisting the devil so that he will flee from them." Does this sentence mean that you believe Christians can be possessed? I need a specific answer in order to fully understand your perspective. 

The only right way to interpret any subject in the Bible is to treat it thoroughly in its own context and then to compare it with what else is taught elsewhere throughout the Bible that pertains to that subject.

It appears to me that you are not yet willing to let the Bible explain to you what fellowship with demons entails the way that God has chosen to explain it. Again, by divine design, the Spirit is the One who has explicitly linked 1 Cor. 10 and Exod. 32. That means we must interpret the one by comparing it with the other.

What does fellowship with demons that is brought about by idolatrous consumption of things offered to demons look like? It looks like all that we read in Exod. 32 from verse 6 onward.

Moreover, have you paid attention to the fearful revelation provided in 1 Cor. 10 itself that explains the immensely dangerous nature of fellowship with demons? After Paul's teaching about people who come into fellowship with demons through idolatrous consumption of sacrifices, he teaches the following:

1 Corinthians 10:21 Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils. 22 Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?

Verse 21 says that it is impossible to partake of both the cup and table of the Lord and the cup and table of demons. Fellowship with demons means complete inability to fellowship with God through the Lord's Supper. This is a fearful statement that may be pointing to a professing believer's rendering himself incapable of fellowship with God and thereby displaying that he never was a believer in the first place.

Verse 22 goes further and says that those who fellowship with demons provoke the Lord to jealousy. Throughout the OT, people who did that experienced the intense wrath of God on them that led either to their deaths or captivity to their enemies. In this context, this provoking God to jealously by fellowship with demons means that the person doing so will certainly incur fierce punishment from God, whether they claim to be a believer or not.

Paul rhetorically adds that we are not stronger than God. When anyone, whether unbeliever or professing believer, flouts God with a high hand by sinning presumptuously through consuming in a worship context what has been offered to an idol, that person pits himself against God and is going to lose. People who sin presumptuously against God incur judgment from God with certainty and finality.

Worshiping an idol by eating and drinking what has been offered to it is not a sin that anyone can commit unknowingly. When you sin openly against God in this way, you now have made yourself an enemy of God (cf. James 4:4) and refused to submit to God (James 4:7a). Such a person cannot resist the devil and the devil will not flee from him (James 4:7b).

The divine teaching in 1 Corinthians 10 is supposed to produce an immense fearfulness of sinning with a high hand against God by partaking in a worship context of what has been offered to an idol.

Possession by demons is not the only thing that renders people incapable of recovering themselves from demonic influence. 2 Timothy 2:25-26 speaks of unrepentant people who are not in their senses and are captives of the devil, but it does not say that they are possessed. Because the remedy for such people is meek instruction with the truth, this is not the same thing as possession, which requires miraculous intervention from God for deliverance.

Scripture also speaks of believers who were delivered over to the devil for the destruction of their flesh because they refused to repent of their sins. Those passages do not say that these believers become possessed, but they still teach that there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them from being destroyed by the devil.
 

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Possession by demons is not the only thing that renders people incapable of recovering themselves from demonic influence. 2 Timothy 2:25-26 speaks of unrepentant people who are not in their senses and are captives of the devil, but it does not say that they are possessed. Because the remedy for such people is meek instruction with the truth, this is not the same thing as possession, which requires miraculous intervention from God for deliverance.

Scripture also speaks of believers who were delivered over to the devil for the destruction of their flesh because they refused to repent of their sins. Those passages do not say that these believers become possessed, but they still teach that there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them from being destroyed by the devil.

Okay, so you are NOT saying that believers can be possessed. Are you saying that it is impossible for a truly saved person to eat something offered to demons.? 

