Some people give food to statues that they think are gods
1 I will answer your next question now, about those statues that some people make, and they think those statues are gods. They give food to those statues, and they reckon the statues give that food power. Then those people eat that food, or they sell it to other people. And you Christians asked me, “Can we eat that food that they gave to those statues?” That’s what you asked me.
Well, before I answer your question, I want you to remember this. All of us know something, but if we think we know more than other people, we start thinking wrong, like we reckon we are really smart. No, we can’t try to be smart. Instead, we have to love people. If we love other people, it helps them to get strong.
2 So if you reckon you know all about everything, you don’t really know much at all. You still have to learn a lot more.
3 But if you love God, then God really knows you, like you are his good friend.
4 All right, now I will answer your question about the food that people give to those statues that they think are gods. We Christians know that a statue is not really a god at all. We know that there is only the one God.
5 But some people, that are not Christians, they respect lots of spirits. They respect spirits in the sky, and spirits on the earth. And they think those spirits are gods, and they let those spirits be their bosses. And people make statues that they think look like those spirits, and they think those statues get power from those spirits.
6 But we Christians know that those statues are nothing at all. We know there is only one God. He is our father. He made everything, and we want to do whatever he wants, as long as we live. And there is only one true boss. He is Jesus Christ. He worked with God, and together they made everything. And Jesus gives us Christians real life.
7 But some Christians don’t understand all that. They showed respect to those statues for a long time before they became Christians, and then they believed in Jesus, but they still think those statues have power. They can’t work out what is true and what is not true. They know that it is wrong to respect those statues, so they don’t eat any of the food that people give to those statues. They think that if they do eat that food, then they are doing something wrong, and it makes them feel bad, like they are not clean.
8 But really, it doesn’t matter if we eat that food or not. If we eat it, we will not get anything special, and if we don’t eat it, we will not miss out on anything. You see, no food can help us be close friends with God.
9 But you have to be very careful. Even though you are free to eat anything, you have to think about those Christians that can’t work out what is true and what is not true. You don’t want to make them go wrong.
10 It’s like this. Some of you Christians know it’s all right to eat food in that place where people show respect to those statues. But if you go and eat that food, another Christian might see you there. If that other Christian doesn’t know what to think about that food, they might think that you are showing respect to that statue when you eat that food, so that Christian will think it’s all right to show respect to that statue. And then that Christian will show respect to that statue, and that is wrong.
11 So you will wreck that other Christian that is not so sure about these things. You see, you yourself know that food has no power, but if then you eat it, and that makes another Christian go wrong, you are doing wrong because you wreck that other Christian. And Jesus Christ died for that person.
12 You see, if other Christians are not sure what is right or wrong, and if they see what you do, and if that gets them to do something wrong, you are really bad. If you hurt them like that, you are really hurting Jesus Christ. Don’t do that.
13 So, you see, this is what I think. I reckon every other Christian is like a brother or a sister to me, so I will not eat anything that gets them to go wrong. If something that I want to eat might get another Christian to do something wrong, I will not eat it. Never.