Since we want to compare this passage with what is taught in other passages, can you show me any other verse about "fellowship" in which "fellowship" indicates a level of control that is almost, but not quite, possession? Acts 2:42 says "They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles' teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer." Fellowship is described here as doing certain things together with other like-minded people. It doesn't indicate some strong level of "control" that the ones you fellowship with would have over you. Of course the assumption is that when you agree to align yourself with other people, that means you are willing to change your behavior to accommodate those other people. From my perspective, this is why fellowship with demons is so bad, because one is willing to align one's behavior to match that of demons. Thus the warning in 1 Cor 10. The believers were eating meat in the pagan temple, not realizing that by doing so, they were willingly aligning themselves with demons. I don't see this meaning "control by demons," since we don't have indication from 1 Cor 10 that these meat-eating believers were suddenly dancing around wildly or taking off their clothes. In the first chapters of Daniel, Daniel and his friends refused to eat the meat that had been offered to idols, but we don't see the other Israelite youth losing their control and dancing around wildly and taking off their clothes. 

In the first paragraph I quoted, you describe "fellowship with demons" as something that would just need "meek instruction with the truth" to rid oneself of, but in the second paragraph, you are saying that "there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them." Which is it? It can't be both.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Possession by demons is not the only thing that renders people incapable of recovering themselves from demonic influence. 2 Timothy 2:25-26 speaks of unrepentant people who are not in their senses and are captives of the devil, but it does not say that they are possessed. Because the remedy for such people is meek instruction with the truth, this is not the same thing as possession, which requires miraculous intervention from God for deliverance.

Scripture also speaks of believers who were delivered over to the devil for the destruction of their flesh because they refused to repent of their sins. Those passages do not say that these believers become possessed, but they still teach that there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them from being destroyed by the devil.

In the first paragraph I quoted, you describe "fellowship with demons" as something that would just need "meek instruction with the truth" to rid oneself of, but in the second paragraph, you are saying that "there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them." Which is it? It can't be both.

No, I did not say that. What are you talking about? Read the paragraph again. I never said that fellowship with demons is something that just needs meek instruction. I do not know where you got that from.

No, you are collating things that I did not collate. Fellowship with demons is not the same thing as what 2 Tim. 2:25-26 talks about; it is also not what the passages that talk about the destruction of the flesh. Those passages are describing three different situations where people put themselves into a position where they cannot recover themselves.

In the case of 2 Tim. 2, those people may be recovered only if God chooses to use meek instruction from other people to grant them repentance and recovery. In any case, they are not able to recover themselves.

You are persisting in refusing to let God teach you. Instead of submitting to the explicit, Spirit-given instruction tying 1 Cor. 10 to Ex. 32, you want to use Acts 2 to try to talk about what 1 Cor. 10 is teaching. That is not the right way to learn from God what He wants you to learn.

Fellowship with humans is plainly not the same thing as fellowship with supernatural beings for the obvious reason that supernatural beings have the ability to influence humans in ways that humans cannot. Demons are insatiably evil and incessantly active in defiling whoever and whatever they can. Any opportunity given to them to control humans will result in their controlling those people.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Possession by demons is not the only thing that renders people incapable of recovering themselves from demonic influence. 2 Timothy 2:25-26 speaks of unrepentant people who are not in their senses and are captives of the devil, but it does not say that they are possessed. Because the remedy for such people is meek instruction with the truth, this is not the same thing as possession, which requires miraculous intervention from God for deliverance.

Scripture also speaks of believers who were delivered over to the devil for the destruction of their flesh because they refused to repent of their sins. Those passages do not say that these believers become possessed, but they still teach that there is no remedy for these people that will deliver them from being destroyed by the devil.

Okay, so you are NOT saying that believers can be possessed. Are you saying that it is impossible for a truly saved person to eat something offered to demons.? 

I am not commenting one way or the other whether believers can be possessed. Scripture does not speak explicitly of such a scenario.  

A truly saved person who engages in idolatrous worship is in deep trouble with God and will incur fierce punishment from God. If he goes so far as to eat in a worship context something that is offered to demons, 1 Cor. 10:21-22 speaks of the solemn nature of what he has done and what he can expect from God.

It's disturbing to me that it seems that you are wanting to use other passages to define what fellowship with demons is instead of letting 1 Cor. 10:21-22 teach you just how serious a matter it is to come into fellowship with demons.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

It's disturbing to me that it seems that you are wanting to use other passages to define what fellowship with demons is instead of letting 1 Cor. 10:21-22 teach you just how serious a matter it is to come into fellowship with demons.

I'm sorry if letting other Scripture verses define the meaning of a word is disturbing to you. It seems you're most disturbed that the verses I present don't match up with the meaning you're trying to convey. To me, the phrase "You're refusing to let God teach you" is the same as saying, "You're refusing to agree with my interpretations." It's disturbing to me that you're placing your own interpretations on the same level as God's Word.

I'm actually trying my hardest to even understand your interpretations.You're not making it easy.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

It's disturbing to me that it seems that you are wanting to use other passages to define what fellowship with demons is instead of letting 1 Cor. 10:21-22 teach you just how serious a matter it is to come into fellowship with demons.

 

I'm sorry if letting other Scripture verses define the meaning of a word is disturbing to you. It seems you're most disturbed that the verses I present don't match up with the meaning you're trying to convey. To me, the phrase "You're refusing to let God teach you" is the same as saying, "You're refusing to agree with my interpretations." It's disturbing to me that you're placing your own interpretations on the same level as God's Word.

 

I'm actually trying my hardest to even understand your interpretations.You're not making it easy.

I see. Well, let's back up. Does 1 Cor. 10:7 quote from Exodus 32:6 or not?

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

I'm sorry if letting other Scripture verses define the meaning of a word is disturbing to you. It seems you're most disturbed that the verses I present don't match up with the meaning you're trying to convey. To me, the phrase "You're refusing to let God teach you" is the same as saying, "You're refusing to agree with my interpretations." It's disturbing to me that you're placing your own interpretations on the same level as God's Word.

I'm actually trying my hardest to even understand your interpretations.You're not making it easy.

 

Also, do we have to use 1 Cor. 10:21-22 to understand what 1 Cor. 10:18-20 talk about or not?

Is Acts 2 a passage about people in a worship context consuming things sacrificed to an idol?

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

I see. Well, let's back up. Does 1 Cor. 10:7 quote from Exodus 32:6 or not?

Yes, so lets look at the context of the quote. Verse six starts out with " Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did." The next verse give examples of the people desiring evil. The first example is the GCI in verse 7, where the people showed they desired evil by practicing idolatry. The next example is verse 8 where the people showed they desired evil by indulging in sexual immorality. In verse 9, they desired evil when they "put Christ to the test," and in verse 19 they grumbled.

The point is about our heart. We shouldn't desire evil. We should watch out for things that tempt our hearts and not fall into evil. Verse 13 promises that we CAN withstand the temptation to the evil things the Israelites did, " No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it."

Verses 14-17 then give a picture of participation/fellowship by looking at the Lord's Supper. When we take the cup, we are willingly identifying ourselves with Christ's blood. "Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ?"(v. 16a) When we take the bread, we are identifying ourselves with the body of Christ. " And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?"(v, 16b) When we take the Lord's Supper together as a church, we are identifying ourselves one with another as one body. "Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf." (v. 17)

Idolatry then becomes a matter of showing identification with demons, which we SHOULD NOT desire to do. Verses 18-20 say, "18 Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar? 19 Do I mean then that food sacrificed to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything? 20 No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons." Paul is saying that the Lord's table is identification with Christ, but the pagan table is identification with demons, and we shouldn't be identifying with BOTH. Verse 21-22 make this inability to identify with both perfectly clear. "21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons. 22 Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy?" Nowhere in this passage do we have indication that demons are going to "take control" in some fashion if we are identifying with them. 

So how does the quote from Genesis fit in? The words are simply a description, straight from Genesis, of what the people were doing as they "desired evil." It's a description of them choosing to be idolatrous.  You've been trying to make some sort of connection that this simple descriptive statement is an indication that the GCI people were practically under the total control of demons such that even the music they produced was corrupted by the demons. I don't understand how you make that connection, when the context of "participation" in 1 Cor 10 is directly tied to who WE choose to identify with, and it doesn't have anything to do with demons controlling people.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

I see. Well, let's back up. Does 1 Cor. 10:7 quote from Exodus 32:6 or not?

 

So how does the quote from Genesis fit in? The words are simply a description, straight from Genesis, of what the people were doing as they "desired evil." It's a description of them choosing to be idolatrous.  You've been trying to make some sort of connection that this simple descriptive statement is an indication that the GCI people were practically under the total control of demons such that even the music they produced was corrupted by the demons. I don't understand how you make that connection, when the context of "participation" in 1 Cor 10 is directly tied to who WE choose to identify with, and it doesn't have anything to do with demons controlling people.

Have you studied NT Greek? If so, do you know it well?

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Have you studied NT Greek? If so, do you know it well?

I took Greek in college. "How well I know it" is a subjective determination. I figure I know it well enough.

The sequence of thought in 1 Cor 10 is pretty clear in all the English translations I checked, so I don't think I need to go through and translate the passage myself from the Greek. There are plenty of online resources that let me read the Greek next to the English translation. 

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Have you studied NT Greek? If so, do you know it well?

 

I took Greek in college. "How well I know it" is a subjective determination. I figure I know it well enough.

 

The sequence of thought in 1 Cor 10 is pretty clear in all the English translations I checked, so I don't think I need to go through and translate the passage myself from the Greek. There are plenty of online resources that let me read the Greek next to the English translation. 

How much Greek did you take?

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

The sequence of thought in 1 Cor 10 is pretty clear in all the English translations I checked, so I don't think I need to go through and translate the passage myself from the Greek. There are plenty of online resources that let me read the Greek next to the English translation. 

 

 

How much Greek did you take?

Enough to know that koinónous doesn't mean "control."

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

The sequence of thought in 1 Cor 10 is pretty clear in all the English translations I checked, so I don't think I need to go through and translate the passage myself from the Greek. There are plenty of online resources that let me read the Greek next to the English translation. 

 

 

How much Greek did you take?

 

Enough to know that koinónous doesn't mean "control."

Be careful not to set up straw men. I have not made any specific claims about the meaning of that specific Greek word

What its use in a particular Greek grammatical structure and larger context means is what has to be established. You assert that it is used in 1 Cor. 10 to mean "identification."

If you have any Greek lexical sources that say that specific word by itself means "identification," I would like to know what those sources are and exactly what they say concerning the meaning of the word.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

I see. Well, let's back up. Does 1 Cor. 10:7 quote from Exodus 32:6 or not?

 

Yes, so lets look at the context of the quote. Verse six starts out with " Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did." The next verse give examples of the people desiring evil. The first example is the GCI in verse 7, where the people showed they desired evil by practicing idolatry. The next example is verse 8 where the people showed they desired evil by indulging in sexual immorality. In verse 9, they desired evil when they "put Christ to the test," and in verse 19 they grumbled.

The point is about our heart. We shouldn't desire evil. We should watch out for things that tempt our hearts and not fall into evil.

Here's why 10:7-10 does not provide 4 examples of "the people desiring evil," etc:

1 Corinthians 10:6 Ταῦτα δὲ τύποι ἡμῶν ἐγενήθησαν, εἰς τὸ μὴ εἶναι ἡμᾶς ἐπιθυμητὰς κακῶν, καθὼς κἀκεῖνοι ἐπεθύμησαν.

7  μηδὲ εἰδωλολάτραι γίνεσθε καθώς τινες αὐτῶν, ὥσπερ γέγραπται· ἐκάθισεν ὁ λαὸς φαγεῖν καὶ πεῖν καὶ ἀνέστησαν παίζειν.

8  μηδὲ πορνεύωμεν, καθώς τινες αὐτῶν ἐπόρνευσαν καὶ ἔπεσαν μιᾷ ἡμέρᾳ εἴκοσι τρεῖς χιλιάδες.

9  μηδὲ ἐκπειράζωμεν τὸν Χριστόν, καθώς τινες αὐτῶν ἐπείρασαν καὶ ὑπὸ τῶν ὄφεων ἀπώλλυντο.

10  μηδὲ γογγύζετε, καθάπερ τινὲς αὐτῶν ἐγόγγυσαν καὶ ἀπώλοντο ὑπὸ τοῦ ὀλοθρευτοῦ.

From 10:7-10, each verse begins with the same negative disjunctive particle μηδὲ.

BDAG (3rd ed) is the standard Greek lexicon for biblical studies. In the entry for μηδὲ, BDAG says, “Negative disjunctive particle . . . and not, but not, nor continuing a preceding negation (almost always w. μὴ) [BDAG, 647].” Note carefully that this particle continues a preceding negation; it does not have an explicative or epexegetical use listed in BDAG.

Paul’s use of μηδὲ at the beginning of verse 7 shows that he is continuing the preceding negation that he began when he said, εἰς τὸ μὴ εἶναι . . . in 10:6. Verse 7 is not the first of four examples of how the people desired evil. It is the 2nd of the negative examples given to us in this passage.

Note also, that every verse in these five verses has the same components:

Negative particle (μὴ in 10:6; μηδὲ in 10:7, 8, 9, and 10) followed by a verb (εἶναι [10:6]; γίνεσθε [10:7]; πορνεύωμεν [10:8]; ἐκπειράζωμεν [10:9]; γογγύζετε [10:10]) followed by an adverb (καθώς in 10:6, 7, 8, and 9; καθάπερ in 10:10).

First Corinthians 10:7-10 is not a passage that has 4 examples of how the people craved evil things or desired evil desires (10:6b).

First Corinthians 10:6b -10 is a passage that has 5 examples for our instruction (10:6a) of how God was not well-pleased with many of them and overthrew them in the wilderness (10:5).

The people’s lusting after evil things in 10:6b refers to the people’s sinfully craving for foods in the wilderness that God had chosen not to provide for them (Num. 11:4, 34). It is the first of the 5 negative examples given for our instruction.

The KJV rightly renders the Greek by using "neither" to connect 10:7-10 with 10:6

 1 Corinthians 10:6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. 7 Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. 8 Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. 9 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. 10 Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. 

This passage is not teaching directly that the heart was the problem in each of the 5 examples. You have misunderstood how 10:7-10 connects to 10:6.

 

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Be careful not to set up straw men. I have not made any specific claims about the meaning of that specific Greek word.

But you have made claims about what fellowship with demons would entail. You even titled one of your posts "Fellowship that surely ensnares." You said in that post, "By consuming in a worship context what has been offered to an idol, humans serve false gods and surely are ensnared. They are taken captive by the demons who are the real entities behind those idols." You later described these humans as being "influenced by demons to such an extent that they are not in their right minds:" You then said "People under strong demonic influence who are not in their senses but not possessed are incapable of worshiping God properly in any form." You have repeated pulled a sentence out of 1 Cor. 10:7 to imply that the wild,out-of-control behavior of the GCI was the result of the fellowship of verse 20. You wrote, "All the people who in a worship context ate and drank what was offered to the idol in the GCI came into fellowship with demons. Because they sinned greatly by engaging in that idolatrous eating and drinking, none of them had any ability to resist the devil, even if they were believers." From what I am reading, your idea of fellowship is "such a strong influence that it ensnares, puts one out of their right mind, is impossible to resist, and results in uncontrollable behavior."

I don't think I'm setting up a straw man. I'm simply reading the specific claims you've made about "fellowship."

Quote:
What its use in a particular Greek grammatical structure and larger context means is what has to be established.
I've already presented the way I read the context. How do you see the analogy between fellowship with Christ's body and blood and fellowship with demons? The same Greek word is used in both sides of the analogy.

Quote:
You assert that it is used in 1 Cor. 10 to mean "identification."

If you have any Greek lexical sources that say that specific word by itself means "identification," I would like to know what those sources are and exactly what they say concerning the meaning of the word.

Well, the lexicon says the meaning is that of partnership, association, community, and communion. From the context o 1 Cor 10, I think the idea of identification is an accurate representation of our role within the partnership. When we believe, our identities become unified with Christ, such that His death on the cross applies to us. In Gal. 2:20, Paul says, "I have been crucified with Christ.." When we partake of the Lord's Supper together, we are recognizing Christ's death for us, and also recognizing that "we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf."(v. 17) I suppose "unification" might be a more precise word that "identification," but I think identification shows our willingness to live our lives according to this unity we have.

Do you have any lexical sources to show that "fellowship" has the meaning which you've been describing (even though you are, for some reason, denying that you've described fellowship)?

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Be careful not to set up straw men. I have not made any specific claims about the meaning of that specific Greek word.

But you have made claims about what fellowship with demons would entail. You even titled one of your posts "Fellowship that surely ensnares." You said in that post, "By consuming in a worship context what has been offered to an idol, humans serve false gods and surely are ensnared. They are taken captive by the demons who are the real entities behind those idols." You later described these humans as being "influenced by demons to such an extent that they are not in their right minds:" You then said "People under strong demonic influence who are not in their senses but not possessed are incapable of worshiping God properly in any form." You have repeated pulled a sentence out of 1 Cor. 10:7 to imply that the wild,out-of-control behavior of the GCI was the result of the fellowship of verse 20. You wrote, "All the people who in a worship context ate and drank what was offered to the idol in the GCI came into fellowship with demons. Because they sinned greatly by engaging in that idolatrous eating and drinking, none of them had any ability to resist the devil, even if they were believers." From what I am reading, your idea of fellowship is "such a strong influence that it ensnares, puts one out of their right mind, is impossible to resist, and results in uncontrollable behavior."

 

I don't think I'm setting up a straw man. I'm simply reading the specific claims you've made about "fellowship."

 

Quote:
What its use in a particular Greek grammatical structure and larger context means is what has to be established.

I've already presented the way I read the context. How do you see the analogy between fellowship with Christ's body and blood and fellowship with demons? The same Greek word is used in both sides of the analogy.

 

 

Quote:
You assert that it is used in 1 Cor. 10 to mean "identification."

 

If you have any Greek lexical sources that say that specific word by itself means "identification," I would like to know what those sources are and exactly what they say concerning the meaning of the word.

 

Well, the lexicon says the meaning is that of partnership, association, community, and communion. From the context o 1 Cor 10, I think the idea of identification is an accurate representation of our role within the partnership. When we believe, our identities become unified with Christ, such that His death on the cross applies to us. In Gal. 2:20, Paul says, "I have been crucified with Christ.." When we partake of the Lord's Supper together, we are recognizing Christ's death for us, and also recognizing that "we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf."(v. 17) I suppose "unification" might be a more precise word that "identification," but I think identification shows our willingness to live our lives according to this unity we have.

 

Do you have any lexical sources to show that "fellowship" has the meaning which you've been describing (even though you are, for some reason, denying that you've described fellowship)?

My comment about straw men was specific to your saying that you know Greek "enough to know that koinónous doesn't mean 'control.'" I never made that claim for that specific Greek word.

No, the same Greek word is not used in both sides of the analogy. Two different Greek words are used: κοινωνία  (1 Cor. 10:16) and κοινωνός (1 Cor. 10:18, 20).

As for your other comments, I will address them in upcoming comments.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

The people’s lusting after evil things in 10:6b refers to the people’s sinfully craving for foods in the wilderness that God had chosen not to provide for them (Num. 11:4, 34). It is the first of the 5 negative examples given for our instruction.

Ah, but the first example is a foundation upon which the other examples are building. The passage is Numbers is one of the times in which the people lusted for evil things. It's not the only time. James 1:15 tells us, "Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin." Lust is the foundation for all other sins. Any other sin that's listed started out with lust. 1 Cor 10 does not reference the Numbers passage in verse 6, as verse 7 references a particular time of idolatry. There is no reason from  verse 6 that we should limit the lusting to just sinfully craving foods in the wilderness.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

No, the same Greek word is not used in both sides of the analogy. Two different Greek words are used: κοινωνία  (1 Cor. 10:16) and κοινωνός (1 Cor. 10:18, 20).

Ah, I see you're going to quibble about whether different forms of the same Greek word are actually related to each other in meaning.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

No, the same Greek word is not used in both sides of the analogy. Two different Greek words are used: κοινωνία  (1 Cor. 10:16) and κοινωνός (1 Cor. 10:18, 20).

 

Ah, I see you're going to quibble about whether different forms of the same Greek word are actually related to each other in meaning.

You are making a factually wrong assertion. This is not a case of "different forms of the same Greek word." Those two words are two different Greek words--they are not different forms of the same Greek word.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

The people’s lusting after evil things in 10:6b refers to the people’s sinfully craving for foods in the wilderness that God had chosen not to provide for them (Num. 11:4, 34). It is the first of the 5 negative examples given for our instruction.

 

Ah, but the first example is a foundation upon which the other examples are building. The passage is Numbers is one of the times in which the people lusted for evil things. It's not the only time. James 1:15 tells us, "Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin." Lust is the foundation for all other sins. Any other sin that's listed started out with lust. 1 Cor 10 does not reference the Numbers passage in verse 6, as verse 7 references a particular time of idolatry. There is no reason from  verse 6 that we should limit the lusting to just sinfully craving foods in the wilderness.

No, the first one is not a foundation upon which the other examples are building. In the first example, the people were not lusting for things that were sinful; they were desiring foodstuffs that were not sinful at all in and of themselves. In all the other examples, the people engaged in actions that are sinful and are never right.

There is a very good reason that you cannot say that the first example is the foundation for the rest. The grammar in the Greek does not support your contention.

Had the Spirit wanted us to understand that the first was the foundation for the rest, He could easily have inspired the use of a different grammatical structure that would have communicated that to us.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

The point is about our heart. We shouldn't desire evil. We should watch out for things that tempt our hearts and not fall into evil. Verse 13 promises that we CAN withstand the temptation to the evil things the Israelites did, " No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it."

Yes, we can withstand temptation with God's help, but only when we are right with Him. If we flout Him and sin presumptuously against Him, this will not be true.

Kevin Miller wrote:

Verses 14-17 then give a picture of participation/fellowship by looking at the Lord's Supper. When we take the cup, we are willingly identifying ourselves with Christ's blood. "Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ?"(v. 16a) When we take the bread, we are identifying ourselves with the body of Christ. " And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?"(v, 16b) When we take the Lord's Supper together as a church, we are identifying ourselves one with another as one body. "Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf." (v. 17)

You seem to be treating verses 14-17 as if they were a separate unit that "give a picture of participation/fellowship by looking at the Lord's Supper." Verse 14, however, is directly tied to what precedes it ("Wherefore . . .") because it gives a command concerning idolatry, which ties it back to what preceded it.

Concerning idolatry, God demands that we flee it. We are not to give it any place in our lives. God is not going to give you help so that you can bear the temptation to commit idolatry if you willfully put yourself in situations where you encounter such temptations--He commands you to flee it!

Kevin Miller wrote:

Idolatry then becomes a matter of showing identification with demons, which we SHOULD NOT desire to do. Verses 18-20 say, "18 Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar? 19 Do I mean then that food sacrificed to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything? 20 No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons." Paul is saying that the Lord's table is identification with Christ, but the pagan table is identification with demons, and we shouldn't be identifying with BOTH. Verse 21-22 make this inability to identify with both perfectly clear. "21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons. 22 Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy?" Nowhere in this passage do we have indication that demons are going to "take control" in some fashion if we are identifying with them. 

No, idolatry is not "a matter of showing identification with demons," whatever exactly you might think that mean (I do not know what you think it means).

Paul says explicitly in v. 20 that when the Gentiles offers sacrifices to an idol, they offer those sacrifices to demons. When humans do so, they give demons worship that belongs only to God. They partner with demons to deny God the worship that is due Him. They partner with demons to advance demonic interests, fulfill demonic desires, and accomplish demonic objectives. They give place to the devil in their lives that gives him the opportunity to devour them and others.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

Well, the lexicon says the meaning is that of partnership, association, community, and communion. From the context o 1 Cor 10, I think the idea of identification is an accurate representation of our role within the partnership. When we believe, our identities become unified with Christ, such that His death on the cross applies to us. In Gal. 2:20, Paul says, "I have been crucified with Christ.." When we partake of the Lord's Supper together, we are recognizing Christ's death for us, and also recognizing that "we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf."(v. 17) I suppose "unification" might be a more precise word that "identification," but I think identification shows our willingness to live our lives according to this unity we have.

Do you have any lexical sources to show that "fellowship" has the meaning which you've been describing (even though you are, for some reason, denying that you've described fellowship)?

Here is how two top Greek lexical authorities define κοινωνός

"κ. τῶν δαιμονίων be a partner w. the divinities (of polytheists) (in the sacrifices offered to them) 1 Cor 10:20" (BDAG, 553)

“one who participates with another in some enterprise or matter of joint concern – ‘partner, associate, one who joins in with” (Greek-English Lexicon of the NT Based on Semantic Domains Vol. 1, 447)

These sources both point to people partnering with demons in the sacrifices offered to them. This goes way beyond any notion of identification. Such partnering is a flagrant violation of the divine commands not to fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness (Eph. 5:11) and not to give the devil any place (Eph. 4:27). When people team up with demons to engage in this vile, sinful behavior that mightily provokes God to wrath, what do you think that means concerning the ability of demons to strongly influence such people?

Do you think that these people are submitted to God when they do this so that they can resist the devil? Are such people highly susceptible to being devoured by the devil or not?

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

I see. Well, let's back up. Does 1 Cor. 10:7 quote from Exodus 32:6 or not?

So how does the quote from Genesis [Exod. 32] fit in? The words are simply a description, straight from Genesis [Exodus], of what the people were doing as they "desired evil." It's a description of them choosing to be idolatrous.  You've been trying to make some sort of connection that this simple descriptive statement is an indication that the GCI people were practically under the total control of demons such that even the music they produced was corrupted by the demons. I don't understand how you make that connection, when the context of "participation" in 1 Cor 10 is directly tied to who WE choose to identify with, and it doesn't have anything to do with demons controlling people.

As I have presented earlier, 1 Cor. 10 is not "directly tied to who WE choose to identify with" when it speaks of those who "have fellowship with demons" (10:20). 

Going back to 1 Cor. 10:7 now, we must accept that the Spirit focuses our attention to the fact that the people were idolatrous in two specific ways:

7 Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.

Through this statement, the Spirit commands believers not to be idolatrous in eating and drinking in a worship context what has been offered to an idol, and He commands us not to be idolatrous in doing what these people did when they "rose up to play" subsequent to their idolatrous consumption of those foodstuffs.

Because the Spirit has done this and because Ex. 32 records what those subsequent activities of those people were in their idolatrous playing, we must pay attention to what Exodus 32 reveals to us about those subsequent idolatrous activities that they engaged in when they "rose up to play."

RajeshG's picture

Divine wisdom is from above, but earthly, sensual, and devilish wisdom is not (James 3:15). This reality applies to all areas of our understanding about all things.

In the perfect wisdom of God, He has provided to us vital revelation about the things that comprised the idolatrous worship in the GCI. Because that revelation includes information about the music on that occasion, we know that information about the music is vital information for what we believe about ungodly worship music versus godly worship music.

Furthermore, because that music was produced by people who partnered with demons in their idolatrous playing on that occasion, we know that their music was demonically influenced music. Concerning such music that is demonically influenced, the only inerrant, infallible information that we have is what God has provided to us in His Word. What God has revealed to us is the perfect information that we need to know about demonically influenced music that is not acceptable to Him in corporate worship.

The Spirit has provided us two verses that pertain directly to the music in the GCI:

Exodus 32:17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said unto Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp.

18 And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Neither Moses nor Joshua could hear any of the lyrics of what the people were singing. We are to learn from this that whether the lyrics are godly or ungodly is not the deciding criterion for whether worship music is pleasing to God or not.

What they could hear was the composite sound emanating from the camp. This fact teaches us that whether music is acceptable to God or not ultimately is determined by the nature of the composite sound of whatever sounds are being produced.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

They partner with demons to deny God the worship that is due Him. They partner with demons to advance demonic interests, fulfill demonic desires, and accomplish demonic objectives.

I agree with these sentences about what it means to fellowship with demons. In fact, this is what I meant when i wrote on page 3 of this thread, "To me, fellowship means something like "going in the same direction," " and "We as humans shouldn't be traveling in the same rebellious path as demons do," I used slightly different wording, but the thought was the same, and you dismissed it.

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